Joseph ‘P-Nut’ Johnson has been creating poetry in the Lowcountry for decades now. The poet writes verses about his every day life in Charleston; a poem captured in the P&C in 2014 has lines like “So wow! Look at Charleston now/ A hotel in every corner/ And many bars and restaurants in between/ Carriages everywhere and tourist every day/ Streets crowded by day and night. But is this right?/ Well honey it’s all about money.” We think he’s on to something.
Now, in addition to his folk storytelling style of prose, Johnson has taken up a new art form. According to a press release from CCPL’s Main Library, Johnson, “wanted to try his hand at telling neighborhood stories through painting.” His works on canvas feature bright colors, “iconic motifs” such as red dots on liquor stores, and the same kind of folk vibes you hear in his poetry.
The Main Library’s Saul Alexander Gallery hosts an opening night reception on Mon. April 2 from 6-7 p.m. The exhibit will be up all month, and a P-Nut Poetry Party will be held on Wed. April 25 at 6 p.m. (in the library’s auditorium).
Johnson will read some of his poetry at the P-Nut Party, which he describes, “A P-Nut Party can happen anywhere. It can happen in a bar, where P-Nut the Lowcountry Poet writes poems on napkins. A P-Nut Party can happen after a long day, sharing stories on his front stoop over a cold Bud Light. A P-Nut Party can be moonshine and daylight. A P-Nut Party can be a big Gullah dinner, pigtail, hoppin’ john and peas. At a P-Nut Party, we don’t have color, white or black. It’s just us. A P-Nut Party is nuts.”
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