Haynes Galleries presents “Fur, Feathers & Friends”
April 24 to May 30, 2015
Reception: Friday, 5 p.m. to 7:30 pm, April 24, 2015

NASHVILLE— Haynes Galleries proudly presents “Fur, Feathers & Friends,” a showcase of animal-inspired artwork by 20th century masters & contemporary realists, featuring paintings & photographs of a diverse range of subjects from friendly pets to exotic beasts. To help our animal friends, a portion of sales from the exhibition will be donated to Happy Tales Humane, a no-kill animal shelter in Franklin, Tennessee. The show opens April 24 and continues until May 30, in conjunction with “Vincent Giarrano: Life in the City— Paintings, Drawings & Sketches.” An opening reception will take place at the gallery on April 24, from 5 to 7:30 pm. Both exhibits and reception are free and open to the public.

Artists have been painting animals for millennia, from ancient cave paintings to modern classics. Every type of animal has been painted, photographed, and sculpted. Contemporary realists have continued the fine tradition leading to some of the most unexpectedly intriguing artworks created in recent years. The artworks in Haynes Galleries’ show will cover a range of styles and approaches, from naturalistic studies to whimsical compositions.

“There’s so much variety in this upcoming show,” says gallery owner and curator Gary R. Haynes. “When people think animals in art, they envision pretty straightforward images. But this collection is very inclusive and surprising. There’ll be classically inspired equestrian pieces next to innovative conceptual pieces, all in the realist tradition.”

For portraitist & plein air painter Marc Dalessio, having his dog Emma in the studio as he works is commonplace. For years, the artist had wanted to paint the dog’s beautiful black coat and pointed ears but she never sat still long enough. But then one afternoon in the studio, she hopped up onto a stool next to Marc and sat for 5 minutes, striking different poses the whole time. The resulting portrait presents Emma as noble, sophisticated creature.

Jamie Wyeth has been sketching and painting animals for the majority of his long and distinguished career. His images of birds, pigs, and dogs transcend the genre of mere animal painting, acting more as character studies. In The Islander, a noble ram overlooks the ocean from an elevated spot on his island home, his shaggy coat blowing in the ocean air.

Animal portraits won’t be the only kind of image featured during “Fur, Feathers & Friends,” though. Imaginative views of animals in their natural habitats, like Chuck McHan’s Assorted Feathers, will also be presented. In McHan’s painting, tropicals birds sit amongst the branches of a tree showing off their vibrant plumage. McHan’s signature “confetti,” small spots of bright paint, dot the image adding an ethereal energy to the painting.

Mechanical, sculpted, and plush versions of animal friends also make appearances adding a playful element to the show like in Philip Michelson’s Tin Doggie, where a vintage wind-up toy dog looks out at the viewer with puppy dog eyes.

Happy Tales Humane is a 501(c)(3) that provides humane options for homeless and neglected dogs and cats in Middle Tennessee. Founded in 1996, it was the state’s first no-kill animal shelter. After 15 years at The Factory in Franklin, Happy Tales recently moved to a new facility in Berry Farms in Franklin where they take in hundreds of animals from overcrowded animal shelters, hoarding situations, cruelty cases, and those found as strays or abandoned. The animals are then given medical and foster care before they find their new families.

This show is a chance to broaden the definition of what it means to feature animals in fine art today and help our four-legged friends at the same time.