On Sept. 3, eight John Brown University faculty members presented a collection of their artwork in a Visual Arts Department exhibit titled “Our Heads, Our Hearts, Our Hands.” This exhibit was designed by the faculty to celebrate the JBU Visual Arts Department and to demonstrate passion and skill professors have for practicing what they teach.
“It’s important for the students to know that we are committed to these creative processes,” said Charles Peer, the gallery’s director and a professor of visual arts.
Peer said almost all of the pieces displayed were completed over the summer, demonstrating that the members of the faculty in the Visual Arts Department not only teach but continue to work and create throughout the year.
Professors said they gathered inspiration from a variety of sources. Assistant Professor Steve Snediker’s film “Levi: A Day–A Lifetime” was inspired by the playfulness and purity of children. Associate Professor Neal Holland’s photography of the Irish seaside showcases his time spent in Ireland this summer.
These artists even draw inspiration from each other and from students. Snediker said that he has a unique relationship with his fellow faculty members and often feels encouraged and inspired by his colleagues. Professor of Visual Arts Dave Andrus said that it was his colleagues who inspired him to explore landscape painting again.
“It’s a celebration,” Snediker said. “Students are encouraging because they get engaged in it. Although our craft is in different stages, I can draw inspiration from their work, and they can draw inspiration from my work. I’m interested to see how the students will respond to my work, take it, and allow it to inspire their own work, which may then inspire my next piece. It’s a circle.”
“Our Heads, Our Hearts, Our Hands” displays art styles from landscape and en-plein-air paintings to wire drawings, photography, screenprint pieces and a short film.
“I like the exhibit because all eight of [the Visual Arts Department faculty] participate and do wildly different things,” Andrus said. “I like the variety and the quality.
“I wish I could have had the opportunity to view my teachers’ work like this when I was a student. Come and learn something about your professors!”
“Our Heads, Our Hearts, Our Hands” will be displayed Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Sundays from 2-4 p.m. in the Windgate Visual Arts West Gallery through Sept. 27.