The Oconee County Library highlighted Athens artist Betsey Barth Withington during the month of June with an exhibit of her artwork. “The exhibit includes acrylic paintings — some made by brush and others the palette knife — along with some of her fine-art photographs,” an article in the Athens Banner-Herald reads.
The exhibit will end this week, but Withington has another exhibit set to begin July 1 in the upstairs gallery of Chops & Hops restaurant, which is located in downtown Watkinsville. That exhibit is set to last through July 30.
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“Recently, Withington was visiting the Oconee Cultural Arts Foundation in Watkinsville, where one of her acrylic paintings, ‘Sky High Sky,’ was among those showing in the annual Member’s Exhibit, which remains up through July 7,” the ABH reports. “The painting was inspired by a photograph she saw in the New York Times that accompanied a story on the upcoming 2018 Winter Olympics, which will be staged in South Korea.”
Withington made it clear that the painting is not a copy of the photograph; rather the picture was just where her inspiration came from. She told the ABH that she never copies anything.
“While the scene originated in Korea, it could be a mountain range from many places,” the article reads. “Other paintings she has done show some area scenes like an old grist mill in Clarkesville, the Iron Horse statue in Greene County and the Chapel Bell tower on the University of Georgia campus.”
Withington said that some of the scenes may look familiar, but they are all from her point of view.
Withington is a native of Rochester, N.Y. and retired from the University of Georgia. She didn’t get serious about her art until about three years ago, according to the article. She married Tom Withington about four years ago and as they were packing items from their two households, he saw some of her artwork and he encouraged her to continue painting.
“She has taken art classes at OCAF under the guidance of veteran local artist Charles Warnock,” the ABH article reads. “He’s like Socrates. He strolls around the room (giving advice),” she said.
Withington also has a book about her travels in the works. She has traveled from Europe to South America over the years and her book is about some of her adventures along the way.