Article Published: Jun. 27 | Modified: Jun. 27
Keith Lambert and Willie Baucom are trying to make the
Meat Camp community known more than just for a pretty drive in the
Along with promoting their own fire-kilned pottery and
hand-sculpted marble figures, the husband-and-wife artistic duo want to serve as an intermediary for
other artists in a community that’s off the beaten path.
representing not only ourselves, but Meat Camp artists and their art,” Lambert
Their newest studio-gallery hybrid, Shipyard Earthworks on Meat Camp
Road, showcases their earthly inspired pottery and sculptures that have rivaled European pieces that
demand the admiration of the world’s top artists.
Lambert actually won a top
French contest — a first for any Yankee who has dared entered the competition, bragged
If the couple is world renowned for the artistic talents, you would not
know it by their unassuming, quaint studio located nonchalantly off the side of their restored 1903
The studio serves as a retreat and staging area for the artists
who split their time between the mountain safe haven and their coastal studio in
As they have in their secluded location on the Carolina coast, where all
they have to do for inspiration is literally look out the window at a rare breed of wild Spanish
horses, the artists have found comfort and musings in the mountains of Watauga
One intangible that has remained a constant for the artists, besides
the hardened marble they work with, is the good nature of people and
“Good people is the best thing you can find anywhere,” Baucom
The couple’s fusion as a working tandem is a serendipitous tale of
long-acquainted artists who have always admired one another’s work.
Lambert is a
Rockingham native who taught at UNC- Greensboro and served as head of the art department at Gaston
College for 25 years.
Baucom, on the other hand, was part of a visiting
artists’ program at Gaston College and for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg school
They fell in love with the High Country, particularly Meat Camp,
while working on a three-dimensional wall for the new AppalCART building and AppalCART markers on
King and College streets.
“We had been up here quite a bit and we just love
the area,” Lambert said. “That was the big change. That’s when we decided we enjoyed coming up here
and should probably start looking for a place.”
While Lambert was on a trip to
South Korea, Baucom started looking for a new house.
“I said to her, ‘Don’t
find me a fixer-upper, but she found the worse one,’” Lambert said with a
All repairs aside, the couple has felt right at home at their
western studio and home.
“Our neighbors are embedded in the earth,” Lambert
said. “Everyone that we have met has been unbelievable. We are in a nice community for art and the
Throughout the years, Baucom and Lambert have come to rely
and cherish one another as artists.
“We are a team,” Baucom said. “We have
taught together for years. It’s good to have a friend, who at the end of the night, can just sit
around with you talking about the process.”
“We really work well together and
value each other’s opinion,” Lambert said.
“And each other’s work,”
interjected Baucom, as she finished her husband’s train of thought.
Earthwork is located at the corner of Profitt and Meat Camp roads, approximately four miles from the
intersection of Highway 194.
The studio is open the first two weeks of each
month and by appointment any other time.