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The Hudgens Center features numerous exhibitions and special events this summer. “Hike in the Painted Desert” by artist Rebecca Shewmaker is part of the Chattahoochee Handweavers Guild exhibition which will be on view through July 31.

Four exhibitions and an intriguing assortment of events are currently available at The Hudgens Center for Art and Learning in Duluth.

Stephanie Lloyd, the Hudgens’ Education and Development Director, is enthusiastic about the upcoming months filled with Folk Art, Fiber Art, and works in Clay.

“I love the variety of artwork at The Hudgens,” she said. “I’m always learning something new.”

Already on view is a special exhibition which has been adjudicated by Catherine Ellis. “Stories from Nature: Works from the Chattahoochee Handweavers Guild” celebrates the 20th anniversary of this biennial juried exhibit. It is the longest continuously running fiber arts event in the Southeastern USA.

Thirty-nine international artists were invited by Ellis who selected 33 work of fiber art reflecting this year’s theme: “Stories from Nature.”

Said Lloyd: “Nature is and always has been a source of inspiration for artists. Besides physical beauty, there are timely stories to be told through functional and artistic expression.”

This exhibition is on view through July 31.

The Hudgens is excited to feature Folk Artist Ed Gillam’s exhibition “Drawn to Clay: Works of Ed Gillam from the Private Collection of Thomas E. Scanlin.” This exhibition began May 15 and will be on view through July 31.

Gillam is known for his whimsical paintings on ceramic chargers. He creates works that often combines human and animal imagery with snippets of poetry and prose.

Gillam began creating art full-time at the age of 60. He paints surreal snapshots of homegrown wisdom that are simultaneously mischievous and reassuring. His work is reminiscent of fairy tales and fables, inviting the viewer to finish each story for themselves.

“I really love Ed Gillam’s work,” Lloyd said. “His pieces are so unique and beautiful, but also a little creepy, which is fun.”

Visitors will also enjoy the 4th Biennial National Juried Cup Show through July 31st. Adjudicated by Shoko Teruyama, this show features clay work created by artists 18 years of age and older who live in the USA. This popular Hudgens biennial event features cups, mugs, tankards, tea bowls, tumblers, goblets and more.

Hudgens visitors are also invited to “get acquainted” with nature’s beauty that often goes unnoticed. “Get Acquainted: Works by Yesha Panchal” invites viewers to be inspired by nature’s details at the microscopic and naked-eye level, taking in minute details of our surroundings.

This Friday feature another “Patio Paint and Sip” event in the Hudgens Sculpture Garden from 6 – 8 p.m. This popular happening, where guests become artists as they enjoy the ambience of the outdoors, will also occur on July 23.

For very young artists, “Toddler Fridays” happen on May 28, June 25 and July 30 from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

The Hudgens Center also offers a special “Family Day” June 12 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. featuring free admission.

For more information, contact Stephanie Lloyd at slloyd@thehudgens.org or call 770-623-6002 ext. 214. The Hudgens Center is located at 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway in Duluth.

Holley Calmes is a freelance writer and public relations consultant specializing in the arts. Email her at hcalmes@ mindspring.com.

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