Staff Report

Social media in West Alabama was abuzz this week with the surprising news of the passing of local artist, illustrator, sculptor, collector, paper-maker, printer and professor emeritus in the University of Alabama’s Book Arts Program, Glenn House Sr.
He died on Sunday, September 14, after being infected with the West Nile Virus. House was 83.
After retiring from UA in 1991 he went on to found—along with his wife, photographer and artist Kathleen Fetters—the Crossroads Arts Alliance, a collective of artist studios in Gordo, his Pickens County hometown.
As an artist, he became especially known as the designer of the iconic Moon Winx Lodge neon sign, when he had just graduated from college in the early fifties. As a professor in the Book Arts Program at UA he developed Kozo papermaking using the bark of the indigenous mulberry tree. But there was something beyond his art that made Glenn House stand out in the community: his personality, his spirit, his generosity and kindness. He didn’t know a stranger, some said.
The outpouring of tributes began as soon as his sudden death was announced and has continued. Person after person posted pictures of themselves with House, quoted him, shared favorite memories or pictures of him or one of his sculptured faces hanging on their walls. He had touched so very, very many. He was the best of the Deep South, the very essence of the “magic” at its core.
No doubt he is aware, pleased and humbled by the outpouring of adoration— to know the value that his art and his goodness had to those carrying on in his stead.

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