Celebrate African American History Month

Open House & Reception
Thursday, January 21, 2010
4 – 7 pm

In celebration of African American History Month, Outsiders Art Gallery, Durham’s gallery specifically dedicated to exhibiting and selling works by Southern outsider artists, will host an open house and reception Thursday, January 21st from 4 – 7 pm. This event will be catered by Durham Catering Company and is free and open to the public. The Outsider Art Gallery is located at 718-C Iredell Street, around the corner from Whole Foods Market.

Artist Bernice Sims

“A large majority of the artists represented in this gallery are African American and I wanted to pay tribute and honor to these artists during this time, starting the week of Martin Luther King Day and throughout the African American History Month of February”, states Pamela Gutlon, founder and proprietor of Outsiders Art Gallery.

Many of the artists exhibited in the gallery are the first to be acknowledged in the outsider art genre, a genre that has gained popularity since it was first recognized in the early 1970’s.

Visitors to the gallery can view and purchase original works by Mose Tolliver, Jimmy Lee Sudduth, Bernice Sims, Black Joe Jackson, and several others, and most of the pieces have not been previously exhibited in the gallery. “What is poignant about these artists is that they took such pride in documenting scenes from their lives, recording visual history and paying homage to their ancestors, often on any material that was available, from wood scraps to tin roofing. To see the exhibit is a history lesson in itself”, Gutlon states.

The gallery will also feature the works of Bart Shultz, a self-taught contemporary artist living in Richmond, Virginia. Over the years Shultz has experimented with a number of art forms, most often related to sculpture. Several years ago he started working with masking tape to create his pieces. Shultz states, “While I have a great appreciation for American folk art, self-taught southern artists and outsiders, as well as many contemporary artists, I’ve worked hard to create and develop my own style of work, never mimicking the work of others. Defining the style of my work is something that I’ll leave to others. Some would classify it as folk art – others have called it contemporary with a pop influence.”

The Open House on January 21st is part of the ongoing monthly events at the gallery.