By Kelsi Peace, Features Editor
Art appreciators can visit 15 studios displaying artwork in mediums including sculpture, stained glass, pottery and painting.
Kelly Langford Thompson, Abilene Cultural and Heritage Tourism Director, said the tour has been well-received the past two years.
“Abilene is very rich in working artists,” Thompson said.
The number of participating artists has increased each year, and Thompson said prospective artists enter their names and undergo a jury process to ensure that only quality work will be displayed.
This year, metal sculptor Nic Noblique will participate in the tour for the first time.
Noblique has displayed his work at many art exhibitions, including his 9,000 pound steel sculpture entitled “Runner,” which was displayed at the 2003 Navy Pier Walk at Navy Pier in Chicago.
Audra Sewell, Noblique’s wife, said after Noblique’s Gallery a-gO-gO opened downtown, Thompson approached him about hosting a Preview Party at the gallery as well as a tour at Noblique’s studio.
The Preview Party was held at Gallery a-gO-gO during ArtWalk on Thursday to display samples of participating artists’ work.
Last November, Sewell said, the studio near their home burnt down, destroying the building and the equipment and work that rested inside.
The public can view the new studio, which was built in February, Sewell said.
“They’ll actually get to see what remains of the old, burnt-down building and then the new building.”
At the studio, viewers will be able to watch demonstrations, work with scraps and ask questions.
“Nic will actually show and let people actually work some of the machines,” Sewell said. “He works with some really huge machines.”
Sewell said Noblique is excited to be part of the show and hopes the hard work of the artists will be appreciated.
“Nic’s real charismatic,” Sewell said. “It definitely won’t be boring.”
Thompson said sculptor Terry Gilbreth, who started the studio tour, will set up stations to demonstrate the sculpting process.
At Studio 13, the artists will have a band, punch and food.
“It’ll be a party there the whole weekend,” Thompson said.
Brochures and maps for the tour are available at the Abilene Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Texas and Forts Trail Visitors Center at Frontier Texas! and at all participating studios.
The studios will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission to the studios is free.