Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Narratives: Family Biennial

Narratives: Family Biennial

Gallery 80808 is pleased to announce this weekend exhibition featuring work by Mana Hewitt, Steve Hewitt, and Vanessa Grubbs.

OPENING RECEPTION: Friday, August 31 from 5:30 until 8:00
Additional hours: Saturday and Sunday from Noon until 5:00

For additional information: Please visit the gallery website at or call (803) 252-6134.

Free parking is available after 6 PM in the city owned lot located diagonally across Lady Street from the gallery...but entrance to this lot is off Washington Street across from the police station.

Vista Studio Artist exhibiting in Gallery 80808 in August

Vista Studio artist exhibiting through August 28

The artists with space at Vista Studios are exhibiting work in Gallery 80808, its atrium, and the hallways through Tuesday, August 28. Hours are by chance or appointment...this is actually many, many OPEN hours. The gallery is generally open whenever one of the artists is working in his or her studio...which is most of the time. There's generally artists working from late morning through mid-afternoon and again from late afternoon through early evening. Just call (803) 252-6134 or, if in the area, stop by!

Fiifo Boamah and Derk Ansani present "Authentic Africa"

Fiifi Boamah & Derek Ansani present Authentic Africa

AUTHENTIC AFRICA, presented by Fiifi Boamah and Derek Ansani, runs from Thursday August 2nd, 2007 to Tuesday August 7th, 2007 with an opening reception on Thursday August 2nd (5pm to 9pm). Weekday hours are 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Saturdays, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sundays, 1 – 6 p.m.

The exhibition will feature original canvas paintings, sculptures and masks which will seek to bring viewers and patrons to a place where they will experience see and taste Africa. The artwork reflects the rich culture and endeavors of Africa. The artists’ work expresses their heritage, emotions, thoughts, feelings, fears, dreams and their observations of every day life.

Derek Ansani is committed to bringing authentic, original and unique African artwork that reflects the continent of Africa to the international scene. We exhibit hand-crafted endeavors by Africans which shows the creativity, spirituality and skills of the artists.

The exhibit and sale will take place at the Gallery 80808 in Columbia's located on 808 Lady Street. Admission is free.

For additional information by telephone, call 843-617-1713 or call the gallery at (803) 252-6134. For information via email Please also visit the Vista Studio website at

Kiln Opening, July 14, 2007

Kiln Opening: July 14

After weeks of work vending the kilns, Jeff Donovan's studio is handsomely equipped for firing both regular clay and paper clay. The "grand opening" of the first paper clay firing was Saturday, July 14. The work inside looked spectacular. Even the "Kiln Gods" must have been pleased!

Also, Vista Studios' Main Gallery, atrium, and hallways are currently exhibiting work by the resident artists. This display will hang until August 2. The gallery is open when a member artist is at work...which nowadays is almost all the time! There's a day crew coming by 10 AM that overlaps an active late afternoon and evening crew. Most weekends are open too. It's best to call 252-6134 before making a special trip. Free parking after 6 PM and on weekends is available in the city owned lot diagonally across Lady Street...but entrance is off Washington Street across from the police station.

Cara Moskot, July 5 - 10, 2007

CARA MOSKOT at Gallery 808008

Cara Moskot presents her Master of Fine Arts Exhibition: Forming Sense From Out of Place from July 5-10, 2007 at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios, 808 Lady Street in Columbia's downtown Vista. There will be an artist’s Reception on Friday, July 6, 5:00-7:00pm. Additional hours are from 1-5pm Weekdays, Saturday and Sunday and by appointment.

For more information, contact Cara Moskot at (225) 810-6615 or Also, please visit the gallery's website: or call (803) 252-6134.

Free parking for the exhibit is available after 6 PM in the city owner lot diagonally across Lady Street from the gallery...but entrance is off Washington Street across from the police station.

The following is Cara Moskot's statement for this exhibit:

Moskot explores the relationship between material and concept in paintings inspired by experience. She uses visual language as an analogue to experience, and builds narratives based on sensation as tangible and intuitive. Born and raised in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Moskot identifies with its milieu as “melting pot”. Her academic and artistic background has been interdisciplinary, fueling interest in conceptual integration. Moskot received a Graduate Teaching Assistantship at the University of South Carolina and was a recipient of the inaugural Arts Institute 2005-2006 Residency Award. She has served as the Instructor of Record for Foundations Courses ARTS 103 and ARTS 112 at the University of South Carolina, Columbia.

Posts from May 22, 2007 until July 1, 2007

Skate and Create Photos and news,+Columbia,+SC&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us
By cutting and pasting the link above, one can view photographs from the recent exhibition, Skate and Create, held at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios from June 21 through 24. The link brings up an archived page, simply scroll down to a box called "Spotted" where the words Skate and Create are listed. Click: Skate and Create. Thank you Jen Ray!


Columbia, SC

What a great week-end! The Skate and Create Event brought in over $2000. Thanks to everyone for coming out and helping us to move one step closer to getting a great skatepark in Columbia. Special thanks to Susan Lynns and 80808 Gallery for hosting the show!!! Thanks to Shannon at Body Rites Tattoo and Dave Toole at Bluetile Skateboards for sponsoring the event. Thanks to Lance Mountain, Kris Markovich, Jay Croft, Ryan August, David Yaughian, and all of the artists for donating your art!!! It was an amazing show. All purchased pieces have been picked up by the owners and we will have more pieces displayed soon at Sid and Nancy!

Below are entries on POUR IT NOW!, the official website for the non-profit organization raising funds for skateboarding facilities in the Midlands.


Columbia, SC

Thanks to everyone that came out to the skate and create art opening and hill bombing session yesterday. Everything came together really nicely and we are really stoked about that. Please tell all your friends how awesome it was so theyll come check it out.

We brought in over $700 in art and tshirt sales last night!!! Remember the show is open for 3 more days. There are so many awesome pieces for sale including art by Lance Mountain, Kris Markovich, Michael Siebens, Ryan August, and many more!!!

Tonight at 9pm, don't miss the premiere of "Blood Money", a skate video by Chris Brunt coming out of Asheville NC. viewing is at the 80808 gallery and it is free to get in.

The guys will be there selling videos and hanging out and a portion of all the videos sold at the event will go towards Pour It Now. There will be an after party at the Whig from 10 to 12.

Saturday, "Welcome to Your Doom!!!" a video by Dorian "Schlotzky" Warneck. Video starts at four. Dorian will be selling videos there for 15 bucks. Free to get in. Still no ramps.

Spartanburg Museum Biennial website show

Although the Spartanburg biennial juried show is now over, there is an excellent presentation of the work on the museum's website. To view the art, please go to:

The Vista Studio artists represented were: Jeff Donovan, Stephen Chesley, Susan Lenz, and David Yaghjian. Also from Columbia were: Mike Williams and Marcelo Novo. Former Vista Studio artist (now living in Charlotte) included Jeanette Grassi.

Skate and Create

Above is David Yaghjian in his studio, busy painting a skateboard for this event. Below is Clare Yaghjian with her completed skateboard.

Skate and Create is being held at Vista Studios on June 21 through 24. It is an art event focusing on the need for a civic skateboarding facility and being held by a new non-profit organization aimed to help raise funds for a future location. Several skateboard company donated blank boards for artists' uses. Approximately 30 area artists are using them. These works of art will be available in the gallery.

