Posted by on Oct 25, 2012 in Blog | Comments Off on Connecting with the Past – A Beautiful Show in Concord, NC

Party Girl by Cindy Biles resized for blog

Party Girl

This past summer, Lin Barnhardt, Visual Arts Director of the Cabarrus Arts Council in Concord, NC, emailed me and asked if I would like to participate in a show entitled, “Hey, Diddle Diddle, ” with the theme, “Whimsical artwork that recalls the child in all of us.”

Lin had seen images of my work and felt it would be a good fit.  He wanted some of the pieces I still had in my possession.  And, as always, whenever possible, I wanted to create original work especially for this show.

And, as always, I began lots of research on the Internet.  I was born in the mid-1950s grew up in the early 1960s.  Looking up images from that era brought back so many childhood memories!  And gave me waaaay too many ideas–it was difficult to select a few and then narrow that down in the short time available to complete a good-sized piece. (A few months seems like a lot of time, but it takes a while for these sculptures to dry, and it was a VERY busy  Fall.)  Of all of the ideas, I decided to make Party Girl, above.  Although my birthday is in the summer, I dressed her for the fall-to-winter season, to coincide with the dates of the show.

I had to do a lot of research–not only has clothing changed in all of those years (style and color trends) but, would you believe it, birthday hats!  Designs are very different (no Disney princesses or Spongebob Squarepants’s), not to mention, modern birthday hats don’t have those little metal things that connect the elastic band to the hat.  Also getting the colors right–I wanted the elastic band to be a different color than the girl’s skin.

While sculpting, I was reminded of many  birthday parties with all of the relatives–grandparents, lots of aunts and uncles, and many, many cousins running around.  My mother’s traditional birthday cake-sponge cake with whipped cream and strawberries, served with Neapolitan ice cream.

There was just enough time to create a few smaller pieces–a bunny inspired by a stuffed toy I had as a child…

Rabbit-low res CROPPED


a puppy that looks like one my grandmother owned…

Black and White Puppy by Cindy Biles resized for blog


He must have looked real because photographer Jason Dowdle’s dog, Ranger, kept trying to give him kisses!

Jason Dowdle dog Ranger kissing Puppy Sculpture  resized for blog


I attended the reception on October 19.  The Arts Council is housed in the beautiful 19th century courthose in the center of town. Like our own Arts Council in Alamance County, the building was saved and renovated.  So glad on both accounts since these building have such a rich history and  are stunning.

Arts Council Cabarrus County courthouse

The Cabarrus Courthouse, home of the Cabarrus Arts Council in Concord, NC

That night was also the town’s kickoff for the holiday season.  Everyone was out for a Christmas parade and other festivities, including fireworks and the tree lighting.

An added bonus is that a wonderful friend lives in Concord and though it isn’t that far away, we hadn’t seen each other in a couple of decades or more.

A beautiful exhibit, a great time and a lovely night.