BOONE — The Turchin Center for the Visual Arts at Appalachian State University invites the community to a Spring Exhibition Celebration from 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday, April 5.

Held in conjunction with the downtown Boone Art Crawl, the public is invited to engage, discover and connect through the arts at the Turchin Center, where the festivities will include costumed dancers and live music in the Main Gallery, refreshments and a cash bar.

During this event the Turchin Center will celebrate four exhibitions and many of the artists will be on-hand to meet visitors and provide insight into their intriguing work. This event is free and open to the public.

New Exhibitions

Elizabeth Alexander: “The Great Enemy of Truth”

Through June 1 in the Main Gallery

“The Great Enemy of Truth” is a site-specific installation by Elizabeth Alexander with an integral sound component by Todd Bowser. The Main Gallery has been transformed with intricate paper installations, suspended sculpture, found objects, costumes, dinner plates and sound for an immersive experience that the artist says: “seems double-edged, a dreamlike scenario that is both familiar and foreign--inspiring frequent shifts in mood.”

John F. Kennedy, in a speech made at Yale University, stated: “For the great enemy of truth is very often not the lie — deliberate, contrived and dishonest — but the myth — persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic.” As the artist explains, “This statement was made in 1962 yet feels like an accurate portrait of our current era of fake news, tribal politics and emotional baiting at the forefront of contemporary culture and decision making.”

During the evening, masked dancers in costumes created by Alexander will perform in the gallery accompanied by live music created by Bowser.

Alexander is an interdisciplinary artist who specializes in sculptures and installations made from paper and found objects. She holds degrees in sculpture from Cranbrook Academy and the Massachusetts College of Art. Alexander has received fellowships from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the St. Botolph Foundation, the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund, and, was awarded “Best Artist of Boston” in 2014 by Improper Bostonian Magazine.

Alexander frequently exhibits in museums and galleries across the U.S. Her work is part of private collections across the United States including the contemporary craft collection at the Mint Museum in Charlotte. Alexander is currently an assistant professor at the UNC School of the Arts in Winston-Salem.

Bowser is a librarian, “sonic atmosphere maker,” “ill-tempered pacifist,” future-primitivist, and bassist living and working in Winston-Salem. He primarily collaborates with Alexander.

Plein Air: Southern Appalachian Forest, Reiko Goto Collins and Tim Collins

Now – Aug. 3 in the Mayer Gallery

Trees are the largest living things on earth. Forests are often discussed as one aspect of the range of approaches necessary to sequester carbon with the potential to reduce the impacts of climate change. The experience produced by “Plein Air,” mediated by sensors and software, lets us hear a metaphor — a sound of one leaf/one tree breathing.

Reiko Goto Collins is a Japanese artist who has lived in both the U.S. and U.K. and is a principal in the Collins and Goto Studio. She has been a research fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at University of Edinburgh.

Collins participates in an international “Climate Change Network: Uncertain Human Futures” and is currently involved in a working group on “Living Organisms and Their Choices.” She is a distinguished research fellow at the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

Tim Collins is from the U.S. and is an artist, author and planner, a principal in the Collins and Goto Studio and an honorary research fellow in the School of Social Science at the University of Aberdeen. He works across science, technology and philosophy to develop projects related to nature, culture, changing ideas about ethical duty and public space. In 2017 he was on the development committee for the Art and Artists in Landscape Environment Research Today seminar at the National Gallery in London. He currently serves on the board of directors for the Landscape Research Group and Glasgow Sculpture Studios.

Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition

Now – June 1 in the Mezzanine Gallery

In its 16th year, the Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition provides both amateur and professional photographers with the opportunity to showcase their interpretation of the unique character, people, places and pursuits that distinguish the Southern Appalachians. The categories include: Adventure, Blue Ridge Parkway, Culture, Our Ecological Footprint, Flora/Fauna and Landscape.

Nearly 1,000 entries were submitted and the jury panel selected 50 finalist images that are on display in the Mezzanine Gallery.

