Interview with a Weasel

IMG_7554On Friday, July 12, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Wesley the Weasel for a brief interview.  We spoke about his passion for art, his commitment to supporting local arts organizations, and his obsession with crochet.

Tell me a little about yourself?

Well, just to get it out in the open, yes, I am a weasel.  I am also a lover of art, nature, and crochet.  I was born in the North Carolina mountains, but am currently enjoying the city life in Raleigh. I’d also like to say that while weasels may have a bad rep in the media (being the weasel faced guy in a movie pretty much assures that you are the villan), in reality, weasels are smart, resourceful, and have a great sense of humor.

Crochet?

Well, to be honest it is mainly the balls of yarn I love.  Man, those things are fun to chase around.  Although I do enjoy a nice scarf in the winter and I’ll never say no to a beautiful handmade blanket.

What first inspired you to pursue art as a career?

When I was younger I spent most of my days surrounded by nature.  I have always been amazed at how beautiful the natural world is and as I grew up I wanted to contribute to that beauty.  The best way for me to do that is through art.

How did you get involved with Artspace?

Some artists friends of mine had taken some classes there in the past and recommended it to me.  My first visit was during one of the First Friday Gallery Walks and I was impressed with the quality of artists in the building, the diversity in the exhibitions being presented and the overall energy of the place.  I LOVE the open studio environment.  As an artist, it is important to look at what other artists are doing and talk with them.  The environment at Artspace makes it easy for me to troubleshoot a problem or become inspired by a new idea.  I also signed up for their Figure Drawing sessions on Tuesday evenings and really benefitted from the opportunity to draw and paint from live models.

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Why did you join Weasels for Easels?

I really appreciated all the opportunities that Artspace provided for both myself as an artist and for the community. It’s obvious to me that they are committed to their mission of making the visual arts accessible.  They believe in paying artists what they are worth, teaching the public about art, offering exhibitions of diverse artwork from around the country, partnering with community social service organizations to bring art to at-risk kids, and much more.  I felt it was only appropriate to give back.

Plus, those easels are, shall we say, in a delicate state.  I love the figure drawing and other classes that Artspace offers, and not having to lug my own easel around made the classes even more convenient, however, the easels they have now are on their last legs.   It’s a struggle to set them up, the staff spends a lot of energy lugging the heavy metal and wooden ones around the building for the various purposes and have you seen the storage room?  I have and let me tell you, there is not a lot of space to store those big bulky easels.

Any advice for artists and art lovers?

My only advice is to stick with it and don’t let others influence you too much.  A little influence is a good thing, but don’t be afraid to be your own person (or weasel) even if that means that you are creating something others don’t appreciate or you appreciate something others think is weird.  I’m a weasel who likes art, sometimes it’s okay if things are weird.

A BIG THANKS to Wesley for taking the time to speak with me.  I hope you good readers can join us in our Weasels for Easels campaign and help bring quality, dependable easels to Artspace.  Check out the ways you can get involved!

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July 19 – September 19 - Donate $25 to Weasels for Easels through Artspace’s Power2Give page – www.power2give.org

August 2, 6-10pm - Stop by Artspace during First Friday to make an origami weasel!  Suggested donation of $5. While supplies last.

August 22, 6-8pm - Easy Peasy Plush Weasel Class! – Decorate your own plush weasel.  Pre-stuffed weasels will be ready for embellishment with markers, fabric, paint, and more!  Class fee is $20.  Please call Artspace to pre-register – 919-821-2787.

 

 

About Mary Kay Kennedy

Development & Communications Manager

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