Turning our attention away from the coronavirus and to things that make staying alive worthwhile: Paintings of landscapes from David Mudrinich of Arkansas Tech University and Ricky Sikes of UA Little Rock.
Mudrinich’s paintings are on exhibition at Cantrell Gallery in a show titled “Balanced Nature.” The drawing and painting professor in the Department of Art at Arkansas Tech brings his experience as a research forestry technician in an experimental forest in Georgia to bear on his work.
Known for his paintings and drawings of country scenes including beehives, Mudrinich is also among the artists whose work was selected for the 62nd annual Delta Exhibition at the Arkansas Arts Center. His pastel “Discordant Hives” can be seen in the virtual exhibition.
From the artist:
“Ever since I was a little kid I always wanted to be outdoors. The vast variety of sights, sounds, colors, textures and habitats stimulated my curiosity and motivated me to draw. As I developed into an artist, I continued to stay outside, live out of town, and explore all the various characteristics that made any one location unique. This could include the natural features of the landscape as well as the human alterations made to the land. My compositions fluctuate between expansive panoramic views and more intimate, close-up locations. Everything in life is subject to change. This continuous transformation allows me to visit the same place repeatedly and always experience something new.
The farm next to my home has beehives in the yard that I see every day. I am intrigued by both their structure and by the visual rhythm of their arrangement within the landscape. Many of the apiaries I come across are at abandoned locations that were once a home, farm or business. They seem to symbolize a rebirth of the place while continuing their role as pollination centers for the well being of the planet. This cycle of balance reinforces my overall interest in the relationships of continuous change happening within a particular place.”
The show at Cantrell Gallery, 8208 Cantrell Road, runs through October. Gallery hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Sat. A face covering is required to visit.
“Internal Landscapes” is the title of Sikes’ show in the Small Gallery of the Windgate Center of Art and Design at UALR. Sikes, the artist in residence, uses oil paint and mixed media to create expressionist works inspired by his experience of the deep woods of Louisiana. Sikes explains: “All of the complexity, mood, contrasts, and mark-making catalyze to echo the unique internal state I experience when immersed in the tangled vines and dense canopy of the forest.”
“Internal Landscapes” runs through Nov. 15.