Turnage art show opens

Published 5:58 pm Friday, May 21, 2010

Lifestyles & Features Editor

The Turnage Theater is inaugurating a new series of art exhibits, this one featuring award-winning pieces by Washington artist Jeffrey Jakub.
The show officially opens today with a reception from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., according to Turnage Theaters Foundation Executive Director Scotty Henley. The event is open to the public.
“The idea is to announce that we actually have a gallery, which will allow us to hang other artists’ work,” Henley said. “And, hopefully, this will bring us attention so the College of Art at East Carolina University will have another venue for their student-art presentations.”
The Jakub exhibit will remain on display through the first week of June. After that, a presentation of jazz-inspired art by members of the Greenville Brushstrokes group is planned to coincide with a jazz concert featuring the Steve Creech All-Stars. Also scheduled are exhibitions featuring artists from Washington’s River Walk Gallery and Inner Banks Artisans’ Center, as well as the Watercolor Society of North Carolina.
This is the second time Jakub’s work has been included in a Turnage show. As part of a fundraising effort titled “A Lavish Night of Entertainment,” Jakub and other local artists put together an art exhibition. At that time, it was realized the theater offered a unique venue for art shows, but a suitable way to display the pieces was not in place.
Offering proceeds from the sale of two of his pieces in the show, Jakub laid the groundwork for the purchase of a hanging system, and he encouraged other artists to financially support the drive.
The new hanging system was utilized recently by ECU student Tori Harden, whose work was displayed last month.
The new series of art presentations will financially benefit the Turnage, according to Henley. Each participating artist will donate a percentage of his or her sales to the theater.
“If anything sells, I’ll make a donation to the Turnage,” Jakub said. “And as an incentive to buy, everything is 30 percent off.”
The Jakub exhibition features more than 25 original watercolors, including one that was displayed in New York with the American Watercolor Society and another that was featured in a California showing hosted by the National Watercolor Society. Several others have received awards from the Watercolor Society of North Carolina, Jakub said.
The exhibit runs the gamut from florals and landscapes to portraits.
“I don’t allow myself to be pigeon-holed into any one subject matter. I’m interested in everything,” Jakub said. “It’s a challenge.”
Along with the original paintings, prints of Jakub’s work also are available.
Jakub, who has lived in Beaufort County for 24 years, formally trained at the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Art. Although he had received a full scholarship to another school, he opted to attend Newark without scholarship assistance because of it’s excellent reputation.
“All the instructors were from their respective fields. They were not professors, so it offered a practical application in the arts,” Jakub said. “It was a good decision. I started working before graduating and I’ve been working ever since.”
A former president of the Beaufort County Arts Council’s Board of Directors, Jakub is president of the Greenville Brushstrokes and president-elect of the Watercolor Society of North Carolina. He’s also a fixture at River Walk Gallery, a nonprofit group located on West Main Street in Washington.
For more about upcoming events at the Turnage, visit www.turnagetheater.com.