Historic Downtown eNews

Carl B. Jessee Sr. and Bill Brinkley in the Virgie R. Fleenor Art Gallery for the month of February

February 1–28

The Bristol Public Library is pleased to have the work of Carl B. Jessee Sr. and Bill Brinkley in the Virgie R. Fleenor Art Gallery for the month of February.

Carl B. Jessee Sr., native and lifelong resident of Southwest Virginia, is an artist who has come full circle in his artistic expression. After spending many successful years in commercial art and design with his own sign company, Bristol Sign, he has reflected back to the canvas and expanded his talents in oil painting to include watercolor, acrylic, and even wood carvings.

Jessee was born in Honaker, Virginia and spent his childhood days helping with the family farm, while occasionally stealing away to “paint” pictures on the hillside rocks and barns. Today, Jessee’s work captures the beauty and brightness of nature in simple, natural settings. His realistic style is both refreshing and pleasing to the eye. “The philosophy that drives me to paint, is the challenge of capturing the beauty of various elements of creation and translating that onto the canvas”, he says.

Bill Brinkley grew up in Bristol, TN where he began drawing in the eighth grade. Much later, he headed to California to study at the Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles. From there, he also studied at the School of Visual Arts in New York and spent the next forty years as a writer/producer/director of national advertising.

Retiring to his Bristol, TN home, Brinkley returned to his personal interest in painting. He paints in fine detail using pencils combined with acrylics. His favorite subjects are nostalgic things such as the old local barns, mills, abandoned cars, and other “Images of Appalachia.” As Bill says, “they all seem to carry a timeless dignity, the pride of a life well lived and a job well done.” Brinkley likes to paint subjects that tell a story, and you can see this in all of his works.

This display runs February 1st -28th at the Bristol Public Library in the Virgie R. Fleenor Art Gallery. Reminder: The library is open Monday- Thursday 9 a.m.-8 p.m., Friday- Saturday 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sundays 2 p.m.-5 p.m. For questions about the Art Gallery or any other library programs, call 276.821.6148.