Artists at work
JACKSON – The colors of spring in the heart of Jackson proved to be the perfect setting for music, handmade crafts and vibrant artwork.
On Saturday, the art community in Northampton and surrounding counties displayed their works at the 4th Annual Cultural Arts Day.
The Northampton County Cultural Arts Committee organizes the event with the help of a Grassroots grant from the North Carolina Arts Council.
Despite a chill in the air, Cultural Arts Committee Chair Judy Collier said the event went well despite the weather.
“I was a little disappointed in the crowd (attendance) but that was because of the weather,” she said. “It’s a shame because there is a lot of talent in the county.”
Collier said the change of scenery—moving the event from the Northampton County Cultural and Wellness Center to the Courthouse Square—was ideal for Cultural Arts Day and there are plans to bring it back to the courthouse area for next year.
Writer and poet Phillip Shabazz was the writer in residency for Northampton County High School and worked two weeks with students on the topic of poetry.
“The poetry and writing is all about getting young people to talk about their lives, dreams, aspirations,” he said. “It aides them to look beyond where they live.”
Shabazz of Carrboro County is gearing up for the release of his latest book of poems, “Frames in the Fire”.
He noted events like Cultural Arts Day are a good way to bring the community together.
“It takes them out of the humdrum of 9 to 5 and let’s them celebrate each others’ talents and gifts,” he said.
Gloria Goode of Gaston, a vocalist with SPIRIT, said she loved the fact Northampton County has a day for local talents to showcase their works.
“It gives an opportunity to show the talent in the area that you would not normally see,” she said.
Denise G. Barnes, the director of SPIRIT, said the event was a fantastic way to bring creative people who use different mediums together.
“It’s great because art is not just pictures,” she said.
Berly Brill and Judi Gums with “Granny Squares of Love” were on hand showcasing their crocheted items. The volunteer group meets monthly in Jackson (first Monday of the month) and Rich Square (first Tuesday of the month) to crochet items (blankets, booties, hats, scarves, gloves and afghans) for those in need.
“We’re always in need of new volunteers,” said Brill.