6 Stylish Artists


Southern style can be hard to define when it comes to art. As we think about what Southern style truly means, some of our favorite Southern artists—who have either worked hard to define their own terms of Southern style or have stumbled upon it gracefully—keep coming to mind.

Whether they are well-known painters like Daniel Smith, who has a permanent gallery in the Telfair Museums, or artist Mollie Youngblood, who just recently opened up her first gallery and shop in downtown Savannah, these six artists are the epitome of artistic Southern style.


1. b. moody

Behind the quirkiness  of his Southern charm, and behind the face of a local Savannah real estate agent, you can find Bradford Moody—better known as b. moody—painting new works of art right here in the Lowcountry. Moody explores social issues such as race, religion, gender, power, and redemption through his artwork, so it’s no coincidence that the Southern culture here has impacted the heart behind his works.

Moody notes that Savannah is a completely different ball game for him. The culture and history in this town has helped to shape his works, fighting against the well-rooted injustices found in Southern culture.

“Lots of that stuff is based on what I observed in Savannah,” Moody says. “It’s like a throwback to the 50s, and lots of that stuff is fascinating to me.”

For Moody, it’s all about expressionism, and that in itself sets him apart from many other artists in Savannah. Taking inspiration from an artist like Basquiat, Moody hones and garners a passion for taking the cultural norms of a place like Savannah and places them in the spotlight with his paintings, essentially making a social commentary with most of his paintings.

Through it all though, his focus is on capturing feelings and emotions, and in exploring the many different experiences he’s taken in living in the South.


2. Robert Morris

Perhaps it was meant to  be that the Georgia Ports’ Senior Director of Corporate Communications Robert Morris would call the Savannah River his office, his home, and his studio. His trade with the ports provides a vital creative concert that fuels his craft and allows his art to remain fresh, vibrant, and as alive as the River itself..

“When I paint or create, one hat comes off and another comes alive,” Morris says, “and it is somewhere in the middle ground—the interaction, even the conflict that informs both parts of the brain—that I find original ideas, motive for metaphor, and sense of place.”

On the note of the past and its force for the future of Savannah and Southern art as a whole, Robert sees Savannah transforming into an international “art capitol.” As he observes and paints that progress, he hopes his work, his art, will make people think and, if they feel the energy of the River he paints, impact their sense of humanity.

“What makes art Southern is our connections to each other, to history, and to the land,” Morris says. “With that depth comes the opportunity to express so many different ideas rooted in passion, hope and spirituality.”


3. Daniel Smith

Some people go on hikes ; some people take walks through the park—but Daniel Smith? He likes to paint the meditative sites many people long to see or walk into. A local Savannah artist from New York, Smith is a landscape and abstract artist that likes to dig deep into the art of painting spaces that people can get a sense of peace from.

“I’ve always expressed myself best through drawing or painting,” says Smith. “Even when I was very, very young, and even though I never showed anyone, I had books on books full of drawings.”

Experimental with elements such as color and form, Smith draws his inspiration from landscapes and the many endangered marshes he sees around him in the Lowcountry. His heart for environmental surroundings has currently lead him to an exploration of endangered landscapes, which he says has increased pace in the last 20 years and is an effect of the mechanical lifestyle of human beings.

At the end of the day, his art goes beyond the touch of a Southern culture, and beyond the influence of having a love for the environment—at the end of the day, it’s all about understanding the importance of your surroundings and digging deep into that meditation.


4. Bin Feng

Artist Bin Feng's Journey from Shanghai to the Southern city of Savannah established a vision within himself to communicate with people beyond his artwork, which consists of photography, video installations, and even sculptural art.

“I would like to visualize everyday life experiences living here in the South,” says Feng. “When I first came here, my language was really bad, so the language barrier became the motivation of making all the artwork. I have the desire to want to communicate with people,   but the language barrier stopped me, so that inspired me to want to emphasize on the visual components rather than the language.”

Feng attributes his desire for wanting to pursue a full time career as an artist to his college experience in Shanghai, working with some of the best artists in the city. In fact, it was the bicultural shock of transitioning to such a different culture in the U.S. that altered his vision as an artist for the better.

Recently, 220 of Feng’s works were showcased at HAZA, a contemporary art gallery owned by artist and currator Christina Zanetti. Out of all these works, ranging from collections such as “Pin Man,” to “The American Dream,” Feng is sure to mirror that of his cultural struggle here in the U.S.


5. Mollie Youngblood

Thankfully for artist Mollie Youngblood, Savannah has always been open-minded when it comes to art, despite its oftentimes conservativeness. Youngblood graduated from the Savannah College of Art and Design in 2007 with a B.F.A. in Painting, and after a few years of teaching privately, opened her own gallery and shop called Bohemia South.

Layered in hand-painted recycled sheets, armchairs upholstered with patchwork, and a mass of plants in eclectic jars and pots—situated at the south end of Forsyth Park in Savannah—the shop parallel’s Youngblood’s own artistic style: Bohemian, infused with Southern.

Youngblood’s work ranges from carefully crafted jewelry, hand-painted baby and women’s clothes, mixed media paintings, and more. But no matter what ingenious artwork she creates, it will always adhere to her aspirations as an artist: to introduce a little fun to Southern style.

“Savannah is quirky, but I think in every traditional home there are the exact same things I sell here, but in a traditional way,” Youngblood says. “You could have your gorgeous white sofa and put this quirky patchwork upholstered throw pillow on it to spice it up. A lot of things are traditional. I just do it in a funky way.”


6. Shea Slemmer

Years before Shea  Slemmer opened her first artist’s studio in Savannah in 2003, her first canvases were the walls of her childhood home on a five-acre self sustaining organic farm on the edge of the Ocala National Forest in Florida.

“I didn’t make a conscious decision to go on an artistic path. I was already on one,” she explains.

Shea’s path would take her from Ocala to the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, and eventually to Brooklyn and Savannah where she splits her time between the studios she owns and maintains in both cities.

Currently, her Savannah-influenced art comes to life in an old, not-yet-renovated, yet possibility-  packed church near the beginnings of the Starland Village.

“I am a process artist,” she says. “That means it’s not about the end-result of the painting—it’s about the creation of the painting.”

Because part of the artistry in Shea’s work is her process, the work she creates in her Brooklyn studio radiates a contrasting energy to her Savannah art.

“New York is a noisy, safety-yellow swirl of energy, and Savannah is a sticky cicada song after an afternoon thunderstorm,” says Slemmer. “It’s very different and my work reflects that. I see Savannah’s art scene busting through a glass ceiling and it has never been a more exciting time to live here.”

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Greatest Chefs 2019

Chefs are invisible artists. They keep us salivating, our minds fixated on the last time we ate at our favorite restaurant, and when the next time we plan on going. Nominate your favorite chef now!

Greatest Pets 2019

Man's Best Friend can be South's Greatest Pet with the right amount of love. Enter your pet and get those votes! Limited to southeast Georgia and the Lowcountry. Voting begins June 10 and ends July 1.
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Events Calendar

  • SS Savannah (1819-2019)

    May 23, 2019
    10:00 AM - 5:00 PM @ Ships of the Sea Museum

    2019 marks the 200th anniversary of the SS Savannah's groundbreaking trans-Atlantic crossing.  In recognition of this monumental achievement,...

  • "The Prints of Dame Laura Knight" Exhibition at Telfair Museums

    Jan 19, 2019
    10:00 AM - 5:00 PM @ Telfair Museums' Jepson Center

    Telfair Museums exhibits nine prints by Dame Laura Knight (British, 1877-1970), together for the first time since they were acquired by the museum...

  • Ready. Set. Summer. at Bluemercury!

    May 13, 2019
    10:00 AM - 8:00 PM @ Bluemercury

    Summer is quickly approaching – stop into your local neighborhood beauty store Bluemercury for all the essentials you need to refresh your...

  • Love Your Hair at Bluemercury!

    Jul 18, 2019
    10:00 AM - 6:00 PM @ Bluemercury

    Beginning July 18th, your local neighborhood beauty expert Bluemercury will kick off ‘Love Your Hair’ Events in stores – and on...

  • Girl Scout QuestFest 2019

    Jul 18, 2019
    12:00 PM - 3:00 PM @ Savannah Historic District

      Join us for our Third Annual Girl Scout QuestFest. Return to the place where Girl Scouts began to not only see the history and enjoy a...

  • Harper's Desserts Birthday Party

    Jul 21, 2019
    1:00 PM - 4:00 PM @ harper's desserts

    Come help us celebrate the 2nd Birthday of Harper’s Desserts! Join us for family friendly fun with guest appearances from Harper and Ralph,...

  • Disney Summer Classics: The Aristocats

    Jul 21, 2019
    3:00 PM - 5:00 PM @ Lucas Theatre for the Arts

    Have you ever wished (upon a star) that you could get the chance to experience again the magic of the Disney animated classics on the big screen?...


    Jun 27, 2019
    5:00 PM - 9:00 PM @ Deep South Photopoint

    The Arts on the Coast (AOC) is proud to present its 2019 Annual Exhibit hosted by the Photopoint Gallery and Elmgren's Garden Center in...

  • French Moderns: Monet to Matisse, 1850-1950

    Jun 15, 2019
    All Day @ Consumer Museum of Art and Garden

    The biggest names in French art such as, Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, Henri Matisse, Claude Monet, and Pierre-Auguste Renoir will be showcased...

  • Oak Island Farmers and Artisans' Market

    Jul 15, 2019
    8:00 AM - 1:00 PM @ Middleton Park, Oak Island

    At the Oak Island Farmers and Artisans’ Market,  discover fresh local produce, homemade jams, cakes and diverse homemade goods ranging...

  • Summer Sea Camp

    May 27, 2019
    9:30 AM - 4:00 PM @ Tybee Island Marine Science Center

    Kids 6 to 11 years old * Morning and/or Afternoon Modules * After Care * Curbside Drop-off/Pick-up   Summer FUN for the kids…designed to fit...

  • Summer Reading Program

    Jun 01, 2019
    10:00 AM - 5:15 PM @ Live Oak Public Libraries

    Reach for the stars with Summer Reading Program at Live Oak Public Libraries! Explore "A Universe of Stories" from June 1 through July 31...

  • FREE Info Session: Costa Rica Yoga Camp 2020

    Jul 22, 2019
    7:30 PM - 8:30 PM @ Savannah Power Yoga

    Each year, we offer a week-long immersion in yoga called Yoga Camp. We offered it in Costa Rica for 2019, and we're doing it again in...

  • Blowing Rock Charity Horse Show Hunter Jumper I

    Jul 23, 2019
    8:00 AM - 5:00 PM @ Broyhill Equestrian Preserve

    See competitors complete the courses in several Classics and Divisions. Outdoor show on grounds adjacent to the Blue Ridge Parkway.

  • "Spider-Man: Far From Home"

    Jul 24, 2019
    3:00 PM - 5:00 PM @ Tybee Post Theater

    Peter Parker returns in “Spider-Man: Far From Home,” the next chapter of the “Spider-Man:...

  • 8th Annual Savannah Ambucs/Vaden Nissan Celebrity Bowlapalooza Kickoff and Auction

    Jul 25, 2019
    6:00 PM - 9:00 PM @ Plantation Club at The Landings

    Come join us for a night you won't want to miss! The Savannah Ambucs and Vaden Nissan for a night of fun and fundraising at The 8th Annual...

  • Literary Love: Authors Rock Savannah

    Jul 25, 2019
    All Day @ Savannah Mariott Riverfront

    Join countless authors for a 3 day weekend full of books, fun and goodies! the even runs thursday to Sunday, in Savannah GA, at the Savannah...

  • Blowing Rock Tour of Homes

    Jul 26, 2019
    9:00 AM - 4:00 PM @ Various homes & gardens

    Open the doors to some of Blowing Rock’s most special private homes & admire the special features, furnishings, & grounds. 2018 featured homes...

  • Friday Concert Series

    May 03, 2019
    7:00 PM - 12:00 AM @ Historic Courthouse, Downtown Blairsville on the S

    Come enjoy live music every Friday Night from the first Friday of May through the end of October. The Historic Union County Court House will host...

  • Golden Girls Gone Wild!

    Jul 19, 2019
    8:00 PM - 10:00 PM @ Tybee Post Theater

    Picture it! Miami, 1980s. A lovely suburban home shared by four fiesty older women. Now, picture this!  Kansas City’s Late Night Theatre...

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Scenes of the South

Bohemian Hotel 10th Anniversary

Stonewall50 - A Legendary Block Party

The Stonewall 50 block party, held on June 28th outside the LGBTQ Center on Bull Street, commemorated the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Protest — one of the most important moments in LGBTQ history and the catalyst for the gay rights movement.

Pelindaba Lavender Savannah Grand Opening

Pelindaba Lavender Grand Opening was this past Thursday, June 28th! This fun night included ribbon cutting, product sampling, lavender refreshments and special prizes! During this festive evening 10% of sales benefitted the good work of Coastal Pet Rescue. Stop by the store at 112 E Broughton St, Savannah, Ga to see the many products they offer!

Sonja Griffin Evans Gullah Art Exhibit

The Sonja Griffin Evans Gullah Art Event in Hilton Head displayed several paintings featuring the culture and heritage of the African-American Lowcountry. Sonja Griffin Evans paints with bright vibrant colors — while also incorporating materials such as tin and wood — to emphasize the traditional Gullah style, evoking an emotional response by bringing to life historical and cultural events.

JCB MudRun 2019

Participants hit the ground running at this year's JCB Mud Fest, climbing through tough obstacles in either the 5k or the 5 mile run. At the end of the race was a long slide where, upon finishing, contestants found themselves in the Party Pit. Winners from various age groups were presented with trophies, and all the proceeds from the JCB Mud Fest benefited the Lady Bamford Center for Early Childhood Development.

Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum's 200th Anniversary!

This past Wednesday, May 22, we celebrated with Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum for for the 200th anniversary of the SS Savannah's historic trans-Atlantic crossing — the WORLD'S FIRST oceanic voyage under steam! On this year's Maritime Day, Ships of the Sea celebrated the Savannah's 200th anniversary with a commemorative ceremony provided by the PROPELLER CLUB, where Robert Morris unveiled two eight-foot paintings. The evening also included an amazing performance by the Parris Island MARINE BAND, complimentary hors d'oeuvres and celebratory beverages!

Brews For A Cause at Top Deck

This past Tuesday, May 21 we celebrated another successful Brews for a Cause at Top Deck Bar! We joined up with Southern Eagle and a great group of like minded people to benefit Two Hundred Club of the Coastal Empire in their efforts to provide financial assistance to the surviving families of local law enforcement officers and firefighters who lose their lives in the line of duty. It was another memorable night in the South filled with great people and even greater crafted beer! This month's Featured Craft Beer: Island Coastal Lager Sponsors: Island Coastal Lager, Two Hundred Club of the Coastal Empire, Southern Eagle, South Magazine

Brews for a Cause at Churchill's

This Thursday, Churchill's was pack as we celebrated another successful Brews for a Cause at Churchill's! We joined Southern Eagle and The Coastal Heritage Society. Southern Eagle provided great craft beer, Sista Rae Rae performed live, and the silent auction was a huge success. All the proceeds from the silent auction — including a diamond necklace from International Diamond — benefitted the Coastal Heritage Society.

Nine Line Foundation Dinner

On Friday, May 17, Nine Line hosted their Foundation Dinner that included special guests WWE Superstars Mark Calaway aka The Undertaker, Dustin Rhodes aka Goldust, John “Tig” Tiegen, hero of Benghazi portrayed in the movie “13 Hours,” Chad Prather, comedian and social media celebrity, and Graham Allen, social media celebrity. Guests mingled with the superstars and bid on auction items to raise money for the foundation. Matt Lyda put on a stellar performance as the MC of the event and kept the crowd entertained and bidding.

6th Annual Nine Line Run for the Wounded

The Nine Line Foundation and Nine Line Apparel celebrate Armed Forces Day for their 6th Annual 5K/10K Run for the Wounded in Savannah, Georgia. Proceeds from the race go directly towards their newest initiative: building a transitional community, a Veterans Village, for homeless veterans right here in Savannah, Georgia. With both 5K and 10K options available, this twilight run turned out to be another great success.