By Jeannette Carrington
The Lewis and Clark Community College (L&C) is proud to celebrate the creative talents of its own faculty members with a captivating art exhibition. The opening reception for this exciting showcase of artistry took place on October 20, 2023, at the Hatheway Cultural Center on the Godfrey Campus, from 4 pm to 6 pm. The event provided an opportunity for the public to immerse themselves in the artistic world crafted by the college’s dedicated faculty members.
The exhibition, masterfully planned and installed by Art Studio Technician Morgan Laughlin, serves as a testament to the exceptional art faculty at L&C. These educators not only impart their knowledge but are also active artists with a presence in galleries nationwide. This year’s exhibition features the works of eight distinguished faculty members, each bringing their unique perspective to the canvas.
The artists featured in this exhibition include Angela Hung, Louise Jett, Jordan Walker, Jessica Forys-Cameron, Eric Shultis, Diana Yost, Sage Mend, and Elizabeth Sheck-Lambert, all of whom have their own distinctive approach to art and a compelling story to tell.
Angela Hung, Program Coordinator and Gallery Director at L&C, uses her background in metalsmithing to create beautiful ceramics, among other art forms. Her work often explores the harmony between nature and the act of making tea. She shared, ” Drinking tea is an integral part of my culture. My teapots are a continuation of my identity. It represents the harmony of nature and how all is connected through the discipline of our internal and external interactions: drinking tea, making pottery, contemplation…”
Jordan Walker, an Assistant Professor of Art at L&C, pays homage to the masters of art history through his oil paintings. He interprets renowned works by artists like Rembrandt van Rijn, John Singer Sargent, and Michelangelo Buonarroti. His pieces are not just tributes but also a way of carrying forward the legacy of naturalistic painting.
“My paintings in this exhibition address the enduring significance and influence of naturalistic painting—especially the great masterpieces of history! By painting these, I found myself engaged in an age-old tradition of studying the masters who came before me. The main challenge was in replicating the imagery of some of history’s great artists. I sometimes interpret the images in my own way with flourishes of color or the addition of silhouettes in the background. Making these pieces work in a way that gave due respect to history but also felt fresh and contemporary was difficult but rewarding!”, Walker said.
Louise Jett, Graphic and Web Design Coordinator at L&C, brings digital art to the forefront. Her personal and therapeutic journey is reflected in her illustrations, which explore proportion, color, and personal experiences. She emphasized the therapeutic aspect of her art, stating, “My art is deeply personal and reflective of my life experiences. Since my art is so therapeutic and personal, it is often challenging for me to share it with others. I put at least 15-20 hours, maybe even more, into each piece. I think deeply about the artistic choices I make and that takes time.”
Sage Mend, a textile artist and weaver, showcases a series titled “The Hunt of the Unicorn Continues.” Her work draws inspiration from pop culture and references the famous “Hunt of the Unicorn Tapestry Series” from the 1400s. Mend says, “It references a lot of pop culture but also references the past with the “Hunt of the Unicorn Tapestry Series”, which is a famous woven series that is Netherlands-ish. It was created around the 1400s. “This is in direct reference to those pieces with the inclusion of certain figures and the scene. A lot of the original tapestries reference things like purity and loss of innocence.”, Mend explains.
According to Mend, the tapestry she made called “The Mystic Capture of the Unicorn with Dolly Parton” is her favorite artwork in the show because it has an image of the singer. “There’s a lot of stuff that I put into this that references the past, but as well as the present with more modern-day icons such as Dolly Parton.”, Mend said. “I’m from Tennessee. Of course, she’s going to be a big inspiration for somebody who’s from Tennessee.”
Mend’s tapestries are intricately woven with materials like black chenille and cotton, incorporating structural elements to add depth and meaning to her work. “It’s a specific structure that’s woven with the chenille to give it this dynamic positive-negative effect. It’s supposed to reference coloring pages, these velvet coloring pages that you can color in with markers. It’s just an added layer to the referencing that I’m trying to do with these works. That’s really the big use of the combination of the structure with the material to reference certain aspects of pop culture.”, said Mend.
The exhibition runs from October 20 through November 18, and visitors can explore these remarkable works of art at the Hatheway Cultural Center. The gallery is open to the public from 10 am to 4 pm, Monday through Friday, and from 10 am to 2 pm on Saturdays.
This exhibit is an excellent opportunity for art enthusiasts and the general public to experience the diverse and exceptional talents of the Lewis and Clark Community College faculty. The artists invite viewers to ponder their unique interpretations of art history, the harmony of nature, tea and clay, and the therapeutic aspects of artistic expression. The exhibition is a testament to the thriving art community at L&C and showcases the creative spirit that thrives within the college.
Jett said, “I hope people can appreciate digital art as fine art. I love all art! I think the show is fantastic, and I appreciate the variety included in it. Our faculty members are so talented!”
For more information about the exhibition, including artist biographies, you can visit the following website: L&C Faculty Art Exhibition. To delve deeper into L&C’s Fine Art program, you can explore L&C Fine Art Program. For those interested in Graphic Design, visit L&C Graphic Design Program, and for information about Web Design and Development, please visit L&C Web Design and Development Program.
The Lewis and Clark Community College faculty art exhibition is a celebration of creativity, diversity, and the enduring power of art to connect and inspire. Don’t miss the opportunity to explore this captivating world of artistic expression, created by the talented faculty members of L&C.