In September, the Lauren Rogers Museum of Art invited artists from across our community to submit works for our Seeing 20/20: Creativity during COVID online exhibition. A truly contemporary exhibition, Seeing 20/20 sought art produced since March 2020 that represented a diverse array of perspectives, ideas, and reflections upon the past six months of our lives.

 

In many ways, our shared worlds and individual existences changed dramatically in the first half of 2020. This virtual exhibition showcases how artists – student, amateur and expert – have engaged with and considered this novel moment in time.

 

 

Pat Abernathy | Biloxi, MS
Still Life
Gouache and Ink
8 x 8 inches
September 2020

 

 

Pat Abernathy | Biloxi, MS
Wildflowers
Mixed Media
18 x 24 inches
September 2020

 

 

Pat Abernathy | Biloxi, MS
Table for Two
Acrylic
24 x 34 inches
September 2020
My favorite subjects for paintings are flowers and the figure so during this time of isolation I began to experiment with more abstraction in my art . I used multiple media and mark making. I really love the freedom and the time to try new ideas and compositions in my paintings and have really enjoyed finding new and exciting ways to express myself in my work.

 

 

Constance Keith Alford | Port Gibson, MS
Grant’s Crossing and Duffner’s Story
Watercolor & ink on hot press paper
8 x 9 inches
September 2020
“Grant’s Crossing and Duffner’s Story” gives the locations for some wonderful and not-so-wonderful tales about Gen. Grant bringing his troops (20,000+ men) down the Louisiana side of the Mississippi River to cross at Bruinsburg on the way to Vicksburg and about their first encounter with Confederate Troops at the Shaifer Place on May Day, 1863. I first heard these stories from a dear friend, Libby Shaifer, who was a descendent of A.K. Shaifer, and I marveled at their richness and her telling of them. Walking the roads and imagining the battle in these Loess Bluffs has engaged my imagination ever since. William Duffner of the Indiana Volunteer Infantry was in that first battle at the Shaifer Place and his post-war story of his friendship with A.K. Shaifer is one of profound Grace. I painted a map and used some of William Duffner’s words to describe his memory of the roads, the moon, and the Shaifer Place in Spring. The land, the Natchez Trace and the movement of the troops are all part of a remarkable story that took root in my mind as I worked on this painting.

 

 

Constance Keith Alford | Port Gibson, MS
I Know a Place
Watercolor and ink on handmade paper
8.75 x 8.25 inches
April 2020
The painting, “I Know a Place” was inspired when a friend in Paris sent me photos of Medieval maps of hills, fields and waterways. There was no writing or labels on these little maps; they were delightful little drawings. I made a map of the place I go every summer where I know every field and stream. When I was asked to show some paintings I had done during the pandemic on Facebook, I posted this one. Over a period of a couple of days after it went online, more than a hundred people recognized this place who had spent summers there too! Even people who knew nothing about the place enjoyed it as I had enjoyed looking at the small maps sent by my artist-friend.

 

 

Constance Keith Alford | Port Gibson, MS
A Kite of Trees
Watercolor on handmade paper
8.75 x 9 inches
April 2020
I inherited a collection of drawings by Alexandre Pankoff from 1924. He mounted a series of small (2″- 3″) illustrations of famous buildings in a scrapbook as a gift for Constance Sheltman, my great aunt who lived in Turkey three years as a Near East Relief worker. The renderings are of famous buildings in Paris, Istanbul and Russia. Around each building is a frame which interprets the subject in some way. I used hand-made water color paper I had stuck away on my studio shelf for years and began painting natural scenes with modest to elaborate frames around each one to see what effect the frames would have on the subject. In “A Kite of Trees,”, the frame not only dresses up the image, but also conveys my sense of the magnificence of the trees and their height.

