Plein Air Artist - Nerys Levy
Born in Wales and a twenty seven year resident of Carrboro, North Carolina, Nerys Levy is deeply rooted in her native country’s culture which has influenced her painting. Levy had a first career in race relations, community work and education, working in India, the Caribbean, South Africa, and London. She has a PhD in Modern South Asian History from the University of London. Although she painted throughout much of her childhood, Levy began serious studies in 1980 in La Jolla, California, working with various members of the Visual Arts Department of the University of California at San Diego. She also studied at the Pacific Art League in Palo Alto, California. Many of her works are in private collections both in Europe and the United States. As Chairperson of the Carrboro Branch Library Art Committee and Co-Chair of the Horace Williams House Art Committee, during the past twenty one years Nerys has curated at least ninety exhibitions. She is also a member artist of FRANK Gallery, Chapel Hill where she and others are responsible for that gallery’s education and outreach activities. Nerys’s particular responsibility is the FRANK Karen Youth Art Group working with Karen Refugees from Burma and Thailand. That group’s recent collaborative project was the production of a children’s illustrated bilingual book about our local Transplanting Traditions Community (Karen) Farm which Nerys facilitated. She is well versed in forging partnerships and facilitating collaborative projects.
Working on site using mixed water-based media on paper, I try to portray the forms and forces of nature: I often do a series of works of the same subject in shifting light, seasons and weather. In December 2007, I visited the Antarctic Peninsula and in July 2009 worked in the Norwegian Arctic, As a result of these Polar experiences and with a deeper long term commitment to educating the community about climate change, I led a six month collaborative student project at McDougle Middle School, produced a large body of work on Polar animals and landscapes for the multimedia collaborative exhibition, Ice Counterpoint, at UNC’s Fed Ex Global Education Center from January 7 through May 31 2010 and for a solo exhibition at the Asolo Civic Museum, Veneto, Italy in November 2010. Some of these images were later included in the exhibition “Vanishing Ice” which toured four North American museums-- the Whatcom Museum, Bellingham, WA (2013), the El Paso Museum of Art,(2014) the Glenbow Museum, Calgary, Canada (2014) and the Mc Michael Canadian Collection, Toronto, Canada (2015) . I have also painted a number of on-site paintings in different parts of the world including China, Russia, North Wales (where I was born ) and Italy –the Italian and Welsh on site series is ongoing
June 1993. Duke University, Louise Jones Brown Gallery; November 1993 Venice, Italy, Galleria Santo Stefano; May 1995. Chapel Hill, N.C. Horace Williams House; February 1996. Carrboro Town Hall, N.C. Inaugural exhibit- Carrboro Arts Committee; January-April 1997. Bradiggins Gallery, Hillsborough, N.C.; 1995-1997. The Principle Gallery, Alexandria, Virginia; March and April 1998. Page-Walker Arts and History Center, Cary, N.C; June 1998. Orange County Public Library, Hillsborough, N.;C. July 1998. North Carolina Legislature, Raleigh, N.C; November 1999. Carrboro Branch Library, N.C; April-October 1999. Curator of and exhibitor (along with John Rosenthal and Nan Gressman) Chapel Hill News, Inaugural Art Exhibition; January and February 2001, Carrboro Town Hall, N.C; November 2001. PageWalker Arts and History Center, Cary, N.C.; November and December 2004. The National Humanities Center, RTP. N.C; November and December 2005, Carrboro Town Hall, N.C. Invitational exhibition to celebrate the end of Mayor Michael Nelson’s ten year tenure as Mayor of Carrboro; December 2005-February 2006. Panzanella, Carr Mill, Carrboro, N.C; January 2007- In conjunction with the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra, N.C. Italian Inspirations exhibition; November 2007, East End Gallery, Carrboro Arts Center, NC “ From China “; April-May 2008. Alamance County Arts Council, Graham, N.C;May- July 2008, The Community Church, Chapel Hill, N.C; February & March 2009. Seymour Center, Chapel Hill: “Global Perspectives” exhibition; December 2009- February 2010, UNC Chapel Hill. Center for the Study of the American South; October 2010-Civic Museum, Asolo, Veneto, Italy, October-2010. January 2013: Featured Artist FRANK Gallery- “A Journey in Russia”- thanks to WUNC Radio; January 2014: Featured Artist FRANK Gallery- “Snowdonia-the Welsh Heartland “; March and April 2014, The Face of Our Earth: Polar Regions, The Community Church UU, Chapel Hill, NC; FRANK Gallery Chapel Hill-December/ January2016/17“Natural Forces”
March 2009-June 2009: McDougle Middle School, Carrboro. Polar art project funded by a grant from the Chapel Hill/ Carrboro Public Schools Foundation. The results of this project were shown at both the Carrboro Branch Library’s Art Gallery and at UNC’s Global Education Center’s UNC’s Polar exhibitions.
June 2009, Ackland Art Museum: The process of time and the problem of cold-the work of plein air painter in Polar Regions January 2013-FRANK Gallery, Chapel Hill, “A Journey in Russia”-featured artist talk
interview with Frank Stasio on A State of Things, WUNC Public Radio, 2/15/13. June 2016 about FRANK Karen Youth Art Group’s bilingual book
Featured artist, “Blotter”, March 2013November 2013: Vanishing Ice -The Catalog, by Curator Barbara Matilsky, Whatcom Museum, WA, June 2013: GENETICS JOURNAL-Cover Image “Swiss Lake IX”March 2015; National Art Education Journal: An article on the “Vanishing Ice” Exhibition by the Whatcom Museum’s Education Department which includes a discussion about my work and images from my Polar sketchbooks Ongoing--Citations in the Times Education Supplement UK --online discussions referring to the usefulness of my Polar art as a teaching tool.
