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10/09/2008

Two Winthrop Faculty Members' Works Displayed in New Art Center in Columbia, S.C.

Quick Facts

 Faculty members Beth Melton and Phil Moody show their art at 701 Center for Contemporary Art.
 Center to open in historic textile mill village.

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Beth Melton's work Story Lines
COLUMBIA, S.C. - Two Winthrop artists will display their work in South Carolina's new major art venue, called 701 Center for Contemporary Art, when it opens later this month. The center  is located at the renovated 701 Whaley St., the former community center of Olympia, Columbia's historic textile mill village.

On Oct. 16, 701 CCA will hold its gala opening. One day later, the center will have the opening reception for its inaugural exhibition, Textile Tales. The exhibition will show work by Beth Melton and Phil Moody, both Winthrop faculty members, and Scotty Peek of Columbia, S.C.

701 CCA, a non-profit, is unique in South Carolina. It has a gallery space for museum-quality art exhibitions and a live-work unit for artists in residence. Through its 701 CCA Plus program, the center will offer interdisciplinary programming in performing, literary and media arts and a broad range of educational programs.

701 CCA's first year will focus on art that engages the legacy and materials of the textile industry, mill villages and mill workers.

701 CCA's first artist in residence is Rock Hill artist Beth Melton. During her six-week residency, Melton created a site-specific work that will be part of Textile Tales. Using wooden spindles from looms and stretch fabrics produced in South Carolina's textile mills, Melton's work is informed by architecture, history and space. Melton is a lecturer for the Department of art and design at Winthrop, where she teaches weaving.

Phil Moody, an art professor at Winthrop, uses the photographic medium combined with text to tell the story of the demise of the Carolinas' once thriving textile industry and the hardships endured by mill workers in his "Textile Town" series. These poignant tributes to mill workers are larger than life photographic essays that Moody began more than 10 years ago.

Scotty Peek's work is informed by a sense of place and connectivity. Using traditional portrait painting as a foundation, Peek attempts to link past and present through portrait of individuals who have some shared experiences with the history of the location. Peek's previous mill-inspired work was based on a group photograph taken of mill workers of the Columbia Mills (the home of the S.C. State Museum). For Textile Tales, Peek has created 20 portraits of mill workers in the Olympia neighborhood. Peek is a professor at South Carolina State University in Orangeburg.

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