If you go
› What: “Through the Grey,” works by Genesis the Greykid
› When: Noon-7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30 preview, 5 p.m.-midnight Friday, Dec. 1
› Where: 2 West Aquarium Way
› Admission: Free
A little over a year ago, local poet/artist/writer Genesis the Greykid traveled via foot and rail from here to California and back. He used the trip as inspiration for artwork he created that blended his poetry with large oil-on-canvas paintings — works he calls "fine art poems."
He presented those works at the Church on Main as part of "Through the Grey" on Dec. 1, 2016. It was the first of what he plans to make an annual event. This year's showcase will feature more than double the number of pieces, and it will take place in the upstairs space at 2 West Aquarium Way.
To help find his muse for the project, he again headed to Los Angeles, but this time he traveled in an SUV and he took company.
"I went with six local creatives," he said. "I was intentional about that. We had painters, writers, musicians. We drove for 32 hours and we had the craziest hypothetical discussions. I took local artists because I want to be part of changing and growing the art world here."
The theme for the show, and really for his life over the past year, has been "the power of presence. Just being in the present and being reacquainted with yourself. There is a power that is deep down inside all of us and we need to get out of our own way sometimes.
"I get in my own way a lot, so this is about being in tune with yourself and the present."
He went on to say doing so makes one a better person. "A better husband, a better father, a better mother, a better friend."
There were 12 pieces in last year's showcase and he sold five of what he calls "fine art poems." The remaining seven will join 23 new pieces in this year's gallery. Interested patrons can get a sneak peek Thursday, Nov. 30. The main event on Friday,Dec. 1, will include music from a DJ, food and drink.
The poems are conceived and written first, and they then provide inspiration for the paintings, which are done on large canvases. Some are 2-feet by 3-feet and some are 4-feet by 5-feet in size.
Through contacts he made at last year's showcase, Genesis plans to spend four or five months at the beginning of next year showcasing his work in Los Angeles. He also has plans to collaborate with noted artist Audrey Schilt on a new project. Schilt has worked with Ralph Lauren for many years and sketched dresses for everybody from Princess Diana to Oprah Winfrey.
Genesis was born in Chattanooga into a military family. He lived here only three days but returned often over the years before making it his permanent home several years ago.
"I love it here. I want to do this show every year on Dec. 1."
Contact Barry Courter at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6354.