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Department of Art Archives - News and Events

The Department of Art presents Resa Blatman’s "Gaia Series" Nov. 3 from 5-7 p.m. in the Fielding Wright Art Center Gallery.

Art gallery presents Resa Blatman exhibition

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Delta State University’s Fielding Wright Art Center Gallery presents an exhibition of Resa Blatman’s “Gaia Series,” a multimedia installation that addresses the causes and effects of climate change.

An opening reception to launch the exhibit will take place Nov. 3 from 5-7 p.m.in the gallery. Blatman will discuss the exhibit before the reception at 4 p.m.

Blatman’s exuberant, multi-layered paintings have always been inspired by nature, but in recent years, her attention has turned to the alarming signs of climate change – global warming, shrinking arctic icecaps, rising water levels, extreme weather conditions, extinction of animal species, migration of species and the growing scarcity of natural resources.

The title of Blatman’s series derives from the Gaia hypothesis developed by James Lovelock and Lynn Margulis which provides a model for understanding the threats caused by environmental pollution, industrial exploitation of natural resources, and the growing world population. The theory sees our planet as a complex, synergistic, self-regulating system that helps to sustain conditions for life on Earth. 

Blatman recently completed a residency in the Arctic, where she could observe the effects of climate change firsthand. Many of the works in the exhibition were directly impacted by her experiences there. She does not claim to be a scientist but speaks from the perspective of a concerned citizen. She hopes her work inspires discussion and raises awareness of the issues while also providing her audience with an engaging visual experience.

Blatman is an independent artist from Somerville, Massachusetts. She earned a MFA from Boston University and a BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. She has had one-person exhibitions at the Museum of Arts and Sciences in Macon, Georgia; Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, Massachusetts; Hartnett Gallery at the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York; and other places. Additionally, she has been included in numerous group exhibitions, most recently at the Spartanburg Art Museum in Spartanburg, South Carolina . Her work is in public and private collections across the United States, Europe and South Africa.

The exhibition will run until Dec. 8.

Gallery hours are Mondays through Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The gallery is closed on weekends, holidays and during semester breaks.

For more information, visit the Department of Art’s website at http://www.deltastate.edu/college-of-arts-and-sciences/art/, or contact 662-846-4720. For updates and announcements of upcoming events, follow Delta State Art Department on Facebook, or join the email list.

Photography professor Kim Rushing’s new book, “Parchman,” will be available for purchase from the University Press of Mississippi beginning in September.

Rushing completes photo book on Parchman

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Delta State University photography professor Kim Rushing’s new book, “Parchman,” will soon be available for purchase.

In 1994, Rushing was given the unique access to photograph and interview inmates in the Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman.

The 10-inch by 10-inch book, being published by the University Press of Mississippi, features 125 black and white photos and stories written by the inmates.

According to the book’s forward, Rushing’s visit to Parchman was the first time an outside photographer was allowed to photograph its inmates. For almost four years, he was given access and created images about their lives and prison conditions.

The men featured in his work volunteered to be photographed and permitted Rushing to share their experiences.

“The images I made in Parchman Penitentiary, and the stories the inmates wrote, were completed almost 20 years ago,” said Rushing. “The process of making the book happened only during the past two years. The work at Parchman evolved into what felt like a natural way for me, but making the book was a real education.

“University Press allowed me creative control throughout the process, and they were a pleasure to work with. It’s great to see the book completed, but I’m ready to start the next one.”

Beginning in September, the book will be available here: http://www.upress.state.ms.us/books/1932.

Rushing will also take part in a panel discussion with four other authors during the Mississippi Book Festival in Jackson on Aug. 20. He will talk at 3 p.m. in the Capitol Building, and a limited supply of books will be available for Rushing to sign and sell at the event.

Rushing, has taught photography at Delta State for 23 years. His photographs have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers, including the New York Times and Garden and Gun.

Learn more about photography courses at Delta State and the Department of Art at http://www.deltastate.edu/college-of-arts-and-sciences/art.

