Highlights of the Fine Art Museum 2005-2006 Inaugural Season

Nearly 1,000 visitors attended the Fine Art Museum grand opening and gala reception on October 23, 2005. Chancellor John Bardo greeted visitors and recognized several important individuals, to include Professor Emeritus John Wakeley, former Interim Chancellor and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, who served a key leadership role during early stages of the arts center planning. Special guests included inaugural exhibition artists: Joel Philip Myers, acclaimed glass artist, Luzene Hill, noted artist from Atlanta, alumni artists, Connie Bostic, Fairview, Mary Charles Griffin, Asheville, and Tim Jacobs, Cullowhee, as well as special guest Harvey K. Littleton, his wife Bess and family members from Spruce Pine, North Carolina.

OCTOBER 23 - DECEMBER 15, 2005
Worldviews: Selections from the Collection and New Acquisitions

Premiering Western's growing fine art collection to include major work by Quita Broadhead, Louis Finkelstein, Edith Neff, Kenneth Noland, Neil Noland,  Mary Parker, Esteban Vincente, and new acquisitions by emerging and noted local, regional, national artists, and international artists such as Erwin Eisch, Joel Queen (Cherokee), Gregory Masurovsky, Harvey K. Littleton, Martin Puryear, William T. Wiley, John Wilson, a recent major gifts of paintings by  Rosemarie Beck and John Heliker and important  print portfolio by 20th century American artists gifted by Rob and Leigh Anne Young.

Contemporary Native American Artist Exhibition Series

Funded in part by a grant from the Cherokee Preservation Foundation

Luzene Hill: The Pilgrimage Ribbon

Noted contemporary artist from Atlanta, Hill exhibited created a new installation exploring Mayan concepts of time, search for a spiritual home, and her Cherokee heritage, in newly created books forms, drawings and sculpture.

Lasting Impressions: Native American Prints

A limited edition print portfolio features 10 distinguished Native American artists from throughout the country. Edgar Heap of Birds (Cheyenne/Arapaho),

Joe Fedderson Colville), G. Peter Jemison (Cattaraugus Seneca), Truman Lowe (Ho-Chunk), Duane Slick (Ho Chunk/Mesquakie), Mario Martinez (Yaqui),

Jaune Quick-to-See Smith (Flathead), Kay Walkingstick (Cherokee), Emmi Whitehorse (Navajo) and Melanie Yazzie(Navajo); Master Printer is Jack Lemon. Published by the University of Arizona School of Art.

MARCH 16 - MAY 14, 2006
Natalie M. Smith: HIVES

Smith explores the transformation of mind, body and spirit in a mixed media and video installation, referencing her Cherokee heritage and universal issues facing humanity and specifically the Cherokee culture.

OCTOBER 23 - DECEMBER 15, 2005
Joel Philip Myers: Studio Glass Installations and Dialogue Series

Acclaimed studio glass artist, Myers from Denmark and Pennsylvania exhibits two provocative  bodies of work expressing a literary reference and personal metaphor for living.

Strange Beauty: New Perspectives

Premiers a series of exhibits in a variety of media to showcase emerging and noted Western art alumnae who offer challenging viewpoints in response to complex contemporary culture, social, political and personal visions of mind, body, and spirit. Connie Bostic, Mary Charles Griffin, Tim Jacobs.

DECEMBER 10-18, 2006
The Emma Johnson Allison Art Awards 1978-2005

Each year since 1978, the Twentieth Century Club of Sylva, has sponsored prestigious purchase award from the annual Art Student Competition to recognize a top Western art student in honor of Emma Johnson Allison.  This exhibition will feature of the selection of the award winners over the years.

JANUARY 23 - MARCH 25, 2006
Jeff Oestriech: New Ceramics

Nationally recognized potter from Minnesota examines critically the functional aspect of art in contemporary ceramics and serves as artist in residence for two weeks.

