Monday, September 17, 2012

Closed for September Art Walk! Come to WMAC!

The West Main Artists Co-op is hosting a new exhibition, Applauding God / Reflections of the Spirit. This two-person exhibit displays works by Chip Walters and Kristofer Neely and will be on view September 20 - October 13, 2012. The opening reception is Thursday, September 20, 5-9pm and is part of Spartanburg's Art Walk. During Art Walk, local galleries are open 5-9 pm, the third Thursday of each month. The West Main Artist Co-op is located just 8 blocks west of downtown’s Morgan Square at 578 West Main Street, Spartanburg, SC, 29301, 864- 804-6501,

Chip Walters and Kristofer Neely share common interests.  Both enjoy painting on wood and incorporate vibrant colors into their work.  They also use spirituality as inspiration.  Chip often finds her art to be an outlet for expressing gratitude to God.  Kris creates his work as a manual act of contemplative prayer.  The artists also share a love for outsider and self-taught art.  In their personal lives, Walters and Neely are both educators and adoptive parents. 
Walters says of Neely: “He is an artist that I admire for using art as a way to bring joy and comfort to others and to express meaning through words and texts ….. each piece has a special meaning for the viewer to connect with.  When you see one of his Guardians you know that  the place where it is displayed holds special meaning to someone or some group.”
Kris says of their collaboration, “When Chip invited me to consider a joint show with her at the West Main Artists Co-op, I said yes immediately.”  Applauding God / Reflections of the Spirit is the joint show that has resulted from their collaboration. 
Chip Walters
Chip Walters is a graduate of Converse College and has been teaching at the SC School for the Deaf and the Blind for 28 years. Since 2004 she has been the Director of Fine Arts at SCSDB and is a National Boards Certified Exceptional Needs Specialist. She is the director for many theatre productions at SCSDB and coordinates all Fine Arts activities for the agency. 
Chip creates abstract art inspired by Bible truths, often using verses and words.  Each piece of art in this exhibit reflects an applause to God.  Several pieces of art will be donated to The Journey, an inner-city church where Chip serves as Kid’s Camp Coordinator.
Kris Neely
A graduate of Wofford College, Neely earned his MFA from Goddard College in Plainfield, Vermont.  Kris currently serves as Assistant Dean and Coordinator for Studio Art at Wofford.  He teaches courses on painting, installation, street art, and digital photography.  Kris is the founding artist and owner of Wet Paint Syndrome Art Studio, LLC in Hillcrest Specialty Row. 
Since 2005, Kris Neely has painted more than 8,000 of his “Guardians” on found wood. Inspired by self-taught and street artists, these Guardian angels have been installed in church sanctuaries, college campuses, public parks, homeless shelters and cemeteries. Recent notable installations of Neely’s works include Ghost Ranch, New Mexico and Oxford Chapel at Emory University in Georgia.