Two New Exhibitions Open Feb. 26 in UNC Asheville Campus Art Galleries


Two exhibitions will open at galleries in UNC Asheville’s Owen Hall on Monday, Feb. 26. One showcases the work of the late James Spratt who earned his BFA at UNC Asheville 40 years ago, and the other features Al Slydel, who will earn a BFA in May. Viewing hours are weekdays from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Both shows and their receptions are free and open to everyone.

Spratt was a sculptor of animals, nature and people, who served four years in the Navy before attending UNC Asheville, and spent the final period of his life being treated for cancer at the Charles George VA Medical Center in Asheville. Grateful for the treatment he received there, Spratt created a life-size statue of Charles George, a Cherokee soldier and Medal of Honor recipient for whom the medical center is named. Spratt saw the project through to completion in 2016, but passed away in his bed at the center just minutes before the statue was unveiled in a ceremony outside.

A reception for the James Spratt Memorial Exhibition will be held from 6-8 p.m. on Friday, March 9 in the Owen Hall Second Floor Gallery, where the exhibition will be on view through March 23 (note: the gallery will be closed for UNC Asheville’s Spring Break March 10-18). A closing reception will be held from 6-8 p.m. on Friday, March 23.

they/them, an exhibition of mixed-media sculptures by UNC Asheville senior Al Slydel, opens on Feb. 26 at UNC Asheville.Slydel’s mixed-media exhibition is called they/them: a sculptural exploration of gender fluidity, and is a reflection of the artist’s personal struggle with identity formation. “they/them opens the conversation about gender nonconformity by illustrating one of infinite non-binary/trans experiences, while also providing solidarity and relatable content to those experiencing similar identity struggles,” says Slydel.

An opening reception with the artist for they/them will be held from 6-8 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 26, and the exhibition will be on view in the S. Tucker Cooke Gallery in Owen Hall through March 9.

For more information about upcoming exhibitions and UNC Asheville’s Art and Art History programs, visit