In addition to the boards, four artists are being featured: Ryan August (screen printing and mixed media); Lauren Gregory (oils); Miguel Deleon (photography); and Ray Croft (mixed media)

Hours: Open Skating/Skate demo on Lady Street in front of the gallery on Thursday, June 21 from 4 - 7. Exhibition reception follows from 7 - 10.

Friday: 7 - 10 PM with screening of "Blood Money", a video produced by Chris Brunt and Eric Hunt of Asheville, NC at 9 PM

Saturday: Noon to 6 PM with screening of "Welcome to Your Doom", a video by Dreher High School rising eleventh grader Dorian Warneck at 4 PM. (This is not Dorian's first film but it is his first time incorporating many local skaters in a community project. Dorian is following in the footsteps of Jason Jones, a USC grad who turned his love of skateboarding and film into a successful NYC film editing career.)

Sunday: Exhibit open from noon until 6 PM

Co-Signed by Dave Alsobrooks

Dave Alsobrooks will stage “Co-Signed: Interpretive Paintings of Handmade Signs” at Gallery 80808 in Columbia, SC. The mixed media exhibition will run for two weeks, beginning June 6. There will be an opening reception at Gallery 80808, Thursday, June 6 at 6:00 pm.
The Co-Signed paintings are a partnership between the artist and scores of un-named, unknowing individuals. The thoughts of these individuals were originally broadcast to the world at large primarily through handmade signs and overheard conversations. Alsobrooks collects these manifestations of thought and repurposes them into paintings exhibiting an array of materials
and techniques. His intent is to place the found language in new contextual environments, allowing for new interpretations of the words to arise.
“I assign new meaning to these found words through my painting process ... in a sense, I’m steering the conversation through associations of color, materials, etc. but my hope is to only supply the basis for viewers to create their own unique narratives and to explore the facets of language and communication.”
While the Co-Signed work recycles words, it does not replicate original expressions. In fact, says the artist, “The pieces generally have nothing in common with the appearances of the original expressions.” He goes on to explain this point as the origin of the exhibition’s name. “These paintings are not possible without the ingenuity of others. They are truly collaborative in this sense, even if only one side of the equation knows it. They’re Co-Signed.”
Dave is an artist living in Efland, NC. His work has been exhibited across North Carolina and in Chicago, New York and London. He is a partner at The PARAGRAPH Project in Durham, NC and received a B.F.A. in Design from Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC. | |
Gallery 80808 | 808 Lady Street | Columbia, SC 29201


Don Zurlo gathers inspiration from Italy

Recently Vista Studios' artist Don Zurlo flew off to soak up some Italian inspiration in Tuscany. He found the landscape beautiful and the US dollar weak. The other artists cannot wait to see the results in oil paint.

Posts from April 17, 2007 until May 15, 2007

Corley Mill Spring Art Exhibit

The Corley Mill Artist Group opens their spring art exhibition with a reception at Gallery 80808, 808 Lady Street this Friday, Map 18 from, 5 until 8 PM. Additional hours are on May 19 and 20 from 11 AM until 3 PM. For more information, please visit their website: or email or call (803) 356-2986.

Free parking is available after 6 PM and all weekend in the city owned lot diagonally across Lady Street from the gallery....but entrance to this area is off Washington Street across from the police station.

The gallery's telephone number is (803) 252-6134. The website is


Over the weekend of May 5 and 6, the artists of Vista Studios participated in the Midland's new, major art event: OPEN STUDIOS. This was part of the visual arts components of the Columbia Festival of the Arts. Over 380 visitors came to Vista Studios, many from other counties and even far off states. Artists were available to discuss their inspirations, techniques, and creative processes. Artwork was sold. Above is Stephen Chesley's studio.

Above is Sharon Licata in her stone sculpting studio.

Above is Heidi Darr-Hope in her mixed media mecca.

Above is Ethel Brody in her studio.

Above is Pat Callahan surrounded by her figurative drawings and mixed media boxes.

Above is Laura Spong's oil painting studio.


The artists at Vista Studios, 808 Lady Street in Columbia's downtown Vista, are among the 66 participating visual artists in OPEN STUDIOS, part of the Columbia Festival of the Arts. The event is scheduled from 10 AM until 6 PM on Saturday and from noon until 6 PM on Sunday. This is a opportunity for the public to engage artists while at work, talk about inspirations and techniques, and to leisurely view (and hopefully buy!) fantastic works of art!
The image appearing in the previous post includes a detail by the Vista Studios participating artists, from left to right: Susan Lenz, Stephen Chesley, Laura Spong, Pat Gilmartin, Don Zurlo, Sharon Licata, Heidi Darr-Hope, Ethel Brody, Pat Callahan, Jeff Donovan, and David Yaghjian
Free parking is available in the city lot diagonally across Lady Street from Vista Studios but the entrance to the lot is off Washington Street, across from the police station.


Please join the artists of Vista Studios for Artista Vista, Thursday, April 26 from 5 - 9 PM and for ART DAY, Saturday, April 28 from 11 AM - 3 PM. The main gallery, atrium, and all the hallways are hanging with recent work by all twelve, active members of the group including: Pat Callahan, Jeff Donovan, David Yaghjian, Laura Spong, Pat Gilmartin, Ethel Brody, Don Zurlo, Stephen Chesley, Sharon Licata, Robert Kennedy, Heidi Darr-Hope, and Susan Lenz.


The artists at Vista Studios are busy this spring! Previous posts included some of this information, like STUDIO VISITS at the Greenville Museum of Art, April 18 - June 3. This is a multi-generational trek through South Carolina and features Laura Spong and David Yaghjian among others. There is also a free artist's talk on Thursday, May 3 at 6:30 PM.

Pat Gilmartin has been invited to participate in an exhibit at Brookgreen Sculpture Garden, Pawleys Island, SC. The show, which runs from March 31 through June 17, 2007, highlights sculptors who participated in Brookgreen's Kenan Master Sculpture Program from 2003 – 2005.

Susan Lenz has work in the 35th annual juried show in the Fayetteville Museum of Art, Mar. 18 - May 6. The website includes a slide show and is at She also has work in the 50th Annual National Juried Art Exhibition at the Rocky Mount Arts Center, Mar. 28 - June 17 and will have other pieces in the 28th Annual South Carolina Artists Exhibition at the Pickens County Museum of Art and History, Apr. 28 - June 9.

Several of the Vista Studio artist were accepted into the Hub City Biennial Art Exhibition at the Spartanburg Museum, Mar. 31 - June 17. The artists showing are: Jeff Donovan, Stephen Chesley, David Yaghjian, and Susan Lenz.

Artista Vista is always a busy time for the Vista Studios artists. Yet, this year is even bigger and better. In addition to the "NEW WORKS" exhibit in the main gallery and atrium of Vista Studios, two of the artists are showing elsewhere.

Stephen Chesley is being featured with a solo show at Carol Saunders Gallery, 922 Gervais Street with an opening on April 26. The show runs through May 26. (For more information: 803-256-3046)

David Yaghjian is being featured along with his late father, Edmund Yaghjian, at if ART Gallery, 1223 Lincoln Street. This show's opening reception is on Friday, Apr. 20 from 5 - 10 PM, is part of Artista Vista, and closes May 12. (For more information: 803-238-2351)

At McKissick Museum of Art, the annual, juried fund-raiser "A Fool For Art" will hang through May 5. The show includes: Pat Gilmartin, Laura Spong, Ethel Brody, David Yaghjian, Stephen Chesley, Sharon Licata, and Susan Lenz.

