Savannah’s art scene has steadily grown over the years, aided by a welcoming community that makes it simple for artists to put their work on display. Beginning at 4 p.m. three days a week – Thursday, Friday, and Saturday – a local artist is featured at the DoubleTree Savannah Historic District, while another sets up shop at the Homewood Suites Savannah Historic District/Riverfront.
Each artist has their own style, specialty, and unique background that is made apparent through their work. Here’s a look at a few of the creators.
Kala is a Tybee Island-based artist who, by her own admission, “accidentally” discovered how much she loved making jewelry when she and a friend who worked in the same office took a class atthe local arts and crafts store. Powered by a strong desire to get better at creating jewelry, what started off as a hobby eventually evolved into a means of livelihood.
One of Kala’s driving forces is the fact her jewelry is enjoyed – and portable. “I love that my jewelry travels with people,” she said. “And it can be passed on to future generations.”For any aspiring artists, Kala does have this advice: “There’s a difference between making art and making art marketable,” she said. “The latter is a whole different beast.”
C.O. initially tried woodcarving when he retired back in 2002, and carved decorative duck decoys, shorebirds, and fish. It wasn’t until 2012 that C.O. tried acrylic painting on canvas – a move that seemed to be in the making for a while: “I always enjoyed painting my carvings more than the actual woodcarving process,” he admitted.
His first painting – completed in May of 2012 – is a 24×48’’ canvas of 15 historical scenes of Savannah. It currently hangs over his fireplace and “it is not for sale,” but prints are available. His current work features landmarks from the historic district in Savannah and scenes of coastal life from Tybee Island. C.O. has been featured in Chatham County Living Magazine.
Joe and Nona Delgado
Joe and Nona are, in their own right, two separate artists, but they work together as a team that specializes in leathercrafting.
“I think it’s so elegant to make useful items out of top grain leather,” said Joe. “I love to see someone wear one of our items.”
Nona agreed. “I love the look, feel, and smell of leather,” she added.
Some of their leather creations have inspirational inscriptions that, for Nona, is a matter of wanting to “make a difference in someone’s life, even if it is as small as something they wear or use. For Joe, those inscriptions are a matter of “sharing things that matter to me with the world.”
Jessica graduated from Armstrong Atlantic State University (now Georgia Southern University Armstrong Campus) with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Visual Art with a concentration in jewelry and ceramics. Her bead store, Epiphany Bead and Jewelry Studio, has been open for six years.
Jessica cited the beads and stones themselves as the biggest influences for her work. “I love designing with new beads and stones as well as with found objects from in the Lowcountry,” she said. “My style is very natural and earthy, and I like incorporating things such as sharks’ teeth, shells, and deer antlers into my pieces.”
The aforementioned aren’t the only artists you’ll come across in the lobbies of the DoubleTree and Homewood Suites. There’s David and Natalisa Strickland, a couple of beekeepers who also create stained glass artwork as the aptly named Tybee Island Hives. Donna Clark is unique in that she’s the only artist whose painting medium is watercolor. Or you may run into Tiffany O’Brien, who has a unique style you’d be hard-pressed to find replicated.