Across My Desk with Love

Written by: Brenda Durant
February 2023

I love the start of the year. I love a freshly cleaned blackboard, a re-start, a do over, and the optimism that comes with 12 months rolling out, ready to begin again. I love our community. I interact often with our creative community; It’s inspiring to talk, exchange emails, and read press releases about upcoming events. I get so excited!


I recently spent time in Drake White’s new Broad Street Gallery, CANDL. Drake was sharing his plans for the coming year. It was also art pick-up day from his first show so I got to see Lou Ann Zimmerman, Betty Moretz, Lillie Morris, and Tom Crowther. They came in one after another, so I kept sitting back down and talking to Drake so I could see so many of Augusta’s creative people that I love. Drake’s next show which features Brian Rust, opens next Friday February 10. Make sure you drop in!


Last October for the Leadership Augusta Arts Day we started with a talk by Wayne O’Bryant about Dave the Potter and his exhibit, currently at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Dave at the Met is a big deal. I was thrilled because I love Dave’s pots and his story. In late December my daughter Alex called me to say she had a Delta Buddy Ticket and would love for me to go to New York with her. We went in late January and the only item on my list was to see the Dave the Potter exhibit at the MMA. It was glorious. When we stopped at the info table to get directions to the exhibit we meet a volunteer who grew up 20 minutes from Dave’s hometown in the Edgefield area.

We chatted for a while and exchanged life stories. Funny how the universe so often sends you the right person, at the right time. She insisted we go to the cubism exhibit that was closing in two days. The show featured many of Picasso’s paintings (which I love) and resonated with me since my book club just read his third wife’s biography of Pablo. A very serendipitous and wonderful visit. There is a great Youtube video about the exhibit.

As a lover of Public Art I went to Hudson Yards to see and climb the Vessel. Unfortunately, the Vessel was closed so I will treasure my pre-Covid visit when Ed and I climbed it right after it first opened. Speaking of Public Art, I walked the new Sculpture Trail with Ed and we loved the new sculptures. If it ever stops raining plan to spend some time on a downtown walk. You will love it! We started on the Common, walked down 8th to the Steps to the Levy then up and east (right) to enjoy the new additions on the upper and lower levy and 5th Street Bridge. A great afternoon.


I have a special love for Alice in Wonderland and have been reading a lot of Wonderland tales to prepare for our trip down the rabbit hole at the 2023 Wet Paint Party and Sale. Our theme is a Madhatter’s Tea Party and the Julian Smith Casino will look pretty magical. I have to work on the signature Cocktail so I am glad it’s no longer Dry January—Let the games begin.


Get out, have some fun and find lots of things to love —see you at Wet Paint!



“The time has come,” the Walrus said, “To talk of many things: Of shoes—and ships—and sealing-wax— Of cabbages—and kings— And why the sea is boiling hot— And whether pigs have wings.” Alice in Wonderland