When the Scott family asked the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette to include this picture of Norman Scott with his obituary yesterday, the paper declined, saying it needed a "normal" picture. The family says this photo of Scott in google eyes, by Andrew Kilgore, was pretty much the norm for Scott, a funny man who liked to "laugh and dance and eat and drink," his son-in-law said. Scott, founder of Cantrell Gallery, died Aug. 24 of pancreatic cancer.
His obituary, sent to us by daughter Cindy Scott-Huisman, who operates the gallery with her mother, Helen, and husband, Clarke:
Norman Victor Scott
Born at home in Star City, Arkansas on April 8, 1939. His parents were the late Victor and Irene Meeks Scott. He grew up in Crossett and was strongly influenced by their family business, Ideal Lumber Company. After high school he went to Ouachita Baptist College and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics, and then he attended Law School at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.
Norman then moved to Little Rock and worked at several jobs, including the Arkansas State Purchasing Department where he was Assistant Purchasing Director. He always had a dream and vision of owning his own business. This led him to open a very small art gallery, Art Fair, on Seventh Street in Little Rock, in 1970. This is the business that grew into Cantrell Gallery, Little Rock’s oldest and largest gallery. At some point while owning the gallery, Norman began creating art himself. This became an absolute passion, enabling him to create an alter ego named Maurice and Maurice’s friend Ms. Dupree. Along with his talents in the field of visual arts, he also developed another creative outlet, which was cooking. His dream home, which was built in 1988, was designed with a second kitchen where he could make an elaborate meal and then shut the door on the mess.
Norman had a quirky sense of humor that manifested in his artwork and cooking.
He lived life to the fullest — enjoying every moment. He was a deeply spiritual person who believed in the absolute greatness of God, and he believed that everyone’s religious expressions are valid.
Norman’s faithful partner through his entire adult endeavors is his wife, Helen Reed Scott. Their children: Angela Scott Johnson and Cindy Scott-Huisman with her husband Clarke Huisman, have been a vital, joyful part of their lives. They have four grandchildren who call him Ralph: Jonathan Johnson, Kelsie Johnson, Christian Huisman and Levi Johnson. They have always known that they could do anything they wanted to when they were at their Ralph’s house. A younger brother, Bill Scott, preceded Norman in death. Bill’s widow, Marsha and Bill had one son, Matt. Norman also has a much younger brother who was a great deal like the son he never had, Steve Scott. There are many fond memories of family fun with Steve, his wife Julie and their three sons Clark, Don and Ben.
Norman always enjoyed a good party, many of which were at their home. His formula for a good party was good friends, good food, good drinks and good music. So what better way to send him on his journey than a good party? If you knew him or wish you had known him, please join his family and friends for a celebration of his life on Saturday, September 11 at 7pm at Cantrell Gallery. There will be a memorial service at Second Presbyterian Church, Thursday August 26 at 7pm in the main sanctuary.
Some of the organizations he supported and loved were Heifer International, Habitat for Humanity, Humane Society of Pulaski County and Second Presbyterian Church. Goodbye Norman. We love you.
Chakaia Booker is a New York artist who uses cast-off tires to make large-scale sculptures, and one of her sculptures is in the library of the Donald W. Reynolds Library at Philander Smith College, a significant acquisition made possible by the Reynolds Foundation's 2 percent for art allocation it provides along with its grants. I found this video of Booker and her work today while researching an exhibit coming to the Mosaic Templars next week (more on that to come) on Exhibits USA's website. Watch, enjoy, go see the piece at Philander.
What is art? Why do we want it? What determines which art sells for millions and which ends up on the curb? The answers to those questions, as the film proves, often have absolutely nothing to do with creativity and talent."
The San Francisco blog "Art is Moving" is interviewing artists across the country and two of those interviews — with Eureka Springs artist Rebecca J. Becker and UALR artist and gallery director Brad Cushman — have been posted, along with images of their work.
Cushman on his influences:
It really depends on the project I am working on at the time. I collect inspiration from family photos, found photos and objects, weathered billboards, interactions with friends and strangers. I love kitsch too — growing up with MAD magazine, Saturday Night Live, TV Sitcoms, The Rocky Horror Picture Show etc. At the age of five, I swam with the Monkees — literally the “rock” group at a hotel in St. Louis, had a crush on Elizabeth Montgomery on Bewitched, saw Cher tell Sonny to “fuck off” at the Illinois State Fair and went to see Rock Husdon and Carol Burnett in the musical I do, I do in the 1970s. LOL
Becker on how we should react to corporate support of exhibits, such as those backed by British Petroleum:
The article [in the Guardian] raises interesting questions, but shouldn't we — all of us — be looking at ourselves a bit?
Do we drive?
Have completely plastic-free computers?
Use acrylic paint?
BP could not exist if hundreds of thousands of us didn't enable them to do so.
The money BP provides the Tate comes from us.
Should I not sell a painting to a couple who walk into the gallery, because they drove to town in an SUV?
Eureka Springs (where I live) spends a good deal of money enticing people to come here — and that advertising allows me to survive as an artist, because it works — people do come. Roughly 2,500 people live here — many of us, artists — and nearly a million people visit every year. Not one of them comes on foot.
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