One more exciting happening is OPEN STUDIO, Saturday May 5 (10 - 6) and Sunday May 6 (Noon - 6). Eleven of the thirteen artists at Vista Studios are participating in this exciting event, part of the Columbia Festival of the Arts. This is a chance to see 66 artists in Richland and Lexington Counties working in their studios, to talk about inspirations and processes, and to view various media in studio settings. It is part of the Columbia Festival of the Arts. (For more information:

Posts from March 19, 2007 until April 9, 2007

Tyrone Geter Presents HEADS UP

Tyrone Geter opens HEADS UP at Gallery 80808, 808 Lady Street in Columbia's downtown Vista this Thursday, April 12, 2007 with an artist's reception that evening from 5 PM until 9 PM. The exhibition runs through Tuesday, April 17. The exhibition will feature new pastels, charcoals, sculptures, and oils by this excellent Columbia resident.

Tyrone, a nationally acclaimed children book illustrator, recently donated all of the original drawings from his book “Little Tree Growing In the Shade” to the Columbia Public Library.

“HeadsUp” is a collection of pastels, charcoals, oils, mixed media, and sculpture pieces exploring the realm of personality in people of ordinary means. The collection originally conceived as nothing more than an excuse for technical self-indulgence quickly evolved into an exploration into the self and the many ways that the personality can be portrayed.

Tyrone, an accomplished artist in a wide variety of materials and techniques, gives the viewer a deeper understanding of the many levels of accomplishments that can be obtained when a committed working artist is exploring the necessity of growth and change. These are two important elements needed for personal artistic development and self-realization.

For more information, call 803-865-6384 or email
Please also visit the gallery's website at The gallery telephone number is 803-252-6134. Parking after 6 PM is free in the city lot diagonally across Lady Street from the gallery; however, the entrance is off Washington Street across from the Main Police Station.

STUDIO VISITS feature work by Yaghjian and Spong

"Reflection", 2006 by David Yaghjian
"Untitled", 1960 by Laura Spong

Two of Vista Studios artists, Laura Spong and David Yaghjian, are featured in STUDIO VISITS at the Greenville County Museum of Art, 420 College Street, Greenville, SC. The exhibition opens on April 18 and continues through June 10 with an artists preview on Tuesday, April 17 from 6:30 - 8:30 PM. The Museum is open Tuesday–Saturday from 11–5, remaining open until 8 on Thursday evenings. On Sundays the hours are 1–5.

STUDIO VISITS ia a multi-generational trek through South Carolina, featuring paintings by Laura Spong, David Yaghjian, David Boatwright, Dorothy Netherland, and Alexia Timberlake with ceramic sculptures by Jay Owens. The exhibition offeres a collection of recent work by a unique combinationa of artists, presenting experimentation and accomplishment, humor and serious themes, evoked by artistic voices of significant maturity as well as enthusiastic youth.

For additional information or to respond for the opening preview, please contact

Pat Gilmartin's art at Brookgreen Sculpture Garden

Pat Gilmartin has been invited to participate in an exhibit at Brookgreen Sculpture Garden, Pawleys Island, SC. The show, which runs from March 31 through June 17, 2007, highlights sculptors who participated in Brookgreen's Kenan Master Sculpture Program from 2003 – 2005.

Brookgreen Gardens is a National Historic Landmark with one of the most significant collections of figurative sculpture in an outdoor setting by American artists in the world. Located in the South Carolina Lowcountry in former rice plantation settings, the beautifully landscaped gardens comprise a jewel-like setting for enjoying nature and sculpture. For further information call 843-235-6000 or email to

Pat Parise: New Works opens at Gallery 80808

"New Works" by Columbia, S.C. artist Patrick Parise will be on view
from Friday, March 30 through Tuesday, April 10, 2007 at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios, 808 Lady Street the Vista area of Columbia.

Parise will be showing his paintings on wood panels as well as new
etchings and paintings on canvas. The new images will again include a range of his work, from colorful landscapes to beautifully flowing abstracts.

An opening reception will be held at the Gallery on Friday, March 30th from 5 - 10 pm.

The artist will be available at the gallery on Saturdays from 11 - 6 pm and on Sundays from 1 - 5 pm, on weekdays from 11 - 7 pm and by appointment. Call 803-790-2136 or email the
artist: pat Also visit his web site at


Sisters Show Work in Wood & Weave

The exhibition Wood & Weave opens at Gallery 80808 with a reception on Friday, March 23, 2007, from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. The exhibition presents the works of two sisters: custom caned furniture by Kate Callahan and shadow boxes by Pat Callahan. Both artists use traditional techniques and materials ingeniously to weave their creations.

Kate Callahan first tackled caning when she volunteered to recane one of her parents’ kitchen chairs. Armed with an instructional video and an unflagging can-do spirit she soon built a steady business of furniture recaning and repair, learning techniques and cane patterns on the job. Kate leapt into furniture design in 2003 when she designed and built (with her father’s assistance) a maple armchair with caned back and seat. The chair is comfortable to “sitters” of all sizes and fitting for formal or casual d├ęcor. Engaged by the “drama of wood” and possible materials, Kate has crafted the chair in mahogany, in walnut, with Danish cord, and with a rush weave. In addition to two variations of the chair, Wood & Weave will include Kate’s entry table in elm and in maple, coffee table in mahogany, display boxes in maple, wenge, mahogany, and purple heart--all incorporating her signature caned floating shelf--and a cane wreath designed for a 2006 invitational exhibition at the Peninsula Fine Arts Center, Inc., Newport News, Virginia. Kate’s furniture received the best in show award at the 2006 Gosport Arts Festival, Portsmouth, Virginia. Kate resides in Chesapeake, Virginia.

Pat Callahan’s recent work displays equal ingenuity and beauty. Known first for her figure drawings, the Columbia artist presents shadow boxes in Wood & Weave. Working in three dimensions has unleashed Pat’s propensity to collect feathers, rocks, and whatnots; and a love of wood, tools, and metal workings. Her constructions explore what the artist terms “burrs,” kernels of truth and deceit, perceptions and distortions, and unsettling beauty. The boxes exhibit a curious juxtaposition of found and created elements and marked restraint and balance, the result of the artist’s design sense honed over a graphic design career. Included in Wood & Weave will be a series of shadow boxes with work-weary figures that speak to distorted cultural and personal work ethic and “night song in 3 acts,” a three box homage to nightfall when Pat often heads to her studio at Vista Studios.

Wood & Weave continues through March 27, 2007. Gallery 80808 is located with Vista Studios at 808 Lady St., Columbia. Weekend hours will be 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. For more information please call Vista Studios at 803.252.6134.

Posts from February 6, 2007 until March 7, 2007

if Art International presents Leamon and Thornton

if ART, International Fine Art Services
presents at

Gallery 80808/Vista Studios, 808 Lady St., Columbia, S.C.

Deanna Leamon: Shroud & H. Brown Thornton:

Great Sea Creatures & the Earth on the Back of the Giant Turtle

March 9 – 20, 2007

Artists’ Reception:

Friday, March 9, 5 – 10 p.m.

Opening Hours:

Saturdays, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sundays, 1 – 5 p.m.; and Weekdays, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. and by appointment

For additional information contact Wim Roefs at if ART: (803) 238-2351 or call the gallery at (803) 252-6134 or visit the Gallery 80808/Vista Studios website:

For its March exhibition at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios in Columbia, S.C., if ART, International Fine Art Services, presents solo exhibitions by Deanna Leamon and H. Brown Thornton. Leamon will exhibit mixed media works on paper. Thornton will show mixed media paintings. Both artists are represented by Columbia’s if ART Gallery, 1223 Lincoln St., (803) 238-2351.

