The Daily Tar Heel
Printing news. Raising hell. Since 1893.
Friday, April 12, 2024 Newsletters Latest print issue

We keep you informed.

Help us keep going. Donate Today.
The Daily Tar Heel

'From The Porch' honors Georgia artist

	Jake McCord’s artwork will be featured in a gallery in Durham this month.

Jake McCord’s artwork will be featured in a gallery in Durham this month.

A tribute to self-taught Georgia artist Jake McCord is being held this month at Durham’s Outsiders Art & Collectibles Gallery.

The Gallery, which features the creative works of self-taught or “outsider” Southern artists, has partnered up with folk art gallery Mike’s Art Truck to put the exhibition, “From The Porch: The Paintings of Jake McCord,” together in honor of the late McCord.

Greg and Karen Mack, the owners of Mike’s Art Truck, knew McCord personally during their time spent in Georgia.

“Jake was very quiet and reclusive, so I don’t think very many people knew him very well,” Karen Mack said.

“But he spoke through his art.”

Karen Mack said bold figures and happy people characterize McCord’s paintings.

“Jake referred to them as ‘jolly looking,’” she said.

Pamela Gutlon, the owner of Outsiders Art & Collectibles, said the Macks approached her about hosting the show.

“Jake was considered a genuine outsider — his work is stunning and interesting and he had a really good story — he’s the real deal,” Gutlon said.

“He has a traditional background of being African-American and uneducated, but he taught himself how to paint and he’s a memory artist, so he does paintings of things he’s remembered or seen.”

The gallery will be featuring a collection of 12 of McCord’s paintings, which are also available for purchase.

“Every month we host a show that celebrates the life of these particular artists and their work, so we hope people will see (the exhibition) and enjoy it for what it is, and maybe even buy some,” Gutlon said.

Greg Mack said McCord represents a dwindling group of folk artists in the area.

“We’re not seeing those same types of folks coming up nowadays, which is frustrating for collectors,” he said.

“So I’m hoping people appreciate this art because when you look, it’s a lot harder to find now.”

Karen Mack said the exhibition serves as a celebration of McCord’s work, which didn’t receive recognition on a large scale.

“He didn’t really reach the height of popularity that we thought he deserved as an outsider artist,” Karen Mack said.

“We think he’s genuine and delightful, but a lot of people haven’t seen his work, so we wanted to try and spread it around a little bit.”

To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.