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Fall 2008/Spring 2009 News

The 2008-09 Gallery Series ended May 5, 2009 with two art shows featuring the work of CSC students.

The Main Gallery held the large and varied All Student Juried Art Show from April 22 to May 5, 2009.

 With more entries than ever before it was a tough choice for our local juror to narrow it down to 40 pieces.


Upstairs in Gallery 239 was the spring Advanced Art Studio Show, “Six Sheets to the Wind, ” featuring Valerie Short of Scottsbluff, ceramics; Pat Moss of Chadron, ceramics; Emily Hudson of Benkelman, oil and landscape; Anna Higgins of Deaver, Wyo., water color portraiture; and Susi Schaefer of Chadron, ceramic sculpture.


On April 1, six CSC art students and instructor Mary Donahue took off for the annual museum/gallery/design/ad agency trip. This year the destination was Utah, billed as “7 people, 6 days, 4 states, 1900 miles.” The first stop was Logan, Utah, to visit the Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art on the Utah State University campus as well as a tour of the Utah State University art department and an afternoon with Graphis magazine award-winning designer Bob Bissland and his posters (below.)

Visits in Salt Lake City included the Salt Lake Art Center; a tour of Richter 7 (a creative top-20 regional ad agency) with partner, Scott Rockwood; and a visit with artist Sandy Brunvand at her home and studio. The group browsed Park City galleries before taking off for Moab, Utah, where they sketched and photographed in Canyonlands and Arches National Parks.

 View a slide show of the trip.


More Spring Semester 2009 . . .

Three spring blizzards in three weeks during March and April battered Chadron and caused a cancellation of classes. The second half of the 2008-09 Gallery Series, “Open Space  opened in January with regional landscape paintings by Hot Springs artist, Mike Tuma in the Main Gallery.

Showing in Gallery 239 was the printmaking portfolio exchange, “Women Weaving Transparent Thought,” with work by women from the U.S. and abroad making connections beyond place. A highlight was work by CSC faculty member, Laura Bentz.


The bleakness of winter was brightened in February with the colorful 2009 CSC Faculty Art Show,  “”

It featured glasswork by Richard Bird; prints and paintings by Laura Bentz; graphic design and paintings by Mary Donahue; paintings and sculpture by Don Ruleaux; and paintings and ceramic work by Nancy Sharps.

Upstairs was a show of Wisconsin artist, Lisa Bigalke’s very colorful and layered prints based on landscape.


The celebration of color continued with the paintings of Melanie Yazzie, an internationally-renowned printmaker, painter, and sculptor and University of Colorado art professor.

 In Gallery 239, CSC graphic design students (Ashley Johnson, Bobbi Bath, Ashley Goff, Michelle Vorderstrasse, and Brandon Allen) exhibited brochure, poster, ad, and package design work in the “Show Your Stuff Show.”

 Opening on April 6 was the Senior Thesis Student Art Show, “Design and Conquer,”  featuring three senior art students in the culmination of their CSC art careers, Bobbi Bath of Douglas, Wyo., Rehena Drummond and Jerome Dopheide, both of Alliance. All three are graphic design majors and showed a substantial amount of design work in addition to glass, ceramics, prints, photographs, drawings and paintings.


Youngsters experience art . . .

At the beginning of their art careers, the charming and colorful work of students from Chadron Middle School was exhibited in Gallery 239. The Chadron Public Schools Outstanding Students show ran April 6 - April 17, 2009. Their instructor is Patricia Bird. An opening with large crowds was a rousing success!


Middle-school students from Scottsbluff visited CSC on April 8. This included a tour of the CSC art department with Laura Bentz, associate professor of art.

CSC art alum, Buff Tewahade, teaching at Oelrichs High School just over the border in South Dakota brought his class of mainly Native American students to tour the art department and talk with CSC art professors. Buff and his wife, Whitney Tewahade, another CSC art alum have opened an art studio, Ta Da Studio, in downtown Chadron. The studio offers art classes for children as well as an artist’s co-op to show local artist’s work.

On Monday, Nov. 10, the CSC Art Dept. hosted their annual high school art day with 7 areas schools (Bayard, Bridgeport, Gordon-Rushville, Hemingford, Kimball, Mitchell, and Morrill) participating. The high school students had the opportunity to work with CSC instructors and students in the areas of graphic design, watercolor collage, glass blowing, ceramics, printmaking, photography, and scratch board.

During last summer of 2008, 40 students in grades 8-10 from Chadron, Alliance, and Gordon-Rushville experience a taste of college life through the federally funded Upward Bound program. Part of that experience included daily art classes with CSC associate professor of art, Laura Bentz.


Fall Semester 2008 . . .

The fall semester kicked off the 2008-09 Gallery Series, “Open Space,” with some big names in the art world showing in the Main Gallery. “From Particle to Planet,” a traveling show from the Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery in Lincoln. The show gave CSC students the chance to view work from Ansel Adams, Robert Henri, John James Audubon, and Andy Warhol among others.

In Gallery 239 there was an exhibit of large photographic prints of complex nature scenes by Boulder, Col. artist and Regis College professor, William Sutton.


The school year kicked off with a CSC art student mixer with pizza and socializing on Sept. 18.