Leamon is a professor at the University of South Carolina art department. Her graphite-driven works on paper have received great critical acclaim. Leamon only sporadically shows in Columbia, and this show will be her first local solo exhibition in a commercial gallery. Leamon’s work was in “Thresholds: Expressions of Art & Spiritual Life.” The exhibition was curated by New York art critic Eleanor Heartney and traveled throughout the Southeast from 2004–2006. Leamon also was in “The Felt Moment,” a 2003 show of contemporary art from the Carolinas at the Columbia Museum of Art.

Aiken native and resident Brown Thornton also was in “The Felt Moment.” Thornton received his BFA from the University of South Carolina art department in 1999. From 2001–2005 he lived and worked in Chicago, where he shows with the Linda Warren Gallery. The realization that the South was a significant aspect of his work – and the fear of another cold Chicago winter – made Thornton decide to move back to Aiken, where he lives and works in a warehouse studio.

“I want my work to constantly emphasize the temporal, passing moment,” Thornton says of his abstract acrylic paintings with representative elements. “This can be something that just happened or something that happened long ago and only remains as fragments made up of memories or photographs. I think I am defined more so by a collection of constantly passing events, both present and past, than most anything else. I often place the whale skeletons on dry land, emphasizing that this land was not dry at one point and may one day be under water again.”

The impetus for Leamon’s current work is the war in Iraq, she says, “especially those aspects of that war that our government doesn’t want us to see, such as Iraqi casualties. This work continues my concern with individual human suffering as a consequence of large bureaucratic exercises of power. I continue to explore new ways to extend drawing and to make the drawing medium serve the artistic message.”

Sharon Licata's Residency at Burton Pack Elementary

During the week of November 29 and again on January 23, fourth grade students at Burton-Pack Elementary worked with artist-in-residence Sharon Collings Licata, a sculptor who has a studio at Gallery80808/Vista Studios in downtown Columbia. Students created African masks using clay. The artist-in-residency program is made possible through grants from the S.C. Arts Commission.

This entry was composed from the caption accompanying photos that appeared "The State Newspaper" on Thursday, Friday 8, 2007.


Washington Color Field Great
South Carolina’s

Presented by:
if ART, International Fine Art Services
Gallery 80808/Vista Studios
808 Lady Street, Columbia, SC

Feb. 9 – 20, 2007

Artists’ Reception:
Friday, Feb. 9, 5 – 10 p.m.

Opening Hours:
Saturdays, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sundays, 1 – 5 p.m.
Weekdays, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.
and by appointment

For additional information: Wim Roefs at if ART:(803) 238-2351 or

(Laura Spong's Breaking Point)

For its February exhibition at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios in Columbia, S.C., if ART, International Fine Art Services, presents Abstract In Nature, a group exhibition with work by South Carolina artists Laura Spong, Mike Williams and Katie Walker as well as renowned first-generation Washington Color Field painter Paul Reed. The show consists of abstract paintings by Reed, Spong and Walker and abstract metal sculpture by Williams. The exhibition opens Friday, Feb. 9, with a reception from 5:00 –10:00 p.m. and runs through Feb. 20. Opening hours are weekdays, 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Saturdays, 11 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., and Sundays 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. Reed, Spong and Walker are represented by Columbia’s if ART Gallery, 1223 Lincoln St., (803) 238-2351, which also shows sculpture by Williams.

Washington, D.C., native Paul Reed, (b. 1919) in 1965-1966 was one of the six painters in The Washington Color Painters, the first nationally traveling exhibition of Washington Color Field paintings. The other five painters were Kenneth Noland, Morris Louis, Gene Davis, Howard Mehring and Tom Downey. Reed’s work is in dozens of museums across the country, including the Phillips Collection, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden and the National Museum of American Art, all in D.C., the Detroit Institute of Art, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, the Dallas Museum of Art, the Wadsworth Athenaeum Museum in Hartford, Conn., the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, the San Francisco Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago and the Birmingham Museum of Art in Alabama. In South Carolina, his work is in the Greenville County Museum of Art and the Columbia Museum of Art, whose acquisition of two Paul Reed paintings was facilitated by if ART owner Wim Roefs. Reed’s work has been in more than 100 solo and group shows, including Modernism & Abstraction: Treasures from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, which traveled nationally from 2000-2002.

Columbia’s Laura Spong (b. 1926) enjoyed her most successful year in 2006, both in terms of sales and critical acclaim. Spong sold more than 30 paintings from her 80th birthday solo exhibition at Gallery 80808 in February 2006, which was accompanied by a 32-page catalogue published by if ART. Spong also had solo exhibitions last year at Carol Saunders Gallery in Columbia and Greenville’s Hampton III Gallery, as well as a retrospective at the University of South Carolina’s McMaster Gallery. She was in a two-person show at Atlanta’s Vinson Gallery and in several group exhibitions in North and South Carolina. In April, she’ll be in a group exhibition at the Greenville County Museum of Art that also will include if ART Gallery artist David Yaghjian.

Greenville’s Katie Walker (b. 1970) was in the 2005 Florence, Italy, Biennale, and recently has been in exhibitions at the Upstairs Gallery in Tryon, N.C., Sandler Hudson Gallery in Atlanta, the Spartanburg (S.C.) Museum of Art, the Carillon Building in Charlotte, N.C., the Artbomb in Greenville and Brookgreen Gardens in Pawley’s Island, S.C. She was included in New American Paintings No. 40, 2002. Walker holds a BFA in Studio Art from Furman University and an MFA from the University of Georgia.

Sumter native and Columbia resident Mike Williams (b. 1963) recently had a major solo exhibition at Columbia College in Columbia, S.C. Williams is among the state’s most-acclaimed painters and sculptors. In recent years he has had solo exhibitions at Pawleys Island Cheryl Newby Gallery, I. Pinckney Simons Gallery in Beaufort, S.C., and at Newberry College in Newberry, S.C, Francis Marion University in Florence, S.C., and the University of South Carolina Upstate in Spartanburg, S.C.

Ethel Brody and Leona Sobel Featured in Columbia Metropolitan

Vista Studio artist Ethel Brody and her sister Leona Sobel are featured in the February issue of "Columbia Metropolitan" magazine ( an article by Kathryn Kruger with photography by Tim Conway. The text includes fond memories from the sisters' childhoods that blossom into a passion for travel, art, collecting, and civic contributions. The image was taken inside the Columbia Museum of Art, one of the numerous organizations benefiting from Ethel and Leona's generosity and deep knowledge. The article includes insight into Ethel's unique artistic background and mentions her Vista Studio location as a place "where she pursues her ongoing exploration of pattern and personal motifs through her mixed media art". One particular quote stands out from the article: "'Collecting is a learning proposition,' says Ethel Sobel Brody. 'One must fall in love with art, but one must study before one collects.'" Vista Studios is truly fortunate to have such a visionary among its numbers.

NBSC Oil Painters' Invitational at Sumter Gallery of Art

Jeff Donovan's "Earth Tone". First Place.

Gallery 80808/Vista Studios is proud to announce that two of its members have just won awards in the NBSC Oil Painters' Invitational Exhibit at the Sumter Gallery of Art, 200 Hasel Street(adjacent to Patriot Hall). Jeff Donovan took the top prize for Earth Tone. David Yaghjian received an honorable mention for "Barringer II".

