Talented Young Artist Exhibits at the FAC

Recent visitors to the Fine Arts Center have had the privilege of experiencing an exhibit of powerful images and ideas. Inspirations for many of the works, according to artist Carrie Gilboy, are obviously people and horses, but these were not staid portraiture. The artist’s use of color and texture supercharged the Edna B. Love Gallery with a sense of electricity that was almost palpable.

The Fine Arts Center was fortunate to host this first-ever full exhibit of Gilboy’s work. While this was her first full exhibit, it was not the first time her work graced the Center’s walls, as Gilboy is a former Scholastic Arts winner. This annual competition showcases the work of young artists who can qualify for awards and scholarships, and Gilboy was one such award winner when she was a student growing up in the New River Valley.

When asked about the sources for her fantastically colorful and evocative images, Gilboy noted that she is inspired by graffiti and street art. “I really like that media,” she says, “so I used it as my inspiration.” She added that graffiti and street artists often use really bold colors, so she “got inspiration from the colors they use and transferred it to the things I like to draw.”

Her favorite subjects were obvious, “people and horses,” but with a mix from portraiture to juxtaposition of geometric elements, including a three-dimensional installation. The geometric features, often repeated in her work, build upon classic forms to explore different elements, such as developing strength through geometric repetition or the feeling of movement through repeating, nestled arcs.

One standout from the exhibit is Gilboy’s acknowledged favorite. She took the challenge from her horse-back-riding coach to emulate the power and energy of a horse coming to a sliding stop. She noted she focused on presenting energy through the representation of dirt being kicked up from the horse, but did so in hues of blue so that one might interpret the horse shearing through water, or perhaps even in flight. The juxtaposition between textures in the glistening red-orange of the horse, where one wants to almost reach out and touch the powerful steed’s muscles, to the energy of the displaced blue matter creates a three-dimensional effect that draws you in. That, and the expression in the horse’s eye that captures your attention and makes you want to keep looking at and exploring the picture.

The Fine Arts Center wants to thank Carrie Gilboy for sharing her passion and creativity with our visitors. We look forward to seeing this talented young artist grow and share her work in the years to come.

For future exhibits and receptions, please visit our calendar.

John Ross