NASHVILLE, TN.-The Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art presents Westen Charles, on view through December 31, 2005. Westen Charles is a Miami-based artist who used found objects, original sculptures, and paintings in his work. Charles, who received his BFA from Pratt in New York and his MFA from the University of Miami, has used everything from lint to bowling balls in his installations. In his multi-layered, subtly psychological works Charles often takes objects that are normally discarded and alters them. By acts such as squaring off bowling balls and adding veneer or altering a dryer so it creates dozens of lint balls the size of human heads, Charles delivers quirky, visually riveting installations that rethink the chosen objects beauty and value.
Often incorporating animals into his work, Charles has even recreated the huts from the popular childrens story The Three Little Pigs. He then placed a pig in the gallery to see which house the animal would choose. Other, inanimate objects that have graced his installations are wooden zebras and cheetahs as well as a stuffed (via taxidermy) bobcat. Charles even created a series of paintings that focuses on the shared characteristics of people and animals.
Charles has exhibited in over thirty exhibitions, including shows in Miami, Atlanta and New York.