The Galleries at Georgetown College are currently displaying works by two very interesting and talented artists.
“Nunca Pasa Nada” by Bethany Springer, an Associate Professor in Sculpture at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, is up in the Wilson Art Gallery. A closing reception with the artist is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 21, from 6-8 p.m.
Of her work, Springer writes, “My current work lies somewhere between romanticism and realism, an inquiry into place and identity as influenced by history, heritage, globalization, and the information age. We are living manifestations of our cultural heritage and genetics, but at times it’s difficult to trace what remains and if it matters anymore. Change is certain but not always obvious, which is perhaps why patterns are established to preserve some semblance of control and belonging as if we could bridle something fleeting. The systems we inherit and affiliate with, the constructs we surround ourselves with and shifting convictions of progress, purpose, and fulfillment subsequently epitomize our existence.
“If it is true that globalization erases regional identity, then how do an individual’s perception of place and ownership change? If one’s sense of belonging were destabilized, would the tendency to exhibit human territorial behaviors, defending collective long-term interests be lost? In a society that is increasingly connected, is it possible to be lost?
“How place is established, reinforced, and lost is referenced in my work through the juxtaposition of seemingly disparate historical and contemporary images, metaphors that often find ironic commonality through a quick online search. Often, I use search engines as a tool to interpret and inhabit the world beyond my own heritage and environment, pairing a simple word or phrase with a complex network of associations connecting semiotics, historical origin, consumer products, and contemporary fads. Ultimately, I see my work as experiments monitoring awareness in a constantly accelerating world.”
Bethany Springer has received grants from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, Arkansas Arts Council, Iowa Arts Council, the University of Arkansas Community and Family Institute, and the Center for Digital Technology and Learning at Drake University in Des Moines. Springer has also been in residence at Full Tilt Creative Centre in Newfoundland, the Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts & Sciences, the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, MA, the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts in Omaha, NE. Selected exhibitions of her work include in Memphis, Maryland Art Place (MAP) in Baltimore, Boston Center for the Arts, Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design, Creative Arts Workshop in New Haven, CT, Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ, City Gallery East in Atlanta, and the Walton Arts Center in Fayetteville.
Bridges’ work, he explains, is influenced by dreams, old tales, and the mysterious. His work is narrative in nature and is inspired by stories imagined wholly in his own mind. These are fragments of tales from a land called The Thousand Weed Marsh. Bridges likes to think of these as scenes ripped from a larger story, like drawings cut from worn and dusty children’s books from years gone by. His goal is to pique the viewer’s interest and to leave them to imagine the rest of the story. His influences draw heavily from the classic period of illustrative work from days gone by. Bridges seeks to celebrate its wonder, whimsy, and beauty through his art.
Rob Bridges is a native of Los Angeles, California and holds a BFA in Fine Art from Cornish College of The Arts in Seattle. Bridges’ art has a timeless feel with a dark and whimsical edge.
He is often asked how he came to be interested in illustrative art. He replies, “I grew up in Los Angeles, where my school lacked proper funding for learning materials. My father, an artist himself, would get me to read my photocopied primers by drawing pictures on the book’s endpapers. His attempts missed the mark, and I became more fascinated with the drawings than learning to read. I began honing my craft by making drawings on the inside of my father’s books, much to his chagrin.”
Rob, his wife, and their children now make their home in Georgetown and Scott County.
The Wilson Art Gallery is located in the Wilson Fine Arts building at the corner of East College and Mulberry Streets. Its hours are Wednesday through Friday from noon to 4:30 p.m.
The Cochenour Gallery is on the first level of the Ensor Learning Resource Center on the main campus. Its hours are Monday through Friday from noon to 4:30 p.m.
An appointment for other times at either gallery may be arranged by calling Samantha Simpson, Gallery Director and Curator of Collections, at 502-863-8399.