Art is What? Monongalia Arts Center, July 18-August 2, 2014
“Return and Other Works“, The Purple Moon, 906 Quarrier Street, Charleston WV, June 26, 2014
Sketchbook Project 2014, Art House Co-Op, Brooklyn, NY
Interview with WV Public Radio, Monday, April 28, 2014
Pittsburgh Artists Against Fracking, Garfield Artworks, 4931 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA, April 4-May 31, 2014
“Les Femmes Folles WV” Monongalia Arts Center, March 7-April 5,2014 Featuring art by Julia Cahill, Betsy Cox, Sally Deskins, Claudia Giannini, Bonnie Gloris (image above by Gloris), Breanne Holden, Charlotte Ka, Jane Ogren, Sharon Lyn Stackpole and Jennifer Yerdon Lejeune.
“Les Femmes Folles is a volunteer organization supporting women in all forms, styles and levels of art. The exhibition series that began in 2011 in Omaha, Nebraska celebrates the female perspective presenting art by a group of strong artists who are women. Though the gender represents over half the population, women are still vastly underrepresented in the arts; less than 10% in solo and group exhibitions in American museums and galleries, and less than 5% featured in art texts. Recognizing the female perspective is vital to a peaceful society, and the arts is one way to do this.
This exhibit at the MAC, a non-profit arts and culture center serving Monongalia County and surrounding areas, in March, is in celebration of Women’s History Month, featuring ten women artists from Morgantown and Pittsburgh examining the female figure explicitly, abstractly and metaphorically in two and three dimensions.”
“Imaginaries” Patty’s Art Spot, Star City, WV, January 2014
SCOPE Miami, See.Me, December 2013
“Bare Form”, Monongalia Arts Center, November 2013
“The Little Yellow Kite“, Fiction Project 2013, Art House Co-Op
“SHADY: Our Neighbors the Trees“, Arts Monongahela, Oct. 4-28′ 2013
“Winged Things”, Verse on Paper project, Art House Co-Op
“Creatives Rising“, See.Me, viewing of work on skyscraper in NYC among other prime locations in September 2013.
“Momentous Collective“, creator-contributor, September 2013-January 2014, momentouscollective.com
Print Exchange 2013, “The Drive Home”, Art House Co-Op, Robert Blackburn Printshop, 323 West 39th St., New York,NY, Sept. 5-29,2013; and July 26-28, 2013 at the Graphic Arts Workshop in San Francisco, CA.
“The Story of the Creative“, See|Exhibition Space, 26-19 Jackson Ave., Long Island City, NY July 25-Sept.10, 2013
Featured in the Paper app on iPad
Global Art League International Exhibition, Montreal, July 20-August 17, 2013
“The Memoir Project“, Art House Co-Op, Brooklyn, NY 2013
Rhododendron sign installation, AIDS Living Memorial Garden, Charleston, WV
Topaz Review, Vol. 1, Issue 2, “Youth and Decay”, June 2013
“Earth Day Invitational Exhibit“, Apartment Earth Gallery, 223 1/2 Hale St., Charleston, WV April 18, 2013
“Starseeds“, with Jacob McGill, Monongalia Arts Center, Morgantown, WV, March 1-30, 2013
Sketchbook Project 2013, “A Book About Getting Through Life,” Brooklyn Art Library, Brooklyn, NY, Call Number 204.9-4
Twitter Art Exhibit, with Exhale Unlimited Gallery (EU) 953 Chung King Road, Los Angeles, CA, January 12, 2013
“Uncharted Territories,” Shaw Galleries, Pittsburgh, PA, September 2012
Appalachian Gallery, 270 Walnut Street, Morgantown, WV, September 2012-present
“Art Takes Times Square,” Times Square, NYC, in conjunction with Artists Wanted and Chashama, June 2012
LETTER TO EDITOR, Charleston Gazette, Friday, April 20, 2012: Art is not ‘graffiti’
Shame on Gazette for calling art ‘graffiti’
As one of the 10 “Pier to Peer” muralists who worked on the Interstate columns in Charleston last summer, I was horrified to see your reporter refer to our work in the first line of an April 16 article as “graffiti.” Our publicly commissioned murals were and are not graffiti.
