Early Spring in the Meadow, 2012. Oil and wax on canvas. 32" x 60"  Image courtesy of the artist.

Forever Protected: Paintings of the Blue Ridge Conservancy Holdings by Gayle Stott Lowry

The following information about this past Turchin Center exhibition is kept here for archival purposes only. This exhibition is not currently on display. View current and upcoming exhibitions.

Friday, September 7, 2012
Saturday, December 1, 2012
Community Gallery, East Wing

The Forever Protected exhibition began as a conversation between the artist and Walter Clark of the Blue Ridge Conservancy (BRC) over two years ago.  This conversation was about her painting some of the special protected lands in the High Country – particularly those protected by BRC. To date, BRC has protected hundreds of properties and over 16,000 acres. Gayle is painting many of our private farmland properties, properties that are part of the North Carolina State Park system and many other properties that are part of the Blue Ridge Mountain landscape.

Artist statement

For some time, my deep concerns over changes in the environment have informed my artwork. The theme of living with uncertainty and forces beyond our control, on a personal and collective level, has been the impetus for my recent series of landscape paintings. Though the imagery varies according to my thoughts, imagination or travels, it is usually an exploration of the enormous affect that change and loss have on the environment depicted and those within it.

Safeguarding our land and preserving natural space is critical, especially considering the toll that development and pollution are taking. Over the last forty-six years of residing and traveling in North Carolina, I have become aware of our state’s extensive natural resources and the enormity of the task of preserving them. Thus, when approached by Walter Clark about a joint project with the Blue Ridge Conservancy, I was immediately interested.

During 2011 and 2012, I visited numerous properties held in trust by the Conservancy in order to experience, sketch and photograph the land. Depicting a variety seasons, times of day and atmospheric conditions was a goal. Light played an important role I strove to capture the spirit and the mystery of each particular place I chose to paint.

Visiting and painting these lands that will be forever protected has been a rewarding experience for me. I hope that my paintings capture the essence and expansive beauty of this valuable part of our state and help raise funds and awareness for the Blue Ridge Land Conservancy and it’s mission.

About the artist

Gayle Stott Lowry studied art and primary education at East Carolina University in Greenville, NC. Additional studies with Wolf Kahn and Sidney Goodman, and a residency at the Vermont Studio Center provided further training.
 Her introspective paintings have been awarded, exhibited and collected on a national basis over the past twenty years. Solo exhibitions have been held at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina; Art6 in Richmond, Virginia; Artspace in Raleigh, NC; and private galleries in New Orleans and North Carolina. Recently, the North Carolina Museum of Art acquired her large-scale landscape painting for their permanent collection. Other corporate collections include The City of Raleigh, Glaxo Smith Kline, Progress Energy and IBM.


Painting for Lowry involves an intuitive process integrating insight from dreams and therapy, resulting in work that correlates directly with her life experience. She has participated in lectures on the Creative Process, Dreams and Psychoanalysis around the U.S. The daily act of creating art is an essential part of her existence.

To view exhibition images please visit our Exhibitions Album on Flickr.

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