German-born Vicksburg resident Elke Briuer won the Mississippi Art Colony Spring 2014 Elizabeth Pajerski Award for Best Use of Color for her painting "Searching for Inner Peace." (Justin Sellers/The Vicksburg Post)
German-born Vicksburg resident Elke Briuer won the Mississippi Art Colony Spring 2014 Elizabeth Pajerski Award for Best Use of Color for her painting "Searching for Inner Peace." (Justin Sellers/The Vicksburg Post)

Art colony traveling exhibition at SCHC

Published 11:06am Thursday, June 5, 2014

Local artist Elke Briuer said she considers herself a shy person. But, when listening to her talk about the Mississippi Art Colony, it is evident that her passion for the group clearly removes her sheepishness.

Briuer, who was the recipient of the Elizabeth Pajerski Award for Best Use of Color in this year’s spring show, said she has participated in most of the art shows since becoming a member of the colony.

“I’ve been a member of the art colony for five years and have been to every single show (there are two a year) and have entered artwork every year except the first.” she said.

Tonight from 5 to 7, a reception will be held at the Southern Cultural Heritage Center and locals will have the opportunity to view the 28 pieces of artwork selected for the traveling exhibition before it moves to Madison.

The Mississippi Art Colony was established in 1948 at the Allisons Wells Hotel in Way,

Mississippi. Twenty people took part in the opening session and the director and instructors included Karl Wolfe, Mildred Wolfe and Caroline Compton of Vicksburg.

All work involved in putting on a workshop including setting dates, securing instructors and prizes, sending out notices and publicity is done by the artist-members.

The Smithsonian lists it as the country’s oldest artist-run organization of its kind.

The workshop now meets at Camp Henry S. Jacobs, near Utica, and the five-day sessions are held in April and October.

“There are no telephones,” Briuer said, and talking is at a minimum so artist can concentrate on their work.

The workshops include a meet and greet, dinners, a talk by the visiting artist/instructor and conclude with a critique of work produced during the session.

Briuer, who was born and raised in Germany, moved to Vicksburg in 1988, where she worked in public relations with the Vicksburg District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. She said that she was surprised that she received the Elizabeth Pajerski Award for Best Use of Color.

“I wasn’t paying attention (during the awards ceremony) because I didn’t think I would get anything and then they called my name,” she said.

Local artist Randy Jolly is also represented in the Mississippi Art Colony Exhibit.

Jolly is the director of Mississippi College’s Gore Galleries.

The reception is free and will be held in the Exhibit room of the SCHC, 1302 Adams St. For more information, call 601-631-2997 or visit www.southernculture.org.

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