GV professors put talents together to create art

GVL / Robert Mathews
Putting It All Together Exhibit

Robert Mathews

GVL / Robert Mathews Putting It All Together Exhibit

Stacy Sabaitis

The Grand Valley State University Art Gallery’s newest exhibit goes beyond just art on a wall.
“Putting It All Together: A Collaboration Between Ann Baddeley Keister, Patricia Nelson and Patricia Clark,” blends the different talents of each artist into one exhibit.

“I hope that [students will] be surprised, and visually delighted, and intrigued of how the things go together,” Nelson said.

Nelson, who is a professor of art at Ball State University in Indiana, contributed to the metalwork part of the collaboration.

“I am the jeweler and the medalsmith,” she said. “I do the medal work and all of the enameling.”

Nelson also helped make the jewelry and interpret the dresses that Keister designed into metal.

The exhibit will travel to Muncie, Ind. next fall along with additional dresses and jewelry to be displayed at BSU.

The fabric wall pieces were designed by Keister, an associate professor of art and design at GVSU. She cut kimonos and haoris to create the original pieces.

“I’ve always really loved Japanese fabric,” Keister said. “I ordered kimonos from a company in Japan. I take them apart and re-cut them.”

Keister said she mostly works in silk, but also works with cotton, and occassionally synthetic if the pattern is right. Along with the fabric wall pieces, Keister assisted Nelson with the jewelry making, weaving beads through chains that have pendants attached to them, which will be displayed on dressed mannequins.

“Every garment was specifically designed to be worn with the piece that is on it,” Keister said.

The poet behind the gallery, Patricia Clark, is a GVSU writing professor. Her original poem included in the exhibit, titled “Beauty’s House,” is Clark’s own description of Keister and Nelson’s designs and was written in the spirit of both being inspired by and referring to their work.

“The words are going to float around the room on the wall near the artwork,” Clark said. “It describes what I am seeing when I look at their work.”

Clark said that all students should come to the show, even if they’re not art students because it is such a diverse exhibit.

The artists will have a meet and greet reception on Sept. 6 from 5-7 p.m. for anyone who wants to talk more about their pieces.

“Putting It All Together” runs through Sept. 21 and is free and open to the public.
For more information, visit the art gallery website at gvsu.edu/artgallery.

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