Senior artists to present collection of works in exhibit

Release Date: April 3, 2008

PLAINVIEW – Five senior art students at Wayland Baptist University will be sharing the Abraham Art Gallery space from April 10 through May 3 for an exhibit of their work while at Wayland.

Completed as a requirement of their art degree, the exhibit is a practicum and culmination of work in a variety of media. Each student’s style and talent will be displayed through works they have chosen to represent their art career at Wayland.

“The senior practicum exhibit represents the first professional art exhibition on the artist’s show record, and the works done by these talented young artists are as divergent as their individual passions and interests,” said Dr. Candace Keller, professor of art and curator of the gallery. “It has been a great experience to work with them and see the growth of their visual expression.”

Seniors to be exhibiting include Brianne Drury of Lubbock, Jacob Flick of Kress, Mackenzie Garner of Littlerock, Calif.; Michelle Sanders of Watauga; and Wendi Vanlandingham of Childress. A reception for the quintet will be held Sunday, April 13, from 2-4 p.m. in the gallery.

The daughter of Frank and Sandy Drury of Lubbock, Brianne is pursuing a degree in art and language arts. An artist who works primarily in acrylics and photography, Drury said she sees her artwork as a perfect venue to express herself and her feelings.

“With painting I find that one color and that one object that portrays my deepest emotions or desires. With those, I am able to create something that will help me remember what I was feeling at that time…yet I will always have the freedom to look at my work and feel something entirely different,” she said.

Drury said her goal is to show viewers that art is not perfect because people are not perfect. “I want people to embrace imperfection; I want them to see struggle, because these things are a defining characteristic of life,” said Drury, who titled her exhibit “Necessary Imperfections.”

“Brianne presents her ideas to the viewer through works which incorporate text and symbolism, often in a minimalist fashion that evokes intrigue. The psychology of color and the sensitivity of feeling in her subtext are at times straightforward, yet often veiled and elusive. Her works seem to incorporate the considered concept and substance of hope,” Keller said of her work.

A native of Kress, Flick will earn his bachelor’s degree in art in May, specializing in painting and metal/jewelry design. Flick said his interest in art has been life-long, though he did not begin to focus seriously on his own talent until his junior year of college, when he learned techniques in jewelry making, acrylics and other media. His show is titled “Raised on the Farm.”

“All the work I do reflects my life and childhood. Many of my pieces are linked with my experiences on the farm, while others deal with current situations such as my new profession as a lineman working for Xcel Energy,” said Flick, the son of Russell and Tommie Flick. “I take pleasure in working from my imagination to create my own original works of art.”

“Jacob has an affinity for the expansive landscape, and his imagery reflects iconic themes of the myth and beauty of the West,” Keller noted. “His drawings, paintings and jewelry designs speak to his reverence for the land, and his ease and satisfaction in belonging to it.”

The daughter of David and Amy Garner, Mackenzie is an English and art major who has titled her exhibit “Frame of Reference.” As a California native, Garner recalls watching her grandmother oil painting, often joining her at the easel, and she believes those experiences sparked her interest in art. She added the art emphasis after taking a required fine arts course, eventually adding the major.

“Art is now a larger part of my life than it has ever been, and I am truly thankful for this opportunity that I have been given,” Garner said.

“Mackenzie works with a clear and reasoned observation, and ranges in her treatment of subjects from realist painting and photography to whimsical and delicate fantasy works in watercolor,” Keller said. “She incorporates subtle humor and irony into her works, as well as an influence of oriental design sensibility.”

The daughter of Sam and Linda Sanders of Fort Worth, Michelle was home-schooled for eight years before coming to Wayland, with plans to graduate in December 2008. Working in various media, Sanders prefers photography and acrylics, focusing her work on warm tones that exhibit “the warm, natural or otherwise impassioned outlook I have on the world.”

“Art, to me, is the interaction between creator and creation, whether it be my thoughts systematically formulated on a canvas or God’s perfect orchestration of our lives,” she said. “I feel that I interact most proficiently through the lens of a camera. By sensing my intense and blessed inferiority to God’s original design, I feel that the best way I can do justice to creation is to capture the moment in time.”

Titling her show “Animus Veritas,” Sanders said she views her college career as a time to grow her talent and expand her vision and passion for her artwork.

“As my role as an artist has progressed, my method and outcome within the composition of art has evolved from the painstaking replication of a particular image to the patient production of a piece of visual and psychological value.”

Keller noted the same.

“Michelle is a visual storyteller, and she expresses her strong convictions directly through her imagery in paintings, drawings and mixed media,” she said. “Also working in photography, her art resonates with her visual reasoning, allowing those who come to the work to take from it what they choose.”

A native of Childress, Vanlandingham has worked her pursuit of a degree in art around a full-time job in the Wayland office of financial aid and her role as a wife and mother to three daughters. She enjoys painting and drawing and has most recently added photography to her repertoire. She has done extensive mural work, completing a large work for the children’s department at her church, College Heights Baptist, over the span of a year.

Titling her exhibit “Life is a highway,” Vanlandingham said her work reflects a belief in the joy of the journey of life.

“I believe that every where we turn there is a work of art. Through painting and photography, I have found great joy in capturing those moments and sharing them with all around me,” she said. “I find simplicity in my paintings and photography and I know this reflects my desire to enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Whether it’s capturing the memory of a hot summer day and an ice cold piece of watermelon or enjoying the view of an old barn door, I believe that art is found in the unadorned things in life. I pray that through the guidance of Christ that I am able to use the gift God has blessed me with to bless those around me.”

Keller notes that Vanlandingham’s work is often autobiographical.

“Wendi draws her inspiration from moments in time, capturing visual images that reflect her concerns with family and faith. Her realistic drawing, and painting, and her photographic works present a sensitive and artistic eye for detail a reverence for the importance of the ephemeral,” she said.

The show will be open and free to the public during regular gallery hours: 10-5 Monday through Thursday, 10-4 Friday and 2-5 Saturday. For more information, contact the gallery at (806) 291-3710.