Local artists tour area with travelling exhibit

Artists Adele Goodman and Leslie Hudson-Tolles are presenting EquuTour 2011, an art exhibition that the North Carolina equine community will celebrate.

Goodman and Hudson-Tolles' art features horses in a majestic, strong and powerful way.

EquuTour 2011 will make three stops in North Carolina and feature more than 40 pieces of art on display and for sale showing many facets of horses. The first stop will be April 29-May 1 at Cauble Creek Vineyard in Salisbury.

Adele Goodman 46, lives on her family's farm in Mooresville with her two horses, Prince and Buck, along with other pets. Goodman's love of horses began when her father brought their first one home at an early age.

"I love everything about horses," said Goodman.

Goodman describes horses as strong and powerful, but with a gentle spirit. She and Hudson-Tolles, 60, both can attest to the bond between horses and humans.

"It is a very strong bond," said Goodman. "Almost like the horse and I become one."

EquuTour 2011 is free and open to the public. Guests can expect a casual atmosphere and an opportunity to view Goodman and Hudson-Tolles' work in picturesque settings. Guests will have a chance to sample the wine at Cauble Creek Vineyard as they view the artwork.

Cauble Creek will also offer an opportunity on May 1 for exhibit-goers to speak to Goodman and Hudson-Tolles.

"The tour, the artwork and the friendship between Adele and I are a wonderful blend," said Hudson-Tolles.

Goodman's and Hudson-Tolles' artwork is full of emotion and life - Goodman speaks passionately about connecting with each of her subjects and making sure that they look alive.

Goodman grew up loving art and drawing horses and other animals and studied art at East Carolina University. Goodman and Hudson-Tolles both believe in depicting horses anatomically correct. Goodman's favorite medium is pastels (colored chalk), and she dabbles in oil paintings. She even has done many pet portraits for clients, and does all her work in a studio that she affectionately calls "Monarch Cottage."

Hudson-Tolles uses a variety of mediums, including drawing, painting, pastels and sculpting bronzes.

Both artists have full-time jobs outside of creating beautiful artwork with an equine theme.

Goodman is the executive assistant to the president of Penske Racing and the vice president of marketing and communications for Penske Racing.

Hudson-Tolles teaches art at Erwin Middle School in Salisbury.

Goodman describes herself and Hudson-Tolles as kids that went through the "horse phase" as a child but never outgrew it.

Although art is a very solitary hobby, Goodman loves to show her work and speak to the people that come to look at it.

"I put my heart and soul into everything," said Goodman.

Although anyone can draw a horse and make it look like a horse, Goodman says that the challenge for artists is to make it their own.

Goodman was commissioned to paint Kurt and Eva Busch's horse, Lauro, as well as the 2006 Kentucky Derby Champion, Barbaro.

Hudson-Tolles has an equally impressive resume, having shown her artwork across the country, been featured in prominent equine magazines and winning awards for excellence in art education.