Artist Jim Secky Adds 'Personal Touch' to Work on Pinehurst History
If it happened in Pinehurst, if it was built in Pinehurst, if it lives, grows or makes its nest in the Sandhills, if it signifies any aspect of the man who founded the resort in 1895 or the man who later would design the championship golf course that has made Pinehurst world-famous -- chances are you will find it somewhere in the elaborate pictorial history of the golf resort, called "The Essence of Pinehurst."
Created by Southern Pines-based home designer and artist Jim Secky, the 18" x 24" color lithograph -- struck from an original ink and watercolor painting Secky completed in 1999 -- is the kind of complex, richly detailed work that requires more than a glance or two to take it all in.
However, those with the patience and curiosity to peruse this unusual art piece will almost certainly be rewarded. Even long-time residents of the village will likely be surprised by many of the 68 images the artist has chosen to include in his historic panorama, and intrigued by glimpses of the village's past history revealed in the seven-page "illustration guide" that Secky includes with each signed and numbered print (along with a certificate of authenticity).
How many readers know, for instance, that, in the early 1920s, renowned female sharpshooter Annie Oakley, and her husband, Frank, became "seasonal residents" of Pinehurst? Or that in 1911 a Curtis biplane -- a dead ringer for the original one built and flown by the Wright Brothers at Kitty Hawk just eight years earlier -- landed at Pinehurst's trapshooting grounds? Or that, at some dim moment in the Pinehurst Country Club's storied past, archers competed against golfers on the links, the former using wooden bows and metal-tipped arrows, the latter, regulation golf clubs and balls, trying to reach each hole in the fewest number of shots? (Although no casualties were reported, Secky notes dryly in his illustration guide that "For obvious reasons," the bizarre new sport "was very short-lived.")
Now Secky is introducing a novel twist to "The Essence of Pinehurst" by offering local residents a chance to put themselves on the historical map -- literally -- by adding an artistic rendering of their homes to the original print. By customizing his lithograph, Secky is following a time-honored tradition by which an artist can distinguish a print that is part of a numbered series from all of its counterparts by adding a small, personalized drawing or symbol near his or her signature. (The embellished lithograph, known in artistic circles as a "remarque print," is considered more valuable than the same print without such a marking.)
Secky will discuss "The Essence of Pinehurst" -- what inspired him to create it, how he selected its nearly six dozen different images, and the technical process by which a graphic artist can transform a finished lithograph into a unique, individualized, remarque print -- on Friday, July 18, at 5 p.m., at Le Faux Chateau gift shop, 3 Market Square, in the Village of Pinehurst (next to Dugan's Pub). The artist will also be available to answer questions from 4 to 6 p.m. at the same retailer, which currently sells both framed and unframed copies of the print.
For more information, call Le Faux Chateau at 295-8300.
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