Urban sophistication at Red Piano Too

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The Red Piano Too Art Gallery’s Annual Penn Center Heritage Days exhibit featuring Mississippi artist Eric Jones in an exhibit titled “Urban Sophistication” will open with a Meet the Artist Reception on November 7 from 5 to 8 p.m. The exhibit will continue for the month of November. Eric will be in the gallery on Saturday, November 8 as well.

Eric Lamar Jones was born July 6, 1977 in Vicksburg, Mississippi, where he currently resides. During his thirty-something years, however, he lived in Atlanta, New York, Washington, DC, and New Orleans.  He has worked as a carpenter, studio assistant, maintenance man and insurance agent. His journey as an artist began at his brother’s art gallery in Atlanta. That experience made the idea of being an artist realistic and sustainable.

Describing himself as a self-taught artist but also a protégé of his late brother and mentor, William Tolliver, Eric attended the William Tolliver School of Fine Arts and worked as a studio assistant for Tolliver over a period of several years.  As he has aged, his passion for art has continued unchecked. He has obtained more knowledge and skill in the arts with every passing year.

The subject matter of Eric’s oil on canvas and pastel/acrylic works on paper are African American figures involved in the activities of daily life: working, loving, playing, music, and just living.  Stylized, sometimes cubist, freestyle, the way they embody the emotion of the activity evokes the iconic or mythic.  Eric embodies a futuristic and contemporary style to his artwork.

Eric’s works are strikingly reminiscent of that of his late brother, the highly accomplished artist William Tolliver. Red Piano Too Gallery owner Mary Mack says of the brothers, “I first met William Tolliver many years ago in the New Orleans, La., Gallery Royale and immediately knew I had to own one of his works — what a surprise to come across the works of his brother Eric Jones in 2010.  I was struck by their stylistic similarity — especially the beautiful abstract/cubist jazz musicians painted by both William and Eric.”

The Red Piano Too annual Penn Center Heritage Days exhibit is free and open to the public. The Meet the Artist opening reception is scheduled for Friday, November 7, from 5 to 8 p.m. The gallery is open  Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sundays from 1 to 4:30 p.m. The gallery is located at 870 Sea Island Parkway, St. Helena Island, SC, 29920. For more information, contact the gallery at 843-838-2241, RedPianotoo@islc.net, www.RedPianotoo.com.