As your copy editors could easily verify for me, graffiti is defined as writing or drawing illicitly scribbled or painted on a public surface. Most often, with the intent to deface, or to vandalize.
A mural is (certainly in this case) art applied to a wall, in this case a public surface, legally, cautiously, and with great care and consideration. Certainly, with the intent to improve and to beautify.
I trust the distinction is clearly made and understood.
The power of the press is sufficient that people read such flippant articles and wrongly assume that indeed our laborious efforts are simply destructive, “taxpayer-funded” graffiti. Truly, as the fourth estate, you do have a responsibility to have more care in the information that you present.
Working on “Pier to Peer” was one of the most positive community experiences I have ever had. Everyone on the West Side seemed to love it, judging from the encouraging comments, beeps and well wishes I and the other artists got from passersby as we worked.
If it isn’t art when it engages the entire community and promotes a general sense of well being, then I don’t know what it is – but graffiti, it’s assuredly not.
Sharon Lyn Stackpole
With Charleston, WV Mayor Danny Jones and Charleston artists Megan Bullock, Rob Cleland, Ian Bode, Bernice Deakins, Charly Jupiter Hamilton and Jeff Pierson at the Peer to Pier Mural Dedication on Saturday, October 15, 2011.
PEER TO PIER Mural Project, Charleston, co-produced by the Charleston City Council Strong Neighborhoods Task Force, Lori Brannon, project director, and supported by The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation, Summer 2011.
2011 donation to the American Heart Association
Assemblages and Intricates by Sharon Lyn Stackpole Opening
West Virgina artist Sharon Lyn Stackpole will be opening a show of new work at The Purple Moon this month which feature the artist’s colorful and quirky assemblages and paintings.
Born in 1969, Sharon is a native West Virginian who studied painting and art history at Fairmont State and West Virginia University. After art school, she worked for some time as a newspaper reporter and columnist in West Virginia, and still maintains a daily blog. She is a strong supporter of arts in education and lobbies for the restoration of art instruction at the primary grade levels in West Virginia.
Stackpole introduces a new style in this show – which she refers to as Intricates – small and very detailed paintings which incorporate her colorful view of life and the world around her.
Assemblages and Intricates opens on Thursday, August 19th, with a reception as part of the monthly Downtown Charleston ArtWalk from 5 to 8p.m. Live music will be provided by Charleston-based Tofujitsu.
Lobbying on Capitol Hill for better legislation for heart health care
shown here in U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd’s office
Bare Form Exhibition, Monongalia Arts Center, 107 High Street, Morgantown WV, November 2009
Speaking with the PopCulteer, Rudy Panucci, in 2009
The Purple Moon will be presenting Filters of color, word & light: Works by Sharon Lyn Stackpole beginning Friday, February 27th in the Over the Moon Gallery. The show will open with a reception with the artist from 6 – 9 pm in the gallery at 906 Quarrier Street in Downtown Charleston.
Sharon Lyn Stackpole studied art at Fairmont State and West Virginia University, but has also read poetry in coffeehouses in San Francisco, and worked as an award-winning reporter for the Wheeling Intelligencer and News-Register. Recently her series, Fictionaries, traveled around the state of West Virginia and also exhibited at the Beehive in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Fictionaries was all about the blending of word and image.
Ms. Stackpole’s current show is continuation and expansion of that blending. In discussing her work she said:
“As I continue this journey, this immersion into my art, I’ve gone through various obsessions. Obsessions with words, with sculpture, with painted glass, and with glass itself. Obsessions with color have transcended into obsessions with light — what changes it, what transforms it, what alters light, what filters it. I want those filters. I want to hold them in my hands and build.”
