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Eight days, eight artists event
Dot Goodwin, above, is one of the featured eight artists that will be part of the Artists Attics Eight days, eight artists event.

Starting Nov. 16 and running through Nov. 23, the Artist’s Attic studio and gallery will be open each day until 8 p.m. The Artist’s Attic is located at 930 Broad St., in downtown Camden. Each day will feature a different local artist and his/her work. The event is called "Eight days, eight artists." One of the featured artists for this event is Dot Goodwin. Goodwin provided the following statement about herself and her work:

"Dot Goodwin was born at home, in a rural farmhouse in Chatam County, North Carolina to a farming family. When times became too tight, her father left farming to join the military, only to return to it once World War II was over. After another unsuccessful attempt, he reenlisted in the military and the family began to move to various bases around the country.

Goodwin recalls that some of her earliest interest in art was doodling endlessly on her schoolwork -- much to the dismay of her teachers. She finally found her niche when the family was stationed in California during her high school years. The arts program was so advanced there, she was able to take two and three art courses a year, throughout her high school career. The family moved back to North Carolina, where Goodwin began to consider a career in the military as well. She had become familiar with the crafts shops on various bases and knew that there was an opportunity for a guaranteed duty station as an Arts and Crafts Specialist, so she pursued the option, since military bases were a familiar and comfortable environment to her.

She served three years at Fort Jackson, returning to the Art Shop as a civilian for seven more years. There, she became proficient in many media and techniques, ranging from lapidary and leather crafting to wood carving, embossing and die-making and casting. She began her journey as a master framer throughout those years as well. Many of the GI’s were happy to share their knowledge of techniques learned from all over the world with her, and she was an eager and apt student.

As an active member in the arts community, Goodwin volunteers her time to support others in their artistic pursuits. She has spoken to the local artist association on numerous occasions, conducts workshops at Springbank Retreat Center and currently serves as art director for the Downtown Camden Guild, spearheading many efforts to bring local artists and their art to beautify the town. She has also sat on the Art Steering Committee for Pinckney Elementary School, an ABC Pilot School for the arts, at Fort Jackson since 1995.

Today, Goodwin delights in noticing the symmetry and balance of her life coming full circle. She once again makes her home in the country on a farm with her two horses. Here, she is content to surround herself with the inspiration that nature daily brings to her, living the life she loves and loving the life she lives.

Goodwin cites her hands as her favorite tool, savoring the sensation of carving surfaces, or carefully building multi-level images for casting. Her strong sense of symmetry and attention to detail are features that stand out in her work, lending themselves to the creation of iconic images and traditional symbols of institutions and South Carolina in her commercial pieces. Goodwin often incorporates Native American imagery in her personal pieces, feeling a deep connection to the people and their spiritual practices. Images of horses and wings are recurring icons throughout her work.

Goodwin calls the Artists’ Attic, a cooperative gallery and studio that she shares with eight other professional artists, her home away from home. There, she spends most of her waking hours creating her one of a kind dies and carvings, preparing for the biannual Craftsman Classic show, which she has participated in for 27 years. Her work is often showcased in the co-op’s gallery area, and is also available through The Chameleon Art Gallery in Darlington, SC. R&I Designs in Spartanburg also markets her work."

(Story and photo provided by Dot Goodwin)