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Indepth Arts News:

"Motifs of Time: Mississippi Artists Invitational "
2002-05-23 until 2002-09-08
Walter Anderson Museum of Art
Ocean Springs, MS, USA United States of America

The exhibition Motifs of Time: Mississippi Artists Invitational will open on Thursday, May 23, at the Walter Anderson Museum of Art. The exhibition name is taken from a particular set of lines set forth by Mexican artist and filmmaker Adolfo Best-Maugard in his 1925 publication A Method for Creative Design. According to Best-Maugard, motifs are a series of marks or lines that form a basic alphabet for drawing. These lines have been used throughout the history of art and can be traced back to the earliest carved and painted designs known. They are not the only ones used, but they seem to be the most common. In fact, the seven lines referred to in this exhibition are actually derived from two shapes--the curved and the straight line. The 46 artists represented in the exhibit were challenged to create a work using the motifs in an original, yet obvious, form.

A group of Anderson drawings with motif references are displayed as a group in this exhibition. The drawings quickly move beyond the lines into flowers, animals, and landscapes. The Community Center mural refers to them in the designs around the windows, in the doors, and they are subtly embedded in the paintings of the earth, the sea, and the mythological cosmos.

Anderson often uses the motifs as a warm-up similar to a calligrapher‚s strokes of the alphabet. He interprets them in different ways, sometimes writing out an emotion or action beside the line:

Curved - running - thirst
Zigzag - walking - fear
Half circles - sitting - fatigue
Circles - hunger
Vertical lines - standing - boredom
S curves - bending - love
Spirals - saluting - acquisitiveness

The modern works by the Mississippi artists in Motifs of Time approach line by many avenues. Some photographs capture the spiral or the S-curve as the controlling contour of the image, some three-dimensional work incise the motifs as part of the decorative design. The paintings range from abstract images to the realistic contours of objects we see everyday. But lines are always present if the viewer looks attentively, and may imply worlds of meaning beyond.

The Mississippi artists featured in Motifs of Time include:

Jere Allen, Oxford
Walter Inglis Anderson
Van Bankston, Carrollton
Vidal Blankenstein, Jackson
Lyle Bonge, Biloxi
Robert A. Brooks, Biloxi
Marion Brown, Yazoo City
Carl Buchanan, Laurel
Claudia Cartee, Seminary
Anna Chupa, Mississippi State
Mary Ott Davidson, Saucier
Tom Douglas, Amory
Billy Dugger, Moss Point
Terry Blake Edwards, Pass Christian
Claire Evangelista, Ocean Springs
Lucy Gaines, Tupelo
Sandra Halat, Ocean Springs
Ann Hanger, Starkville
Mary Hardy, Ocean Springs
Gail Hendrickson, Gulfport
Frank Janka, Biloxi
Talle Johnson, Bay St. Louis
Steven Kirkpatrick, Ocean Springs
David Lambert, Jackson
Tina Lutz, Tupelo
John Marshall, Meridian
P. Sanders McNeal, Jackson
Greg Moran, Gulfport
Bill Myers, Ocean Springs
Tomas Nawrocki, Columbus
Bill Nelson, Moss Point
Brian Nettles, Pass Christian
Dina O'Sullivan, Ocean Springs
Patt Odom, Ocean Springs
Elizabeth Pajerski, Vicksburg
Joseph Pearson, Waveland
Susie Ranager, Ocean Springs
Joey Rice, Ocean Springs
Robert Ring, Fulton
Ted Rose, Long Beach
Amy Sorensen, Jackson
Harry Souchon, Bay St. Louis
Matt Steadman, Gautier
Chris Stebley, Ocean Springs
Kappy Page Stevens, Biloxi
Cecile Higdon Stephens, Moss Point
Elizabeth Veglia, Bay St. Louis

A series of ancillary programs are offered during Motifs of Time, which runs May 23 through September 8.

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