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Beverly & Sam Ross Gallery


What is a Weed

February 21 - April 3, 2020
Artists' Reception: Friday, February 21, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

“What is a weed? A weed is a plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Gardening is not a rational act.” — Margaret Atwood

"As far back as I can recall, I always enjoyed manipulating toys or common items in order to fit whatever narrative was consuming my mind at the time," says Gregory Allen Smith. "Like repurposing a deck of playing cards with pennies so I could be one of my favorite comic-book heroes or turning He-Man into a Ninja Turtle. My work relies heavily on experimentation with materials, both conventional in sculpture and unconventional. Found materials always serve as the origin of a certain idea or form and there is a wonderful excitement that comes from seeing something new in something discarded. I allow the properties of the materials to influence the direction in which each imagined form progresses. Reuse of discarded elements also plays a large part in the overall theme of my work by commenting on human wastefulness and our relationship with nature. I like to imagine how our misguided 'control' of the planet could affect future evolution and then combine this idea with my love of plants and animals along with pop culture, science fiction, and nostalgia. The colors of the pieces come from natural representations of toxicity, which are vivid and psychedelic. The newer addition of neon and phosphorescent refer back to my youth in the '90s, when glowing neon and plastic seemed to be in every edgy storefront or new animated television show."

Gregory Allen Smith lives in Memphis, TN. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Mass Communication with an emphasis in Photography from Middle Tennessee State University In 2006. After moving back to Memphis, he completed his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the University of Memphis in 2014. Since then, he has held the fulltime position of preparator at David Lusk Gallery.



February 21 - April 3, 2020
Artists' Reception: Friday, February 21, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

"Bridges" is focused on four abandoned railroad bridges in Cordova, TN, near the artist's home. They are drawn from a body of around 80 works on paper produced from December 2017 to the present. “I didn’t expect to spend so much time  with them, but they have kind of become my muse,” Miller says. Never comfortable assigning meaning to his work, Miller says, “I know my own mind, but it is not for me to tell viewers what to think. That being said, even I can see them appearing to be about nature and human conceit. I certainly did not set out with that in mind, but I can understand how they could be seen that way.”

Remy Miller was born in Bridgeport, Connecticut and spent his childhood in Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, eventually finishing high school back in Connecticut. He holds a BFA in Painting from the University of Connecticut and an MFA in Painting from Bowling Green State University in Ohio.  He has been making paintings and drawings for almost 40 years and has been teaching for about the same amount of time. Thirty of those years he spent at Memphis College of Art.

The Beverly & Sam Ross Gallery is located on the lower level of Plough Memorial Library in the center of campus on the Buckman Quadrangle, easily accessible from the Central Avenue parking lot and the East Parkway entrance. All exhibits are free and open to the public.