A local artist has featured his works in a new exhibit at the Appalachian Arts Center, and the public is invited to visit the exhibit and even purchase the exhibits.
The exhibit, titled “Appalachian Abstraction,” features the works of local artist and musician Wesley Hunt, a native of Elkhorn City. After graduating from college and becoming a counselor, Hunt said he started creating art about four or five years ago to create an outlet to express himself.
“Counseling can be difficult for you. Listening to people’s stories every day is hard,” Hunt said. “I have a history of substance abuse issues since I was 14, so I understand. I thought I could save the world, but soon realized that I had to save myself first. Four or five years ago I started painting because I didn’t play music and just needed an outlet. Through prayer and meditation, he finally came out.
Hunt said he showed some of his early works to one of his friends and word started to spread about his paintings. He said he felt humbled and honored to see his works in a gallery, after spending many hours working there.
“Honestly, it’s really cool to see him like this,” Hunt said.
The app’s executive director, Robin Irwin, said she had been in contact with Hunt for about a year about his works and wanted to promote his works at the gallery.
“He painted with his heart and soul, and art healed his life,” Irwin said. “Art was there when no one was, and that’s what art can do. You can source yourself and find that there is a singular call and he answered the call. … And, I think that’s unusual. People haven’t seen that kind of work here.
Irwin said she wanted the app’s gallery and facilities to be a place where regional artists of all kinds are celebrated.
“I love having him here,” she said. “It’s so personal and it’s organic of him, so I want to encourage all of that across all disciplines and all forms of art – theater, music, painting, photography. This is the Appalachian Arts Center — all the arts, not just theatre. I want everyone to see that they can live with art.
The exhibit is located in the second floor gallery of the Appalachian Arts Center, located at 218 Second Street. All exhibits are available for purchase. The exhibition runs from March 1 to April 3. For more information, call (606) 262-4004 or visit theapparts.org.