(Above: Barringer II by David Yaghjian)

The exhibit opens with a reception on Thursday, February 8 from 5:30 to 8:00 PM and runs through March 18. Gallery hours are: Tues-Sat 11-5 PM and Sunday 1:30-5 PM.

The show was juried by Sandra Rupp, Director of Hampton III Gallery in Taylors, SC. Ed Wimberly, whose work is annually displayed at Gallery 80808, won second place with Sitter. Columbia based artist Marcelo Novo won third for Dreaming of Nothing.

For additional information, please visit the Sumter Gallery of Art website at: or call: 803-775-0543.

David Yaghjian's "Barringer II". Honorable Mention

Ed Wimberly's "Sitter". Second Place

Marcelo Novo's "Dreaming of Nothing". Third Place.

Posts from December 8-9, 2006 until January 30, 2007

Tapestry in Blue by Susan Lenz featured at Mac's on Main

Tapestry in Blue, a grouping of twenty-four mixed media portraits of early female Blues singers by Susan Lenz, will be on display at Mac's on Main, a popular jazz club and restaurant in downtown Columbia. The artwork will hang throughout February in honor of Black History Month. Chef Fatback, pictured with the artwork, requested this exhibit during last November's Vista Lights event. Artist Susan Lenz is happy to share the series with a new group of music fans. Mac's on Main is located at 1710 North main Street. For more information: (803) 929-0037 or

WINTER EXHIBITION: Chesley, Williams, Wimberly, Yaghjian

Oil on panel by Stephen Chesley

The annual WINTER EXHIBITION featuring Stephen Chesley, Mike, Williams, Edward Wimberly, and David Yaghjian is an art event often described as "not to be missed".

The show open in Gallery 80808 at Vista Studios, 808 Lady Street, on Friday, January 26 and runs through February 6. Weekend hours are 1 - 5 PM. Weekday hours are 10 AM to 5 PM. The opening reception will be on Friday, January 26 from 5 - 10 PM.

For additional information, call (803)252-6134 or (803)206-9600.

Oil on panel by Stephen Chesley

The following is the artists' press release:
Friday, January 26, 2007, will mark the opening of the fifth annual Winter Exhibition at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios featuring South Carolina artists Stephen Chesley, Mike Williams, Edward Wimberly, and David Yaghjian. This annual exhibit has become a New Year’s tradition for these artists to present a unique and diverse mixture of outstanding new paintings and drawings for collectors and art lovers to enjoy or purchase. During the opening reception and throughout both weekends that the show will be open, the artists will be available to discuss the artwork.

David Yaghhjian's "Back Flip"

David Yaghjian's "Snake Handling"

Vista Studio artist Susan Lenz with Janet Kozachek at I. Pinckney Simons Gallery

Vista Studio artist Susan Lenz is participating in a two woman show with Orangeburg artist Janet Kozachek in I. Pinckney Simons Gallery, 1012 Gervais Street from January 5 through 31. The exhibit is called "Stones, Bones, Fibers: Excavating Civilizations of the Mind". The gallery hours are Tues. thru Fri. from 11 AM until 5 PM and on Sat. from 11 AM until 3 PM. The artists reception is scheduled on Thursday, Jan. 18 from 5:30 until 8:30 PM.

This is a grouping of collaborative work done by the artists.

Susan Lenz created a unique installation called "The Archeology Project". Viewers are encouraged to sort through the collection of imaginative "artifacts" and altered books.

Also part of Lenz's "Archeology Project" are one hundred-twenty-five wrapped nuts and bolts and spools with decorative hand stitching and collaged images.

The artists team-wrote the following article to accompany their work:


A two-person exhibition of mixed media works by Janet Kozachek and Susan Lenz opens January 5, 2007 at the Pinckney Simons Gallery, 1012 Gervais Street in downtown Columbia. The exhibition features individual and collaborative art through January 31. An opening reception will be held on Thursday, January 18 from 5:30 to 8:30 PM.

Collaborations can yield amazing and often serendipitous results. When artists dare to relinquish what two hundred years or so years of history has considered sacred, they step across traditional boundaries. By letting go of ego, identity, and property, Kozachek and Lenz have torn down old ways of working and traveled into each other’s creative space.

An article in the May 2005 issue of Carolina Arts brought the artists together. The article detailed Kozachek’s art and work processes for an exhibition of mosaics and companion oil paintings reminiscent of archaeological sites. The concepts resonated with fiber artist, Susan Lenz. Both artists are intrigued by cultural mystery, fragments of civilization, and their artistic identity within the scope of history. Both artists find a parallel between ancient ruins and the chaos of accumulation in their own studios.

The first collaborations resulted when Lenz’s small fiber fragments were positioned on Kozachek’s unfinished paintings. The blend of color and texture effectively completed the work. The two artists described their experience as “finding the missing puzzle piece in one another’s studio”. They had tapped into the Jungian “Collective Unconscious,” that morass of signs, symbols and archetypes that lie at the foundations of all civilizations. They also had to relinquish individual artistic control and develop a link to a greater creative unity.

The second collaborations tested their trust in one another’s unconscious choices. Kozachek and Lenz challenged each other to create artwork using artifacts salvaged from one another’s studios. The results are both startling and amusing. They were taking the Dada practice of “ready made” art even further by using found objects that were found for the artist rather than by the artist.

Ironically, even within the confines of these limitations, the identities of the assembling artists shine through. In addition to their collaborative artwork, Kozachek and Lenz are also displaying individual pieces that explore their joint interests in history, archeology, and cultural remains. The exhibit strives to create a narrative where there was once merely an amalgam of facts.

GROUP 07 at Upstairs Artspace in Tryon, NC

Upstairs Artspace opens GROUP 07 with a "Rock Around the Clock" New Year's Eve Reception on Sunday, December 31, 2006 from 6 to 9 PM. The show will run through February 24, 2007, Tues. thur Sat. from 11 AM until 5 PM. Vista Studio artist LAURA SPONG is among the artist's presented. Others include: Andrew Blanchard, Edward Evans, Celia Gray, Gay Groomes, Mana Hewitt, Hanna Jubran, Ralph Paquin, Kathryn Rileigh, Fern Samuels, Paula Smith, Dustin Spagnola, Ann Stoddard, Kathryn Temple, Scott Upton, and Paul Yanko. Upstairs Artspace is located at 49 South Trade Street in the heart of Tryon, NC. From Interstate 26, use Exit 67 (Columbus), turn west on Highway 108 to Tryon and go about 4 miles. From additional information: (828) 859-2828 and

CONSTRUCTION CREW II: Dec 8 - 19, 2006

if ART, International Fine Art Services
presents at
Gallery 80808/Vista Studios
808 Lady St., Columbia, S.C.

C o n s t r u c t i o n C r e w II:

Dec. 8 – 19, 2006

Artists’ Reception:
Friday, Dec. 8, 5 – 10 p.m.

Opening Hours:
Saturdays, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sundays, 1 – 5 p.m.
Weekdays, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. and by appointment

For more information, contact Wim Roefs at if ART:
(803) 238-2351 –

For its holiday exhibition at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios in Columbia, S.C., if ART, International Fine Art Services of Columbia presents Construction Crew II, a group exhibition with work by South Carolina artists Matt Overend, Virginia Scotchie, Christine Tedesco and Paul Yanko. Like the first if ART Construction Crew exhibition in December 2005, the show consists of two-dimensional and three-dimensional art that has strong constructional or architectural characteristics. The exhibition opens Friday, Dec. 8, with a reception from 5:00 –10:00 p.m. and runs through Dec. 19. Opening hours are weekdays, 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Saturdays, 11 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., and Sundays 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. Overend, Scotchie, Tedesco and Yanko are represented by if ART Gallery, 1223 Lincoln St., (803) 238-2351, where additional works of art by all four artists will be on view.