 

 

Bebe Baldwin | Laurel, MS
Courage
Sharpie on paper
4 x 8 inches
July 2020
From my sketchbook, Dauphin Island, July, 2020: Sailing a stormy sea takes courage! “Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.” Psalm 121

 

 

Bebe Baldwin | Laurel, MS
Dappled Things
Watercolor on yupo paper
11 x 13 inches
September 2020
Beauty is all around us. Planting a few flowers in springtime, bringing them in in late summer and placing them in vases may result in a great subject for looking, thinking, enjoying and painting , especially if we remembered to water them! These were actually from my yard.

 

 

Bebe Baldwin | Laurel, MS
Contemplation
Watercolor
15 x 11 inches
March 2020
Remembering times and places that have personal importance can transport us to a more pleasant time in our lives. This painting is from a photo I took at Biltmore, which I visited with family a few years ago.

 

 

Mark Brown | Ellisville, MS
Figurehead 8 (Series)
Mixed Media, found objects
14 x 11 x 6 inches
August 2020

 

 

Mark Brown | Ellisville, MS
Pine (Series)
Mixed media, found objects
11 x 6 x 6.5 inches
August 2020

 

 

Mark Brown | Ellisville, MS
Figurehead 13 (Series)
Mixed media, found objects
8 x 3.5 x 5 inches
April 2020
I have been working with discarded objects and unorthodox materials for more than 25 years. Primarily a sculptor, I am intrigued by these found items due to their apparent history, and aesthetic qualities, such as form, texture and color. The random nature of the items within my sculptures lends itself to surrealism, although the themes become more personally relevant as the work progresses.

Prior to the pandemic, I had been dabbling with the theme or concept of waiting, as I prepared current work for the Spring 2020 Jones College Faculty Exhibit. I noticed this subtle thematic thread as I completed my work for the exhibit.

Ironically, our faculty art exhibition had just opened in March when the campus was closed to the public. With a closed show, closed galleries, and canceled contests, I realized that the theme of time and anticipation was more poignant than ever before. As the situation required us to remain at home, I continued to explore the idea of “waiting figures.” Whether waiting for an individual, an anticipated event, the passing of a difficult time, or something else, as humans we are all awaiting something.

As an artist, I intend to convey my environment or the effects of my immediate environment. As a collector of “things”, it is inevitable that they have become an essential aspect of my art. I have often created busts and heads out of found material to refer to materialism, and the temporary nature of all things. However, in recent months I have sought to make these abstract figures more contemplative in their appearance, as they reference the passage of time. Again, I find my work correlating directly with our current situation on multiple levels.

Some facets of the pandemic have been extremely liberating artistically, as there are less deadlines, or outside pressures to finish work. Not only has it allowed me to fully evaluate my intentions, but also to literally and metaphorically attempt to address the concept of the passage of time. I have come to the realization that I am using objects from the past, to create work in the present, that often represents the future.

 

 

Ryan Coker | Laurel, MS
Broken String @ Pearl’s
Gouache & colored pencil
5 x 7 inches
September 2020
The play on words might be made with a Substitution of “@” with “of”, however, I hope this will engage the viewer to ask “What happens now? or “Is there a replacement mask available?”.

 

 

Laura Crosby | Summerville, SC
Pendants
Plastic, shells, beads, backing of soft aluminum siding
3 x 3 centimeters x 3 millimeters
May 2020
I collect plastic bits. My husband and I travel to Eleuthera, Bahamas frequently. Sadly, there is a great deal of plastic waste on the beaches. It seems a sin to issue compliments to plastic, but the wave-tossed plastic buckets and other items have lovely patina. I used some of my stash to create small pendants. All throughout the process, I was on the island; not stuck in a room under quarantine! I find meticulous work very joyful and creating miniature artworks seems to be my life’s mission, though I have no idea why.

