Second Saturday at the ArtSpace

From Staff Reports (

Article Published: Apr. 10 | Modified: Apr. 13
Second Saturday at the ArtSpace

Shirley Hampton’s artwork is being spotlighted in the ArtSpace’s Open Door Gallery.

April 12 is the second Saturday of the month, and for the Watauga County Arts Council, that can mean only one thing.

It’s the Second Saturday Arts Celebration, and it runs from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Blue Ridge ArtSpace, located at 377 Shadowline Drive in Boone.

In the Main Gallery, the WCAC will feature the forged furniture and metal works of Carley Eisenberg, complemented by the original paintings and drawings of Tommy Lee McGhee.

“Both of them were Regional Artist Project Grant winners this past fall, selected the be part of an elite group of 10 artists chosen from among an outstanding slate of talented artists from Watauga, Ashe, Alleghany and Wilkes counties,” WCAC executive director Cherry Johnson said.

McGhee, also known as Sir Tom Foolery, is a member of downtown Boone’s Nth Degree Gallery.
“His works are delightful and whimsical, yet are filled with symbolic messages and narratives,” Johnson said.

Eisenberg, who specializes in metalworking, recently opened her own forge, “where she now enjoys spending all day forging both beautiful and functional artwork,” Johnson said, adding that the artist is now creating a new collection based on the original tales of Cinderella.

In the Open Door Gallery, featured artist Shirley Hampton will showcase her figurative abstract and impressionistic painting.

Hampton said she paints from her imagination, starting with a blank canvas and simply painting, not knowing exactly how it is going to turn out. She also sculpts, and, like her paintings, the results are the products of her imagination. The end result is an eclectic collection of fresh works, which are both colorful and frequently large.

In the Serendipity Gallery, “outsider artist” David Richardson will display a collection of his works.
About 10 years ago, Richardson fought a wave of boredom by sketching an old barn shed. Happy with the result, he began to create pencil drawings, has painted his grandchildren’s pictures and has crafted several organic wood carvings.

The Tarheel Footprints Children’s Gallery will feature the works of art from the students of Mabel Elementary School. Their instructor is Rae Filsinger, who divides her time between Mabel and Parkway schools.

“She featured her Parkway students’ work in November, and it will be exciting to see what her Mabel students have been doing this year,” Johnson said.

All of the WCAC galleries are sponsored by Cheap Joe’s Art Stuff.

As for the ArtSpace’s five classrooms, Johnson said all will be filled with creative energy, with each featuring a new arts adventure. Among the featured artists this month are Pat Grant, who will be working on an acrylic painting and will have some of his works for sale; Tunde Afolayan, whose vibrant and colorful paintings were featured in the January exhibit in the Main Gallery; Jody Bargerstock, “whose dynamic alcohol ink paintings reflect her equally dynamic personality,” Johnson said; and Bill Kaiser, whose two novels, “Bloodroot” and “Hellebore,” depict the Civil War and its impact on families in Western North Carolina.

There will also be plenty of shopping in the Gift Shop and light refreshments. During the Second Saturday weekend (Friday and Saturday), all WCAC members are entitled to a 10-percent discount in the gift shop by showing their membership card.

For more information on the Watauga County Arts Council, visit

Additional Images

Shirley Hampton’s artwork is being spotlighted in the ArtSpace’s Open Door Gallery.

Carley Eisenberg’s funtional and decorative metal art is being showcased in the Blue Ridge ArtSpace’s Main Gallery.
Photo submitted

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