Nellie Ashford

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Nellie Ashford (born c. 1943) is a self-taught folk artist from Mecklenburg County, North Carolina.[1] Her mixed-media folk art depicts the experiences of Charlotte’s African-American community during the era of Jim Crow in the U.S. South.

Early life and education[edit]

Ashford grew up in a rural part of Mecklenburg County, and attended school in a segregated four-room schoolhouse. She later graduated from Plato Prince High School and earned a bachelor's degree in psychology and social science from Shaw University.[2] She is self-trained as an artist.

Career[edit]

Her work has been featured in a number of special exhibits since at least the early 2000s. She participated in a 2004 juried art show for the Afro-American Cultural Center in Charlotte, North Carolina, for which she earned the curator's recognition award.[3] In 2010, her show "Nellie's People" was featured at the Delta Arts Center in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.[4] In 2013, her work was displayed at the Gaston County Museum in Dallas, North Carolina.[5] The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts+Culture hosted her first major-museum, solo exhibit in 2016.[6] According to the Gantt Center, the solo exhibit, titled "Nellie Ashford: Through My Eyes," communicates "cultural identity, shared community values and aesthetics."[1][6]

During the 2012 national election campaign, 11 of her works were featured at the Democratic National Convention Committee headquarters in Charlotte.[7]

Awards[edit]

She is a four-time recipient of the Actors Theatre award and a recipient of the Priscilla Literary Award. In 2007, she was named the Harvey B. Gantt Center's (then known as the Afro-American Cultural Center) artist of the year.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Kelley, Pam (July 28, 2016). "Artist Nellie Ashford evokes Jim Crow Charlotte in new Gantt Center show". Charlotte Observer. Retrieved March 10, 2017.
  2. ^ a b White, Herb (March 3, 2011). "Ashford creates folk art". Charlotte Post. Archived from the original on March 10, 2017. Retrieved March 10, 2017.
  3. ^ "Results of Past Juried Shows – 2004". Carolina Arts: A publication Covering the Visual Arts in the Carolinas. 2004. Archived from the original on May 19, 2017. Retrieved May 19, 2017.
  4. ^ "Delta Arts Center Archive". Delta Arts Center. 2016. Archived from the original on May 19, 2017. Retrieved May 19, 2017.
  5. ^ Memrick, Amanda (January 7, 2013). "Folk artist to be part of local exhibit". Gaston Gazette. Archived from the original on May 17, 2017. Retrieved May 17, 2017.
  6. ^ a b "Exhibitions". Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Art+Culture. Archived from the original on March 10, 2017. Retrieved March 10, 2017.
  7. ^ Curtis, Mary C. (December 14, 2011). "Gallery shows its wares at DNC headquarters". Charlotte Observer. Archived from the original on March 10, 2017. Retrieved March 10, 2017.