The Unseen Work of James Harold Jennings

Reception, Wednesday, October 27, 2010
5:30 – 8:00 PM
Live Music by Wiley Fosters and Katharine Whalen & Her Fascinators

Outsiders Art & Collectibles will host an exhibition of unseen work by James Harold Jennings on Wednesday, October 27 from 5:30 to 8:30 pm at 718 Iredell Street in Durham. This event is free and open to the public.

The exhibition of work by the late James Harold Jennings is from the private collection of the Jennings family and will be the first time many of these pieces will be seen by the public. Mike Smith, friend of James Harold Jennings and Owner of the At Home Gallery, will be in attendance to share his many years of memories with Jennings and his family.

About James Harold Jennings (1931 – 1999):
James Harold Jennings lived all of his 69 years in a rural area near Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Eccentric and reclusive as a child, he was home schooled by his mother. As an adult, he worked as a projectionist in a movie theater and helped on his family’s tobacco farm. He lived with his mother until her death in 1974, at which point his creative impulses were awakened. He moved out of his mother’s house and began assembling a series of abandoned school buses across the road from the home he had grown up in; it was out of this unlikely setting that he lived and created a fantastical and powerful environment that showcased his artistic talent. His “Art World” was an explosion of color and movement that became a pilgrimage destination for art fans far and wide. Although he remained shy and reclusive, his pride in sharing his “Amazon Women” paintings (which attested to the superiority of women over men), his spectacular crowns, and his articulated ferris wheels was evident. Jennings passed away on his 69th birthday, in 1999. Since his death, he has finally begun to receive some of the recognition he so deserves. The Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art in Winston-Salem, NC, mounted an exhibition of his life and work in 2002 entitled “Health, Happiness, and Metempsychosis.”

About Outsiders Art & Collectibles:
Outsiders Art & Collectibles is Durham’s only gallery focusing on the genre of Southern Outsider Art. Outsider’s owner, Pamela Gutlon, strongly believes that bringing Durham’s business, nonprofit, and art communities together better serves the community as a whole. In the spirit of this collaboration, Sew Durham Studios, a group of sewing artists who share space with Outsiders, will also be present to display and sell their work and speak with visitors. The artists of Sew Durham Studios are Amelia Burch, Jennifer Collins-Mancour, Andrea Stephens, and Katharine Whalen, who will also be performing music at the event with her Fascinators.

For more information about this event, contact Pamela Gutlon at, or call 919-451-3231.