Contact: Sasha Steinberg
STARKVILLE, Miss.âArtworks by the co-author of Mississippi Stateâs 2015 Maroon Edition book selectionâas well as others by self-taught artistsâare on display at the university.
Free and open to all through Oct. 2 in the McComas Hall Art Gallery, the exhibit titled âHere and Beyond: Outsider Art from the Mississippi Museum of Artâ features 16 varied pieces. They range from visions of space ships to rural landscape memory paintings to observations of New Orleans street life.
Among them is a print made from an original painting by Denver Moore (1937-2012). Titled âWe Are All Homeless Just Working Our Way Home,â it shares its name with the last line of this yearâs Maroon Edition selection, âSame Kind of Different as Me: A Modern-Day Slave, an International Art Dealer, and the Unlikely Woman Who Bound Them Together.â
Moore is co-author of the 245-page novel released in 2006 by Thomas Nelson, a HarperCollins Publishers subsidiary. His art piece was donated to the MMA exhibit by Cerulean Gallery in Amarillo, Texas.
Among other self-taught artists being featured are Eula Crabtree (20th century), Roy Ferdinand (1959-2004), M.C. âFive Centâ Jones (1917-2003), Prophet Royal Robertson (1936-97), Juanita Rogers (1934-85) and Luster Willis (1913-94).
In addition to the Jackson museum and its Traveling Exhibition Endowment, the campus exhibit is supported by MSUâs Maroon Edition freshman common reading program and College of Architecture, Art and Designâs art department.
A 5 p.m. exhibition reception will take place Oct. 1 in the ground-floor gallery whose main entrance is located off the parking lot on McComasâ east side. The reception also is free and open to all.
In addition to Mooreâs creation, the exhibit includes three works by self-taught artist Loy Allen Bowlin (1909-95), a Franklin County native who resided in McComb until his death.
Bowlin experienced a spiritual awakening of sorts in 1975 after hearing Glen Campbellâs hit song âRhinestone Cowboy,â which he said inspired his passion to create colorful, glittery art works. Bowlin also favored embellished satin suits that, along with his distinctive artworks, earned him the nickname âThe Original Rhinestone Cowboy.â
âThe art on view was created sometimes for spiritual reasons and sometimes from the sheer pleasure of creating,â said Beth Batton, MMAâs curator of the collection. âArt by outsider artists was shaped less by an ambition to âmake itâ in the art world and more by the ups and downs of life.â
Ron Hall, the other co-author of âSame Kind of Different as Me,â was keynote speaker for the universityâs second Freshman Convocation held earlier this month.
MMAâs Traveling Exhibition Endowment is supported by significant private contributions that are matched by the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information, visit www.msmuseumart.org.
Now in its seventh year, Maroon Edition is a university-wide program that encourages incoming freshmen to read the same book prior to fall-semester arrival. Throughout the school year, they discuss the selected work with other students, administration, faculty and staff members. For more, visit www.maroonedition.msstate.edu.
Part of the College of Architecture, Art and Design, MSUâs art department is home to the Magnolia Stateâs largest undergraduate studio art program. It offers a bachelor of fine arts degree, with concentrations in graphic design, photography and fine art (ceramics, drawing, painting, printmaking and sculpture).
The McComas Art Gallery is one of the several departmental venues that regularly features traveling exhibits, student shows, and group and solo exhibitions by professional artists. Exhibit hours for the gallery are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday, as well as by appointment. For more, visit bit.ly/MSUArtGalleriesFB.
Additional gallery information is available from Lori Neuenfeldt, MSU art departmentâs coordinator for gallery and outreach programs, at 662-325-2973 or LNeuenfeldt@caad.msstate.edu.
MSU is Mississippiâs flagship research university, available online at www.msstate.edu.