Artist Overcomes Fear to Return to Her Craft
March 26, 2009
by Bill Lynch
Memorial sign* made in commemoration of the passing of Tyler County native, youngest and oldest Governor ever elected to office, Cecil H. Underwood (November 5, 1922 – November 24, 2008)
*Sign now in permanent collection of Tyler County Museum and Historical Society
Tyler Star News, November 19, 2008
The Blue Moose
248 Walnut Street, Morgantown, WV
Nov. 2- Dec. 13, 2008
“Lots of coffeehouses are art galleries du jour — and it’s certain that more people at least glimpse the stuff on cafe walls than do so in your average gallery. The South Side’s Beehive has long exemplified the practice, and tonight’s reception for a former newspaper columnist from Middlebourne, W. Va., shows why. Fictionaries is Sharon Stackpole’s collection of mixed-media paintings, words and images, glowing with color and tinged with mystery. “My art is not about creating the world in which you live,” says Stackpole. “It’s meant to create the world I can’t live without.” –Bill O’Driscoll, Pittsburgh City Paper
Artist makes her mark from Tyler County
By KRIS WISE MARAMBA
Published: Sep 20, 2008
MIDDLEBOURNE, W.Va. (AP) — About 13 years ago, Sharon Stackpole was living in San Francisco, raising a baby with her artist husband, reading poetry at open mike nights and trying to plant roots in the big city.
The former reporter and mother of three, Stackpole spent time in the arts community of San Francisco, but found her inspiration only after moving back to West Virginia. She now also works as town recorder in Middlebourne, where she grew up.
“Today, she’s finally a successful artist and writer and married for a second time to a mechanical engineer.
She’s also a stay-at-home mom and a popular Web logger, or blogger, with a part-time gig in small town government.
But she’s far from California.
Stackpole finally found the life she was looking for in Middlebourne, the Tyler County town with a population of 870, and the place she grew up.
“I remember coming back from California with my son for a visit,” Stackpole said. “We were at my mother’s house and he didn’t have any shoes on and he ventured off the sidewalk and started crying because his feet were in the grass, and he couldn’t figure out what it was. I really thought he should know about these things.”
Stackpole, 39, has three boys now. She’s the town recorder in Middlebourne, but is probably better known for her blog — s.m.Art — and her art work, displayed at the Hitching Post on her town’s Main Street and in galleries as far flung as Pittsburgh and New Mexico.
Her blog, which she started before blogs got big, is a treasure chest of thoughtful nuggets — her musings on daily life, photographs and her artwork. Among them is the technique that’s probably among her most popular: what she calls “fictionaries.” They’re mixed-media works that combine original drawings or paintings with overlays of text. Often they’re bits from the dictionary, but they take on new meaning when combined with Stackpole’s ethereal images.
The Pittsburgh City Paper recently mentioned her show at the Beehive Coffee shop in its “Short List” section, calling it “glowing with color and tinged with mystery.”
One piece features a little boy with a ball, definitions of words like “squander,” ”square,” ”squash” and “squat” superimposed on his chubby cheeks and hands.
Another shows a little girl — reminiscent of a charcoal-drawn character from a nursery rhyme — holding her hat in a windstorm. She peeks out around words like “spook, “spoon” and “sporting.”
It’s almost as if Stackpole is illustrating pages of a dictionary.
She knows a thing or two about words.
Growing up in Tyler County, Stackpole was a smarty-pants in school. She had the chance to skip several grades, but declined.
After graduating from the old Tyler County High School, Stackpole majored in graphic design for a year at Fairmont State, got bored and spent five years studying art at West Virginia University. “I would open up the course schedule and just say, ‘Oh, that looks interesting,’ and I’d sign up for Butter Sculpting 101 or whatever.”
She cut her college career short when she got married, had a baby and moved with her then-husband to the West Coast, where he taught at San Francisco’s Academy of Art.
After a divorce, she and her son wound up back in West Virginia, wondering what to do next.
A chance perusing of the Star News, the Tyler County paper, landed her an occasional gig as a columnist.
“I got $10 a column, which sounds like nothing,” she said. “But it was something. It was a start.”
That led to a full-time job offer from the Wheeling Intelligencer, where she worked for about five years as a reporter, covering local politics and writing feature stories.
But the time came for a change, and she quit and moved back to Middlebourne.
“I like being part of a small town,” she said. “One of the things about San Francisco that attracted me initially but later wore off — nobody had any idea who I am and I’m really . But as I started raising my son, I missed those connections.”
She connected to the Middlebourne community in a way she never dreamed.
Not long after moving back after her stint in Wheeling in 2001, the town council was desperate to fill the recorder’s post — a part-time job that pays less than $100 a month and requires someone to take minutes at meetings and keep track of the town’s public records.