 

 

Laura Crosby | Summerville, SC
Miniature Coiled Baskets
Sweetgrass (Muhlenbergia filipes), waxed linen thread, center of red earthenware and cone 05 glaze
2.5 x 2 inches
May 2020
What pandemic? I got lost in basket making. It is so gratifying to watch a basket grow, albeit a miniature basket. I am inspired by the craft of sweetgrass basketry that has been practiced for 300 years in the area in which I live. Also known as “Gullah” baskets, local basket makers also used sweetgrass which grows in lovely ‘plumes’ and flowers in pink in the fall. It is now used as a landscaping plant in all the parking lots! While slightly impatient to complete a basket, irrespective of its size, the process is a joyful muse. While I had some sweetgrass on hand, since we were locked down, I simply switched to longleaf pine needles when I ran out of the other.

 

 

Laura Crosby | Summerville, SC
Southern Magnolia Leaf
Colored Pencil
11 x 8.5 inches
April 2020
When my town was locked down, I thought of projects I could do that would be interesting and enjoyable. Recently, I’d studied Mark Catesby, a naturalist who traveled “the Carolinas, Florida, and the Bahamas” during the early 1700’s documenting flora and fauna. His record of native plants and animals is extremely important today, as, unfortunately both plants and animals he observed and drew are now extinct. I live in a region of the country where massive development is taking place; forests and swamplands are being obliterated, and surely species of native plants, wildflowers, and just plain ‘weeds’ will be eliminated forever. Therefore, I started drawing every native plant I could get my hands on within walking or bicycling distance of my house. My goal is to draw 100 plants. I have reached number 30. The University of SC A.C. Moore Herbarium has been extremely helpful in identifying the plants. (Also, several apps on my smart phone). Through the process, I forgot the pandemic; forgot the virus, and attained great joy and personal satisfaction watching simple lines become 3-dimensional illusions of lovely native specimens.

 

 

Linda Gustafson Farrar | Waynesboro, MS
Three Pears
Mixed Media
10 x 10 inches
July 2020
Loved painting this piece because of the rich jewels tones and the challenge between textures of the fabric, bowl and fruit. Mediums used were acrylic and pencil on a stretched canvas.

 

 

Linda Gustafson Farrar | Summerville, SC
Southern Hospitality
Mixed media
9.375 x 9.75 inches
June 2020
This was so much fun because the artwork is on a vintage cigar box! Staying true to my love for mixed media, I used acrylic, pencil, gold leaf pen and a 3 Dimensional medium. Just felt the varied textures just added to the artwork!

 

 

Linda Gustafson Farrar | Summerville, SC
Matherville Field
Mixed medium
40 x 30 inches
May 2020
Love working with mixed media for different effects, depths and presentation!
Mediums used were acrylic, pencil and gold leaf pen.

 

 

Sharon Howard | Laurel, MS
Ancient Forest on Whiting Bay
Oil on stretched canvas
20 x 16 inches
September 2020
I spent a month in my ancestral homeland of Scotland, two years ago to document the landscapes there. I spent twelve days on the Isle of Skye and fourteen days on the Isle of Arran. The rest of my time there was on the mainland. I went solo. I photographed hundreds of landscapes and have been working on a series of paintings dedicated to my adventure. I started this one three months ago and finished it last week. Again, I tried to capture the emotion that I experienced in this forest.

 

 

Sharon Howard | Laurel, MS
Gentle Waves at Sunset
Oil on stretched canvas
24 x 36  inches
April 2020
This composition was conjured in my mind; not from a photograph. This work is all about emotion. I used a palette of complimentary colors, blue and orange; a palette often used by Vincent Van Gogh. I depict the sun setting in late afternoon as waves rush to the shoreline. No one is on this beach, but in its essence Nature is alive and full of emotion, as she is always; one must take time to find that emotion.

