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Former local mural artist to exhibit work at Ozark gallery

Some people around Pike County may not remember the name Albert Dean but many will remember the abstract billboard mural that Dean created as a participating artist in the Mural Freaks project in 2003.

The project highlighted artists who worked outside the box and Dean’s mural turned a lot of heads on busy Highway 231 in Troy.

Since that time, the 2004 Troy University graduate has been creating art at his home studio in Ariton. On Saturday, Nov. 1, between 30 and 35 of Dean’s pieces of art will be on exhibit at the Dowling Museum/Ann Rudd Art Center in downtown Ozark.

The exhibition, titled “Albert Dean: A Different Perspective” will be Dean’s first one-person show.

“I’m excited about the exhibition and have been working hard to get ready for it,” Dean said. “The mural won’t be a part of the exhibit but I will have as many as 35 pieces in the show that will be a culmination of my last four years of work.”

The show will include a wide range of styles that show the versatility of the young artist.

“I’ll have everything from abstract to folk art,” Dean said. “ The folk art is an effort to do pieces that people of this area will relate to. My family has chicken houses so I’ve done several chickens because that’s what I’ve been around all my life.”

Dean prefers art in the abstract so, not surprisingly, two of his favorite “new” pieces are abstracts.

“For those paintings, I used encaustic paint, which is wax that contains color pigments,” he said. “I used those for the bottom layers to give the painting texture. Then, I painted over it with oil paint. It makes interesting art.”

Other pieces include work that Dean did for his senior thesis at Troy University and some will be selected “sections” of murals that Dean has done.

Opening night for “Albert Dean: A Different Perspective” is from 6 until 8 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 1 and the public is invited. The exhibition will run through Jan. 3, 2009.

Dean is a member of the board of directors of the Dale Council of Arts and Humanities, the sponsoring organization of the “Albert Dean: A Different Perspective” exhibition.

“I had been participating in juried show sponsored by the Dale Council and the council elected me to the board of directors,” Dean said. “Several months ago, they asked me to about doing a one person show and I agreed.”