Adams, Robinson share insights at JCA

Published 11:27 pm Friday, August 21, 2020

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The Johnson Center for the Arts hosted an artists’ reception and Art Talk for local artist Charles Adams and Huntsville artist Guadalupe Lanning Robinson on Thursday night.

Brenda Campbell, JCA director, said it was an honor to have these two outstanding artists as exhibitors and an even greater honor to have them share the creative process and passion for their art.

“Both artists are so likeable and so easy to talk with,” Campbell said. “Those who already knew Charles love and appreciate him and everyone fell in love with Guadalupe and with her ‘cotton and clay.’”

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Art patrons had the opportunity to view the exhibitions and visit with the artists prior to the Art Talks.

Bill Hopper, board chair of the Troy Pike Cultural Arts center, said the artwork of both artists is phenomenal.

“I encourage everyone to take this opportunity to see the work of these two Alabama master artists,” Hopper said.

Adams began his career in the arts in the early 1960s as a clay artist. He was introduced to kiln-fire glass by Ed Walter at Troy State and quickly realized that his talent was as a glass artist.

Adams works at his studio on Highway 231 south of Troy.

Adams quickly admitted he borrowed ideas from “high places.”

He attended an art show at Lenox Square in Atlanta and was intrigued by the color combinations so he “borrowed’ those “combos” for many of his glass creations.

The idea for his clear glass windows and doors came from Ruby Tuesday.

“Back in the 1980s, I noticed Ruby Tuesday had all clear glass,” he said. “I decided to try it but other glass artists laughed at me. The next big show we had, I sold every piece, so, I had the last laugh.”

Adams shared the process for his colored glass and how he uses old window panes to make unique dishes. Some processes are strictly Charles Adams and he’s not talking.

Robinson said the work she creates dates back thousands of years.

“It is an authentic challenge to make something new that is an art that is that ancient,” she said. “I love what I do,” she said.

“I grew up in Mexico and my culture is my influence. When I started working with clay, I knew what I wanted to do the rest of my life. To me, working with clay is not work. I talk clay; I read about clay; I dream about clay. I can work with clay for hours and not even look at the clock. Clay is that much a part of my life.”

Robinson is also a quilt artist.

The motif that runs appears throughout much of Robinson’s work comes from the colorful dresses traditionally worn by the women of Mexico.

Robinson is also a master quilter. Many of her quits patterns trace her Mexican heritage while others are geometric in design.

She has a studio a Lowe Mill in Huntsville.

Adams’ “Glass Through the Years, 1960-2020” and Robinson’s “To Cotton from Clay” exhibits will run through September.

Johnson Center for Arts hours are 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Wednesday through Friday. Admission is free.