Gatewood: Facing the White Canvas

The Empowerment Project's documentary about the life and work of artist Maud Gatewood. A collaboration between Oscar-winning filmmaker David Kasper and artist Carlyle Poteat.

The Lonely Hunter
See the Independent Weekly's feature article

In this revealing documentary, Maud Gatewood gives us insight into the determination and creative process that have led to her becoming one of the most admired painters to emerge from the American South.  For over 50 years Maud Gatewood has been an inspired laborer, producing an extraordinary body of work.  Honors have come to her as a painter, an advocate of the arts, and an active citizen.

Gatewood is known for being tough and demanding, yet in her paintings, reverence and tenderness seep into every rendering of landscape and people. Through her eyes we become acquainted with the passion for landscape and the human condition which powers her works.  Looking at her paintings, we get a feeling for the woman behind them.  She is revealed as empathetic and complex.  From her roots in the small town of Yanceyville in the North Carolina Piedmont to her excursions around the globe, Maud Gatewood has explored subjects and techniques as a painter, a teacher, and a traveler.  She has not only an observant eye but the extraordinary talent required to select and interpret the interaction between nature’s forces and mankind.

The subject of this film is a woman both uniquely gifted and ordinary, a woman who has faced the white canvas of her paintings and her life with vision and fortitude.

It’s when you see a big mass of Maud’s work and really start reflecting on it that you do feel it’s very centered in this sense of the land and of what’s enduring behind the whole human enterprise.

  --Reynolds Price

Produced & Directed by
David Kasper & Carlyle Poteat

Music Scoring
Jack Herrick, of The Red Clay Ramblers
David McHugh

Reenactment Direction & Photography
Gary Hawkins

Appearances by
Reynolds Price
Charleen Swansea
Larry Wheeler, NC Museum of Art
Reynolds Brown, Cameron Art Museum
Topper Maxey
Moving Poets
and others

For further information contact:
Empowerment Project
PO Box 2155, Chapel Hill, NC 27517

(919) 928-0382

EP Homepage

Gatewood VHS Cover

Expanded DVD Now Available

•The full one-hour documentary.
•Index with full views of 248 Gatewood paintings.
•Chronological 51-year slideshow of paintings.
•Sketches & Photos.
•Slideshow tour of Maud's house.
•Extra video segments.
•Soundtrack music.

Individuals: $15.00

Institutions: $75

To order by phone, call:
(919) 928-0382