The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Local News

May 3, 2013

More details of city's artist incubator revealed at event

— Photographers, painters, potters, poets and a number of other local artists of all mediums displayed their works during the High Cotton Art Exhibit Thursday at W.E. Estes & Son, located at 103 W. Washington St. in downtown Athens.

Local artisans were on hand with a number of people from throughout the community to celebrate tradition and new beginnings in the merger of 100-year-old W.E. Estes & Son and H.C. Blake Company, a 130-year-old company.

The event, which included barbecue, was also an opportunity to introduce plans to turn an old cotton warehouse, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, into a working space for local artists.

The warehouse, donated by H.C. Blake Co. President Jim Batson, is to be transformed into an art incubator known as High Cotton Art.

Trisha Black, executive director of Spirit of Athens, a nonprofit organization dedicated to revitalizing downtown, said the plan is to renovate approximately 8,000 square feet of the warehouse.

Black said the Spirit of Athens selected the name during a meeting. “Someone said High Cotton Art,” she said, explaining that when you have a good crop of “high cotton” you don’t have to bend down to pick it.

To her it meant “why go somewhere else when the cotton’s high and you have what you need right here.” “It just fits,” she said.

Plans are in the early stages. However, Black has been working with architects on a plan for the space. An architectural rendering was on display during Thursday’s luncheon.

She is unsure of the cost of renovation, but said she would like to stay around $300,000. Black said they would like to raise funds to make High Cotton Arts happen. Work could begin this fall.

“There is a lot of potential,” Black said about the warehouse. “Athens really needed this.” She said for years local artists have been looking for a space downtown. “We just didn’t have the space for them,” she said, adding they would end up going other places. “With this, we keep people here and showcase local talent.”

Text Only
Local News


Which foreign crisis is the biggest threat to the security of the United States?

None of the above
     View Results
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow
Twitter Updates
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Business Marquee