Introducing the art of Destry Sparks.
Featured Artist @ Western Carteret Public Library for the month of November:
There is a Path
I grew up in the rural fishing village of Sea Level which is close to the tourist town of Beaufort, NC.
Much of my childhood was spent poking around in the woods looking for interesting things. I learned to
appreciate simple pleasures like the sound of wind in the tops of pine trees and patterns in the sand
along the shoreline. I enjoyed watching my great grandfather Irving Fulcher who was a well known
decoy carver as he turned inanimate wooden blocks into rough versions of lively birds. Other major
influences in my younger years were comic books with fantastic characters such as the Silver Surfer.
At East Carteret High School my main concerns were football and art class led by Kathy Gillikin. She
covered the basic principles of art such as balance and color theory which I use to this day. Discipline
was something even more important she taught me to practice. When it became clear I would pursue
art in college, she pushed me to work harder to perfect my skills and reach my potential. Talent alone is
no substitute for persistence or patience. To do meaningful work
dedication would be required.
At East Carolina University I studied art and anthropology (the study of cultures). A wonderful team of
professors and practicing visiting artists opened my eyes up to a vast range of ideas to consider. They
challenged me further to try new things in my work. I saw a lot of interesting things which excited me
about the potential to do new things myself.
But not until the day in 2005 when I noticed a stick on the ground did my work go in a unique
personal direction. I had been painting colorful abstract paintings for years, but there were plenty of
artists doing the same thing better. I picked up a graceful twig and noticed smooth curved lines
running parallel along its length. It was immediately obvious that this mere stick was more beautiful
than any of my flashy color-packed paintings. The design of the stick was perfect while my art certainly
Instead of relying on just myself to create truly worthwhile art I would begin to use some of the amazing
things all around us. Part of my job now is to help people to notice the world is full of beauty and
wonder if we just slow down long enough to notice. Everything and everyone has a place and a purpose
in the world. My art is the best way I can express that.
While I draw on many influences including traditional Aboriginal and African craftsmen, American
outsider artists and contemporary masters Anselm Kiefer and El Anatsui, none are above divine
guidance. In the tradition of William Blake I give ultimate credit for the ideas which come my way and
any ability I have to share them to what I know as the Holy Spirit. I thank him for giving me the
wisdom to notice the value of a stick on the ground, the splendor of wind rustling treetops and the
ability to turn trash into something special.
Please join us and enjoy the view at the library.
ABOUT ART EXHIBITS AT THE WESTERN CARTERET LIBRARY
As a public service to the citizens of Carteret County, the Western Carteret Public Library provides designated space for exhibits and/or displays of art works, crafts, special interest collections, etc. which reflect community interest and talent. The Friends of the Western Carteret Library coordinate the monthly art exhibits for the Library. For information regarding exhibits, please read the Policy for Exhibits and Displays at Western Carteret Public Library. If you are interested in displaying your artwork, come by the Library to pick up an Exhibit Application.