Local Artists @ Firehouse Wine Bar
by Tim Borland
Firehouse Wine Bar & Shop located at 216 St. Francis St. is currently featuring the work of six local and regional artists as a part of The Traveling Metals Show. With metal work, photography, and canvas adorning the long walls of the narrow building, patrons have plenty of visuals to fill their eyes while imbibing a delicious wine varietal. While Artwalk is an excellent opportunity to view these works, this exhibit will remain on display throughout October.
“We’re excited to be hosting the show and to be part of the vibrant art scene in downtown Mobile,” said independent business owners Margo Alderton and Andre Lotz. “It’s part of what attracted us to the city to begin with.”
Lebaron Heathcoe of Azalea City Copper Creations is well known for his metal sculptures depicting subjects such as sea creatures. A great local artists, several of his pieces currently adorn the walls above countless racks of wine bottles and hang from the ceiling above guest’s heads. The sculptor is the primary featured artist, anchoring the collaborative display.
“ [I am] dedicated to handcrafted copper art, highlighting it’s natural beauty, properties and form,” Heathcoe explained.
Other supporting artists include Kathleen Cope, Gail Rancier Wilson, Claire Noojin, and Yevette Ward. Mobilians may recognize Wilson, Noojin, and Ward as three of the artists behind Dauphin Street business and gallery Art(ology). Mounted in attractive groupings on the brick walls, the individual lighting brings out the rich hues present in each work. Kentucky native Cope combines a love of photography and drag racing to create a unique style.
“Art is a self expression of one’s feelings inside. More and more schools are removing art classes. Children are losing the concept of self expression,” Cope emphasized.
Firehouse Wine Bar & Shop is quickly becoming a recognized destination to view art. Exhibits change month to month, and often focus on local artists. In addition to the attractive ambiance of the old fire department building, the independent business also provides excellent service to patrons. With over 150 varieties of wine, as well as a unique draft beer selection, many customers become regulars after visiting the distinctive locale. Whether one visits during Artwalk, or for their weekly Tuesday Tasting event, the business provides yet another outlet for area artists to gain exposure.