Get exclusive early access to exhibitions and select events. Find out more today!
Charles Williams (b. Blue Diamond, Kentucky, 1942 – 1998), described the place he grew up as a “little old country hick town in coal mining territory.” He taught himself to draw by copying comic book figures and though he never finished high school, learned practical job skills at the Breckinridge Job Corps Center before finding work as a janitor at IBM in Lexington. Williams maintained an elaborate yard show in addition to making hundreds of pencil holders, in varying sizes and forms, mostly gleaned from the desk drawers of IBM employees after they had gone home for the day. Williams worked avidly on comics, paintings, drawings, assemblages, sculptures, and furniture until his untimely death in 1998, the result of AIDS-related complications and starvation. A few months later, an organization called A Moveable Feast was founded in his honor and tasked itself with providing hot meals to people living with HIV/AIDS in the region.