You don’t have to look far to recognize High Point is a city brimming with artistry. With High Point Market always a presence in our city, the craftsmanship and artistry of the industry spills over into so many parts of our town’s culture and story. And High Point attracts artists, as they get the opportunity to showcase and work with designers in this area. But the art we’re talking about today, extends beyond the artistry present in the furniture industry (although these things go hand-in-hand!). Today, we are highlighting Linwood, a modern abstract artist with art that’s been shown worldwide, who resides right here in High Point! The artist debuted 12 original pieces at Market with Thayer Coggin, using the pieces to create certain showroom vignettes.
“The Thayer Coggin showroom esprit and their brilliant furniture design became an inspiring point of departure,” said Linwood. “Of course, artwork certainly needn’t match your sofa, but holistic design— art and furniture — where disparate influences, elements and materials come together is a high achievement. I think we all seek unity.” (from Home Accents Today)
We got to hear more from the artist about his art, and we found that this talented artist articulates his work just as beautifully as he paints it!
Q. Tell us about your works of art in about 10 words.
A. Row, row, row your boat, gently toward the light…. (Read on for more!)
Q. Why did you start this newest collection and what was the vision?
A. It was a perfect storm – but in a very good way. I had been contemplating my next abstract art series, thinking about color, composition and themes, when the Thayer Coggin team invited me to be their featured showroom artist at the April Market. What an honor to partner with such an iconic brand. From there, I set sail, so to speak, and started painting.
Q. What do you love about your work?
A. When I step back, I think of my art as beauty born of chaos. The act of creation is very exciting for me personally. But what I really love best about the work is the chance to engage others. It’s about spreading creative chaos and discovering beauty. Because the work is abstract, everyone is invited to find meaning. For me, art is communal.
Q. What is one thing people would be interested to learn about your art?
A. If you look – and not always too hard – you’ll see there is a bateau, a boat, in all of my pieces. For me, the bateau is a symbol of change, transformation and journey. Hence, row, row, row that boat…!
Q. What are the highlights of working in High Point?
A. High Point is my design colony. Creativity percolates here and it’s inspiring to be around so many kindred spirits: designers of all variety – furniture, interiors, graphics – as well as photographers, fine artists, writers and craftspeople of all variety. Oh, and let’s not forget the entrepreneurs. Masterminding a new business is highly creative work!
Q. How has High Point changed since you started?
A. High Point has been an important pin drop on my personal map for over 25 years. I’ve seen a lot of changes. Today, the High Point mindset is progressive and much more modern. Now combine that with what’s not changed – a sense of neighborhood, community and genuine hospitality – and you’ve got a great place to live for the 21st century.
Q. What has been your biggest challenge and how did you overcome it?
A. Can I get back to you on that one?? Truth be told, it’s PROCRASTINATION. I have a creative and busy mind. I have to very consciously choose discipline over distraction. Life is full of so many interesting people and pursuits. For me, the key to overcoming procrastination is to BEGIN, prep the canvas and let the ideas flow.
Q. If you had one piece of advice for someone just starting out, what would it be?
A. Don’t listen to all the naysayer noise out there, especially the racket inside your head. Surround yourself with positive voices and examples – and then do it! Elizabeth Gilbert’s book Big Magic was super inspiring for me. It’s about facing down fear and finding your creative path. Read it. Re-read it!
Q. What are you excited about for High Point’s future?
A. High Point is a great mix of modernity and history. This is one of the things that makes us special. I love seeing the redevelopment of old buildings and repurposing of existing ones. And, look what Plant Seven and the Mill Collective are doing. High Point is on the brink of what’s new, but also a real community. That’s exciting!
Q. How can the HP Discovered Audience find you online?
We hope you’ll take the time to join in the appreciation of the arts in our city. High Point is richer for the presence of the furniture industry, and artistry like Linwood’s make our city even more of a hub of arts, culture, and beauty!
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