Artist John Lackey: Model Renaissance Guy


Who are This Year’s Models in Lexington? Model Citizens? Visionaries? Innovators? Big Thinkers who are also long on Action? Every year,  Ace celebrates “This Year’s Models” with a special year-end Annual Edition (on stands now). All year long, the readers nominate Lexingtonians who have made a difference in making Lexington a better place to live.

This year’s class includes an artist bent on revitalization, an athlete, a couple very different bloggers, hip-hop moguls, and a bike-ridin’ cowboy.

JOHN LACKEY: Renaissance Man

Voted “Best Local Artist” by the Ace Readers in the 2010 Best of Lex poll, John Lackey took all the newfound fame, fortune, and glory bestowed by such an honor and became the latest linchpin in the North Limestone Renaissance — relocating his gallery to the former Spalding’s Bakery building at the corner of North Lime and Sixth Street, across the corner from Al’s Bar and across Limestone from a community garden. 

Known for his Wilco posters, his prolific art, new block prints, and Holler Poets series, he hopes the space will become a haven for art — whether it’s visual, literary, or musical. On the day we toured the space, John Lennon played on the stereo, and little neighborhood girls walked past and threw rocks at the window. Landlord Chad Needham, who’s been renovating the 1880 building over the last year, stood at the top of a ladder on Limestone, painting, and chatting with the UPS man about who makes the best pizza in town.

Lackey recently completed the woodblock cover for Chinaberry, the unfinished novel-in-progress by the late Kentucky author James Still, edited by Silas House, to be published in 2011 by University Press of Kentucky.

He says, “art’s a heartbreak beat,” and he welcomes the vitality and collaborative spirit that comes with the new neighborhood.

Ace Dec 23 issue: This Year’s Models 

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