Mildred Huie Wilcox Reviews New Campus Sculpture, "Unlocked"

From the Coastal Illustrated

Jim Jones, Valerie Hepburn and Millie WilcoxDuring the Christmas season I found myself at the College of Coastal Georgia, standing in the foyer of the Correll Center for Teacher Education and Learning, admiring the recent sculpture by Jim Jones. The stunning sculpture, intuitively titled "Unlock," had just been installed. Jones' sculpture is truly a fabulous piece of art (Figure 1), a perfect symbol for the unsurpassed knowledge, research, teaching, learning and service that The College of Coastal Georgia has come to represent.

I was fortunate enough to share this moment with the artist and his mother, Betty Jones, and president of the college, Dr. Valerie Hepburn. Dustin Cathey, who collaborated from the beginning and whose artistic talents contributed greatly to the sculpture, joined us as well, along with Peggy Golden, Nathan Brock, Michael Houseman, and assorted college officials, engineers, electricians and other team members stopped by. It was a serendipitous happening. Together we gazed upon this wonderful work of art. It was a powerful moment.

I thought back to April 19, 2012, when we all came together to discuss plans for this unique sculpture at Jones' studio in Brunswick. He showed us an interesting, weathered antique key and an old lock that captured his imagination as well as ours. It was here that we came to an instant decision on the subject matter and intention of the sculpture "Unlock."

Recalling this day brings me great Golden Marsh by Jim Jones contentment, as I have such a respect for both Hepburn and Jones and the creative work they both accomplish.

"Unlock" has a vertical orientation with a dramatic bronze key, symbolizing discovery and fortitude, suspended over a lock that rests on a large stack of encyclopedic books. The books, which speak to us of exploration and wisdom, comprise the base of the sculpture. The color of granite prevails throughout, accentuated by luminescent spotlights. An exciting detail is that this masterpiece is visible from Altama Avenue, an impressive, welcoming asset to The College of Coastal Georgia. Surely its message of wisdom, energy and education will appeal to all who admire it: students, faculty, staff, and visitors.

Golden Isles Golf Course Scene by Jim JonesI first got to know the artist Jim Jones many years ago, and I've enjoyed his art immensely ever since. His creative personality is an inspiration to us all as he paints the subject matter that speaks uniquely to him. Here in Coastal Georgia he's known for his marsh and estuary scenes (Figure 2) as well as his golf landscapes (Figure 3). However, there is another side to Jim's talents that I appreciate. His New York Cubist period (Figure 4) is one of my favorite periods of his work. Jones is an artist of many surprising talents. He is able to communicate his artistic vision with a variety of media and subject matter.

Art in public places is dear to my heart as it is to Heather Heath, executive director of Golden Isles Arts & Humanities who joins me in looking forward to the unveiling of Jones' sculpture. Heather is shown here (Figure 5) selecting art for another public space, the Ritz Theatre. "International Vistas: Left Bank at the Ritz" will be on New York Abstract by Jim Jonesdisplay throughout the month of February.

"Unlock," the new sculpture by Jim Jones, will be unveiled at 1 p.m. Jan. 25 during the ribbon cutting for the Correll Center for Teacher Education and Learning. Visitors and residents are encouraged to attend this very special opening.

The College of Coastal Georgia showcases original art throughout its campus and provides cultural programs and activities throughout the year. The Huie/Wilcox Gallery is open to the public and tours can be arranged. This collection consists of original artwork by many outstanding Southern artists, including an impressive abstracted mural-like painting at the entrance to the gallery by Assistant Professor of Arts Jeff LeMieux.

With 2013 having just begun, now is the perfect time for residents and visitors of the Golden Isles to explore all of the amazing art that the College of Coastal Georgia has to offer especially "Unlock" by Jim Jones. We live in such a wonderful community let us unlock the key to education, exploration and artistic creation. Happy New Year to all!

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Release Date: 1/9/2013
Source: Coastal Illustrated

By Millie Wilcox