Skyuka Fine Art’s “Block House Equestrian Art Exhibit 2014” opening reception May 9

Published 10:00 pm Friday, April 25, 2014

In honor of Tryon’s 68th Block House Steeplechase Race, Skyuka Fine Art in collaboration with Tryon Riding & Hunt Club is proud to present its second “Block House Equestrian Art Exhibit” 2014.
This group show will first be presented at F.E.N.C.E. on May 2 during Tryon Riding & Hunt Club’s kickoff celebration the evening before the famed race, as well as on May 3 during the race. Then the show will move into Skyuka Fine Art’s gallery space for an official opening to the public with a formal reception on Friday, May 9 from 5 – 8 p.m. The show will end three short weeks later on May 30.
Famous equestrian artists, many with the American Academy of Equine Art and well known plein air landscape artists have been invited to participate in this unprecedented show. These artists will be featuring their equine and pastoral art in a variety of techniques and media. Artists include Jan Lukens, Tucker Bailey, Booth Malone, Ann Malphrus, Valerie Hinz, Mary Neely, Linda Luster, Jim Carson and Richard Christian Nelson. The show will focus on original artwork. However some giclees and framed prints will also be available.
Award-winning artist Richard Christian Nelson had the distinct honor of creating the artwork featured in this year’s TR&HC’s Block House Steeplechase poster (also featured in show logo). Hailing from Detroit where he earned his BFA from The Center for Creative Studies and took post graduate fine art courses at Wayne State University, Nelson has been working as an artist ever since. His career started as an illustrator then as a portrait artist, gallery artist and instructor. Nelson’s poster artwork will be available as framed giclees in multiple sizes. Pre-order now by contacting
Booth Malone is one of the premiere equestrian artists in the country; his paintings have appeared on the cover of numerous horse-oriented magazines. In 2006 he was Official Artist of the Breeder’s Cup and in 2007, Featured Artist for the Masters of Fox Hunting Association Centennial Exhibit. His forte is capturing movement, gesture and nuance in people and animals with style and originality. Malone’s palette is distinctively vibrant and fresh and his technique and compositions are unmatched in the world of sporting art.
Mary Neely has had an amazing art-filled education painting en plein air for 15 summers in France. These summers followed another impressive student history that includes studying at University of Michigan, Kentucky, Dayton Art Institute the Scottsdale Artists School, as well as studying under Daniel Greene at the Art Students League of New York. Neely’s work reflects this in that her works are breathtakingly beautiful in color, composition and application.
With two art degrees, Linda Luster has worked as an illustrator, a photographer and a director of exhibits for the North Carolina Museum of History. Although horse training had been a passion, she is now a devoted equestrian artist and only trains occasionally. Her work has been featured on the cover of the Chronicle frequent times and as an artist has been voted overall as being one of the magazines favorites. Luster’s work shows the emotional connection and intimate knowledege of her subject indicative of a life devoted to horses.
Tucker Bailey grew up in northern Minnesota, and it was there that she developed her love of nature. Horses became a part of her life at an early age and remain so. She worked at a foundry for a few years learning the art of bronze casting and that experience proved valuable to this day. Doing both painting and sculpting lends a fresh perspective to each new piece she works on.
Equestrian portrait artist Jan Lukens has been awarded a painting exhibition at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, DC for winning top honors in a national portrait competition. His work has been featured on the covers of The Chronicle of the Horse and in the pages of The Artists’ magazine, The Equine Image, The Canine Image, Ink and Show Circuit. His equine portraiture is outstanding and distinctively different.
Ann Malphrus resides in Greenville, S.C. and although she showed a strong interest in art early on, she chose to spend her time first in the barn and then in veterinary school. Career and family meant that her interest in horses and art would be put aside for years, until 2012 when her lifelong dream of melding those two interests materialized in a week long class on sculpting the horse. Ann’s combination of spot-on anatomy, representation of a palpable emotion and her intriguing mottled technique are an impressive union resulting in captivating work. We look forward to seeing many more great equine sculptures coming from this gifted and emerging artist.
A Canadian farm girl, Valerie Hinz is an equestrian and animal painter. Some of Hinz’s recent accolades include: official artist for the 1999 Queen’s Plate and 2003 Breeder’s Cup and Artist’s Choice “Best of Show” at the 2009 and 2011 Calgary Stampede Western Art Showcase, just to name a few.
Hine’s soft impressionistic strokes are always inspired by light and allow the animals beauty and character to shine through.
Jim Carson’s work can best be described as “fresh and painterly”. Cutting through to the essence, simplifying, and finding balance is his goal. Carson has been influenced through various workshops with Ken Auster, Marianne Dunn, Kevin MacPherson, Kenn Backhaus and John Budicin. Carson now gives his own workshops throughout the year. He prefers painting in “plein air” and there is a true simplicity and freshness to Jim’s paintings that distinguishes them and gives them a character of their own. His pastoral farm scenes are a refreshing addition to this exhibit.
Skyuka Fine Art is located at 133 N. Trade St. and is open Tuesday-Saturday 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. 828-817-3783,

– article submitted
by Kim Nelson

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