Gallery C is once again showing off the “Best of North Carolina.”
The 17th annual show features dozens of pieces by North Carolina artists dating back to the 17th century. The downtown gallery will also display a smaller show called “Master Works of Haitian Art.”
Gallery owner Charlene Newsom says while other exhibits show historic art from North Carolina, none go back quite this far.
The oldest piece in “Best of North Carolina” is a Dutch map of the coast by Willem J. Blaeu that was printed in 1640. One of the more prestigious pieces is an 1850s oil painting of a landscape in Cherokee County by William C. A. Frerichs.
Newsom said it’s an important piece for the state because Frerichs worked hard to accomplish his paintings while Native Americans tried to steal his paints and easel.
All art pieces in the show are for sale and a few of the artists are still living, such as Burk Uzzle.
Uzzle, a photojournalist from Raleigh, has three original photographs in the show from the week Martin Luther King Jr. died in 1968. He urged Newsom to sell two of the photos as a set. They depict a main street in Memphis, Tenn., lined with distraught people – blacks on one side, whites on the other.
Newsom expects the “Best of North Carolina” show will attract clients who are natives of the state and also other Southerners. She figures some buyers will be people who are building a southern historic art collection.
Gallery C doesn’t solely show historic art, and her clientele is wide-ranging.
“We have blue-collar people who buy here,” Newsom said. “Art is nurturing. People need it in their lives and it makes them happy.”
But her commitment is to older work. Gallery C represents 11 estates of artists who passed away; their families commissioned the gallery to manage the art.
Newsom founded the gallery in 1985 in Raleigh and moved downtown in 2011 to the historic Russ-Edwards house at 540 N. Blount St.
It was important to Newsom to move the gallery into a building that reflects the historic art she typically displays.
The Russ-Edwards building used to house the State Bureau of Investigation, and traces of the agency are still present with a seal on a door and old investigation filing tabs.
Knopf: 919-829-8955, @tayknopf
Want to go?
First Friday, from 6 to 9 p.m., is a monthly art event in downtown Raleigh. Art galleries stay open later, and a number of restaurants offer special deals. For more information, go online to FirstFridayRaleigh.com.
More First Friday
▪ Local Color Gallery, 311 W. Martin St.: “Fooling Around,” work by Rebecca Toy and Kim Ballentine
▪ Nicole’s Studio & Art Gallery, 719 N. Person St.: “Beautiful New Spring Arrivals,” work by various resident artists
▪ 311 Gallery, 311 W. Martin St.: “Watermedia Abstractions,” work by Sterling Edwards
▪ Tipping Paint Gallery, 311 W. Martin St.: “Roatán Gems,” work by Linda Eddins
▪ United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County, 410 Glenwood Ave.: “First Friday Visual Art Exhibit,” work by Anthony Garcia-Copian and Helen Seebold
▪ MA Allen Interiors, 1020 Glenwood Ave.: “Meet the Artist,” work by Kate Long Stevenson
▪ DECO Raleigh, 19 W. Hargett St.: “Get Drawn at DECO,” work by Kiki Farish