Artmongerz gallery scheduled to reopen in time for August’s First Thursday celebration

by Jim Dowell Jr.

The weather is perfect for my opening announcement. As hot as it is outside, there is even more heat being turned up downtown, and the source is on Elm Street. I’m talking about the reopening of Artmongerz, Greensboro’s premier downtown artist owned and artist operated fine art studio/gallery and it is reborn to be wilder. Greensboro icon Frank Russell has handpicked his new team, and it is a winner. The beautiful and talented Lori Key was the first to sign on. Her figurative and abstract paintings are very collectible, and her popularity is soaring. As lovely inside as out, her paintings emote pure, rich feelings that you can easily interpret. We’ve only just begun to see the future of this lady. Jon Meadows was the next to sign on. Jon’s work is fun, affordable, unique and just plain hot. I have long admired his wit as much as his talent, and both shine vividly in his found-object sculptures and driftwood pieces. Extremely interesting, boldly colored paintings, birdhouses and such should please any collector.

Theresa Wiles and Dianne Ellis have also relocated their working studios to Artmongerz. Any fine art advocate should check out Theresa’s powerfully serene and highly skilled artworks. Diane’s striking and handsome portraiture and sensual figurative works are top notch

As I have said many times over the years, Frank, whom I consider to be Greensboro’s premier male artist, is never afraid to tread new waters. This time, he has put his money where his mouth is, and it totally works. On the Canvas rating scale out of possible four stars; Artmongerz gets four stars. Check them out at 610 S. Elm St. in downtown Greensboro, or for more information call 336.389.0398.

A couple of wonderful opportunities are available for those wanting to nurture their talents. Greensboro artist and educator Jack Stone will be teaching oil and acrylic classes for beginners and intermediates at the Villa Savilla Studio in Fisher Park. Class size is limited, and remaining sessions with a few openings are available on Aug. 3, 10, 17, 24, and 31 from 6 – 8:30 p.m.

A one-day workshop titled ‘“Nude In The Studio’” by award-winning artist Frank Rowland will also be at Villa Savilla on Aug. 13. A gourmet lunch will be served, and afternoon demonstration will follow. Contact Karine Thoreson at 336.209.4151 for both events. Class size is limited on this as well.

Greensboro framer Susi Frate has opened Addison’s Loft in the building that houses The Upstairs Gallery, and Carpets by Direct. Susi has 30 years experience in the framing business and has virtually anything you could want or need in custom framing. Contact her at 336.549.9518, or 336.288.9369. Bring in this article of YES! Weekly for a 15 percent discount on any purchase. Addison’s Loft is located at 2837 Battleground Ave. beside the TJ Maxx shopping center.

In closing the column this month, we at YES! Weekly would like to pay tribute three wonderful Greensboro artists that have, sadly, passed away this month.

Wilton ‘Will’ King was an extraordinary man with a passion for love and life despite his own lifelong disability, epilepsy, which took his life at 39 in early July. His full time vocation was with the Autism Center for Life Enrichment teaching adults with autism. He then spent the rest of his time nurturing the artistic abilities of people with disabilities. He ran the VSArts-NC gallery in the Cultural Center, where people with disabilities can display their works. His sense of humor, compassion for others and gentleness is irreplaceable.

Mary Jane Anderson, a well-known impressionistic artist with a flair for portraiture died on July 9 of a heart attack. She was extremely popular, and had been in Greensboro for 25 years. She belonged to several art leagues in the Triad, and was a creative and passionate artist. Her works are displayed at 2 ArtChicks at 609 South Elm St. in Greensboro. She leaves behind many sad friends and colleagues who will always love her.

Janice McIver Brooks, the beloved friend to everyone, also passed away in July. I have never heard of anyone who touched so many lives in so many different ways. She was a colorful, high- spirited woman whose passion was life. I doubt she even realized how many lives she touched and how many people loved her, but the count is extremely high. She founded the Janice M. Brooks Arts and Designs in Greensboro, and was an artist for McLean Lighting. She had a smile for everyone, and would gladly lend an ear to hear out anyone’s problems, and try to make it better. She leaves behind her daughter, Amanda Oates; her son Joshua Brooks; and her beloved dog Sam. Lindley Park, Sunset Hills and College Park, look into the stars at night. There is one star shining bigger, better and brighter than all the rest. It is Janice letting you know that she is okay, and at peace. May the star bring peace to all of us.

Goodnight, and goodbye to three wonderful angels.

I’ll see you all in September.

Feel free to email Jim Dowell Jr. with any art scoop at Have a great summer!