Pivot Points: Six Painters Six Poets

Pivot Points is a traveling exhibition organized by two faculty members in Virginia Commonwealth University Painting and Printmaking departments. The exhibition brings together three generations of artists and poets examining the ties of mentorship between teacher and student. The second generation acts as the "pivot points" connecting the generations together.

APRIL 10 - JUNE 1, 2006 
Lois Dodd: A Pure Landscape

The Fine Art Museum offers a rare opportunity to see a small of selection of extraordinary landscape paintings by acclaimed New York painter, Lois Dodd. Dodd was artist-in-residence at Western Spring 2006, meeting with students, venturing with painting students to on-site painting locations, especially Balsam Mountain Preserve, along the Smoky Mountain Parkway, and deep into hollers and coves.  Phillip Alexander Gallery, Inc., New York, and Dodd's exclusive gallery representation generously loaned examples of Lois Dodd's work for exhibition. Ms. Dodd generously donated two extraordinary paintings to the Fine Art Museum permanent collection. Her work is included in major public and private collections nationwide,

Lois Dodd was born in Montclair, New Jersey in 1927. From 1945 to 1948 she attended the Cooper Union in New York. In 1952 she was one of five artists to establish the Tanager Gallery, where she exhibited until 1962. From 1871 to 1992 Dodd taught at the Brooklyn College, and has, since 1980, served on the Board of Governors of the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. She is an elected member of the American Academy of the Institute of Arts and Letters and the National Academy of Design.

APRIL 10 - MAY 8, 2006
Annual Art Student Competition

Selected by independent jurors, Linda Larsen and Lei Han, the annual showcase features exciting undergraduate student art works in a wide range of media, including painting, drawing, sculpture, ceramics, photography, printmaking/book arts, graphic design and new media  - purchase awards and cash prizes. The distinguished jurors for the 2006 Student Art Exhibition at WCU are Linda Larsen of Weaverville, North Carolina and Lei Han of Asheville, North Carolina.

Linda Larsen is a practicing studio artist well recognized for her two-dimensional and three dimensional art work in a variety of media to include painting, printmaking, ceramics and mixed media sculpture. Ms. Larsen has an extensive exhibition record to include recent exhibitions at the Meadows Museum of Art, Shreveport, Louisiana and Blue Mountain Gallery, New York City. Lei Han is a digital artist in motion graphics, film, and digital media. She received her BA degree from Shenzhen University in China and her MFA from the Memphis College of Art. Ms. Han, currently Assistant Professor of Multimedia Arts and Sciences at the University of North Carolina at Asheville, has a creative research interest in video art and digital animation.

JUNE 20 - AUGUST 8, 2006
Master of Fine Arts Thesis Exhibitions

The Fine Art Museum will also feature thesis exhibitions of Western's Department of Art first graduating class of the new Master of Fine Art degree program.  Culminating from a comprehensive three-year course of study, MFA degree candidates will produce solo thesis exhibitions to showcase their creative research. Thesis exhibitions for MFA candidates, Heidi Leitzke (painting), Sarah Noble (painting), Tai Lipan (painting), Kristen Sullivan (painting) will begin June 20 through July 8.  Free and open to the public, an exhibit opening reception will take place at the Fine Art Museum on Friday, June 23, 6-8 p.m.

MFA degree candidates Bill Clements (mixed media sculpture), Jennifer Lipsey (painting), will begin their thesis exhibitions July 14. Free and open to the public, an exhibit opening reception for Clements and Lipsey will take place at the Fine Art Museum on Saturday, July 22, 6-8 p.m. Kelledy Francis (Integrated Media), will present her MFA thesis exhibition as part of "The Opening of Sky and Sea", an multi-media performance at Asheville's LC Gallery, 63 N. Lexington Avenue at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, July 15 and Greg McPherson (painting), will open his solo MFA exhibition, July 10 through July 22, with a reception on Friday July 21, 8 p.m. at the Wedge Gallery, 115-b Roberts Street, Asheville.