Passion Flower

Passion Flower by Charity Valentine

Artists and art lovers will come together for the 30th annual Art from the Heart and Student Art shows next month.

During the last two weeks of February and the first week of March, the Arts Council of Carteret County will present the 30th annual Art from the Heart show and sell original artwork created by adult artists from multiple eastern North Carolina counties. The group will also host the Student Art Show, featuring artwork created by public, private and home-schooled students from Carteret County.

Art from the Heart started in 1989 when the ACCC was newly reformed and organizers were trying to think of a way to bring new members to the art organization.

“I remember attending my first meeting of a newly resurrected Arts Council in 1988,” ACCC board member Patrick Keough said. “…There were no members to speak of and only a charter from the NCAC (N.C. Arts Council) and a few enthusiastic proponents of the arts.

“A year later, after the first Art from the Heart exhibit in 1989 we had almost two hundred members on the books. We have come a long way from those days,” he continued. “Essentially we came up with Art from the Heart as a way to give exposure to a defunct Arts Council and resurrect it from the ashes.”

Over the last two decades, Art from the Heart has become one of the largest and most popular art shows in eastern North Carolina. Sales of artwork have increased each year, as have the number of visitors to the gallery.

According to the ACCC, total sales exceeded $10,000 in 2019, while an estimated 1,900 people visited the gallery. ACCC President and Art from the Heart 2020 Chairman Lee Lumpkin said last year’s Art from the Heart event was by all accounts a tremendous success.

“One hundred and eighty-four artists submitted work in 2019. Thirty-three had never entered our show before,” Mr. Lumpkin said.  “Last year, the show featured over 400 pieces of original artwork, many of which were sold during the exhibition.”

Mr. Lumpkin said the show was popular among new and seasoned artists.

“I believe the show serves as both social and professional opportunities for many artists,” he noted. “Most of our artists do not own gallery space and they truly enjoy displaying and selling their work. They also enjoy seeing artwork that others are producing.”

According to Mr. Lumpkin, Art from the Heart is an artist-friendly show that welcomes new artists and those who have been participating in shows for years.

One of those artists is Sally Anger. She said she enjoys participating in the show.

“I enter shows in other parts of the state and in other states, and Art from the Heart really is unique because it welcomes all artists (in the area),” she said. “There is a warm feeling of fellowship among the artists and with the community.”

Mr. Lumpkin said hosting Art from the Heart over the years has been rewarding.

“Our entire board contributes in varying degrees in putting these shows together,” he said. “We are all volunteers.  Working together with the Board and other volunteers to pull off a successful show has been a true pleasure for all of us, I think.”

For more information on Art from the Heart, visit the ACCC’s website at Rules for entry, entry forms and a full calendar of events are posted on the website.


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