One doesn’t need to watch “America’s Got Talent” on television, one only needs to check DavidsonNews.net where “Davidson’s Got Talent” is showcased regularly. Just read about these three talented women in our midst.
Today Around Davidson takes a look at Dione Goyette, a newcomer who jumped right into an art project playing with a full deck. And you know the old saying that we each have a book somewhere inside – just ask Nancy Lammers and Jean Berg at The Pines, newly published authors. We visit with these ladies and learn about their books.
PLAYING WITH A FULL DECK
Dione Goyette, a Canadian by birth, moved to Davidson’s McConnell neighborhood last August with her husband, Paul, and their three children, Jackson (16), Finleigh (13) and Hanna (11). Always interested in art and painting but not having a work permit for the US, Dione decided she needed a home-based project. Before long, “Art in Hand” was born.
What is “Art in Hand?” A full deck of playing cards with art by local artists. And this month you can purchase the artistic deck of cards or the actual artwork from one of the artists. From over 150 works submitted in response to Dione’s postings on Craig’s List, artist lists and specific gallery lists, 55 card faces were chosen – that is, the normal 52 playing cards in a deck plus three jokers. The wildly creative cards are fully functional even featuring a joker from an original acrylic painting of Dione’s. The original works (8×10 and larger) were at Davidson’s So Alive Gallery (108 S. Main) last month. This month they hang at the Creative Art Exchange (CAE), in the Cornelius Arts Center, 19725 Oak Street in Cornelius and beginning this Saturday will be available for sale. The final show and sale occurs during June at Artworks on Main, 165 North Main Street in Mooresville. Proceeds from the sale of the original art go to the Creative Art Exchange and Children’s Arts Project. The decks of cards are available at all three locations.
The artists come only from the greater Charlotte area and include students, emerging artists, and established artists. Their mediums range from photography to watercolor to fabric arts. Some cards are playful; some are serious. For the artists, whose participation was voluntary, there is increased exposure to showcase their talents. When you access www.artinhandcards.com you view the full list of artists and when “clicking” on a particular card, you meet the artist and see more of his/her work.
Dione carefully researched this project before beginning and found that the only historical reference to a similar deck of cards was during the Victorian era. She started soliciting art last October and chose artists in January. Wanting the cards to be produced in the USA, Dione chose the US Playing Card Co. in Cincinnati which also produces the familiar Bicycle brand decks. Only soy ink was used in the manufacture and except for the cellophane wrapping, the deck is 100% recyclable. It sells for $12.95. As the packaging states: “Use them to play all your favorite cards games while enjoying a gallery-quality art show right in your own hand.”
What an original and functional idea! Dione hopes to work with other US cities to create their own playing cards but will always have the same “Art in Hand” logo on the back of the cards. Thus one could mix decks with art from various cities. (Dione’s brother lives in Maui so perhaps the next deck will have a Hawaiian theme.) For additional information, you can contact Dione at email@example.com. We are glad to have the Goyette family in town!
PUTTING PEN TO PAPER AT THE PINES
“Surf Riding” by Nancy Lammers
A Davidson resident since 1959, Nancy Lammers has lots of personal material to draw from when writing short stories. She and her husband, Bill (a biology professor at Davidson College), raised three children here. Son John lives nearby in Mt. Ulla with his family, as does daughter, Katrina. Another son, William, lives in Missouri. Nancy has four grandchildren.
How long has she been writing? Nancy answers: “Forever.” Some of her children’s stories have been published in magazines, as have her short stories. She is a member of a local writers’ critique group and also the Charlotte Writers’ Club. Wanting to put some of her favorite stories together in print, she looked to a theme of “transition in life” focusing on new paths after the loss of a spouse or job, or after divorce or death — times when one finds new directions and new meaning in life. Her paperback book contains 14 short stories and is called “Surf Riding,” which is also the name of the first story in the volume. Nancy remarked that the stories may appear based on personal experience but are completely fictionalized.
Main Street Rag published Nancy’s book at the end of January. It is dedicated to the memory of her late husband, Bill. The cover photo comes from Nancy’s North Carolina coast bicycle ride some years ago. Nancy laughed as she recalled the 225 mile circle which began in New Bern as she and Lynn Brickels pedaled on and on around the designated “loop.” We congratulate Nancy on this fine book which is available at Main Street Books in Davidson or online at www.mainstreetrag.com.
“Saying ‘I Do’ in Paradise” by Jean Berg
What an opportune time to visit the Main Street Readers Book Club April meeting, held at the Main Street Books store, and be treated to petits fours and champagne! After all, it was a wedding reception (sort of) to introduce author Jean Berg and her recent publication, “Saying ‘I Do’ in Paradise.”
Jean, who grew up in Hollywood, CA, and her husband, Dick, who grew up in central California, moved to the Charlotte area a year ago. They met Isabelle Powell, a resident of The Pines, through their church and, thanks to Isabelle’s enthusiastic recommendation, moved to a cottage at The Pines last fall. What an interesting life’s journey the Bergs have had.
Jean has worked all her life promoting social justice, and was the executive director of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. When Dick retired from his work with the United Way of St. Louis, the couple moved to Cozumel, Mexico. There Dick designed and built a home, and for the next ten years they learned Spanish and enjoyed a wonderful retired life – almost! Jean, with her degree from Eden Theological Seminary, was soon asked to perform weddings, blessings, renewals of vows and memorial services for couples and families visiting the area. She insisted that the ceremonies (more than 800!) be holy, beautiful and yet fun. Jean laughed when she described her requirement that weddings be sacred occasions. No exchanging of vows with the bride wearing a bikini!
Keeping notes on the various occasions and regaling friends with the stories, Jean kept hearing that she should write a book. Although she loves to write, she was a little hesitant about her ability to put it all together. So she hired an editor, and the result is a delightful volume recounting a few dozen of her best remembrances of romance and commitment in Mexico. Published by Aventine Press and titled “Saying ‘I Do’ in Paradise,” the book is available at Main Street Books in Davidson.
Jean and Dick have two married sons: Greg lives in Durham with his wife, Barbara Mozena; Scott and his wife, Freddi Lipstein, live in Washington, D.C. Since relocating to North Carolina, the Bergs have returned to Cozumel a number of times because of special requests from former brides and grooms who wish to renew their vows. Recently Dick’s health has kept Jean close to home, but you’ll still catch her mornings at Summit Coffee or afternoons thinking about another book. Creative, energetic, talented and a delight to know. Welcome to Davidson, Jean and Dick Berg!
Send us your news
Have news for Brenda? Write to her at firstname.lastname@example.org.