Stardust Rising Exhibition

Last weekend Karen and I hosted the opening reception of my exhibition: ‘Stardust Rising’ at the William King Regional Arts Center.


That’s us standing in front of a 5 x 10 ft digital reproduction of the art from my new painting of the fairy market. For those with sharp eyes, we’re also in the painting itself, standing in the tent directly behind, exchanging gifts.


Adam Justice (standing in the second photo with Pat Jessee), the curator and I decided to add a little visual spice to the exhibition by building a enormous tree that enveloped the passageway between the two gallery spaces as well as erecting a replica of my working studio. Several days of steady work was necessary to transform the exhibition space in time for the opening reception.


After six months of serious detective work I was very pleased to be able to display 35 paintings borrowed from gracious owners all across the US as well as several from overseas. For me it was like a grand and glorious family reunion as I hadn’t seen some of these pieces in 10 years. It was very exciting to spend time with them again and, in some cases, I was surprised by little details that just do not show up in the printing (as good as it was/is).

Here’s a view through the gallery doors.


And then a first taste of some old and new friends:



You can see some of the studio installation in the above shot. Lots of my favorite toys, novels, graphic novels and art books fill the space. Also included are many of my original concept sketches for the book as well as the actual drawing board used and my 1997 wall calendar filled with many Stardust ‘must do now!’ deadline notes.

Here’s a close up of the drawing board:


That photograph on the left hand side is of a cliff top village that was sent to me after Neil had seen it in an in-flight magazine. He thought that ‘Wall’ might look something like it.

And then more art:



Here’s one side of the ‘tree’. Pat and I had to keep on purchasing and hanging yet more greenery to try and cover its enormous expanse. Then I started to populate its limbs and niches with creatures great and small. That was a lot of fun!

Inside the tree as it were, we’ve just today, placed a new arrival: Puck. This 3 1/2 ft. bronze is a part of the 16 foot sculptural fountain (based on ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream) that I and co-sculptor David Spence are currently working on for the local theater.


“Oh what fools these mortals be.” indeed!

Lots more art in the second gallery, as well as Neil’s original hand-written manuscript for the book and my concept sketchbooks (all in VERY secure glass cases). Next to these pieces is the original, hand painted Stardust sculpture that I produced this winter for DC Direct, who will be producing it this summer and also the original ‘Fairy Princess’ sculpture that Dark Horse is publishing.


Come on down for a visit. The exhibition runs through September 9, with many, many activities involved a long the way. See you then…

The next evening there was a costume ball and these gallery spaces were filled with tons of splendid costumes that I’ll show you in my next posting, so stay tune kids.


12 Responses to “Stardust Rising Exhibition”

  1. stardustgirl says:

    Puck! That prankster boy hid until I’d gone, didn’t he? I’m glad he’s put in an appearance; he looks right at home in that spot. I love the expression on his face – he’s gorgeous.

    7 weeks and counting…

  2. Out of the Blue says:

    Very nice. Very pretty. And I agree with Stardustgirl, Puck makes a wonderful addition. That corner really needed something.

  3. Emily Melton says:

    Charles, Thanks for going along with my childhood delight in meeting you, and getting Stardust books signed, and taking photos on June 7. The only thing that would have surpassed our encounter would have been to attend the costume party … but, alas, I was a few days late. Perhaps I’ll find a way to attend the Stardust Festival in September! Cheers, Emily

  4. Carl V. says:

    Thank you so much for the pictures. For those of us unfortunate enough to not get to see it…and I do mean ‘unfortunate’…it is wonderful to get this glimpse.

    I am so excited about the upcoming release of the Stardust HC as well as the film. I hope it brings your work and Neil’s work to a much wider audience so that they can get a chance to appreciate what we fans have appreciated for so long.

  5. tlchang says:

    It looks like a fabulous exhibit. I don’t suppose there is any chance this could be a *traveling* sort of thing, could it? For those of us who live on the opposite coast…? :-)

  6. Moonshadow says:

    Hi Charles, and happy birthday ! The exhibition looks great! I would really like to see such an exhibition here in Europe, that would be cool. Do you have other pictures of the work in progress bronze fountain? That would be nice to see how you and David Spence work on that project. I’ve seen that the Stardust movie is scheduled to be released on october 24th here in France. Too bad for us…. But well maybe it can still change and get there sooner.
    Also, do you think you could send me picture of the original I sent you? I wanted to change the framing and it could give me ideas of what I could do. Anyway, I wish you and Karen a very nice day!
    J. Olivier

  7. AdomCatamon says:

    The show really does look amazing, a perfect fit for such great works. Reiterating some of the other comments, I do hope that this becomes a traveling show. I’m not quite on the other side of the country or the other side of the Atlantic, but it’s still quite a distance.

  8. vampgrl says:

    Hello, Charles. You may remember me from Shari, who lives in Tennessee? She works at Link House…or at least she did last I heard. I can’t wait to see your film when it comes out, or at least when I can see it at my dad’s….

    PS-could you please tell Shari to mail my stuff? Tell her to send it to:
    Kimberly Hillery
    64 Levenseller Rd.
    Eddington, ME 04428

  9. possum4all says:

    Can’t wait for my next visit to Abingdon! Congrats. Exciting times. You make southwest Virginia proud, Charles! Woo hoo!

  10. lucytoon says:

    what a great idea to setup a nook of what your workspace looked like. excellent for fans. hmm…i was JUST dreaming last night about taking a long drive down to the green again…you know…with the rest of the wyrds…


  11. Kristina says:

    What Lucy said.

    The studio space is brilliant. But where are you making art now?? ;)

    Think you can extend the exhibit just a few more days so we can see the show during Rythm and Roots? Or are you going to make us drive down early? Hahaha! I really must see this show-it looks amazing. Congratulations Charles!

  12. Kristina says:

    Oh, and Karen looks beautiful BTW. Did she work with that picture from the clothing store to create her outfit?

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