 

 

Andrea Kostyal | Hattiesburg, MS
Keep things Going…
Mixed media oil
60 x 48 inches
September 2020

 

 

Andrea Kostyal | Hattiesburg, MS
“We are in this Together”
Mixed media oil
20 x 16 inches
August 2020

 

 

Andrea Kostyal | Hattiesburg, MS
“Your Charm Is Your Downfall”
Mixed media oil
60 x 48 inches
March 2020
My dreamlike paintings are inspired by urban landscape and nature, that reflect experiences from my childhood and young adulthood. I grew up in a small town in Europe where playing outdoors and gardening was commonplace. Later, I studied art and textiles in an artistically and culturally rich city in Hungary filled with beautiful historic buildings, and architectural masterpieces. My craving and memories of dynamic city life, the sense of the streets’ atmosphere suggests that my paintings investigate the natural environment and their connections with man-made structures in harmony.
I enjoy careful planning of my detailed collaged and transferred photographs of street views as viewpoints in my paintings. They contain constructed forms between grids in very much the same way as a transparent curtain separates layers. These grids simultaneously connect shapes and forms along horizontal and vertical lines, like woven tapestry, creating rhythms, a sense of depth and visual spacing between detailed or compendious forms. Playful bubbles permeate the whole painting in poetic movement on the canvas, reflecting my feelings and moods.
Emotion, integrity, honesty and power of expression are my primary concerns. Each of my paintings can offer the viewer a subjective landscape to create their own narrative journey.

 

 

Laura Mayne | Simpsonville, SC
Normal
Screen print on Arnhem 1618
30 x 44 inches
September 2020
This artwork grew out of time spent in quarantine. While social outings became sparse access to social media did not. As a pandemic spread across the world, social media and news outlets seemed to be the epitome of the oft mentioned “train wreck”. People took to social media to voice their thoughts on masks, people wearing masks and those not wearing masks. It amazed me that a simple precautionary measure could be so divisive.

 

 

Vanda McCormick | Gulfport, MS
Toxique
Mixed media
30 x 24 inches
June 2020

 

Vanda McCormick | Gulfport, MS
Caring For All
Mixed media
30 x 24 inches
March 2020

 

 

Vanda McCormick | Gulfport, MS
Protect the Innocent
Mixed media
30 x 22 inches
September 2020
During the time that I have spent at home, I have contemplated a series of strong women who care for their fellow creatures. This group of “Icon Ladies,” have helped me to think about things other than the everyday problems associated with this Covid 19 crisis. I hope that these paintings give hope to the world. We have to care about others than ourselves, whether other humans, or creatures we come in contact with.

 

 

George Ann McCullough | Ocean Springs, MS
Approaching Storm
Acrylic on canvas
24 x 24 inches
August 2020
In this ongoing series of paintings, I am exploring mark making by the use of various tools, some traditional, some non-traditional, to apply paint to the surface of the canvas. The paint was applied in layers, dripped, scratched and drawn into, resulting in an atmospheric effect.

 

 

George Ann McCullough | Ocean Springs, MS
After the Storm
Acrylic on canvas
30 x 36 inches
May 2020
In early March, I began a series of paintings exploring mark making by the application of various tools including not only brushes, but also scrapers, trowels, palette knives as well as my hands to apply the paint to the surface of my canvas. The paint was applied in layers, dripped, scratched and drawn into, resulting in an atmospheric effect.

 

 

George Ann McCullough | Ocean Springs, MS
The Sky is Falling
Acrylic on canvas
24 x 20 inches
March 2020
In early March I started a series of paintings exploring mark making by the application of various tools including not only brushes, but also scrapers, trowels, palette knives as well as my hands to apply the paint to the surface of my canvas. The paint was applied in layers, dripped, scratched and drawn into, resulting in an atmospheric effect.

 

 

Alexis McGrigg | Utica, MS
Passing / Passage
Experimental photograph
11 x 8.5 inches
August 2020

 

 

Alexis McGrigg | Utica, MS
Contiguity
Experimental photograph
11 x 8.5 inches
August 2020

 

 

Alexis McGrigg | Utica, MS
In Between OR An inquiry on the mode of travel home
Experimental photograph
11 x 8.5 inches
August 2020
Alexis McGrigg focuses on using drawing, painting, and interdisciplinary media to explore the multiplicity of blackness through fictional, philosophical, and conceptual narratives. The term “blackness,” that she refers to often in her research, is a literal and abstracted term that connotes the investigation of the color black, and the examination of a metaphysical space that finds its roots and origin in the existence of black bodies. This query of the term serves as a means to alter and redefine notions of blackness and shift the authorship of that narrative back to its possessor.

