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New Arts Council Will Link Local Artists With Showcase Opportunities In The Valley

Local Artist – Artist Bill Warren shows two of his works including “After the Storm,” which features a Maine scene (left), and “Coming Down Panola Street,” one of his Water Valley themed paintings on display at Renasant Bank on Central Street. – Photos by Jack Gurner

Market Street view looking west.

Staff Report

WATER VALLEY – The Water Valley Arts Council has been established, to nurture, advocate, and celebrate the arts in the Water Valley area, according to Susan Hart, Program Director for the Water Valley Main Street Association.

The Council will be affiliated with the WVMSA and will serve as a link between artists, local civic and cultural organizations, and the community.

The Arts Council will support local artists with opportunities to display their work or showcase their talents, and will also provide a forum where artists can meet to discuss matters of interest to the local arts community.  

Membership in the group is open to all friends of the arts and artists in the greater Water Valley area, including (but not limited to) painters, sculptors, writers, musicians, singers, dancers, performance artists, graphic designers, jewelry makers, and photographers.

Art enlivens old buildings, revitalizes stores and offices, and enriches the life of a community. It also provides an economic stimulus to the city and attracts new residents to whom culture is as vital as commerce, Hart said.

“The success of the art exhibits at the Remedial Specialists building during the Watermelon Carnival, as well as the recent shows at the Bozarts Gallery and at the McMinn Realty/Main St. Insurance offices convinced us that Water Vallians really care about the arts and would support a separate organization dedicated to providing an environment in which the arts thrive,” Hart added.

“An active Arts Council will help us promote our vibrant art community to encourage cultural and economic development.”

An exhibit by local artist Bill Warren was installed last week in the lobby of the local Renasant Bank.  This exhibit is the first of what Bill Taylor, President of Renasant Bank and the Water Valley Main Street Association, hopes will become a long-running rotating show of local artists.  

“Hosting this exhibit really brings out my pride in Water Valley,” added Bill Taylor, “I would like to invite everyone to stop by the bank and see for yourself the amazing amount of talent we have in this town,” he said.  The Renasant Exhibit will feature different local artists every few weeks, and some of the items on display will be for sale.

For additional information about the Water Valley Arts Council, contact Ramona Bernard at 473-9851  (, Annette Trefzer 473-2484, Bill Warren and Pati D’Amico-Warren, 473-0972 (, or stop by the WVMSA office.

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