Reality TV Star tiles future Henderson Gallery

Special to the Reporter
Staff Writer

Riley Sawyers, Sweetwater resident, is a tile artisan. He is also known as the reality television star of Rattlesnake Republic, shown on Animal Kingdom. The series ran from 2011 through 2014 and still continues with reruns. The producers came to the famous Sweetwater Rattlesnake Roundup looking for someone to feature on a show about rattlesnakes, and life time Jaycee Sawyers got their attention. Riley says that catching rattlesnakes is his hobby, but tile work is his profession.
Born at Simmons Memorial Hospital in Sweetwater, Riley attended Sweetwater schools and has lived here all his life. He has done tile work for 29 years. He has also done construction and has been self-employed for 25 years. His work can be seen at the Nolan County Courthouse and in many private homes and businesses. He has several employees including his nephew Matt Newman, shown in the photos with this story.
Mondel Rogers, world renowned artist, graciously volunteered his time, talent, and expertise to design the interior of the Jo and Tom Henderson Gallery, an art gallery and reception space to open June 30, 2018. Rogers selected colors, styles, light fixtures, including antique chandeliers, unusual ceiling and backsplash materials, granite for the custom made cabinets, and the carpet. He also designed original and unique tile designs for the foyer, walking space in the exhibit hall, kitchen, pantry, anteroom to the bathrooms and the bathrooms themselves.Rogers, trained in art and architectural history, selected colors and patterns to coordinate with the architecture of the 1926 Auditorium and municipal building.
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