In her own ontology, blackness has the ability to change its form, content, direction and position, and is not confined by any finite definition. She asserts that blackness within the black experience must constantly switch between modes of being, having to be one form of blackness and yet exist as multiple forms at once. Her artwork attempts to push the boundaries of a single notion of blackness, re-evaluate its agency from a stagnate, fixed term of ideology, and overturn it to reveal its dynamic nature.

 

 

Rosetta Nesbitt | Spartanburg, SC
Waking Up The Spirits
Printmaking (relief/monotype)
19 x 13 inches
March 2020
As a studio artist, with a focus in printmaking, I create art that is influenced by my culture. In this image, “Waking Up The Spirits,” the title serves the dual purpose of describing technique used while conveying subject matter. The emotional impact of attempting to survive a viral pandemic while being a part of a culture that has experienced generations of social oppression has influenced my work. In creating this image, I wanted to explore my interest in the history of Hoodoo in black culture. With a layer process of relief printmaking, using found elements such as leaves and snakes skins, I was able convey my connection with nature. For the background of this image, I manipulated the viscosity of the ink with mineral spirits to give the illusion of a dreamy outer body effect, thus waking up the spirits.

 

 

Elizabeth Patterson | Ellisville, MS
A Block from Home
Oil paint on canvas
16 x 20 inches
June 2020
Being a people person, social distancing feels like house arrest, but I can still take a walk around the neighborhood. The field at the end of Church Street is eye candy to me, and I have painted it multiple times in different seasons of the year. This was the view on a beautiful June morning, peaceful and the same as ever, oblivious to the cares of the world.

 

 

Elizabeth Patterson | Ellisville, MS
Thoughts of the Sea
Oil paint on canvas
9 x 12 inches
May 2020
After posting a small still life on social media, I received a comment from a cruise ship captain in Coronavirus quarantine in the Pacific, and replied to him. From there a correspondence developed. He was in company quarters with his cell phone for entertainment and seemed to enjoy hearing about life in Mississippi. Thoughts of the Sea was painted for his amusement and mine. The conch was an interesting challenge.

 

 

Elizabeth Patterson | Ellisville, MS
Easter Weekend
Oil paint on canvas
20 x 16 inches
April 2020
On Saturday, the day before Easter, we woke up to a dreary morning, and the pandemic preventing any sort of real Easter celebration the following day. There would certainly be no dinner guests with social distancing in place. Cooking would be simple. What better time to start a painting of a marshy area off Highway 11 in Ellisville. I grabbed my pastels to make a quick sketch and a camera for reference photos. The solitary weekend was not a washout after all.

 

 

Rebecca Roberts | Hattiesburg, MS
Sitting in the Sun
Acrylic
14 x 16 inches
April 2020
This vibrant piece with a background of chaos underneath lively cactus and the sun also includes the mantra Om mani padme hum (in Tibetan script) along the side. Om mani padme hum is an ancient Buddhist mantra. In English, this rhythmic chant literally translates to “Praise to the Jewel in the Lotus”, which basically means the light and peace you seek can only be found within you and as such this painting demonstrates just that in the soul of America- how peace, life, growth, and warmth can be abundantly found here too even during conflict and chaos, perhaps especially during conflict and chaos. Though all around the world we humans are different in so many ways we must remember that the sun shines on us all equally.

 

 

Rebecca Roberts | Hattiesburg, MS
Temple
Acrylic
9 x 12 inches
September 2020
Painted upside down, when turned around clarity of the resemblance of a sacred space was found.

