May 28, 2013

HMA to observe West Virginia sesquicentennial with artist invitational

Contact: John Gillispie, (304) 529-2701, Ext. 307

The Huntington Museum of Art will observe West Virginia’s sesquicentennial with a small invitational exhibit titled Macy's Presents: A Sense of Place: The West Virginia Sesquicentennial Artist Invitational.

The 18 participating artists teach in West Virginia colleges and universities, affording them a unique perspective in that they work closely with West Virginia students from a variety of backgrounds and places within the state.

The exhibit will run June 1 through Sept. 22, 2013. The opening event for this exhibit takes place at HMA on June 22, 2013, from 6 to 8 p.m. with the presentation of a short video about the artists by Brad Boston, followed by a Meet-the-Artists Reception. Admission is free.

This exhibit will present many artistic viewpoints – not only in style (traditional vs. cutting edge contemporary) and chosen media (painting, drawing, sculpture, printmaking, photography, video, etc.), but also in the amount of time the artist has spent in the state absorbing “a sense of place.” Many of the invited artists were born, reared, and have always lived in West Virginia, however, some are recent (and not-so-recent) transplants from other states and other countries.

HMA asked the invited artists to create works in their preferred medium and in their unique personal style using “sense of place” as a broad guide, referring to this theme as an intensely personal response to the environment, both social and natural, which the individual experiences in daily life. This sense can also refer to the individual’s perception of the whole state, and feelings, attitudes, and influences living, working, and residing in West Virginia.

This exhibit is another way for HMA to support West Virginia artists and expand visitors’ knowledge and familiarity of artists working within the state. It is also a wonderful way for the Museum to celebrate the 150th anniversary of West Virginia’s statehood.

Artists who will be participating are: Christian Benefiel, Shepherd University; James Biggs, Concord University; Andy Bloxham, West Virginia Wesleyan College; Jennifer Boggess, Fairmont State University; Liza Brenner, Glenville State College; Michael Doig, Davis & Elkins College; Molly S. Erlandson, West Virginia State University; Sonya Evanisko, Shepherd University; James Haizlett, West Liberty University; Hayson Harrison, Marshall University; Grant Johnson, Alderson-Broaddus College; Natalie Larsen, Marshall University; Peter Massing, Marshall University; Mark Tobin Moore, Concord University; Kenneth Morgan, Bethany College; Erika Osborne, West Virginia University; Dr. Reidun Ovrebo, West Virginia State University; and Michael Sherwin, West Virginia University

Jenine Culligan, organizing curator, will visit each artist’s studio, as will Education Assistant Brad Boston, who will create a travelogue of his journey, documenting his visit to studios, schools and towns throughout the state.

This exhibit is presented by Macy's, and sponsored by the Isabelle Gwynn and Robert Daine Exhibition Endowment; the West Virginia Division of Culture and History; and the National Endowment for the Arts, with approval from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts. This program is presented with support from the West Virginia Department of Education and the Arts.

For more information on events at HMA, visit or call (304) 529-2701. HMA is fully accessible.