Three new art exhibitions are making their way to the Leslie Powell Gallery.

“To the Ends of the Earth,” “Supporting Indigenous Sister,” and “What a Time to Be Alive” will open with a reception on May 15 and be available for viewing through June 25.

“To the Ends of the Earth” is a collection of work by artist Catherine Prose of Wichita Falls, Texas. The collection is inspired by notions of landscape and the conservation of the natural environment. It features drawings, paintings, prints and mixed-media pieces created from 2012-2021.

Matthew Hughes, executive director of the gallery, has been aware of Prose’s work for some time, but until recently had never had a chance to see it for himself. When he finally had an opportunity to see her work, he was taken aback.

“I remember this print had some beautifully hand-drawn, monochromatic elements that looked like etchings; large geometric shapes of saturated color overlayed the etchings and created this nearly non-representational composition. It was more a study of shape and pattern than it was about the hand-drawn bird — I think it was a bird. Long story short, I immediately messaged her on Facebook and invited her to show here,” Hughes said.

As an artist, Prose is motivated by love and concern for the conservation of nature, Hughes said. Her motivation is closely-linked to her experiences in nature as a child. She is interested in, and influenced by, ideas about landscape, the environment and endangered species. Prose holds an Masters Fine Arts from Texas Tech University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Studio Arts from Cameron University. She is a professor of art at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls.

With a final count of 60 pieces, “To the Ends of the Earth” will offer gallery patrons plenty of diversity.

“This is a large exhibition of work with seven series that Cat has curated specifically for this show. It spans a few years’ time, so it will be interesting for people to see so much of her hand and vision,” Hughes said. “Cat is a prolific artist with differing interests. There will be various prints that incorporate various printmaking methods, as well as color pencil drawings, pastel drawings and an interactive video. I feel like the audience will really appreciate the variety of media and content.”

But it isn’t just her own work that Prose is bringing to the gallery. Prose also is connected to the “Supporting Indigenous Sister” and “What a Time to Be Alive” exhibits arriving at the gallery.

“A few months ago, when Cat and I were touching base about the upcoming exhibition, she asked if she could include a couple print exchanges she had been part of. I agreed quickly, thinking it would be an interesting insight for our patrons to see some of the connections to the art world Catherine is a part of,” Hughes said.

“Supporting Indigenous Sister” is an international print exchange featuring the work of female 16 artists. The print exchange was organized by Catherin Prose and Melanie Yazzie, professor of Arts Practice and head of Printmaking at the University of Colorado in Boulder.

Of the 16 included prints, eight were created by artists with indigenous backgrounds, and the other eight were created by artists of other varied backgrounds. This portfolio was created to help begin conversations about missing and murdered indigenous women, according to Hughes.

“When I found out this was about missing indigenous women, I was immediately pleased — if that can even be the correct word for this situation — that the gallery would be able to help spread the word about such an important, yet under-represented, topic,” Hughes said.

The third and final exhibit, “What a Time to be Alive” is a student led professional print exchange by Andi Newberry, a Bachelor of Fine Arts candidate at Midwestern State University. This print exchange asked artists to respond to events of the past year and to predict their vision of the coming year. Prose oversaw the exchange.

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