 

 

Sarah Roberts | Hattiesburg, MS
Home
Mixed media
4 x 6 inches
July 2020
A collage postcard I sent to a foreign land depicting where I live.

 

 

Sarah Roberts | Hattiesburg, MS
Watching Telly in Mississippi
Mixed media
4 x 6 inches
August 2020
A collage postcard I sent out depicting what life had been like for me during this Pandemic.

 

 

Kelly Arcarese Rosa | Hattiesburg, MS
Strength of Ages
Charcoal and chalk on paper
24 x 18 inches
September 2020
I wanted to capture the strength of an old oak that has deep roots and strong branches and has weathered many a storm. The monochromatic scheme focuses on the beauty of strength rather than appearance.

 

 

Kelly Arcarese Rosa | Hattiesburg, MS
Machines of War
Mixed media; spray painted paper collage
20 x 30 inches
September 2020
An expression of how anger and fear can create hatred, violence, and chaos.

 

 

Susan Crawford Stevens | Hattiesburg, MS
On Crawford Pond
Oil on board
18 x 24 inches
August 2020

 

 

Susan Crawford Stevens | Hattiesburg, MS
Stay at Home
Oil on canvas
8x 8 inches
April 2020

 

 

Susan Crawford Stevens | Hattiesburg, MS
Southern Horizon
Oil on board
11 x 14 inches
June 2020
My love of the natural world is deeply rooted in my upbringing where I was given a gift of respect and appreciation towards my natural surroundings. As a young child growing up in rural Pennsylvania, I had the fortune to live on a property that had open fields, magical woods, and a pre-revolutionary home in which to play and explore. Although I have studied art and art history all my life, it wasn’t until my adult life that I had a strong interest in making it. It was a bit serendipitous that I fell into a job teaching art to elementary children which ultimately played a large role in my own art-making education. Another key inspiration was when the family barn, an imposing three story Pennsylvania fieldstone bank barn, built in 1884, burned to the ground within minutes of being struck by lightening. This barn was where we all learned the value of healthy competition (there were two badminton courts along with adjacent spectator rooms for each), the value of the arts (my grandmother maintained an active ceramic studio on the ground floor in which we were always welcome to join in the fun), and the value of curiosity (there were so many mysterious places to play and plunder). These values were instilled not just in my generation but in my father’s as well as he too grew up there. After the barn burned, I suddenly felt an intense need to paint it and the land around it as an homage to my heritage. Thus began my love for landscape painting.

 

 

Kathy Tosch | Ocean Springs, MS
Come Play With Me
Acrylic, mixed media on paper
14 x 11 inches
April 2020
During this year we all missed what felt like joy in our lives. I included lots of bright colors and marks, textures, in this painting. A flowery feel creates a lively and playful exuberance that we all wanted, but his eyes show the sadness and fear we all felt during this time of sickness and death. We all needed flowers in our hair, happiness, and that little being on our shoulder, whispering, “Come play with me, let’s have some fun!”

 

 

Kathy Tosch | Ocean Springs, MS
Genie In A Bottle
Acrylic, mixed media on paper
14 x 11 inches
April 2020
This face was created with a randomness of paint, collage, and charcoal marks, Subdued colors represent the gloom and uneasiness that surrounded all of us this spring. The key to the painting is the mystery of the “ genie”. What is he saying? What is his message? Is he a guardian? I will leave those questions to be answered by the viewer. His direct, piercing gaze reflects the seriousness and worry of our times this year.

 

 

Kathy Tosch | Ocean Springs, MS
Blue Dreams
Acrylic, mixed media on paper
14 x 11 inches
April 2020
Blue Dreams is a thoughtful look at a beautiful face. Blue is the color of wisdom, confidence, faith, truth, and intelligence. His face appeared in the paint I randomly applied to the paper. I continued to add additional marks and collage to enhance and add depth to the painting. His eyes are soulful and reflect the intensity of our times, along with sadness, strength and a weary hopefulness.

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