Overend will show paintings of buildings and architectural structures, a new direction in his art. Scotchie will show her well-known abstracted, ceramic sculptures and objects. Textile artist Tedesco will show colorful quilts and textile pieces of different sizes, typically with abstract, geometric patterns and compositions. Yanko offers colorful, abstract paintings often with a heavily built-up surface.
Matt Overend (b. 1950) is a native of Las Vegas who grew up in Atlanta and has lived in Smoaks, S.C., since 1981. He was with Janet Orselli in an if ART exhibition in March 2005 at Vista Studios. In the past two years, he has had solo exhibitions in Hilton Head, Camden, Charleston and Charlotte. Overend in 1973 graduated as an aerospace engineer at Georgia Tech before studying art at Santa Barbara City College in California, the University of California at Santa Barbara and Yale University.

Virginia Scotchie (b. 1955) is an internationally renowned ceramic artist who teaches at the University of South Carolina art department. Earlier this fall, she returned from Taiwan, where she did a major commission for the Yingge Ceramic Museum. In recent years she has been an artist in residence at the University of Hawaii and Taiwan’s Tainan National University for the Arts.

Christine Tedesco (b. 1959) is an architect and textile artist in Pendleton, S.C. Her work has been part of the U.S. State Department’s Art in Embassies Program, featured in Tanzania and Honduras. She has shown in the Mint Museum in Charlotte, N.C., and was included in the 2001 S.C. Triennial and the opening exhibition of New Orlean’s Ogden Museum of Southern Art in 2003.

Paul Yanko teaches at the S.C. Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities in Greenville. He holds an MFA in painting from Kent State University and a BFA from the Cleveland Institute of Art. He has exhibited at the Cleveland Museum of Contemporary Art and the McDonough Museum of Art in Youngstown, Ohio. This will be his first exhibition in Columbia.

Posts from November 21, 2006 until October 4, 2006


Midlands Clay Arts Society will have their 7th annual Holiday show and sale on December 1st and 2nd, 2006 at the Gallery 80808/Vista Studios
in Columbia, South Carolina. The opening reception will be on Friday, December 1st, 2006, from 6:00 pm until 9:00 pm.

The Midlands Clay Arts Society was organized in 1987. Its members include local potters, crafts people and clay artists who promote the appreciation of things made in clay. This will be a unique opportunity to meet the artists and purchase one-of-a-kind pieces. We will showcase functional pieces, raku pottery, sculpture and jewelry made out of clay. You will have a chance to buy raffle tickets to win unique work of art donated by the artists, with all proceeds supporting the visual Arts students at the Edward E. Taylor Elementary School.

The Society has a variety of members which include both amateur and professional artists. In spite of the very different backgrounds and widely diverse skills, the common factor is everyone's love of clay.

The exhibit and sale will take place at the Gallery 80808 in Columbia's Vista area. The gallery is located on 808 Lady Street. Admission is free. The show will be open on December 1st, Friday from noon until 9:00pm and on December 2nd, Saturday, from 10:00 am until 5:00 pm.

For additional information, please contact Tuula Ihamaki-Widdifield at or call Vista Studios at (803) 252-6134


Vista Lights Features New Artists Stephen Chesley and Jeff Donovan

Gallery 80808 at Vista Studios will open the exhibit, New Crop: New Art, featuring work by Stephen Chesley and Jeff Donovan, as part of "Vista Lights" on Nov. 16. The exhibit continues through Nov. 29, 2006. The artists' studios of Vista Studios will also be open for this evening of art celebration (5-10pm) throughout Columbia's Congaree Vista.

The title New Crop: New Art aptly describes this year's exhibition for "Vista Light".

New Crop: The show is the yield of the artists' efforts through the summer. In truth it is the fruit of years of work by the artists at their craft. "Vista Lights" serves as the annual harvest. It marks the change of season for Columbia as well, ushering in the holiday season.

New Crop: The exhibition includes work by Chesley and Donovan, two artists new to Vista Studios but known to regional audiences and collectors.

New Crop: The exhibition is a harvest of mature work by artists passionately cultivating established themes and directions.

As far as the other offerings for "Vista Light", David Yaghjian's thoughts on middle age again surface in curious scenes with a "senior" pot-bellied man. Jeff Donovan brings his quirky imagery to 3D in ceramic works. The human figure continues to dominate the ceramic pieces of Pat Gillmartin, 2D works of Robert Kennedy and assemblages of Pat Callahan.

Ethel Brody has reached new scale and impact in her abstract paintings. Susan Lenz offers a crop of 10 stitched mixed media works based on autumn vegetation. A student of energy work, Sharon Licata expresses energies of the sacral chakra (second chakra) and the heart chakra (fourth chakra) in an alabaster sculpture.

Heidi Darr Hope continues to mine the serendipitous interplay between inner and outer realms in mixed media collages. Painter Stephen Chesley conjures landscapes of changeable forms in fleeting half-light. Similarly, painter Laura Spong intuitively builds and negates color and markings on her canvases. In contrast, Don Zurlo develops his richly surfaced canvases from digital studies.



November 3rd and 4th

ARTIST'S RECEPTION FRIDAY, November 3rd, 6-8pm

Open hours:
Friday 3rd ,10 am-8 pm
Saturday 3rd, 10 - 3pm
Shop early for someone who has everything!
MC, Visa and Discover accepted
For more information ,
e-mail or call (803)414.9647

This promises to be an excellent show full of great artwork and holiday gift ideas.

One of the featured artists, Penny Burke, gave the following statement about her creative process: "I have been working with clay for 10 years; I consider myself a self-taught clay artist having no “formal” art education. All of my work is created with hand building techniques using slabs, coils, stamps and attachments; nothing is thrown on a wheel. My love of hand-building continues to drive me toward new and better work; the rustic, not so perfect look is what I love the most."


“Shelter” opens October 20 at Gallery 80808 in
Columbia with a free reception 5 to 9 PM. The
exhibition presents artwork by Midlands’ artists
inspired by the work of the Women’s Shelter, Columbia,
and the courage of the women who cross its threshold.
This “art for awareness” exhibition is organized by
Open Eyes, which supports women’s triumphs over
staggering odds. The show continues through October
30. Call 252-6134 for gallery hours.

HUMANS, an if ART, International Fine Art Services Exhibit

if ART, International Fine Art Services

presents at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios

808 Lady St., Columbia, S.C.




Oct. 6 – 17, 2006

Artists’ Reception: Friday, Oct. 6, 5 – 10 p.m.

Opening Hours: Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m. Weekdays, noon – 7 p.m. and by appointment

For more information, contact Wim Roefs at if ART: (803) 238-2351 –

Posts from September 21, 2006 until May 9, 2006

Hank Fuseler's show





Friday 22st-Tuesday 26th, 12-6pm

For more information or to schedule an appointment,
e-mail or call (803)513-6221


if ART, International Fine Art Services
presents at
Gallery 80808/Vista Studios
808 Lady St., Columbia, S.C.
Phil Garrett & Mary Gilkerson:
M o n o t y p e s

Sept. 8 – 19, 2006

Artists’ Reception:
Friday, Sept. 8, 5 – 10 p.m.