Before moving to the Triangle in North Carolina, Nerys Levy participated in group shows at the Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences and at the Pacific Art League, Palo Alto, and California.1994-2006. Six Chapel Hill (N.C) Public Arts Commission exhibitions. January 1999. Page-Walker Arts and History Center. N.C Dream Fest Exhibition; June 2002. Orange County Artists Guild Exhibition, North Carolina Legislature, Raleigh; September 2002. To commemorate 9/11, 5000 Flowers Exhibition; Chapel Hill-Carrboro, N.C;. July-November 2002, Silver Arts Exhibition, Carrboro Branch Library, N.C. May 2003. Chapel Hill Preservation Society, N.C. “Chapel Hill Places” exhibit; July- November 2004. “Paws’, Carrboro Branch Library, N.C; .October and November 2004. Carol Woods Retirement Community, Chapel Hill, N.C; .November 2004. Horace Williams House, Chapel Hill, N.C. Art Committee exhibition curated by Barbara Matilsky of the Ackland Art Museum, UNC-Chapel Hill;. December 2005 through January 2006. The Arts Center, Carrboro, N.C. “Fur and Feathers”- an exhibition of animal imager; April-June 2006, Carrboro Branch Library, N.C “Down on the Farm” exhibit; June and July, 2006, Community Realty, Carrboro, N.C; July and August 2006, Alamance County Arts Council, Graham, N.C. Plein Air Group exhibit; September and October, 2006, Town of Cary, N.C. “Down on the Farm” exhibit, January-April, 2007 “Kaleid-a-scapes-21st Century Landscapes”, Carrboro Branch Library, N.C. July;-August 2007, PAINT Plein Air Group exhibition, Pittsboro Public Library, N.C.; October 2007-January 2008, “Water-our most precious resource Carrboro Branch Library, N.C; April-July 2008- Center for Creative Leadership, Greensboro, N.C; ”Eye on the Environment”; “October 2008-January 2009, Carrboro Branch Library, N.C. “Moving the Line”, The Art of Drawing” curated by Louise Francke and Barbara Keighton; October- December 2008- Holly Springs Library, NC-exhibition by PAINT plein air artists group; October 2008, Sitzer- Spuria Studio, Carrboro/Chapel Hill, Invitational Exhibition; February-March 2009 Panzanella, Carrboro, Celebrating 20 years of Weaver Street Market in Carrboro through art ; April-June 2009, Weaver Street Market and Panzanella: “Local Farms/Local Art “; April-June 2009, Carrboro Branch Library; “Animals without Borders.” Curated by Alex O’Connor; October 2009-January 2010: Carrboro Branch Library: Art inspired by Polar landscapes with McDougle Middle School Students and Brooks de Wetter Smith; January 2010-May 2010, UNC Chapel Hill. “Ice Counterpoint” a multi media exhibition (paintings, photography, ideography, music, sculpture) inspired by the Arctic and Antarctic; April 2011. Panzanella, Carrboro, - Juried Farm Show; December 2011 Alamance County Arts Council --Invitational Holiday exhibition; January 2010--present-- ongoing-FRANK Gallery-Franklin Street Arts Collective, Chapel Hill, NC-member artist-ongoing group exhibitions. March-May 2012- Fine Arts Society of Raleigh, Juried exhibit, NC Artists Exhibition; 2012.March through May 2012, Panzanella, Carrboro.NC, Juried Farm Show; November and December 2012, Alamance County Arts Council, Invitational Holiday Exhibition; January through June 2013-National Humanities Center ”Polar Worlds”- an exhibition of paintings by Nerys Levy and photography by Ron Jautz; January through March 2013, Panzanella , Carrboro, NC Exhibition by FRANK Gallery member artists ;April through June 2013, Carrboro Branch Library, FRANK member artists exhibition; April through June 2013, Panzanella, Carrboro, Local Farms/Local Art; October through December 2013,”Polar Ice” Panzanella, Carrboro, NC with photographer Ron Jautz; November 2013-March 2014,Whatcom Museum, Bellingham, WA- ”Vanishing Ice”- an international exhibition curated by Barbara Matilsky. June 2014-September 2014. “Vanishing Ice” at the El Paso Museum of Art, Texas, September 2014-January 2015, “Vanishing Ice” at the Glenbow Museum, Calgary, Canada, January 2015 through April 2015, “Vanishing Ice” at the McMichael Canadian Collection, Toronto, Canada; November -December 2013, Alamance County Arts Council Invitational Holiday Exhibition; November-December 2014, Alamance County Arts Council Invitational Holiday exhibition; June 2015, Horace Williams House, Preservation Chapel Hill “Committee Meeting”, PCH Art Committee exhibition;. June 2015-October 2015 Carrboro Branch Library, From Farm to Table; March and April 2016- Disappearing Frogs exhibition- NC State Craft Gallery and the Museum of Life and Science, Durham, North Carolina; November 2016-January 2017- FRANK Gallery Artists Exhibition at the High Point Theater Art Gallery, NC; November and December 2016, Alamance Arts Invitational Holiday Exhibition January –March 2017-Carrboro Branch Library-16 Orange County Artists Guild Artists