Along with the opening of the Stephen F. Austin State University School of Art Faculty Exhibition on Thursday, Sept. 10, in Cole Art Center will be the opening of a show in memory of two former SFA faculty artists.
“In Memory of Two Former SFA Art Professors: John Daniel & Gary Frields” opens at 6 p.m. in the Reception Gallery in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House. Also opening that night is a show by Shaun Roberts, assistant professor of painting at SFA.
The Daniel show includes digital drawings, prints and mixed media, while the Frields exhibition features digital drawings, traditional drawings and mixed media sculpture.
“The Central theme to Gary’s work was that he had no central theme,” Tamara Robertson, Frield’s widow, said in describing her husband’s work. “He often said he wanted his work to look like a hundred different artists created them, or maybe a mad man, or Big Foot, or an alien experiencing Earth for the first time.”
In selecting works for the show, Robertson said she primarily tried to find works as different from each other as possible. Frield’s described his own work as: “I begin most works with no attempt to make any particular thing. I proceed relentlessly relying on emotional intuitive reactions while exploring materials, responding as things happen that are not planned. Instinctive discoveries fuel insights while building trust in creating through this working method. This process is suitable to my desire for an unexpected artistic fusion by allowing acquired knowledge and skills to merge with my subconscious as I await whatever might be unveiled.”
“Forms related to Gary’s life would often appear in his work, as he explored the intuitive art-making process,” Robertson said.
Daniel gave the following artist statement in his 2007 catalogue: “I want my art to have the power and appeal of art made by the great primitive societies. I admire the rich vocabulary and the urgency of that art. The objects artists made were of primal importance in people’s everyday life. I want my work to be that intimate. Ideally, the art object would link the viewer to his ancient humanity and to his own personal vulnerability. The art object is a thing, self-contained, finite, but it can be evocative of past feeling and knowledge beyond our comprehension. At the same time, the art object connects the viewer to his own time and space. Sometimes that connecting works best through lightness or humor. Always, it works through what the artist’s hands make.”
These exhibitions and openings are sponsored in part by Friends of the Visual Arts, Nacogdoches Junior Forum and Hampton Inn. Admission is free. All three exhibitions run through Oct. 17.