Rising from the Ashes: The Chimney Tops 2 Wildfires in Memory and Art, a 2022 publication of the University of Tennessee Press, has won a Mary Ellen LoPresti Publication Award.
The LoPresti Publication Award, presented annually by the Southeast Chapter of the Art Libraries Society of North America, recognizes excellence in art publications in the southeastern US.
Rising from the Ashes: The Chimney Tops 2 Wildfires in Memory and Art is a collection of original editorial illustrations commissioned by the UT Libraries to complement the Chimney Tops 2 Wildfires Oral History Project.
The oral history project and the book commemorate the deadly wildfires that ravaged Gatlinburg, Tennessee, and the Great Smoky Mountains in 2016. Fourteen people perished in the wildfires, more than 200 were injured, and thousands were forced to evacuate. Over 17,000 acres were burned and nearly 2,600 buildings and homes were damaged or destroyed.
The four illustrators showcased in Rising from the Ashes have strong ties to East Tennessee. Paige Braddock, author of the Eisner-nominated comic strip Jane’s World and chief creative officer at Charles M. Schulz Creative Associates, is an ’85 UT alumna; Charlie Daniel, beloved Knoxville News Sentinel retired editorial illustrator, has been a Knoxville resident since 1958; Marshall Ramsey, syndicated editorial illustrator and Pulitzer nominee, is a ’91 UT alumnus; and professional illustrator; Danny Wilson has been a visible part of Knoxville’s graphic landscape since graduating from UT in 1984. The artists were given access to the project’s digital archive of oral interviews and were asked to respond creatively to what they heard and read. Text is by Stephen Lynn Bales, a naturalist who grew up in Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains.
Rising from the Ashes: The Chimney Tops 2 Wildfires in Memory and Art is available from UT Press. The art also can be viewed online at rfta-artists.lib.utk.edu.
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