Clyde Jones' house in Bynum.

Nationally recognized outsider artist Clyde Jones of Bynum will be honored with the presentation of the first ever “Chatham County Cultural Treasure“ award at a celebration in his honor called "ClydeFest" on Saturday, June 22, 2002, from Noon until 5 p.m. at the Chatham County Arts Council on Hwy 64 W between Pittsboro and Siler City.

Clyde in front of his critter wonderland.
Mr. Jones is well known as the creator of whimsical “critters” that he fashions with his chainsaw and decorates with found objects. 2002 marks the twentieth anniversary of Clyde’s creations. “Clyde Critters” have been exhibited in many important galleries including the Washington DC Smithsonian Institution and the North Carolina Museum of Art. His fanciful paintings of animals are also greatly appreciated and can be viewed in many area venues including Peregrine’s Restaurant in Chapel Hill, the Dry Docks Seafood Restaurant in Cole Park Plaza, Crook’s Corner in Chapel Hill, and at the Pittsboro General Store Café.

Take a ride through Bynum, NC, between Chapel Hill and Pittsboro, off Hwy 15-501, and see Clyde’s critters grazing on most of the lawns of Bynum, and his mural next to the Bynum General Store. The 1998 recording “The Garden Place” features Clyde Jones cover art, and Haw River Association t-shirts sport a different Jones design annually. Clyde’s critters are presently on exhibit through June 30 at the Totten Center, NC Botanical Gardens in Chapel Hill. Beginning in September, 2002, his critters will be on display at the North Carolina Museum of Art grounds for a yearlong stint.

A big purple fish covered with jar lids. The Chatham County Arts Council, with the generous sponsorship of Dry Docks Seafood Restaurants of Cole Park Plaza and Siler City, Crook’s Corner of Chapel Hill, Tasteful Creations, and Uniqueorn Enterprises presents the program honoring Jones. It will be held at the Arts Council headquarters at the Ferguson Farm, located between Siler City and Pittsboro on Highway 64W. In addition to the presentation of the award, music will be provided by two area favorites, The Bluegrass Experience and Brown Mountain Lights. Delectable cookies by Tasteful Creations will be on sale to help raise money for the the Chatham County Arts Council. Clyde will create critters on site, one of which will be awarded to a lucky ticket holder at the end of the event, and one to be auctioned at the event. Clyde will work with children to create their very own Clyde Critters!

Clyde and Chatham County Arts Council Executive Director Regina Bridgman ClydeFest will run from 12:00 noon until 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 22. Admission is $5.00 for adults; children under 12 will be admitted free. Admission/Raffle tickets may be purchased at the following businesses: Chatham Hackney Insurance and Reality in Siler City, The Pittsboro General Store Café, New Horizon’s Trading Company, and Edwards Antiques in Pittsboro.

Please call the Chatham County Arts Council at 542-0394 for further information.

Written by Regina Bridgman, Chatham County Arts Council Executive Director

Click here for more pictures of Clyde and his critters.

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