Dale Rayburn and Mamie Joe: 50th Anniversary Gallery #1
50th Anniversary Artist Gallery #1
Dale Rayburn & Mamie Joe
Autumn Memories - Dale Rayburn
Monotype on paper
18" x 18"
Autumn Memories by Dale Rayburn
"Throughout my career, I have had a propensity toward painting older people. They tend to show life experiences on their faces and they have great stories to tell, as well. As I have grown older myself, I have painted several self-portraits. This piece was inspired by the fact that I am so grateful for being able to do what I love. Making art as your vocation, in my opinion, has to be one of the most rewarding endeavors anyone could possibly wish for."
Show of Grace - Mamie Joe
Acrylic on paper
15" x 15"
SHOW OF GRACE mixed media on paper by Mamie Joe "My 103 year old mother fell three times several months ago, and by some miracle, she did not break any bones. She did sustain some major bruising, strained her right arm, and could not walk. But with much help from a dedicated physical therapist, she was able to walk again with the aid of a walker. I did this painting to show how thankful we are for God’s grace. The blooming of the flower represents her willingness to overcome great obstacles to walk again."
Dale & Lesley at the Tomato Place
"A couple of years after opening the Attic, our family was strolling the evening streets of Underground Atlanta. A light in a gallery window was shining on a large paper piece that was done in sepia tones. All I can say is that it stopped me in my tracks. I couldn’t move forward. I just stared. The piece showed legs standing in line. It was called My Turn, Your Turn, and it used negative space in a startling way. Finally my feet let me move, and I went into the small art store and picked up the piece, on the back was a bio that identified the artist as Dale Rayburn from Carriere, Mississippi, who had graduated from Ole Miss.
I held that information close to my heart. I felt young, naive, fragile, but passionate. I wrote a note, and mailed it off into the unknown, never expecting an answer. I am forever indebted to someone at Ole Miss who took the time and made the effort to forward my letter to Dale. His answer was the beginning of my relationship with Dale and his partner, Mamie Joe, two truly talented and professional artists. They quickly became two of my most collected artists and good friends, and remain so all these years later."
Dale and Mamie - Now and then...
Dale and Mamie remember:
"It’s hard to remember, but sometimes around the mid 70’s, we climbed those narrow stairs leading to the Attic Gallery over Michael’s Jewelry Shop. To our surprise, we found this rustic and unique space full of every imaginable genre of art that the mind can imagine. At that time, we had no idea that we were about to embark on a long and rewarding relationship with Lesley and the Attic Gallery.
When we think of our relationship with Lesley, we recall how she is always enthusiastic and passionate about art, in general. Plus, she is such a compassionate person who is always willing to take risks on any new art or new ideas that we can conjure up over the course of our careers. We also love her unique sense of humor, even though she may not have realized that she said something funny.
She has done an incredible job of placing our art in people’s home throughout the country. Of all the galleries we have been fortunate enough to exhibit with, Lesley has consistently out-performed them year after year.
Several years ago, we ran into Daniel and Lesley in Santa Fe, NM. They led us on a tour of art galleries, museums, and other art related sites… many of which we would never have known about if they had not dragged us along. We look forward to doing it again someday. They are both very special friends, and we will always be grateful for their place in our lives."
Being a first generation American Chinese, Mamie Joe was originally encouraged to be an artist by her Grandfather who was an artist himself. Her parents, however, wanted her to be involved in a more lucrative field such as science or medicine. But, Mamie really had no interest in anything except art. Even when she was very young, she would sit for hours while minding her parent's small grocery store and sketch. By the time she had finished her senior year in high school, she knew she would never be happy with herself unless she prepared herself for a future in art.
For Mamie, the very basic elements of line, space and color are essential ingredients in her art. How these elements react with one another is always her major concern in every piece she does. Her primary effort is directed toward studying the interrelationship of positive and negative spaces while giving more emphasis on composition.
Mamie is determined to work toward solidifying her work by using high contrast as well as various textures, while continuing to manifest sensitivity. She employs symbols, which have special meanings that relate to her own childhood. Her art has always reflected the cultural complexities of her family's traditional Chinese background with her upbringing in the South.
Individuals shaped and molded by life's joys as well as trials - individuals characterized by their permanence, by their ability to endure - it is these individuals who inhabit the artistic world of Dale Rayburn's art. Although the artistic world inhabited by these individuals is often portrayed as regional - as what many consider as "typically southern," Rayburn's work transcends regional boundaries and stereotypes in both its portrayal of universal human experiences and emotions. Furthermore, Rayburn's emphasis on line quality, on the interplay of positive space, of the characters he portrays - reflect the influence of such artists as Rembrandt, Thomas Eakins, and Edward Hopper.
Born in Carriere, Mississippi, in 1942, Dale Rayburn considers himself fortunate that he is able to make a living doing what he loves most, yet he does not believe that he should compromise his artistic integrity by simply catering to the artistic whims of the moment. It is the work itself - being true to whatever idea which he wishes to portray - that is most important to him. As he noted "If my work is honest, it will have merit."