‘Alabama Reckoner’ honors the state’s living artists and unique ecology

DOTHAN, Ala. – April 11, 2017- The Wiregrass Museum of Art (WMA) announces the opening of “Alabama Reckoner,” featuring the work of Birmingham-based artist Douglas Pierre Baulos. The exhibition is an exploration of Baulos’ process-driven work and the role the state of Alabama plays in his art. “Alabama Reckoner” will present twelve mixed-media portraits of artists who inspire Baulos, including a self-portrait.

The portraits represent individuals that Baulos has met in Alabama and consist of three- dimensional found objects, handmade paper, and meticulous details that give clues to each of the artists’ personas. Portraits from the series include Chiharu Takahashi Roach, Matt Grubb, Victor Thompson, Merrilee Challiss, Pinky Bass, Dariana Dervis, Ukuu Tafari, Matt Posey, Jon Woolley, L.L. Foster, and Brian Edmonds, as well as a self portrait of Baulos. In addition to showcasing the twelve portraits, WMA will also show work from many of the artists represented in “Alabama Reckoner.”

“The process of piecing together an image is a meditative exercise for me, having as much to do with duration as physical texture or of following the thread of mindfulness to create installations that concretize ephemeral and intangible theories of information and time. I merge the abstraction of narrative with the physicality of objects,” said Baulos.

“Alabama Reckoner” is the second of three exhibitions WMA is curating to mark Alabama’s bicentennial, a three-year-long celebration concluding in December of 2019, with a new theme each year. Baulos’ exhibition was chosen to coincide with 2018’s theme, “Honoring Our People.” The exhibition is a celebration of Alabama, a place that Baulos insists is essential to the art he creates, as well as its artists.

“While there are many amazing artists representing our state today, Doug’s work is uniquely rooted in Alabama. He has such an appreciation for the rich resources here, and all of the materials in his work are found and sourced in Alabama,” said WMA Director and Curator Dana-Marie Lemmer. “In addition, his process and his representation of other Alabama artists in this series highlight his commitment to the contemporary practice across the state and his support for his peers in the artist community. Doug deserves recognition for his contributions to Alabama and for promoting Alabama as a place for creativity and inspiration,” said Lemmer.

“Alabama Reckoner” will open to the public on the evening of Thursday, April 19, at WMA’s Art After Hours, an event held quarterly to mark new exhibition openings. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. Admission is free for museum members and $5 for the general public. An interactive website will launch at the opening to offer an extended, in-gallery experience, including artist biographies, interviews, and videos. An exhibition catalog published by the Wiregrass Museum of Art is forthcoming and will be available at the museum and online.

As part of WMA’s Visiting Artist Series, Douglas Pierre Baulos will give an artist talk titled “Mending, Memory and Placemaking” at 6 p.m. on Thursday, June 7. He will also teach a visual ecology workshop with artist Pinky Bass, focusing on the native birds and bees of Alabama on Saturday, June 9 at 10 a.m. Both the artist talk and the workshop are free. Students can register for the workshop at WMA’s website, https://www.wiregrassmuseum.org/.

“Alabama Reckoner” has been made possible by the Alabama State Council on the Arts in celebration of the bicentennial of Alabama’s statehood and by the Daniel Foundation of Alabama.

About the Wiregrass Museum of Art

The Wiregrass Museum of Art inspires a lifelong appreciation for the visual arts by providing innovative educational programs that engage diverse audiences through the collection and exhibition of quality works.

Since its founding in 1988, WMA has offered educational programs, nationally acclaimed art exhibitions and community events throughout the year. Its Board of Trustees guides the long-term vision and strategic goals, while its membership, City and County support, and grant funding provide the resources needed to fulfill its mission. Because of the scarcity of art education in schools, the WMA Board of Trustees and staff have the responsibility to provide quality, accessible exhibitions and to reach out into the community through art education efforts. WMA fills crucial cultural needs in the Wiregrass area.

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Contact:
Lara Kosolapoff-Wright
Communications Manager, WMA
334.794.3871 x 27
lara@wiregrassmuseum.org

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Youth Art Education Policy

Outside of tours, family days, and open house events, individuals who are not enrolled in a class are not allowed in WMA classrooms except by written permission of the Executive Director. Parents may not join children in the classroom during instruction times in order to ensure an atmosphere conductive to creativity. It is important to limit the number of adults to keep the focus on the kids, their learning, and to accommodate limited seating in the studio. Parents are welcome to stay in the museum during class but must remain outside of the classroom during instruction time.

Museum educators are experienced in creating positive learning environments for all ages and are required to go through a background check to ensure the safety of our students. Parents and guardians are encouraged to visit the studio at the end of class to see what their child has created. All docents and volunteers working with children are also required to go through background checks.

Thank you for understanding our policy and priority on the safety and well-being of participating students.

Throughout the year, WMA will host “Meet the Educator” days where parents and their children can come to the classroom to meet the instructor before beginning classes and camps. 2019’s schedule is as follows: January 30 from 4pm-6pm, May 29 from 4pm-6pm, and August 28 from 4pm-6pm.