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A Stroll Through ‘Mountain Gardens’



Article Published: Sep. 22, 2011 | Modified: Oct. 22, 2011
A Stroll Through ‘Mountain Gardens’

Arist Jean Pollock will present 14 new oil paintings this Saturday, Sept. 24, at Alta Vista Gallery in Valle Crucis.

Photo by Frank Ruggiero



Nationally acclaimed artist E. Jean Pollock comes from a family that made a living from flower gardens.

However, Pollock makes a living by creating award-winning oil paintings.

Merging her family heritage with her painting skills, Pollock has created a new body of work, titled “Mountain Gardens,” to show at Alta Vista Gallery in Valle Crucis from mid-September through mid-October. Pollock will greet customers at the gallery’s opening reception on Saturday, Sept. 24, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“Pollock has created 14 new oils for this show,” gallery owner Maria Santomasso-Hyde said. “She is always one of my best-selling artists, so I know her show will be very popular with my customers.”
Last year’s Pollock show saw 14 of her paintings sold during the opening reception alone.

“People love her use of so many colors in every painting,” Santomasso-Hyde said. “They also love that her work is a balance between Impressionism and Realism. And they love meeting her! Jean Pollock is delightful, and quite a storyteller.”

Nationwide, individual buyers of her work are joined by corporate collectors, as several large banks and corporations own oils by Pollock.

Pollock, like her family, loves gardens. She created the theme of this new showing of her work to honor her family heritage, but also because she loves to paint gardens.

“Over the years, about one-third of my work has been painting gardens,” Pollock said. “I’ve painted gardens all over Europe, including Monet’s garden. I’ve also painted gardens all over this country, especially in North Carolina, where our gardens are so lovely.

“Flower gardens were always important to my family, because my mother hybridized iris and daylilies. She’d develop new varieties, and she shipped bulbs worldwide.”

Her mother’s business was called Stadler’s Dahlia Gardens, and she was considered an expert in the area, also writing a column for the Iris Society Magazine, as well as a daylily magazine and several newspapers.

“So, you can see how I grew up around flowers and grew to love them and value them,” Pollock said. “That’s why I paint flower gardens so often.”

“The largest painting in the show, 24 by 36 inches, is titled ‘God’s Garden,’ because only He planted it, with no help from humans. It’s a scene on the Blue Ridge Parkway that is full of blossoms of dogwoods, redbuds and various wildflowers, with the Blue Ridge behind them.”

Another painting features a mountain scene with a vegetable garden, one of Santomasso-Hyde’s personal favorites, while a couple others depict trillium in mountain forests, as well as daylilies, “which I always love,” Pollock said.

Pollock’s show will include a variety of sizes of oil paintings, with many of them as small as 8 by 10 inches or 9 by 12 inches.

“Many collectors of Pollock’s work own many paintings now, so Jean wanted them to be able to get something small enough to put on an easel, or to easily find a spot to hang it,” Santomasso-Hyde said.

The Sept. 24 artist reception is a part of the monthly Avery Tour de Art, which showcases 14 galleries and studios. Maps of the tour are available at each gallery.

Alta Vista Gallery also shows more than 100 other artists in various mediums, including oil, pastel, watercolor, jewelry, fused glass, stained glass and Mangum Pottery.

Alta Vista is located in a National Register Historic farmhouse at 2839 Broadstone Road in Valle Crucis. For a map and directions, visit http://www.altavistagallery.com or call (828) 963-5247.

Receptions are held on the fourth Saturday of each month, June through November. Alta Vista Gallery offers refreshments and tastes from Shelton Vineyards.



Gallery Times

Gallery Times is a weekly news feature of The Mountain Times, featuring short news items submitted by local galleries.

For more information or to make a submission, contact editor Frank Ruggiero at (frank@mountaintimes.com) or (828) 264-6397.

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