 

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Student exhibit and silent auction hosted by art department

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Delta State University’s Department of Art invites the public to the opening of its annual juried Student Exhibition on March 17 from 5-7 p.m at the Fielding Wright Art Center Gallery. The exhibit allows the department to highlight work produced by students in the past year and provides the students a professional opportunity to prepare and submit work for a juried exhibition.

Students submitting work are also eligible to win monetary awards in a variety of categories. The awards are made possible through the generous support of art patrons from the Cleveland community.

This year’s juror is Ashley Chavis, a ceramic artist and curator, who teaches at Northwest Mississippi Community College. Chavis also runs the college’s art gallery and is the faculty advisor of the student art club, Les Fauves.

Chavis’s creative energies are devoted to producing functional pottery that has a unique sense of tactility and surface design. His work has been exhibited regionally and nationally and can be found at Southside Gallery in Oxford. He is a member of the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts, Southeastern College Art Conference, Southern Graphics Council International and Sycamore Arts Council.

Chavis commended the variety and quality of work submitted to this year’s show.

This year’s opening includes a silent auction of student and faculty work to benefit a Delta State art student who lost the use of her legs in a car accident.

“The student has been an inspiration for all in the art department,” said Dr. Michaela Merryday, associate professor of art. “She has never let her health issues limit her ambitions, nor cloud her optimism and sunny disposition. The student is in need of a new wheelchair and her colleagues and faculty are hoping to raise $1,000 through the sale of original works of art donated by them to help defray the costs of a new wheelchair.”

The silent auction will only take place on the opening night of the exhibit. Winning bids will be announced at the end of the day. Student awards will be presented at 6 p.m. The exhibition will remain on display from March 17 to April 22.

The Fielding Wright Art Center Gallery is open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The gallery is closed weekends, holidays and during semester breaks.

For more information on the Department of Art, visit http://www.deltastate.edu/college-of-arts-and-sciences/art/or contact 662-846-4720.

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Art department to host portfolio day

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The Delta State University Department of Art will host its annual Portfolio Day on Jan. 29 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Interested high school juniors and seniors are encouraged to bring a portfolio of six to eight original art pieces for review. The purpose of the review is to guide and encourage the development of promising area artists in their pursuit of an art career.

Works should display the artist’s interests, artistic abilities, and reflect strong, creative conceptual skills. Works should be matted, and neat in appearance. Top mounting is acceptable. Three dimensional work may also be submitted. Photographs of pieces too large to bring may be included in the portfolio.

Submissions should be labeled with name, title and media. Applicants are asked to include a transcript with ACT or SAT score.

Art faculty will review the artwork, discuss educational and professional goals and share information on art programs, careers, admissions, financial aid and scholarships.

Up to $9,500 will be awarded in scholarships.

The schedule of events includes a campus tour and a cookout. Pre-register online at www.deltastate.edu/coll-of-arts-and-sciences/art/portfolio-day-form/, or call 662-846-4720.

Documenting the Blues

Students to document the Delta behind the lens

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Students in photography instructor Will Jacks’ class have kicked off a unique interactive photojournalism project called “Documenting the Blues.”

Throughout the semester, the class will be using the Medium blogging platform to create a publication that shines light on the student experience while they document the region.

“Each week they will have a short assignment designed to get them into the Delta exploring, asking questions and learning more about this place, while also developing their skills with the tools required to tell these stories,” said Jacks. “My hope is that this blog will serve as a living example from start to finish of their improvement in technical skills and thoughts about what it means to live in the Delta.”

Jacks is encouraging the campus and community to follow along by signing up for a free account with Medium. Account holders can even comment on posts and interact with the students.

To learn more about the project and sign up for an account, visit https://medium.com/documenting-the-blues.

“I hope this will encourage and inspire the student to continue to develop their creative voices and recognize that some of the best stories they can tell are found right outside their doors,” added Jacks.

For more information on the Delta State University Department of Art, visit http://www.deltastate.edu/college-of-arts-and-sciences/art, or contact 662-846-4720. For updates and announcements of upcoming events, follow Delta State Art Department on Facebook, or join the email list.