Members of the School of Art faculty at Stephen F. Austin State University will exhibit their work in a show that opens with a reception at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 10, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.
As in the past, this annual exhibition will showcase a variety of mediums, including sculpture, painting, photography, metal work, ceramics and prints, according to John Handley, director of SFA art galleries.
The show will also feature the artwork of Shaun Roberts, assistant professor of painting at SFA, in a separate exhibition in the Reavley Gallery of the art center.
“Each year we take this opportunity to literally show off the wonderful talents of our School of Art faculty, who, in addition to teaching, work as professional artists and exhibit their work in museums and galleries across the United States and abroad,” Handley said. “It is also an opportunity to showcase one of our newer faculty members – in this case, Shaun Roberts.”
Roberts completed his BFA at SFA in painting, and went on to complete an MFA at the University of Washington under the artist Zhi Lin. He joined the SFA faculty first as an adjunct in 2012.
“My paintings are influenced by experiences growing up in rural East Texas,” Roberts said in his artist’s statement. “I work from a mixture of direct observation, photos and imagination. The narratives are a mix of fact, fiction and allegory. The images are charged with an ironic blend of pathos, humor, violence and the social and political implications of the rural working class.”
Roberts said he draws inspiration from baroque painters Caravaggio, Velazquez and Franz Halls and enjoys the dynamic compositions, the use of high contrast lighting, and the psychological tension in them. He also likes works by authors like Flannery O’Connor or Eudora Welty, who write short stories about the rural south.
“I also find cinema to be a great source of inspiration,” he said. “I like to pause films when anxiety is at its highest point and analyze the scene, trying to figure out what about it gives the tension and how it could work in painting.”
The exhibition and opening is sponsored in part by Friends of the Visual Arts, Nacogdoches Junior Forum, and Hampton Inn. Admission is free.
“In past exhibitions, we have received wonderful feedback,” Handley said, “and the public and students enjoy seeing the professionalism of the faculty here at SFA.”
The exhibition runs through Oct. 17.
The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For additional information, call (936) 468-1131.