Opening Hours:
Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m.
Weekdays, Noon – 7 p.m. and by appointment

For more information, contact Wim Roefs at if ART:
(803) 238-2351 – (803) 799-7170 –

For its September exhibition at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios, if ART, International Fine Art Services, will present a show of monotypes by Phil Garrett and Mary Gilkerson. The opening reception for the exhibition is Sept. 8, 5:00 – 10:00 p.m. Opening hours are Saturdays, 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Sundays, 1:00 – 5:00 p.m.; and weekdays 12:00 – 7:00 p.m. or by appointment. For more information or to make an appointment, contact if ART’s Wim Roefs at (803) 238-2351 or
Columbia native and resident Gilkerson is a prominent presence in the art scene of South Carolina’s Midlands. She is painter with a long and full exhibition history. She also teaches art at Columbia College, and is an art critic and curator. Gilkerson holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in art from the University of South Carolina in Columbia. This will be her first exhibition of monotypes, which she produced at Greenville’s King Snake Press in cooperation with Master Printer Garrett.
Garrett, a native and resident of Greenville, S.C., is both as a painter and printer among the region’s more prominent artists. He has completed extensive studies in printmaking, including at the San Francisco Art Institute and with Tamarind Master Printer Cappy Kuhn.
Since Garrett launched King Snake Press in 1998, the medium has spread like a happy virus through Upstate South Carolina and beyond. Artists as different as Edward Rice, Carl Blair and Katie Walker have made prints at Garrett’s press. In 2001, the Greenville County (S.C.) Museum of Art mounted an exhibition of monotypes produced by 25 artists with Garrett at his press.


Starting in just a few days, the season of art at Gallery 80808 will include the upcoming shows:

MONOPRINTS. September 7 - 19, Monoprints by Phil Garrett and Mary Gilkerson; an ifART exhibition


HUMANS. October 5 - 17, Jeff Donovan, John Monteith, Dorothy Netherland, and Herb Parker; an ifArt exhibition

SHELTER. October 20 - 31, An exhibit by Open Eyes, an artistic group supporting women's triumphs over staggering odds. The exhibition will benefit and is inspired by the work of women at Columbia's Womens Shelter and those courageous enough to cross its threshold

THE POTTERS OF CHAPIN. November 2 - 7. Group exhibit.

A NEW CROP (ART AND ARTISTS). November 16 - 30. Group exhibition featuring the artists of Vista Studio. VISTA LIGHT OPEN HOUSE


CONSTRUCTION CREW II. December 7 - 31, Matt Overend, Virginia Scotchie, and Paul Yanko. An ifART exhibition.

January 25 - February 6.

LAURA SPONG and KATIE WALKER. February 8 - 20. An ifART exhibit.

DEANNA LEMON and H. BROWN THORNTON. March 9 - 20. An ifART exhibit.

WOOD AND WEAVE: Caned funiture by Kate Callahan and assemblages by Pat Callaha. March 22 - 27.

NEW WORKS BY PAT PARISE. March 29 - April 10.

ifART exhibition TBA. April 12 - 24.

ARTISTA VISTA: NOW THIS IS VISTA STUDIOS! April 26 - May 15. Group exhibition by Vista Studio Artists and annual Artista Vista Open House.

DON ZURLO: From Santa Fe to Orlando, June 15-20

Most of the paintings in this exhibit are of images abstracted from a series of digital photographs taken at Santa Fe, New Mexico and Epcot in Orlando, Florida. The theme of each painting begins with the sense of place from the photo, and then evolves into a composition of abstract forms in a dream-like landscape. Colors and shapes are adjusted to create a scene that relates to the physical world, but at the same time, appears to exist in some mystical place in another dimension.

The show opens June 15th and closes June 20th. Hours are from 1 pm to 6 pm, and by appointment. There will be a reception Thursday, June 15th from 6 to 9 pm. All sales are through City Art. For additional information, call Don Zurlo, Vista Studios #11, 803-960-2087, or Wendy Wells, City Art at 803-252-3613.

May 19-21 Corley Mill Artist Group show

Corley Mill Artists Group, featuring 20 local professional and emerging artists, will present a special showcase of their art May 19, 5-8 p.m., and May 20- 21 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. For a preview, you may check their web site at Contact Michel McNinch for more information at

Posts from January 22, 2006 to May 3, 2006

GENESIS, An Exhibit by Alicia Leeke


Gallery 80808 will feature the exhibit Genesis, a collection of selected paintings, sketches, monotypes and batiks by Columbia artist Alicia Leeke on view May 12-16, 2006.

Leeke started her artistic studies at Columbia College. During her sophomore year, she vacationed in Paris and visited the Louve, where she fell in love with Impressionism and the work of noted artists: Lautrec, Degas, Renoir and later, Utrillo.

Her work is inspired the most by French Impressionist painters and how they captured history, social conscience and architecture by painting the people and environment around them.

Her pieces are in private collections from New York to California and her work has been juried into several shows including Atalaya. She was recently recognized as an Emerging Artist finalist in Charlotte by Red Sky Gallery and was the Summerville, SC Flowertown Festival Run Art Contest Winner in April 2005 and recipient of a Purchase Patron Award at the South Carolina State Fair in 2004.

When asked about her style, she says “When I look back to my student work, my first series was a group of abstract paintings in the vein of Mondrian. While I still paint abstracts, the majority of my work revolves around vignettes and quaint street scenes. Stylistically, the foundation of all of my paintings is the use of intense black lines found most often in Fauvism.”

This holds true with her sketches, monotypes and batiks too. “Experimenting with diverse media allows me to enjoy some of the same designs away from canvas. I like to experiment with silk and specialty papers and observe the interaction of paints and inks on different surfaces,” says Leeke.

Her upcoming show, Genesis, exemplifies the nature of her work. She notes “This show is primarily about vibrant color and detail, incorporating gentle distortions of linear perspective.

Leeke will be available at Gallery 80808 during the opening reception on Friday, May 12, from 6-10 p.m.; Saturday from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday from 1-5 p.m.; by appointment calling (803) 429-5456 or byemailing


THE BLUES ON LADY STREET, featuring works by members of Vista Studios and the SC Watercolor Society, on view from Apr. 24 through May 9, 2006. The exhibit will also be open for Artista Vista on Apr, 28 & 29, 2006.

Why The Blues on Lady Street? Despite the road crews' best efforts, the continuing street construction outside our main entrance has us singing the blues. Joining the exhibiting Vista Studios artists; Carol Barks, Ethel Brody, Pat Callahan, Heidi Darr-Hope, Pat Gilmartin, Robert Kennedy, Susan Lenz, Sharon C. Licata, Laura Spong, David Yaghjian, and Don Zurlo, will be four members of the SC Watercolor Society; JoAnne Anderson, Meg McLean, Ester Melton and Rose Metz. Also included in the exhibition will be a painting by Rueben Gambrell in memorial.

Perhaps the art exhibited that is most closely associated with "the blues" as a musical form is an installation of twenty-four lady blues singers created by Susan Lenz in Studio 4.

Lenz writes of her Tapestry in Blue, an Installation Chapel: "Early female blues singers lived in a male dominated society, in a segregated country, and worked in an industry that took advantage of their lack of education and opportunity. Physical abuse, drug and alcohol dependence, and poverty plagued most. They struggled, made sacrifices, and sang of their woes. They helped change the world for today's young, black, female vocalists. Music, candles, and an altar will focus viewer's attention on a wall of mixed media icons. Everyone is invited to pay respects in the transformed space."

