Alice Guffey Miller has lived in Arkansas since 1974, currently residing on several wooded acres in Monticello, Arkansas—a place she and her late husband and collaborator Mars Hall named Rising Oaks. A hallmark of Alice’s work is community involvement and she has produced public art all over the state. Her art is often whimsical and always lively, a great match for our honoree, Peg Newton Smith.
Alice comes from a family active in the arts and politics, going back several generations. Her mother Nancy Miller was a longtime docent at the Carnegie Museum and her father Cal Miller was a professional photographer.
When Alice joins forces with the community, art becomes a celebration. Alice’s versatile energy, teamed with diverse groups of all ages and abilities, combine to create the extraordinary. Her community collaborations result in festive and fanciful fountains, mobiles, murals, banners, playground sculptures, simulated stain glass, signage, costumes, theater sets, props and parades. Alice creates grand scale “Involvement Sculptures,” always emphasizing environmental awareness and cooperative community creativity. pARTy for Peg is no exception.
Mars Hall often co-collaborated in Alice’s work, providing the words that fill in the concepts of her work. Mars was a professor of communications at the University of Arkansas at Monticello; and he and his students were involved in several aspects of the creation of pARTy for Peg. In particular, Mars wrote the words that Alice inscribed in the bases of the aluminum figures and also wrote a square dance patter call for the project, called “Peg’s Patter Call.”