The jury who selected the finalist images and the final award-winning photographs are accomplished photographers and artists. Beverly Poppe is an accomplished photographer with her commercial and fine artwork appearing in publications including The New York Times, Bon Appetit and Food Network and galleries around the U.S. and in Italy.

She received her bachelor’s from the Brooks Institute of Photography and her master’s in mixed media with an emphasis in fine art photography from the University of North Dakota. She currently teaches at Appalachian while continuing to work as a freelance photographer.

Katie Langley is a professional photographer with future plans in the field of investigative journalism. She received studied technical photography at Appalachian. Martin Church holds a bachelor’s in photography from Virginia Intermont College and a master’s from Radford University. He has taught at James Madison University, Radford University and currently teaches in the Art Department at Appalachian.

The AMPC is a partnership between Appalachian State University’s Outdoor Programs, the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts and Virtual Blue Ridge. The AMPC provides support for the university’s Office of Outdoor Programs and their extended expeditions that are educational journeys of discovery that take students around the world. The competition is generously sponsored by the Mast General Store and supporters include the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation, Nikon Cameras, Stickboy Bread Company, Bistro Roca, Peabody’s Wine and Beer Merchants, Smoky Mountain Living, Footsloggers, and Appalachian Voices. Visit the AMPC for more information at

“Pieces of the Puzzle: Community Outreach”

Now – June 1 in the Community Gallery

The Turchin Center’s arts and education outreach programs connect the university arts resources to a diverse audience of students, arts patrons, teachers and learners. There are many “pieces of the puzzle” of the Turchin’s outreach programs and each piece strengthens community participation in the arts by creating an environment in which individuals of all ages experience the power and excitement of creating art.

This exhibition celebrates the process of art making and of free play that participants experience when they respond to color, texture, and design in the world around them. According to Pegge Laine, Outreach Coordinator, “When participants let go of the voice that says ‘but I am not an artist’ they allow their creative spirits to soar.” The TCVA acknowledges Hope and Hector Estepan for their sponsorship of this exhibition.

Participating outreach groups include the following:

Hidden Talents: Emerging Artists of Junaluska features clay, alcohol inks and painting of the women of the African American Junaluska Community. They have come together through art, and now share with one another, encouragement and support while relieving stress and promoting healing.

Beyond our Walls highlights the art of disabled adults from Watauga Opportunities. They support and encourage one another as they create work from the heart and strengthen self-esteem through each project completed.

Healing Arts offers opportunities for homeless children and adults at the Hospitality House and Rock Haven to create art. The program provides a safe haven and creative play while making something special to keep with them as they journey through life.

Bethel Elementary School is a six-week expressive arts program for a third grade class and focuses on self-esteem, community, problem solving and expressing emotions through art experiences.

WYN with Art serves adolescents in the Western Youth Network, in a relaxed environment to build character and confidence through positive role models and skill development so that participants can reach their full potential.

Inkalicious is an ongoing open studio experience for community members and Appalachian students to explore the magic of alcohol inks.

Blazing Easels allows young artists age 7-12 an opportunity to explore elements such as line, shape, colors, texture and two and three-dimensional form.

Crack Pots: Clay at the Senior Center, is a program of the Western Watauga Community Center, which has embraced members of the Junaluska community and is mentoring them in their journey with clay.

Appalachian State University Student Outreach offers free arts programming for all Appalachian students. Workshops include open studio, Inkalicious: Alcohol Inks, visual journaling and a step-by-step paint night class. All experience levels are welcome. All that is required is a willingness to allow the experience and the materials to inspire.

Printmaking Participants worked with artists Julie Humby and Vincent Alessi from New Zealand and Australia to learn the creative process of mono-printing using water-based inks on Plexiglas.

Ebenezer Children’s Home Traveling in the ROAM van, TCVA staff worked with five groups of children Each visit provided a supportive inviting environment for participants to express their feelings and rediscover their creative spirit through age appropriate activities: it was a listening-learning project.

Continuing exhibitions at the Turchin include “Full Circle: 2018 Center Awards” through April 27 and “Terraria Gigantica: The World Under Glass” by Dana Fritz through April 27.

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