kentuck's studio artist program

On any given day in Kentuck’s Courtyard of Wonders you can watch a ceramic bowl emerge from a lump of clay, a folk artist at work, or a weathervane grow from hammered metal in our blacksmith’s forge. 

Kentuck Art Center rents studio space to local, full‑time artists for below market value to help them make a living doing what they love. Kentuck’s Studio Artist Program fulfills all facets of our mission statement: perpetuate the arts, engage the community, and empower the artist.

SPACE AVAILABLE: Kentuck has studio space available! Please click HERE for more information.

studio artists

neel alexander

I believe my art performs best when it subtly blends many styles, influences, and media into something unique for that moment. A lot of my work uses themes of nature and historical popular culture references. The mediums I have been using most are acrylics, paint markers, and spray paint. I also enjoy making sculpture. I usually make those out of sculpey or foam and sometimes adhere them to found objects. My main process starts by writing down ideas throughout the day and later revising them into drawings. Depending on the idea in the drawing, I then choose a medium to start working with. When it all goes well, I finish with a fully realized illustration, painting, or sculpture.

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alana baldwin

Founding Member of Open Letter Press

I operate a small-edition letterpress shop and bindery. I work with themes of cause and effecr and see to reconnect readers with the exploratory spirit of youth. In addition, I have a BFA in Graphic Design from Auburn University, an MFA in Book Arts from The University of Alabama, and over 9 years of cumulative professional experience working in various creative environments and industries. Through the guidance of the Book Arts MFA program and its' faculty, I have extensive letterpress experience and recently purchased my first press (a Vandercook Proof Press number 3). My hand-skills have grown immensly as has my passion for well-crafted printed matter in traditional and non-traditional formats.

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kerry kennedy

Kerry Kennedy’s first love is pottery and sculptural ceramics. She has thrown pottery for over ten years. As a student, Kennedy was deeply interested in sculptural works that fused thrown forms with organic aesthetics. These ideas are always influencing even the most functional shapes of mugs and bowls. Her passion for creative anachronism of the rennaisance period takes her to several festivals throughout the nation each year.

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amy leepard

Founding Member of Open Letter Press

Amy LeePard is a book artist and letterpress printer who creates one-of-a-kind and limited edition handmade books and prints. Amy received her Master of Fine Arts degree in Book Arts from The University of Alabama in 2016. Her work incorporates printing processes that span the history of print technology from traditional printmaking to experimental processes for letterpress printing to modern giclée printing. As a hand bookbinder and papermaker, Amy has a special interest in historic book structures and paper sculpture. With a background in architecture and photography, Amy is influenced by geometric patterns, formal design, and the serendipity found in the combination of mechanical and hand processes. Painting, drawing, experimental mark-making, and alternative processes for photography all find their way into her book works. As a curator, Amy served the National Guild of Book Workers as Exhibitions Chair from 2010 – 2016, planning and executing two biennial national traveling juried exhibitions, Horizon (2012 – 2014) and Vessel (2015 – 2017), which traveled to over ten venues across the United States. Amy’s work has been exhibited widely in the United States and abroad. Her work can be found in both private and public collections such as The Library of Congress, the Tutt Special Collections Library, and the Alice C. Sabatini Gallery.

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scott mcqueen

Scott is an accomplished folk artist who was raised in Fayette, Alabama. He fondly recollects times during his childhood when he observed folk artist Jimmy Lee Sudduth create his now-famous mud paintings. Scott is a graduate of Samford University (B.A.), New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary (M.Div) and Luther Rice Seminary (D.Min). Scott is an ordained minister who lives in Nothport, Alabama. He has exhibited in Kentuck's Hotel Indigo Gallery and the Teer Gallery and has been a Kentuck Artist in the Schools for three years. He attends over 20 festivals every calendar year. He is a minister, and author of Reasonable Doubt — A Case for LGBTQ Inclusion in the Institutions of Marriage and Church. For more information, click here.

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Visit Scott's website.

nöelle mercurio

Nöelle Mercurio, born in Miami, Florida and raised in Tuscaloosa  Alabama, features a myriad of abstract mixed media art. Her style is  unique and her range is broad. 
 

Nöelle studied fine art, graphic design, photography and advertising at  the prestigious Pratt Institute in New York City.  After moving back to Tuscaloosa in 1999, Nöelle was a small business  owner, which transferred her creativity to more of a marketing role. In  2014, Nöelle closed her business to have a more flexible schedule with  her busy family. It was at this time that Noelle began honing her skills as a fine artist and painter.  
 
The majority of her creations are inspired by music, imagination, love of  trying something new, and most importantly, her faith. Each piece that Nöelle creates is original and will not be recreated “en masse”. Her use of color, texture, and medium give each piece a tremendous depth, which allows the viewer a different experience every time he/she views it. Whether it is acrylic, oil, or watercolor, Nöelle’s one of a kind pieces will bring life and energy to any space.  

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ashley young

Founding Member of Open Letter Press

Ashley Young was born in Mannheim, Germany, to her father, an Army officer, and her mother, a quilter. She traveled the world as a child and now calls Alabama home. She earned her MFA in Book Arts in 2019 and continues to be inspired by the world around her. She tends to use images from nature and photographic imagery in the creation of her artist books. She also makes custom journals, guestbooks and boxes.

She seeks to spread the appreciation of bookmaking by teaching workshops and attending art festivals.

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© 2020 by Kentuck Art Center.

Kentuck Art Center and Festival was established in 1971. Kentuck's mission is to perpetuate the arts, engage the community, and empower the artist. The Kentuck Festival of the Arts is held annually in October, and during that weekend, makes a $5.5 million economic impact on its community.

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