Renaissance on the Avenue | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Renaissance on the Avenue


On May 6, the public is invited to view some working studios and exhibitions of local artists at the Millsaps Avenue Arts District Exhibition. This event will serve as Pearl River Glass Studio's annual spring Garden Show, and with the support of Andrew Young from Pearl River, other local artists have turned it into a neighborhood festival. The participating studios are Pearl River Glass Studio, Studio 2, Seven*Studioz and R. Potter Designs, all of which will open at noon and provide entertainment and refreshments until 6 p.m. except for Seven*Studioz, which will open at 3 p.m.

Andrew Young, owner of Pearl River Glass Studio, has been in the Millsaps Arts District since before it was an arts district. He moved to Millsaps Avenue in 1976 and has been having regular "Open Studio" tours since 1978. He says this is the first neighborhood show Millsaps has had in about 10 years. He credits this to the infusion of "new blood" into the neighborhood. When asked about the negative view some Jacksonians have of the area, he just chalks it up to having the wrong perspective. "If you are in midtown looking out, everything is fine," Young says.
Pearl River will feature a Yard Art theme in their courtyard for the Garden Show, as well as the work of many local artists. In addition to the artists Pearl River employs, work by Elen Langford, K.C. Williams, Harry Day, Wendy Eddleman and Daphne Nabors will also be on display.

Elli Williams of Studio 2 is a driving force behind making this a neighborhood event. Studio 2 is both the residence and art studio of Elli and her husband Joseph Williams. They have managed to incorporate a space for his pottery, her darkroom and painting studio, and their living space into one wonderful area, where artwork will be on display during the exhibition.

In addition to their art, a wide variety of wonderful artwork will be on display in their studio from artists such as Scott Jarret, Daniel Johnson and James Galpin. Gretchen Haien, who has a studio in the same building, will exhibit some of her work in Studio 2, including the series that won the 2005 Mississippi Arts and Letters, "Interior Frontiers."

A few doors down and up the stairs, R. Potter Designs will display paintings and mixed-media pieces by owner and artist Rebekah Potter. A large selection of her popular "bloks" will be on display, as well as some intriguing new paintings, which initially look like a departure from the style she has established, but once you take a closer look, the progression seems natural. She evokes a markedly feminist subtext through her use of textiles with prominent stitching. Although she primarily uses monochromatic fabrics, Potter is able to create a feeling of depth by using her well-honed collage skills and eye for design.

Down Millsaps Avenue, Ezra Brown, proprietor of Seven*Studioz, describes his studio as an umbrella company that "exposes what (artists) do on a weekly basis." He will have graphic art, digital projections, spoken word, music, DJs and even some graffiti artists working outside. Ezra hopes this art opening will "encourage art and (the) purchase of art."

The Millsaps Avenue Arts District Exhibition starts on May 6 at noon. Roy Adkins' work will also be on display.

Previous Comments


Roy, another great article. I have posted a link to your interview with CONVERSATIONS along with Ali Greggs comments about hers. Keep up the inspiring work.

c a webb


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