Charleston Style & Design | Art
Artists in the Wild
Local artists take it outside during Piccolo Spoleto
BY ROBIN HOWARD
Remember the days when you could visit the cockpit of an airplane and talk to the pilot? Remember when the ferryboat captain would let you steer? Remember the days before security would tackle you when you ran on stage at a Kenny G concert? Those were good times. Today the world is on lockdown; it's all “No, you can't push that button,” “No, you can't prank the Coast Guard” and “No, you can't play my tenor sax.” Our chances to get sneak peeks into the lives of people with cool jobs are dwindling.
The annual Piccolo Spoleto Outdoor Art Exhibition remedies that horrible trend by giving us access to artists, the coolest of the cool people, in the wild. During the festival, Marion Square is brimming with artists painting, hanging out, chatting amiably with new folks and catching up with old friends.
Today I've come to see two local legends: Rick Reinert and Kevin LePrince.
Though they have separate tents for the seventeen days of Piccolo Spoleto, the rest of the year they share space in their gallery, Reinert LePrince Fine Art, on King Street. “In the air conditioning,” they want me to point out.
Now, if I were an artist, I would be surly and distant. I would shout a lot, and I'd have minions to pick out the brown M&Ms. Kevin and Rick went a different route. When you visit Reinert LePrince gallery you don't have to whisper or point with your elbow. Rick and Kevin will not only let you watch them paint, but they'll answer any question you ask. “Any question?” I ask.