CSC art students have been busily creating this year. In Printmaking II, the process of etching was learned. In the spring, the printmakers created linoleum cut prints, both in color and black and white. The fall glass blowers were also busy as were the painters in Painting I. Painting II in the spring ventured into abstraction and larger scale psychological portraits. View some of the work in the student work gallery

October opened with the contemporary paintings of Lander painter and Central Wyoming College professor, Matt Flint.

Gallery 239 hosted another photographic exhibit of evocative and surreal photo collages by Virginia artist, Michelle Rogers.

November also saw campus closure due to another blizzard but the opening of two new art shows—the large and powerful woodcuts of Derrick Riley, a Kentucky printmaker who has shown nationally and internationally and a third photography show upstairs in Gallery 239—the Zen-like meditations of Monmouth University artist, Jing Zhou. 

With the new digital photography class in session Fall 2008, the three photography shows were particularly relevant for classes.


Also on display in November on the second floor of Memorial Hall was a print exchange between CSC printmaking students and students from University of Wyoming.

The CSC student work was exhibited at University of Wyoming while CSC exhibited the work of the Wyoming students. The exchange was organized by Laura Bentz, CSC associate professor of art and Mark Ritchie, assistant professor of art at the University of Wyoming.


CSC associate professor of art, Laura Bentz, traveled to Russia in November 2008 with CSC administrators to cultivate study abroad options for CSC students. Visits to museums and the discovery of Russia’s rich artistic and cultural heritage were the foundation of the trip and will provide excellent opportunities for future art students.


Two CSC seniors majoring in art opened their Senior Thesis Student Art Show on Dec. 1. The show titled, “Reveal: A Glimpse into an Artist’s Soul,” featured the work of Abby Christian of Gordon and Theresa Turner of Chadron. Abby exhibited sculpture, graphic design, glass, paintings, and photographs. Currently, she is working locally as designer and graphic artist for Outlaw Printing in Chadron.  Theresa exhibited mostly 2-dimensional work of collage, painting, and photography. She continues to take art classes and is experiencing great success working at a local firm, Your Selling Team.


Art 411/Graphic Design III students were busy fall semester working on real-life projects. These included creating posters for the CSC Music Department, some of which are being used for publicity and recruiting; working on logo ideas for the Dawes County Historical Society; and their largest project—creating and designing a map of walking/fitness trails and an accompanying brochure for the Lifespan Wellness Team and Chadron Community Rec. Students Brandon Allen, Bobbi Bath, Jerome Dopheide, Rehena Drummond, Ashley Goff, Ashley Johnson, Nikki Suhr, and Michelle Vorderstrasse presented their finished projects to the Lifespan Wellness Team in November 2008.

The committee chose parts of several of the designs and the final brochure will go to print in the summer of 2009 for distribution and public use in Chadron. Thanks to Ann Dockweiler, Jay Sutliffe and the Lifespan Wellness Team for giving the students this great opportunity.


The first week of December brought cold temperatures but hot sales at the annual Art Guild Christmas Sale. Held in the CSC student center, Dec. 3-4, 2009, the sale featured work by students and faculty that included seasonal cards, jewelry, 2-D art and photography, knitted goods, glass and ceramics, in addition to lots of ceramics by Susi Schaefer and Nancy Sharps, glass by Silas Kern, wood ornaments by Gerald Fickel, and jewelry by CSC Art alum Lacey Klein. The proceeds defray costs for the spring art student trip.



Art instructors in the news . . .

One of CSC’s former art professors, William Artis, who taught ceramics and sculpture at CSC from 1954-1966 is recognized as a major figure in African American art history in the United States. The art department has several of his pieces.

One of Nancy Sharps’ watercolor paintings, won the “Technical Achievement Award” at the 2008 Northern Plains Watercolor Society exhibit at the Journey Museum in Rapid City, SD in August/September of 2008. She continues to attend art shows around the country selling her work. In addition, she has licensed her ceramic “critters” and they are selling well.

Don Ruleaux, won several awards at the 41st Annual Red Cloud Indian Art Show at the Red Cloud Heritage Center, Pine Ridge, SD in August of 2008. He won first in watercolor, the Diederich Award for best depiction of a traditional Sioux Indian, and the Diederich Landscape Award. The show displayed over 160 pieces of art from nearly 60 Native American artists. This year more that $7000 in cash prizes were awarded to more than 20 pieces, some of which was awarded to Don Ruleaux. “It continues to be one of the best Indian art shows in the country and definitely in the Northern Plains. The reaction of the visitors is that the artists have stepped it up a notch,” director Peter Strong said.

Richard Bird’s glass work continues to be carried in galleries across the country. Locally, you can find it at the Carnegie Arts Center in Alliance. 

Laura Bentz has participated in several print exchanges including one with the University of Wyoming and “Women Weaving Transparent Thought,” with work by women from the U.S. and abroad making connections beyond place.

Mary Donahue had a pastel in the Cedar City (Utah) Art Committee’s 65th Annual Exhibition during the summer of 2008 at the Braithwaite Fine Arts Gallery, Southern Utah University campus. She also had a pastel in the Norfolk Arts Center’s Juried Visual Arts Exhibit, Norfolk, Nebraska, during March 2009. She participated in the “Air Your Laundry Show,” an exhibit of graphic design work by AIGA/Nebraska members at the Hot Shops in Omaha in November of 2008.

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