NSA Art Show returns to showcase local, regional artists

Published 10:59 am Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy is gearing up for another year of celebrating regional art and creativity. The 2024 Nansemond-Suffolk Academy Art Show and Sale will be held from Saturday, Jan. 27, through Sunday, Feb. 4, located at 3373 Pruden Blvd. The Sponsor’s Reception will be hosted from 6:30 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 26, with the Opening Reception being held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, January 27. Admission will be free and open to the community.

Sponsored by TowneBank, the showcase will have over 150 artists from the Hampton Roads region and beyond, as well as a showcase of works by 2024 Featured Artist Carson Overstreet. NSA Assistant Director of Advancement Melissa Hlinovsky talked about what local art fans can expect at the art show.

“We have North Carolina and South Carolina artists, and they bring to us a variety of artwork, whether it’s flat art with your pastels, acrylics oils into our multimedia, which includes glass, woodwork, jewelry, and other multimedia items as well,” Hlinovsky said.

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Noting the excitement from participating artists, Hlinovsky also said that they will continue to provide a dual platform format for both in-house shoppers and online shoppers.

“As last year, we started a dual platform show. So again, this year will be a dual platform with our in-person during the day and then Art Show after hours online. So when you can’t shop in person here, you can shop online at night. And with that, we have customers from local [and] all the way out to California … We’ll do whatever it takes to help the customer purchase their art,” she said. ” … During COVID times, that online piece came into play. And our artists were just so thankful for that piece that we actually continued the show. And from that, it created a nice inventory process for us. So we use that all the time now.”

NSA Director of Advancement Kenda Council talked about the show’s origins, created by David and Georgellen Monette.

“They’ve since moved to Richmond and David has passed away, but they created this art show and sale to benefit the art program here at Nansemond-Suffolk Academy. And it’s been a really wonderful tradition through the years and what’s wonderful about it is it’s open to the public, the community is welcome to come,” Council said. “It’s a way that we can bring the community into the school. The school benefits, the students benefit, the faculty and staff enjoy it, and it’s become really a thing that people look forward to in January, early February each year.”

Attendees will be treated to over 80 of Carson Overstreet’s various artworks at her featured artist showcase. Raised in Bedford, Overstreet’s works include landscapes and floral paintings as well as figurative pieces. Overstreet talked about her humble beginnings and early love for art.

“So when I was a child, I made art all the time, and it was sort of like my identity. I was good at art. I came from a family of very talented artists, my grandfather grew up in North Carolina and left North Carolina and went to art school in DC,” Overstreet said. “I just had a very supportive family that supported my art growing up. And then when I was in high school, I fell in love with history. And I went to school and studied history in graduate school in college and I worked in nonprofits for about 13 years post school. So I like the first part of my life was really about art, like the first 18 years and then the next 18 years I didn’t have much art in my life at all.”

After having children, Overstreet reflected on wanting to add artwork to her house after seeing various abstract art and how it took her back to her passion.

“I was like, ‘What? I used to be good at art, I should try that!’ So I picked up a paintbrush about 10 years ago and I’m completely self taught. I just started painting and I got pretty lucky. I started selling pretty quickly after I just started experimenting originally to like family and friends and then galleries and stores started to sell my work. So now 10 years, I’m a professional artist! I never, never thought.”

On coming back into the world of art, Overstreet credits the process to her previous experiences in the field and even daily creative activities.

“I had done a lot of creative things in my adult life like cooking and gardening, that kind of thing, but I hadn’t done art and I had really never painted,” Overstreet said. “When I was a child, I did a lot of drawing and I think that served me well. So when I started to do landscapes and I do some figure work, I was able to kind of draw on that really good basis of drawing skills and perspective and all the things I’ve learned when I was young.”

The show aims to have something from everyone with a variety of art pieces to view and purchase. The show will be helmed by Art Show and Sale Co-Chairs Mary Kemple Henderson, Mindy Webb and Michelle LoGioco. However, it will also be dedicated to Art Show and Sale Chair Camille Harrell who passed away following the Christmas season. Despite the air of sadness, Council expressed how they are aiming to bring hope to the event by honoring Harrell.

” … We’re going to find ways through this show to honor Camille because volunteers are what make this show and so many artists have reached out to us about Camille. I know Carson has talked with Camille’s husband Ryan. It’s a big deal. It’s a relationship and we are just struggling with that, and so we’re going to find a way to make this show the best ever as a tribute to our friend and longtime volunteer and fearless leader.”

For more information on the 2024 NSA Art Show and Sale, go to nsacademy.org/arts/art-show-and-sale or nsaartshow.com.