Two additional Vista Studios artists will also be exhibiting collage or mixed media constructions. Pat Callahan will be continuing her communication communion series. In addition she has a construction titled, eve songs (in acts), inspired by the coming of evening, the time she often arrives at the studio and has to traverse the road construction. Heidi Darr-Hope takes the blues on an internal turn with her five pieces presenting an assuagement, a type of medicine for the blues. She desires the viewer to reflect inwardly, to search for meaning enriching the soul.

The painters of Vista Studios are presenting an assortment of "blue" images. Ethel Brody's are Rhapsody in Blue, a series of blue squares and Nautilus. Laura Spong is tipping her hat to the city engineer who has gone to great lengths to maintain access to the Vista Studios building with her Ode to Engineer Linda. Don Zurlo will present one of his acrylic abstracts titled Claybird and David Yaghjian will continue his series.

The sculptors are taking rather different interpretations of "the blues." Pat Gilmartin has created Blue Adluh in earthenware. It is an abstracted representation of the Vista's landmark, the Adluh Floor building. Sharon Collings Licata has turned to the water for inspiration for her abstracted animal forms with Menace from the Blue Depths and a blue heron titled Blue Repose. Carol Barks has a lapis lazidi abstract sculpture, Under Currents. She invites you to find the swirling motions that suggest a whirlpool and waves of emotion.

The guest watercolor artists will be bringing another dimension to the blues theme. JoAnne Anderson speaks to a traditional "blues" with Blues in the Night, while Meg Mclean takes a more spring like turn with Blue Lacecap. Ester Melton has responded to the construction outside the studios' door with Detour and Rose Metz reaches for the sky with Aurora.

Leo Twiggs: Toward Another Retrospective

if ART, International Fine Art Services
Columbia, S.C.presents at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios
808 Lady St., Columbia, S.C.

March 3 – 14, 2006
Artist’s Reception:
Friday, March 3, 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Opening Hours:
Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m.
Weekdays, 12 – 7 p.m. and by appointment

For more information, contact Wim Roefs at if ART: (803) 238-2351 – (803) 799-7170 –

While Leo Twiggs’ retrospective exhibition is on view at the South Carolina State Museum, if ART, International Fine Art Services, will present Twiggs’ first solo gallery show in Columbia, S.C. The if ART exhibition, Leo Twiggs: Toward Another Retrospective, will take place March 3 – 14, 2006, at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios on Lady Street in Columbia’s downtown Vista district. It will present new paintings by Twiggs from the past year. The artist’s reception is March 3, 5:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. Opening hours are Saturday, 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Sunday, 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.; weekdays, noon – 7:00 p.m.; and by appointment. For an appointment, call Wim Roefs at if ART at(803) 238-2351.

“Leo Twiggs is one of the giants of South Carolina art in the past four decades,” said Wim Roefs, owner of if ART. “He’s one of the state’s most important artists, and one of the few state artists with a truly national reputation. He’s also been one of South Carolina’s most important art educators. As a professor and art department head at South Carolina State University in Orangeburg, he taught the majority of African-American art teachers working in this state. And Twiggs has been a major presence on art-related boards, committees and commissions in South Carolina, on any level.”

In 1981, Twiggs was the first to receive as an individual South Carolina’s highest art award, the Elizabeth O’Neil Verner Governor’s Award for the Arts. In 1970, he was the first African American to get an Ed.D. in art education from the University of Georgia. Twiggs is generally considered one of the most innovative batik artists in the county and the pioneer in developing batik as a modern art medium. His retrospective, Myths and Metaphors: The Art of Leo Twiggs, was organized by the Georgia Museum of Art in Athens, Ga. After a two-year tour, the exhibition has it last stop at the State Museum.

Twiggs, who retired from S.C. State in 1998, was born in 1934 and raised in rural St. Stephen, S.C. His art is about subjects, issues and people from or close to his Southern upbringing and countryside home. But through familiar specifics, Twiggs addresses broader themes, be it black culture, including the blues, the relationship between generations, religion and spirituality, or the South’s lingering Confederate mindset.

Twiggs is “an American original,” art historian Frank Martin argued in his contribution to the Myths and Metaphors exhibition catalogue. He makes “formal and aesthetic contributions unlike those of any other American painter.” Twiggs, Martin wrote, has “an uncanny ability to reconcile a multiplicity of cultural traditions with integrity, while simultaneously offering insightful commentary regarding aesthetic, ethical, and social issues that are translated, with understated power, through his unique experience.”

Twiggs began to experiment with batik in the mid-1960s. Already in 1972, the catalogue for an exhibition at Southern Illinois University said that “his name and the medium of batik seem almost synonymous.” There and at several other 1970s exhibitions, Twiggs shared the stage with a virtual who’s who of AfricanAmerican art, including Jacob Lawrence, Lois Mailou Jones, Romare Bearden, Selma Burke, Richmond Barthe, John Biggers, Charles Alston and Hale Woodruff. Woodruff had been his teacher at New York University in the early 1960s. During the 1970s, Twiggs was included in books on African-American art by J. Edgar Atkinson, Samella Lewis and Elton Fax. He had solo museum exhibitions at North Carolina’s Asheville Museum, the Schenectady Museum in the state of New York, and the Studio Museum in Harlem. “In a single work,” wrote Martin, who teaches at S.C. State, “Twiggs may present Southern regional themes, allude to a realm of intuition, magic, and traditional African religious elements, offer autobiographical information, and evoke, without effort, an aesthetic linkage to the most advanced aspects of Abstract Expressionism.”

Warming The Chill Wind With Celebration

if ART, International Fine Art Services
Columbia, S.C.
presents at
Gallery 80808/Vista Studios
808 Lady St., Columbia, SC
Warming The Chill Wind With Celebration

February 17 – 28, 2006

Artists’ Reception:
Friday, Feb. 17, 5 – 10 p.m.

Opening Hours:
Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m.
Weekdays, 11 am – 7 pm and by appointment

For more information, contact Wim Roefs at if ART:
(803) 238-2351 – (803) 799-7170 –

Opening a year of celebration for Columbia, S.C., artist Laura Spong, if ART, International Fine Art Services of Columbia presents as its February exhibition, “Laura Spong at 80: Warming The Chill Wind With Celebration.” The exhibition will present new or not previously shown work at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios at 808 Lady St. in Columbia’s downtown Vista district. The show will consist of 50 new paintings by Spong, who turns 80 years old in February.

The opening reception for the exhibition is February 17, 5:00 – 10:00 p.m. Opening hours are Saturdays, 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Sundays, 1:00 – 5:00 p.m; and weekdays 11:00 a.m – 7:00 p.m. or by appointment. For more information or to make an appointment, contact if ART’s Wim Roefs at (803) 799-7170, (803) 238-2351 (cell) or

The exhibition will be accompanied by a 32-page catalogue with 14 color plates as well as essays by Roefs, visual art critic Teri Tynes and Robin Waites, former chief curator at the South Carolina State Museum and the executive director of the Historic Columbia Foundation.
Simultaneously, another Spong exhibition will take place at Columbia’s Carol Saunders Gallery. The exhibition, called “Evolution,” will present 20 paintings from the 1989 – 2005 period, most of them from the past three years. The show runs from February 16 through March 18. The gallery is at 922 Gervais St. in the Vista district, phone (803) 256-3046.
Also in February, Spong will be in a two-person show at Vinson Gallery in Decatur, Ga. In July, the University of South Carolina’s McMaster Gallery will mount a retrospective of her career.

Winter Exhibition