If you have been downtown recently, you may have seen several new businesses that have popped up in the Trenton Street area: All That Jazz is opening a second location, there's a new boutique called Le Beau Monde, Pastry Moon has moved to West Alabama, and The Lodge has opened next door to Turbo Goat.
Turbo Goat, at 301 North Trenton Suite 1, IS Ruston's bike shop. Listen to this excellent tagline: The Turbo Goat exists to facilitate the cycling lifestyle in any manifestation. Owner Justin Stoppleworth has a great space and devoted customer base. He also has a new shop/partner next door with The Lodge. At 301 North Trenton Street Suite 2, the two "brother" shops share an open wall and the place has a communal vibe. The Lodge has guns/ammo, bows/arrows, coolers, a cool fly-fishing lure station, and other sporting goods.
These two spaces are hosting two visual artists as well as two musicians for this year's Holiday Arts Tour. First, Peter Hay, a 3rd year MFA candidate at Louisiana Tech University will be exhibiting his prints, paintings and photography based on embellishments of current ecological issues. You can find Peter's website here. I've been watching Peter's work since he first joined the MFA program, and I'm impressed by this current body of work. His prints are beautiful and sensitive and interesting. Peter has also worked with NCLAC as a Summer Arts Camps teacher, and frankly, he's a natural educator. Really wonderful job. Peter, along with his wife and daughter, are transplants here from Oklahoma. I would love for them to stay after his graduation....hmm....what can we do about that?
Exhibiting along with Peter will be Sonny Monteleone, traveling to us from Breaux Bridge, Louisiana. Sonny decided to pursue photography professionally while in Vietnam with the US Air Force, where he bought his first new camera. Upon completion of his military duties, he went to school to follow this passion. His childhood was spent piddling with old cameras his dad bought, so he's really been "piddling" with photography forever. Sonny works as a photographer, a photo teacher and a framer (he has a custom frame shop) Sonny's favorite subjects are scenes of Louisiana, and to these images he blends photography and painting techniques through the use of digital technology. This will be Sonny's first year with Holiday Arts Tour, and I'm so glad he reached out to NCLAC and is driving up for the event. He spends much of his time at other art-related events around our great state, such as Festival International and the Big Easel.
Along with these two visual artists will be two musicians. Fred Beavers and Sara Sullivan will be set up in the easy chairs (at The Lodge, of course) to entertain our ears on Friday, from 5-8. They'll be playing a number of short sets so that guests can mingle and chat with them about their music. Fred is an award-winning fiddle champion, having won the coveted Grand Championship of the LA State Fiddlers' contest on more than one occasion. A native of Homer, Fred has played on many stages, including the LA Folklife Festival and the New Orleans Jazz&Heritage Festival. Sara Sullivan will be playing with Fred on guitar and keyboard. Sara is a Ruston native who performs in the area with several hats. She has a '90s cover band, Tranny DeVito, as well as a solo act with keyboard, guitar and vocals. She is a talented songwriter (which may be related to her Masters Degree in English) and is currently working as an English teacher.
For a complete schedule of Holiday Arts Tour, visit NCLAC's official site. The big weekend is almost here! November 21-24, 2013.
Holiday Arts Tour is supported in part by a grant from Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council as administered by the Shreveport Regional Arts Council.