A compendium of craft masquerading as art, art masquerading as craft, and craft extending its middle finger.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Pimp Challiss


My friend Merrilee Challiss lives in Birmingham, Alabama, and leads one of the most action packed lives that I know of. Merrilee used to work at Studio By the Tracks, a studio for autistic adult artists (home to Ross Bullwinkel). She also has a very active art career, with loads of solo and group shows to her credit. She's an Extreme Crafter of the highest order, and a founding member of Birmingham's Collarmoth Collective. Somehow, all of this wasn't enough for her. Now she's started Bottletree, a cafe and lounge in Birmingham's emerging Avondale neighborhood. I haven't gotten a chance to visit yet, but from the looks of it, the interior design suits Merrilee's vision well. Here is Exhibit A, a taxidermied deer head that Merrilee has covered in glitter. The Cafe isn't quite open yet, but the lounge has already had some concerts, and upcoming shows include comedian Todd Barry and The Gossip. Merrilee's current solo show, "Blank Magic" is on view at the Moxie Gallery in Birmingham through June 7th. Just writing about her wears me out. I'm off to take a nap. Happy, Merrilee?

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