Local woman’s exhibit starts tonight

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Kiley Davis Spears is showing her artwork solo for the first time ever in an exhibit that opens with a reception tonight, Tues., April 4, from 5:30 until 7, at The Gallery.

Spears with one of her paintings.

“I’m very much excited,” she said Monday afternoon as she took advantage of a weather day to work on two paintings to possibly add to the 16 to 18 abstracts in her show.

“They asked me several months ago, so I’ve been getting ready for a while,” she said.

While she has done art shows before, she has primarily painted for specific places, and has sold her work on Etsy, an e-commerce website focused on handmade or vintage items.

“I started painting in about third grade,” Spears said. “I have enjoyed painting my entire life, creating art with every medium that crossed my path. My experience with a variety of artwork has led to my passion for contemporary, bold, oversized art. The phrase ‘Go big or go home’ fits my art style to a T.

“Each piece is painted with acrylics and illustrates my love of texture,” she said. “To create texture, I often use common materials including caulk and sheetrock tape in uncommon ways. Incorporating gold leaf is also a favorite technique of mine. I find naming my works of art very inspiring, feeling an emotional connection with each piece.”

Spears said she began doing abstracts when she and her husband, Paul, built their house.

“I always loved to paint, but I started doing abstracts around 2000 because Paul and I both liked modern. The huge paintings I liked were out of my price range, so I thought I’d just paint some.”

Spears said she often paints with her sister, and her work rarely goes in the direction she thinks it will when she starts.

“It’s a feeling,” she said. “Different colors take you different places. I like to paint when I have plenty of time to sit there and not hurry.”

She doesn’t copy or duplicate her work, she said.

“I’ll have something in my mind, but it goes in a different direction nine times out of 10,” she said.

Spears said her grandmother, who will be at tonight’s show, also paints, but her style is very different.

“She’s painted her whole life, but she is very much a perfectionist,” she said. “My stuff leans toward folk art or abstract. I like it very free.”

Spears has lived in Andalusia more than 28 years, and said the community has taught her a lot about love.

“ I found love here (my husband, Paul) and have two children who own my heart (Dalton and Keaton). Our homestead is also shared by furry and feathery friends (dogs, cats, goats, and chickens–lots of chickens). Whether it’s with family, friends, or people who know my art, I love to share my passion,” she said. “ Much thought and love goes into making my vision come to life on the canvas. I hope my passion and love of art speaks to you in a personal way. Art is life and life is art.”

The Gallery, which is the Lower Alabama Arts Coalition’s reception and retail space, is located at 209 East Three Notch St. Business hours are Tuesday through Friday, noon until 5:30 p.m.