We are fortunate to have many local artists in Hot Springs and one we continually hear about is Linda Williams Palmer. Linda is known for her photographs and color pencil drawings of the “Champion” trees in Arkansas. The Arkansas Forestry Commission has designated more than 125 Arkansas trees as “Champions,” which means they are the largest of their species in the state. Arkansas is known as the Natural State and part of the beauty throughout the area can be seen in the majestic trees.
Palmer currently has an exhibit “Arkansas Champion Trees: An Artist’s Journey” at the Hot Springs National Park Cultural Center in the Ozark Bathhouse in Historic Downtown Hot Springs through August 2015. The exhibit features large and detailed drawings and documentary photographs of 18 champion trees. This is one incredible exhibit not to be missed.
The “Champion” trees are located throughout Arkansas and Hot Springs is fortunate to have five local trees designated as “Champions.” The Hot Springs trees are American Basswood, Serviceberry, Sourwood, Magnolia Umbrella and Horse Chestnut. They are situated in different sites around the city. The exact locations of the champion trees may be found at the Arkansas Forestry website.
The Arkansas Educational Television Network featured the champion trees and Palmer’s artwork in an original 60-minute documentary. The documentary was recognized with several awards including an Emmy for Best Cultural Documentary and Best Cinematography in the 2014 annual awards competition of the Mid-America Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
Exhibit curator Barbara Satterfield of Conway said the exhibit includes anecdotes and stories to encourage multi-generational conversations. She said, “The goal is to bring people together to enjoy Arkansas’ greatest natural resources – its land and its people.”
Making a trip to Hot Springs to see the “Champion Trees” exhibit would make a great weekend getaway. Hot Springs is home to several outstanding art galleries in the downtown area. The first Friday of each month Gallery Walk takes place and the local galleries stay open from 5-9 p.m. and serve wine and appetizers. So, the combination of the new exhibit along with Gallery Walk would make a great cultural arts weekend.
And, while in town, we’d love to have you stay with us at our Hot Springs bed and breakfast. We have a beautiful Inn where all rooms include a view of picturesque Lake Hamilton. Our rooms are incredibly comfortable and our breakfasts are delicious – the best in Hot Springs. Make reservations online or give us a call at 501.525.6155 and we’ll help you with reservations and information on the fabulous new “Champion Trees” art exhibit.