We were purely thrilled to partner with the Colquitt County Arts Center on their latest gallery, "Hooked on Rugs." 

The Arts Center brings beautiful art to Moultrie, Georgia from around the world all throughout this year.  But this season's exhibit has an interesting, almost magical twist... One Mr. Berrien Cheatham, an unlikely artisan from Augusta, Georgia. Working slowly and steadily on his many hand knotted rugs, some taking as many as three years to complete.

Berrien Cheatham worked with needlepoint as an avocation for over twenty years. The designs for most of the rugs displayed were taken from favorite Oriental rugs once owned to preserve the designs of those which had become too shabby to use. “When they became thread-bare,” said Cheatham. “I decided to preserve the designs in needlework.” The designs for the rugs were not drawn onto canvas as is the usual procedure, rather worked from the originals to the canvas almost as a painting technique. “It’s like a mathematical progression. You know that you count so many stitches one way, etc. I can talk while I do it.” Cheatham worked wherever the mood struck him in his 1920’s duplex on Morningside in Atlanta. “I keep my work close at hand. Sometimes I work in my big old bed. If I get dressed 10 minutes early to go out socially, which I do frequently, I pick up my work and keep at it for 10 or 15 minutes. I never let it bother me or feel pressured to finish work.” The largest of the collection required three years for completion, while a smaller one could be made in a year’s time. The rugs are slanted because they were handmade and the process of needlepoint causes pulling to one end. Cheatham did not believe in “fooling” with blocking his rugs. An indicator that a rug is entirely handmade is that it is not square but the lines are diagonal.
Mr. Cheatham was a graduate from the University of South Carolina, with some training in design. He lived in Atlanta and was employed by the Georgia Department of Industry and Trade, Research Division for over 30 years.
Berrien Cheatham passed away in 2013.

We were happy to cater the event, providing delicious pastry-wrapped baked asparagus, boiled peanut hummus, southern-style chicken salad, our smoky pimento cheese, and of course, our double dark chocolate espresso brownie bites! 
We are also thrilled to display one of Berrien Cheatham's larger works here in The Square for the duration of the exhibit.  Stop by the Vereen Gallery at the Colquitt County Arts Center, or just drop by The Square to see his work up close and personal!