Story, Song and Image by Glen Miller and John Fowler


Story, Song, and Image: A merging of Musical Heritage and Narrative Painting

This project by John Fowler and Glen Miller focuses on 10 musicians and singing groups who represent different genres of roots music that are important to South Carolina's regional musical traditions. The musicians and singers represented were drawn from different geographical regions throughout the state. The exhibition aspect of the project encompasses the historical and cultural traditions of the genres of music as well as the musician's personal stories which are the subject of the contemporary narrative paintings. The paintings were derived from conversations with the musicians, their music, their stories, and composed in the studio from sketches, notes, and photographs taken in their home environment. The non-traditional paintings are intended to present the musicians as persons that, although representative of a historical tradition, are nonetheless living stories themselves. The performance aspect of the project further emphasizes this concept by bringing the music into the present, completing the purpose of Story, Song, and Image.

Miller and Fowler have combined their fields of study, creating a multi-media project, which celebrates South Carolina's broad music heritage. They have combined elements of visual and performing arts and regional history into a museum based experience, which will include music and contemporary narrative paintings. Several forms of roots music, each relative to a particular geographical region of South Carolina are incorporated in the project. The educational elements include regional and local history, music, art, language and oral history.

This project highlights some of our living history and one of the greatest cultural resources of our state, our musicians and their music.

Glen Miller, a native of Northeast Tennessee, has taught art in South Carolina since 1979. Glen has a BFA in drawing and painting from East Tennessee State University, an MA in Art and Education from The University of South Florida and further graduate study at the University of Tennessee. A public high school art teacher for many years, Glen currently teaches drawing and painting at Converse College and Furman University and is a member of the faculty of the Greenville County Museum of Art. Glen Miller has received numerous awards in regional exhibitions. His most recent solo exhibitions include "Labyrinth" and "Ruminations With A Charred Vine,", a gallery-sized narrative drawing installation at the Greenville Fine Arts Center. The artist maintains a studio in the Pendleton Street Arts District of Greenville and is represented locally by Hampton III Gallery.

John Fowler, storyteller & old-time musician, has been touring professionally throughout the southeast at festivals, theaters, schools and music camps for over 20 years.  His talents stem from family ties to our Southern Appalachian Mountain region. John is an artist-in-residence in South Carolina and is also an approved performing and teaching artist in a number of other states regionally. He has performed at venues on both coasts and has been featured in several documentaries; co-produced a number of specials on South Carolina ETV and hosts an old-time radio show on North Carolina public radio. He is currently serving as the State Scholar for the SC Humanities Council for the "New Harmonies--Smithsonian American Roots Music" exhibit.

This mixed media exhibition will run through Nov. 5. The Bassett Gallery is opened Monday-Wednesdays and Fridays from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Thursdays from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.  Weekends by appointment only.

Admission to the gallery is free of charge.

Join us on Sept. 30 at 5:30 pm for a wine and cheese reception prior to the Dick Goodwin Big Band concert in the Wood Auditorium. The gallery opening is free and open to the public.

Photo: Hope Nunnery, Sumter, SC. Oil on canvas, 46" x 64"

Bassett Gallery exhibitions are sponsored by:


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September 29, 2010 to November 4, 2010


  • Sept. 30 at 5:30 pm Gallery Opening
  • Daily through Nov. 5 at Mon.-Wed. & Fri. 10 am-5 pm; Thurs. 10 am-6 pm


Bassett Gallery