Two women who have lived and traveled widely in the U.S. and Europe will exhibit their art at the Clayton Center in March.
Nancy Ping-Robbins lives in the Bailey Community of Nash County, grew up in Tennessee and pursued a career as a professional pianist, including five years in Germany, before turning her attention to art. She moved to North Carolina in 1974 and paints in oil and acrylic.
New York City native, Ann Campbell of West End in Moore County, lived in Vermont, California and Oregon before moving to North Carolina 30 years ago. She has been an artist since childhood and paints in many media. But focuses on watercolor.
A free, meet-the-artists reception for Ping-Robbins and Campbell is 6-7:30 p.m. March 7 in the lobby of The Clayton Center, 111 E. Second St. Light refreshments will be served and everyone is invited.
The exhibit runs until April 1 and is free and open to the public. The center is open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Both the reception and exhibition are sponsored by Clayton Visual Arts, Inc.
Ping-Robbins grew up with a father who taught her the basics of painting at an early age. When she was 11, she produced a set of four still-life oil paintings on round wooden plaques as a present for her mother.
However, music took precedence during her teen and college years, and she became a professional pianist, which led her to Germany. There, she continued to paint from time to time and steeped herself in the great art works of Europe, visiting museums is many countries. She counts a Picasso exhibit as pivotal to her artistic development.
While in Germany, she exhibited her first adult works at Rhein-Main Air Base outside Frankfurt. A year later she had another exhibit at the Army base in Kaiserslautern. In addition, she sold pieces to local military as well as German friends and acquaintances.
Back home in the U.S., Ping-Robbins exhibited her paintings at an outdoor art festival in Loveland, Colo. Her works served as topics for discussion in a graduate-level course in aesthetics at the University of Colorado.
In January 2007, inspired by photos of fall scenes from Alabama and her home in Bailey, she began to paint seriously. As a semi-retiree, she finally had plenty of time.
She has studied with Bob Rankin of Raleigh, a well-known abstract painter.
Since 2008 Ping-Robbins has maintained a busy exhibit schedule, ranging from the Fine Arts League of Cary to Visual Art Exchange in Raleigh, the Harnett County Arts County, Nash County Arts Council, Wilson County Arts Council and others.
In 2012 she participated in the Clayton Art Faire and also had two solo shows—at Zynique Creations Gallery in Wilson and at Bistro on Third in Smithfield.
Campbell was featured in a solo exhibit at the Clayton Center in 2009.
She works in watercolor, charcoal, pastel, acrylic and oil but says, “Watercolor seems to be my most successful medium.”
In 2010 she won first prize in the watercolor category of the annual Fine Arts Festival in Southern Pines.
She adds, “In viewing my most recent work, it is my conviction that my landscapes, florals and life figures best represent my work. Generally speaking, I tend to have an impressionistic style.”
A teacher as well as a painter, she taught visual art to all ages and in most mediums for the Burlington Parks and Recreation Department in Vermont for 10 years. Since moving to North Carolina, she has taught at Sandhills Community College in Pinehurst since 1986.
Campbell was born in New York City and lived in both eastern and western states before moving to North Carolina in 1983.
Her art studies include the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, N.Y.; the Brooklyn Museum with Reuben Tam; City College, New York; Syracuse University; Oregon State University; University of Vermont in Burlington with Stanley Mark Wright; and Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, Vt.
Among her hobbies are tennis, tai chi, walking and golf; singing in a church choir; bridge; and traveling in the U.S. and abroad.
She is a widow and has three children, all married, four grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.