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House Mountain

Capturing the VMI spirit with Maria Reardon

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Capturing the VMI spirit with Maria Reardon

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Another school year is about to pass and once again there will be a new crop of eager VMI graduates ready to take over the world. This year is kind of special as Cabell’s son Jack graduates. He comes from a long line of VMI grads including his father, uncle, and both his grandfathers. But that is not that unusual with Virginia Military Institute. Tradition is a core value, it practically seeps from the imposing walls. It’s a feeling that you recognize as soon as you walk onto post, but it is not necessarily an easy thing to capture in a painting, unless, or course, you are Maria Reardon. Maria knows about VMI tradition. Her husband is a graduate (‘87) and her twin boys both graduated in 2014. It is with this familiarity that she is able to capture simple moments of life at VMI and allows you to truly feel the emotion of what it must be like to be there.

Matthew, Mark, Luke and John 12x16 Pastel Maria Reardon.jpg

Maria works in pastels and she loves being outdoors, immersed in the world, observing and experiencing everything going on around her. She's drawn to the unique and ever-changing relationships of form and color. She is intrigued by the unexpected combinations of light and color which characterize her work. If there is one thing people always remark to me is that her work has so much color, but she is able to do this while maintaining the realism of her subjects.

Pastureland and House Mountain 10x20 Pastel Maria Reardon.jpg
Navigating the Maury River through Goshen Pass 12x16 Pastel Maria Reardon.jpg

Maria is a Virginia native and received her formal education from Virginia Commonwealth University earning a Bachelor’s of Fine Art in illustration. She lives in Richmond but has a getaway home in Goshen, here in the wilds of Rockbridge County. This love for Rockbridge County and Lexington also shows up in her work, her ability to capture the slices of life locally is as intimate and impressive as those she does of VMI.

The Cabell Gallery is proud to feature Maria Reardon’s work year round. True, many people seem to get sentimental around graduation time. But the thing about VMI tradition it is a lot more than one season. And the thing about Maria Reardon is she has the uncanny gift of the ability to capture it all.

Click here to see Maria’s available works.

View of Main Street 12x20 Pastel Maria Reardon.jpg

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Two Artists - One View

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Two Artists - One View

I wish I could take credit for this compelling idea, but it was Michele Fletcher who brought the idea to us. Michele is a local photographer and a longtime friend of Cabell Gallery. Her work is remarkable, I will say that I have a piece or two adorning my own walls at home. But when she suggested this exhibit, we just couldn’t say “no.”

Michele Fletcher

Michele Fletcher

The idea was to get two different artists perspective on the same view. In fact, we would have a painter work directly from Michele’s photographs to create her own work. Michele enlisted her friend Tammy Hinkle, a well regarded artist out of Richmond, to take up the challenge.

How fascinating it was to see these works side-by-side.

Autumn Morning - Michele Fletcher

Autumn Morning - Michele Fletcher

Lee Chapel - Michele Fletcher

Lee Chapel - Michele Fletcher

Stonewall On Watch - Michele Fletcher

Stonewall On Watch - Michele Fletcher

Autumn Morning - Tammy Hinkle

Autumn Morning - Tammy Hinkle

Lee Chapel - Tammy Hinkle

Lee Chapel - Tammy Hinkle

Stonewall On Watch - Tammy Hinkle

Stonewall On Watch - Tammy Hinkle

The exhibit was in place throughout March 2019 and was extremely popular. I honestly can’t say that I’ve ever heard more “I heard about this from so-and-so and had to come see it.” Although Michele and Tammy were both guest artists at Cabell Gallery, we continue to get questions on their work. If you have any interest in owning a piece of either of these talented ladies’ art, just give us a ring or shoot us an email at Cabell Gallery and we will be happy to facilitate that for you.

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HOUSE MOUNTAIN AFFAIR

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HOUSE MOUNTAIN AFFAIR

House Mountain. It’s as much a part of the Lexington landscape as W&L or VMI. Maybe more…it’s been there longer. But something about that mountain seems to stay in Rockbridge County residents’ minds, and in their hearts. Perhaps Harry Hathaway Warner said it best when he said he’d been “having an affair with House Mountain…stretching over 60 years.” In fact, he wrote a book about it and you can own a copy yourself while helping to raise money to benefit House Mountain.

The book is called House Mountain Affair: A Personal Journal and Pictorial Study of the Signature Landmark of Lexington, Virginia, by Harry Hathaway Warner.

And this Friday, December 4th from 5:00pm to 7:30pm, Cabell Gallery welcomes local author Harry Hathaway Warner for a book signing, reception, and an exhibition of Virginia landscapes artwork. 

All proceeds from book sales will go to the Rockbridge Area Conservation Council to aid in their mission of protecting Rockbridge County’s natural treasures, including House Mountain. Those who purchase a book will also receive a voucher for a 10% discount on one Cabell Gallery item valid for 60 days following the event.   

It’s nice to support local authors and to have your money go to a deserving cause. But there is something magical about House Mountain, and to read Mr. Warner’s book makes you see that others, past and present, know that too. To own the book makes you feel as if you own a piece of the mountain itself. The way he invites you into his heart and hopes and dreams is so intimate. And yes, you get lots of beautiful pictures and maps and historical context, but Mr. Warner also shows you a piece of himself, the piece that has spent all these years in a House Mountain Affair.

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