Brothers of Craft features Peter, Walter, and Mac Anderson who were all talented craftsmen and artists. A craftsman is a highly skilled individual, working in a particular trade, who has the ability to transform his trade into a level of artistry through experience and refinement. Throughout this exhibition the three brothers are featured as individuals and as a collective. By displaying their work separately one is able to discern the individual ingenuity that is particular to each artist. Together, one can see the interconnection between the brothers’ artistic spirits that pulsate through each piece. Throughout their lives, the three supported, motivated, and worked alongside one another. Family, art and the bonds of brotherhood bound them together, giving them stability and purpose.
The Little Room served as Walter Anderson's sanctuary on the mainland during the latter years of his life. When he could, Anderson would spend his time on Horn Island, but he still had obligations on the mainland. To mentally transport himself to Horn Island, Walter Anderson painted the Little Room to portray a day on the island. He never allowed anyone but himself, some cats, and the occasional possum to enter the room. After his death in 1965, Walter's wife opened the door to the Little Room and found this spectacular mural. Covering the floor were thousands of paintings and drawings, some of which he had attempted to destroy in the fireplace and some he had carefully selected and stored in a chest in the corner. When you enter the little room, appreciate the genius of the artist and one man's journey to find peace with the world around him.
Walter Anderson spent a large portion of the last fifteen years of his life on a small barrier island called Horn Island off of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. There, Walter Anderson would paint, draw, and study the natural wildlife of the island. Walter Anderson endured the harsh conditions of the island in order to understand nature and achieve artistic vision. The Museum's Education Director, Heather Rumphelt, has organized two trips to Horn Island and is now planning a third! In October 2016, seventeen individuals traveled to Horn Island and made it their home for three days. During that time the islanders fought biting flies and blazing sun in order to gain a greater understanding of Walter Anderson's art and to create original works of art both on the island and back on the mainland. The participants wanted to share their inspiration with you and have sent in examples of their work for this online exhibition. Please enjoy and remember, "after you visit Horn Island, it becomes part of you forever."
In the summer of 1927, Walter Anderson was awarded a scholarship to study abroad in France and Spain. During his travels, Anderson found that he was not as inspired by the museums as he was the cave paintings of Les Eyzies and the cathedrals, particularly Chartres. For the young artist, the most inspiring aspect of Chartres was the combined effort of generations to build the great cathedral. Anderson was also intrigued by Chartres because of the access to art that it provided common people. Chartres, as well as the caves of Les Eyzies, inspired his love of murals and the creation of the religious icons that are featured in this exhibition. Cathedral to Coast is on display from February 3 - April 30, 2017