DSU Art Faculty Fills Wright Gallery

DSU Faculty Art Show 2017

Every year, Delta State University has an exhibit opening filled with pieces from the art professors, known as the faculty art show. This year the official opening was on Sept. 28, 2017, and viewings are available until Oct. 26, 2017, in the Wright Art Gallery on DSU campus.

In a recent article, written by Jennifer Farish, the pieces of the exhibit are described and given a summary for the artist. The following information simply explains the work and gives the artists’ take on their own work.

Farish described a returning DSU professor, Sammy Britt’s, pieces represented in the show consist of “a series of landscape paintings that explore the language of light and color to distinguish the different light keys in which they are seen.”

New professor and artist, Nathan Pietrykowsky, has a series in the exhibit “that chronicles the history of a surreal cosmos called TooDee. Pietryskowsky draws images from his unconscious, theories of cosmology, and various methodologies in the creation of this imaginary universe.”

Another new addition to the DSU family, Kayla Selby, has works in this exhibit that is “part of an ongoing exploration in utilizing science and research as artistic media while reinterpreting scientific data. Her interest in the possibilities of using scientific data began with a collaboration with a St. Jude scientist who began re-contextualizing human samples in Petri dishes ass literal human portraits.”

John Stiles, another new DSU art professor, teaches graphic designs and frequently works with mixed media. Within his work at the exhibit, “[he] approaches college in a manner similar to paintings, considering each piece of paper a stroke of his brush. The subject matter of the collages was inspired by his love of skateboarding and surfing. Stiles’ paintings are inspired by hurricanes which he experienced while living in Florida. Although, awe-inspiring, Stiles also sees a certain beauty in hurricanes, especially when viewed from space. With their swirling motion, they remind him of paintings such as Vincent Van Gough’s “Starry Night,” and he approaches them with an Impressionist’s brush.”

The last of the new professors is artist Robyn Wall. She involved her “personal history of homes.” Farish adds, “She reconstructs these homes as they exist in her memory. While reconstructing real and imagined spaces, her work acknowledges the fluidity of memories.”

The DSU Art Department Chair, Michael Stanley, and ceramics professor, Ky Johnston, both have a passion for music. Johnston, a musician, and Stanley, sculptor and wood worker, have created many pieces that are rooted from the love they have for music.

The past two years, Johnston and Stanley have collaborated ideas and “took on the challenge of making a guitar from scratch… The two have experimented and perfected their designs of electric guitars, a series of which will be on exhibit.”

Jon Mark Nail, a filmmaker, “has a simple and effective recipe for making a successful film.” First, he gets the audience “into the characters’ immediate dilemma and [complicates it] further.” Third, Nail returns back to step two until he has reached the conclusion such as “somebody gets kissed, somebody gets killed, beautiful sunset, etc.” Finally, the film fades into black, the music begins, the light returns, and it is time to clean the popcorn or other trash. Nail represents these steps in his film, which was projected at the opening.

Michaela Merryday has been interested in furniture making and functional art pieces in the past two years. Farish explained, “The amount of wood waste produced in the process inspired Merryday to recycle the material into small functional objects such as lamps and jewelry. The work presented combines her interest in minimalist design and sustainability.”

Mollie Rushing works mostly in materials such as fabrics. She uses patterns with quilting to “create the illusion of texture and space.”

Kim Rushing has been recently studying his own personal limits in photography by focusing on an object that is available to almost everyone for photography, a cell phone camera. “While the cell phone camera has its limits, especially compared to the sophisticated equipment Rushing usually works with, he has been exploring its unique possibilities.”

This exhibition will be on display for DSU along with the Cleveland community. The viewing dates are from Sept. 28 to Oct. 26, 2017.

The Wright Art Gallery is open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m., to 5 p.m. and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


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