Discovering the Chattahoochee Valley - a large-scale installation of paintings on silk

Columbus is alive with the dreams of the people who live here and the people who visit. I am fascinated by the town of Columbus, and find endless enjoyment in exploring the area.

The Chattahoochee Valley - with its long history, incredible depth, abundant natural resources, and lively community - provides a wealth of inspiration for an artist. The river is a constant presence, always moving, powerful yet calming. The rail lines cross the town, river, and country, and the streets of downtown Columbus are flat and straight, creating sightlines I have only experienced out west. The water towers, mill stacks, and church steeples punctuate the sky with a beautiful grace. During my time here I marveled at the clear blue sky and at the setting sun as it lit up the water tower at Broadway and Front Street. Watching it illuminate the town, I was dazzled by that reflected light, and tried to capture it in my own way.

It has been my honor to create 11 images of the Chattahoochee Valley for the Museum. This opportunity is a life’s dream, an incredible opportunity to share what I saw with you, and I did not take my task lightly. Limiting myself to 11 works was extremely difficult - I have many more I can see in my mind’s eye, and I hope one day to bring them into being.

- René Shoemaker, August 2015 - August 2016, Columbus Museum, Georgia, USA