City View Chattanooga: Drawings in the Mistby David Barlew, Jr. on 10/01/12
While I was out for an early morning run last week, I came upon something truly odd while rounding the big circle at Coolidge Park.
A young lady was walking here and there in an erratic pattern all over the main lawn at Coolidge Park with a scrap of white paper in one hand and a bare paint roller in the other. So, I decided to stop and observe.
As I watched, the young lady placed the roller on the early morning's dew-covered grass and walked a few paces, leaving a swath of darkened grass blades; then, she abruptly stopped, hopped over a few feet, and started the whole process over again heading in the opposite direction. From my vantage point on the ground, I could distinguish her darkened swaths from the lighter, untouched areas of the great lawn, but I couldn't make out any kind of pattern. I decided to head for higher ground; there had to be a method to this madness!
So, I fired The Toxic Avenger back up on my ipod (I do love French electronica) and sprinted to the Walnut Street Bridge, where I could see the park from above.
The lady with the roller was painting...
...er, doodling on the morning's dew!
While the rest of us were going about our activities (in my case, running), this talented artist was producing an ephemeral work of art for anyone on the Walnut Street Bridge to enjoy! As soon as the dew evaporates, so does her art.
While I was taking pictures of that day's drawing, a Pegasus/unicorn hybrid, I struck up a conversation with a lady next to me on the bridge. She explained to me that the talented artist below is Hollie Berry. Evidently, Berry walks with her husband to work every day, and, on the way back home, she stops in Coolidge Park to draw on the morning's dew. The lady on the bridge told me that Berry used to draw on the dew covered grass using only her feet; the roller is a new addition. She then told me that Berry is currently working her way through the alphabet, producing a specific doodle for each letter of the alphabet. The day I saw Hollie working on the lawn, she was on letter "P".
Thanks to my conversation with the lady of the bridge, I was actually contacted by Hollie Berry through Facebook after getting back to the office. Through our online interaction, I learned that Berry calls her great works of temporary art "Dewdles".
Berry has a great Facebook page, where you can view her daily art and her progression through the alphabet.
Also, for more information, you can visit her website at art-instincts.com.
Now, I am happy to report, another talented artist is turning Chattanooga's best park into a canvas for free public art.
All photographs by David Barlew, Jr.
Art by Hollie Berry