BeLoved Asheville’s new gallery offers visibility to underserved artists

proud-to-be-brown-art-studio(Mountain XPress)  Currently on display in the BeLoved Gallery, Unveiling is Rise Up Studio Collective’s first exhibition at the newly renovated gallery space, on view through Friday, March 15. Featured artists, along with Bermejo and Rivera, include Adrienne Sigmon, James Gambrell, Edwin Salas Acosta, Sunni Morgan, Courtney M., Jimi Mead, Jesse Smith and Tim Clark.

The new BeLoved Gallery adjoins the Rise Up Studio Collective’s art studio and the BeLoved community space. Artists work in close proximity, sharing techniques and materials and often repurposing and reclaiming materials in ingenious ways. “We’re proving that nothing is trash, that everything can be turned into a piece of art if you have the creativity to do it,” Bermejo says. Rise Up Studio Collective repurposes and salvages materials and equipment and uses donated art supplies.

The Rise Up Studio Collective was formed in the summer of 2013 in response to the city of Asheville’s policy of confiscating and destroying artwork offered for sale in public spaces by street artists, says self-described “undercover pastor” and BeLoved community collaborator the Rev. Amy Cantrell. Cantrell saw that these artists were being denied what was often their only means of financial support and their method of sself-expression.

Read the full report by Jeannie Regan HERE>