The Gulf of America, by Herb Willey, on Display at the Gulf Coast Library

The Gulf Coast Library on the Gulf Park Campus of The University of Southern Mississippi presents The Gulf of America, an art exhibit by award-winning Bay St. Louis artist, Herb Willey. Sixty original transparent watercolor paintings, set on the Gulf Coast, will be on display until November 22. The community is invited to a reception on October 18 from 4:30 to 6 p.m. in the Gulf Coast Library.

This exhibit, based on Willey’s project, Along Beach Boulevard, depicts everyday scenes along Mississippi’s Highway 90. He has expanded his scope to picture equally inspiring images from the coasts of Alabama, Florida, and Louisiana. Willey is constantly looking for ordinary people in ordinary locations to create stories. Titles like “Stalking a Mocking,” “They Took my Spot,” and “Fisherman and the Critic” cleverly allude to subjects of the paintings.

Willey says, “I like to take common, everyday scenes and pull a narrative painting from them, and maybe make the viewer take a second look at the art and feel the emotion I felt when painting. It is those times that make my effort worthwhile. The opportunity to convey emotion into graphics. When you have those moments in your work, it really is satisfying.”

Willey studied art in public school, later at the University of Hawaii while serving in the US Navy, and also at the University of New Orleans at Lafayette. He studied with well-known New Orleans watercolorist Harrel Gray. His work has been displayed many local art venues including a current exhibition at Gallery 220 in Bay St. Louis. His watercolor paintings have been juried and honored in regional national and international shows, including the Global Division International Watercolor Society shows in Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Along with the framed original watercolors, signed and numbered prints will be for sale.

For more information, contact the Gulf Coast Library at 228.214.3450.