Thursday, October 30, 2014

Hotel Pines photo exhibit: Krain, Henry, Ballard, Adams, Worthen and more

Posted By on Thu, Oct 30, 2014 at 4:17 PM

Susan Crisp, a member of the Blue Eyed Knocker photography group, photographs the lobby of the Hotel Pines from the overlooking balcony
  • Susan Crisp, a member of the Blue Eyed Knocker photography group, photographs the lobby of the Hotel Pines from the overlooking balcony


click to enlarge Photo by Cindy Adams
  • Photo by Cindy Adams
In the hope their work will encourage a preservation effort, Rita Henry and her fellow photographers in the Blue Eyed Knocker Photo Club have taken it on themselves to record the ruins of the 100-year-old Hotel Pines in Pine Bluff, a once-luxe spot designed by George Mann and decorated by Paul Martin Heerwagen. An exhibition of their photographs and a documentary video, “100 Years of Light Through the Pines,” runs noon to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, Nov. 3-8, at the High Cotton Event Center, 220 Barraque St. in Pine Bluff.

A reception for the photographers will be held 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. 

There will be original 
click to enlarge Photo  by Ben Krain
  • Photo by Ben Krain
blueprints on hand at the exhibition, along with designs for adaptive reuse by 19 students in the Design Program of the University of Arkansas Fay Jones School of Architecture. There will also be handouts from Vanessa McKuin, the Historic Preservation Alliance of Arkansas, and Antoniette Johnson of Johnson Consulting. 

The Blue-Eyed Knocker Photo Club photos "reflect the rich history, architectural significance and current state of decline in the landmark hotel, which opened in 1913 and closed in 1970," a press release from the club says. Its efforts to draw attention to the plight of the historic structure were the focus of a UALR radio show. "The artists who captured the images entered the structure with permission, but at their own risk."

Matt Johnson created the 15-minute video, a "walk-through of the structure." From Henry: 

“The first time I entered the hotel, I saw some of the most beautiful light I had ever seen,” Henry said. “The hotel is a prism designed to accentuate natural light. It’s heaven for a photographer.” 


Other quotes from the photographers:

“The light reveals the old and the new,” photographer Benjamin Krain said. "Entering the building sent me through a portal to a distant place far away from Arkansas, with movie-set-like aesthetics and an apocalyptic presence."

Photographer Brandon Markin said, “I felt the rush of discovery — the thrill of looking at something magnificent that had suffered, but still retained a fundamental beauty the looters hadn’t destroyed.”

Another photographer in the group, Cary Jenkins, described the subjects of her images as “paint peels and flakes, plaster cracks and crumble — the marble lobby lighted by a large skylight, the intricate arches and balconies — not only alluring but breathtaking in beauty and an air of disrepair.”

The Hotel Pines is a six-story, U-shaped building offering unique views of Pine Bluff. Michael Hibblen, a photographer, recalls “I was struck by the thought of how many people, from all levels of society, stayed in luxury suites or dorm-sized rooms who observed vastly different activity on the streets of Pine Bluff as they looked through its windows over the 60 years it was opened.”

Photographer Rachel Worthen added, “The Hotel Pines is a building from a bygone era. To see the disintegration in real time is what called to me as a photographer and an Arkansan.”

Carla Koen, a photographer who grew up in Pine Bluff, knows the city and hotel well. “The Hotel Pines makes me wonder what could have been– just before the deterioration.” she said. “The only story now is one of a beautiful and beloved hotel that lost her fans and her beauty, and now stands as a reminder to us to take care of what we have now. It is like a conversation with a wise old woman.”

Photographer Cindy Adams said she hoped “to make one wonder what stories the old hotel would share with us if it could speak.”

Photographer Ann Bryan Ballard, also a historic preservation instructor at the University of Central Arkansas at Conway, added. “It was like attending a funeral of a historic artifact. My photographs speak a eulogy of the building.” 

Need directions? Here they are: 

U.S. 65B/Martha Mitchell Expressway goes in front of Lake Pine Bluff and the Courthouse. Take Walnut Street off 65B then turn left (at liquor store) and the corner of the next block is the "High Cotton" event hall, 220 W. Barraque, a two-story white brick building with black trim.

Tags: , , , , , ,

Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments

Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

More by Leslie Newell Peacock

  • Ahoy! Blue Sail launches Saturday on Main Street

    Blue Sail Coffee Roasters opens its shop Saturday, March 25, in the Little Rock Technology Park, 417 Main St. The grand opening announcement says the shop will be in business at 7 a.m. and stay open until 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
    • Mar 23, 2017
  • Mo' MoMo

    Katmandu Momo, the food truck created by Nepal native Saroja Shrestha, will open a sit-down eatery in April in the River Market’s Ottenheimer Hall.
    • Mar 22, 2017
  • Buenos Aires Grill opens in the River Market

    The Bruzatori family, Little Rock residents for 14 years, are serving up their family recipes of grilled meats, empanadas, Graciela’s chimichurri (named for the matriarch, Graciela Bruzatori) and other dishes reflective of their Argentinian-Italian heritage at Buenos Aires Grill and Cafe. Head cook is Paul Hohnbaum.
    • Mar 21, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Staff Picks: Netflix and Chill, Benji's pasta fresca, Creedence Clearwater Revival and more

    The podcast Design Matters, published by Design Observer, is celebrating its 10th year and they are revisiting some of their best episodes from the last decade. I just finished this week's replay of the interview with the Scottish born illustrator Marion Deuchars. At the end of the wonderful interview, her two young sons are invited into the studio near where they pitch in some of their own thoughts on art and, in particular, drawing in the art books their mother created for children and adults.
    • Aug 28, 2015
  • Guest Mix: Rural War Room

    World wide weird duo Rural War Room (Donavan Suitt & Byron Werner) is celebrating 10 years of broadcasting and production here in Little Rock and abroad. RWR Radio on KABF 88.3 FM (10 p.m. Tuesdays or anytime on their website), features the duo alternating records in an effort to surprise one another.
    • Sep 14, 2015
  • Your new flags of Little Rock

    BRASHER: Hello Arkansans, this is the first piece from us, Brasher and Rowe and we are some dudes who work in downtown Little Rock and we eat lunch and just talk about all the exciting things around here.
    • Sep 18, 2015

Most Shared

Visit Arkansas

Forest bathing is the Next Big Thing

Forest bathing is the Next Big Thing

Arkansas is the perfect place to try out this new health trend. Read all about the what, why, where and how here.

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation