Yes, You Mayo

The Tomato Sandwich, Annie Gustely

Annie Gustely is not a Southern gal. She grew up in Ohio and moved to North Carolina in 2007. But her food still lifes suggest otherwise. Of the handful included in her portfolio, more than half feature jars of mayonnaise. And of the four aioli homages, two depict the most Southern of spreads: Duke’s. (For bonus points, Gustely even renders a jar of Duke’s next to a sandwich made with fluffy white bread and thick slices of heirloom tomatoes.) Of course, to some, this mayo montage may seem a little mundane. But Gustely is inspired by the quotidian. “I am drawn to everyday themes and experiences,” she explains. “I love to find a common experience or object and build a story around it.” When Gustely isn’t painting condiments, she’s capturing pastoral views near her Black Mountain home. “Light, reflections, rogue hues, and deep shadows inspire my work,” she says.   

Annie Gustely, Black Mountain, and on Instagram. Gustely is currently showing work at Asheville Gallery of Art (82 Patton Ave., Asheville, as part of Reflections, a three-artist exhibit on display through Wednesday, Feb. 28. In March, she will open a studio at The Red House Gallery and Studios (101 Cherry St., Black Mountain, and will participate in the Swannanoa Valley Arts League’s group exhibition, Making Changes (March 15-May 13).

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