Photographs kick off center’s first gallery show | Wide Awake Wilson
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Photographs kick off center’s first gallery show

Posted on April 29, 2021

Wide Awake Wilson

Wilson Arts will host its first exhibit in the brand-new gallery space at the Wilson Arts Center this month. The exhibit run to June 17.

Photographers from The Wilson Camera Club will display some of their favorite works, opening with a reception on Thursday, May 6, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The reception is free and open to the public. Featured photographers include Hilton Best, Jay Gallimore, Bill Howard, Ralph Kennedy, Glenda Lamphere, Bill Proseus, Matt Proseus, Matt Shaw, Tom Simpson, Jackie Tate and Alisha Whitley.

This event is free and open to the public.

The Wilson Camera Club dates back more than 40 years and includes members of all skill levels with a common interest — yearning to learn more about how to use a digital SLR camera to take their best interpretation of an image. Education about photography has always been the club’s top priority, and they take great pride in mentoring one another and providing learning opportunities for members. Monthly meetings, outings, guest speakers and photo assignments help keep things active and interesting. To find out more about The Wilson Camera Club, visit the club’s Facebook page.


Also on display will be works from the private collection of Wilson native Allen Thomas Jr. He has had solo exhibitions of his collection at numerous museums, including Raleigh’s North Carolina Museum of Art, CAM and most recently Eyes on Main Street gallery last year. He also has generously loaned works to more than 50 exhibitions worldwide and has donated more than 100 works to permanent institutional collections.

Thomas has served on the boards of trustees of NCMA, CAM and is the current president of the board of directors for the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park.

With a compulsion to collect, he continually acquires new works. To this end, this exhibit will be showing works not yet seen here in Wilson.

“We are very fortunate to have such a prolific collector right here in Wilson,” said Dee Dee Oliver, visual arts coordinator for Wilson Arts.

While Thomas collects all forms of contemporary art, he has been collecting photography for nearly 30 years and has built one of North Carolina’s largest privately held art collections.

His latest venture is Artsuite, an online platform and art marketplace that connects artists with collectors and galleries with communities. This online format showcases artists and promotes their works — several of which will be on display in this exhibit.

The Wilson Arts Center is located at 204 Nash St. S. The galleries and gift shop will be open Tuesdays-Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. beginning on Thursday, May 6; masks/face coverings are required for all guests, and social distancing protocols will be in place.

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