Stackpole reluctantly agreed, after being assured the job wouldn’t involve that much responsibility.
“They told me, the only thing you have to remember is, if anything happens to the mayor, you’re the mayor. But they said that almost never happens,” Stackpole recalls. “About a month later I got a call from a reporter from Wheeling, asking me how I felt about being the new mayor. The mayor had resigned and no one from City Hall had told me yet.
“My first act as mayor was to appoint someone else to do it.”
But she’s stayed in the recorder’s post since then. She said she likes working to get fellow citizens to care about what’s going on in their town and with their local government.
She’s also gone back to making art.
“I’d always had a conflict with writing and art,” Stackpole said. “I tell people I like to combine it in the same way a peanut butter and jelly sandwich was invented. Just smush it together and see what happens.”
She hadn’t done much painting or drawing since college. There were multiple reasons: lack of inspiration, fear of rejection, and an intense dislike of the competition among artists.
“When I started getting back into the art, my oldest son had never seen me paint or stretch a canvas or anything. He’d seen his father do it, and he said, ‘Mom, I didn’t know you knew how to do that.’ I had just sort of compartmentalized that part of my life.”
And on her blogs, she shares her trials and triumphs in the art world, along with the details of family life.
After moving back to West Virginia, Stackpole reconnected with her high school sweetheart, and the two married.
“Whenever I started writing the blog, I told everyone I knew, and now I’m wondering why I did that,” Stackpole said. “You start surprising yourself with what you’re willing to say on there. I eventually figured out a style I was comfortable with where I didn’t necessarily tell so much about my whole day, but just one part that’s interesting. It’s like I’m keeping a journal.”
Speaking about the arts with WV Dept. of Culture and History Commissioner Randall Reid-Smith
“Sharon Stackpole is a former journalist, present public official and future madly successful artist. She spends money well: she studied art at Fairmont State University and West Virginia University twenty years ago and then proceeded to do absolutely nothing with it, that is, until now. She still writes, of course. And takes medication for those multiple personalities.”
–For Whom The Bell Tolls Ohio Valley
Fictionaries show at the Beehive
The Beehive on 1327 E. Carson is presenting an exhibit of mixed-media work and paintings by West Virginia artist Sharon Stackpole until August 17th.The exhibit, titled “Fictionaries”, features a collection of mixed-media paintings which juxtapose words and images in a two-dimensional form. An opening reception with the artist and her work will take place Sunday, August 3, from 6 – 9 p.m.
A resident of Middlebourne, West Virginia, Stackpole was educated at Fairmont State University where she studied graphic communications and art education; and at the College of Creative Arts at West Virginia University, where she studied painting, art education, and art history. After college, she moved to San Francisco and studied art independently.
Stackpole moved back to West Virginia in 1995 and worked as a columnist for the Tyler Star News in Sistersville, West Virginia and then, later, at the Wheeling News-Register and Intelligencer in Wheeling. She left the newspaper in 1998 to rear her sons full-time, while resuming an early interest in researching pre-Renaissance art and architecture. She also maintains a current blog on the web at http://www.sharonlyn.wordpress.com, titled “s.m.ART: art is good, art is wise.”
Stackpole said her work is “meant to be an exploration of joy and exuberance, emotion personified in the play of light and color on canvas and paper.” Her work gravitates toward both the most joyous and intense of colors. She said a former professor advised her to only favor the colors of the palette that she would herself wear.
Because Stackpole has worked as both a newspaper reporter and an artist, the Fictionaries series is one she says she devised in much the same way peanut butter and jelly sandwiches were invented: by mixing the words with the pictures. “My art is not about creating the world in which you live,” she said. “It’s meant to create the world I can’t live without.”
The Dominion Post, Morgantown, WV, Thursday, June 12, 2008
West Virginia Northern Community College, Francis Fine Arts Center, New Martinsville, WV, October 2006
Mim’s Gallery, Main Street, New Martinsville, 2006-2007
The Hitching Post, Main Street, Middlebourne, 2006-2008
N’Harmony, Capitol Street, Charleston, WV, February-May 2006