Visit El Dorado
Live Here
Do Business Here
Chamber of Commerce
« View All News

SAAC Opens Two New Exhibitions in March

Posted on February 25, 2013

The visual arts committee of the South Arkansas Arts Center announces two new exhibitions, Time Was  and perception, which fill the galleries From March 4 through 27. An artist reception will be hosted on, Saturday, March 9, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. in the Merkle and Price Galleries. 

The exhibitions and reception are free and open to the public.

Time Was, on display in the Merkle and Price Galleries, is a series of paintings and sculptures Kit Gilbert began when she received a gift of metal from the owner of a farm in Louisiana. These "found objects? consisted mostly of farming implements used by her ancestors in the 19th and early 20th centuries. 

"Somehow, no matter how hard I looked at these pieces, they did not seem to feel mechanical or agricultural. Just as when we were children, the broom and mop became wild horses and plows and tools became forts and weapons, so these objects ? as I worked with them in my studio, combining metal with canvas ? became part of the series I call Time Was,? said Gilbert. "Because I was born in Louisiana and grew up in west Texas at the edge of the Edwards Plateau (the region of the Comanche Indians), my earliest influences were the wet, lush, natural world of Louisiana and the shimmering heat and light of the Texas plains. Also apparent in my work, especially in the Italian Notebook Series, are the landscape, architecture, and art of Italy to which I return year after year. Later influenced by abstract expressionism and by the modernist penchant for making art about art, my art concerns itself with both the forms of nature and the nature of modern life. It is both ordered and chaotic and used the broken grid as well as the lyrical circle and heart. In some paintings and paper works, the grid becomes something of a time frame, more or less like a strip of film, a moving story, a movement of cells and conduits. I use acrylic paint, photographs, and drawing and marks with pastels, pencil, ink and colored chalk,? said Gilbert. 

Arkansas artist Kelly Campbell brings perception to the Lobby Gallery.  This series of pastels is inspired by a week-long stay in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada in 2011 and again in 2012. 

"I create art because I am often moved to interpret places and things that I see. As a teacher in the public school system, I was able to play with different media, creating small works in whatever my students were working in at the time. After I retired, I fell in love with pastels, with the rich, bold color and the sensation of applying them to the sanded paper, layering color and watching the painting emerge. There is a certain intimacy with the art when working with pastels that comes from applying the color without brush or pen between the hand and the paper. Each of us perceives the world in his own way. This work is simply a reflection of my perception,? said Campbell.  "The first day in the desert each time was spent building camp where there is nothing?nothing but harsh, unforgiving desert. The last day each time was spent breaking camp and packing, leaving no trace that we were there. But in between those days of really hard physical labor, I found healing for my spirit. There are many bicycles in this series?that?s how everyone (approximately 60,000 people) travels on the desert ? by bike or on foot,? said Campbell.

For more information about the exhibitions, contact the SAAC office at 862-5474 or visit" "SAAC Opens Hitchcock's "The 39 Steps" – Thursday, February 28, 2013"