Design I students create chalk drawings

August 31st, 2016 Comments Off on Design I students create chalk drawings

Photos by Megan Bean | Mississippi State University

In the first week of Assistant Professor Neil Callander’s ART 1123: Design I class, students completed a series of straight-line-only design projects using black permanent marker on paper.

Then, students expanded on these ideas by collaborating in small groups to create large-scale public chalk drawings.

The drawings were done in one class period and were made with a carpenter’s chalk line tool.

“Even the most fundamental art/design concepts (in this case straight lines) can be plumbed endlessly by creative minds,” said Callander.

North Carolina, California artists inaugurate MSU’s Emerging Craftsperson Residency Program

August 29th, 2016 Comments Off on North Carolina, California artists inaugurate MSU’s Emerging Craftsperson Residency Program

Hard at work:

By Sasha Steinberg | Mississippi State University

With a grant provided by Arkansas-based nonprofit Windgate Charitable Trust, Mississippi State’s Department of Art recently established a residency program that is advancing the university’s fine arts programming efforts.

Under the direction of Associate Professor of Sculpture Critz Campbell, the MSU Emerging Craftsperson Residency Program currently is hosting its first two artists, Audrey Bell of North Carolina and Angela Eastman of California.

As part of a five-week stay on the Starkville campus, Bell and Eastman are creating new works of art while interacting with art department faculty and students.

Their residency will end with a 5 p.m. show and reception Tuesday [Sept. 6] in the university’s Howell Building sculpture studio. The event is free to all, and refreshments will be served.

Audrey Bell

Audrey Bell

A native of Colorado Springs, Colorado, Bell is a studio artist who runs her own furniture and upholstery business, Outline Designs. She earned a bachelor’s in studio art and anthropology from Massachusetts’ Williams College in 2010. From 2013-15, she served as a Core Fellow at North Carolina’s Penland School of Crafts, focusing on woodworking and painting. She also enjoys printmaking, as well as making furniture and textiles.

In addition to the Williams College Museum of Art and Penland Gallery, Bell’s work has been displayed at the Nave Gallery Annex in Boston. For more biographical information, visit

Eastman is a native of Albany, Oregon, who holds a bachelor of arts from Colorado College. She has seen her sculptures and installations exhibited at her alma mater, as well as in the collections of Duke University.

Angela Eastman

Angela Eastman

Currently a Master of Fine Arts candidate at Cranbrook Academy of Art just outside of Detroit, Michigan, Eastman received metalwork training through her participation in the Penland School of Crafts Core Fellowship program.

Additionally, she has been awarded residencies at the Vermont Studio Center, Oregon’s Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, New York’s Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild and Illinois’s Ragdale Foundation. For more biographical information, visit

For more information on MSU’s newly-established Emerging Craftsperson Residency Program, contact Critz Campbell at 662-275-1064 or

Part of the College of Architecture, Art and Design, MSU’s art department is home to the Magnolia State’s largest undergraduate studio art program. For more, visit

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

The pair presented an artist talk at 11 a.m. on Aug. 23 in the Robert and Freda Harrison Auditorium in Giles Hall.

They also recently spoke to Gallery Director Lori Neuenfeldt’s Bachelor of Fine Arts research class:

Associate Professor Alex Bostic part of National Society of Painters exhibit

August 24th, 2016 Comments Off on Associate Professor Alex Bostic part of National Society of Painters exhibit

"Sydney" | Alex Bostic

“Sydney” | Alex Bostic

Alex Bostic, an associate professor in the Department of Art at Mississippi State University, had work featured in the “National Society of Painters in Casein & Acrylic Upper Gallery” in June.

According to the website, the “National Society of Painters in Casein and Acrylic” was founded to give artists opportunity to exhibit works regardless of style, “school” or subject matter. It is the foremost national showcase for the two aquamedia —casein and acrylic.

For more information, visit

Department of Art holds fall 2016 convocation

August 19th, 2016 Comments Off on Department of Art holds fall 2016 convocation

(Images by Aaron McElfish)

Fall Convocation for the Department of Art was held on Aug. 19 at noon in the Robert and Freda Harrison Auditorium.

Important information about the upcoming year was shared, and faculty were introduced.

Students who participated in summer internships and other programs as well as student organizations spent time discussing these opportunities.

Lunch was provided immediately following.

MSU art department hosts second ‘Great Chalk Walk’

August 11th, 2016 Comments Off on MSU art department hosts second ‘Great Chalk Walk’

Participants of all ages are invited Thursday [Aug. 18] to the second Great Chalk Walk organized by Mississippi State’s Department of Art. (Photo by Megan Bean)

Participants of all ages are invited Thursday [Aug. 18] to the second Great Chalk Walk organized by Mississippi State’s Department of Art. (Photo by Megan Bean)

By Sasha Steinberg | Mississippi State University

For the second year, Mississippi State’s art department is hosting a Great Chalk Walk event.

Taking place Thursday [Aug. 18] in front of the department’s Visual Arts Center Gallery at 808 University Drive, the free 4-6 p.m. event is open to all interested members of campus and surrounding communities.

Participants of all ages will have the opportunity to create colorful, large-scale chalk art pieces designed to brighten a major thoroughfare leading to campus.

Chalk and sidewalk spaces will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis. Refreshments also will be served.

Art department students, faculty and staff will be on hand to assist participants, and share information about the academic unit’s diverse curriculum and programs.

“We want to show new students and others the main route that connects downtown businesses with the campus and also introduce them to the creative resources available here in Starkville,” said Lori Neuenfeldt, the MSU art department’s gallery director.

“Come ready to have fun, be creative and get messy!” she added.

Neuenfeldt said this second-year event is among many in the university’s 11th annual Dawg Daze program—17 successive days of free activities to help welcome new freshmen and transfer students. A complete Dawg Daze schedule is available at

Also, follow on and Participants are encouraged to include the hashtag #MSUDawgDaze with Dawg Daze-related social media posts.

See the story at

Jackson native now serving as MSU-Noxubee Refuge resident artist

August 10th, 2016 Comments Off on Jackson native now serving as MSU-Noxubee Refuge resident artist

By Sasha Steinberg | Mississippi State University

A Macon, Georgia, professional painter who has lived and worked for two decades in Spain is Mississippi State’s newest artist-in-residence.

As part of his month-long exploration of the Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge, Thomas V. “Tom” Cowsert will be sharing his talents and experiences with the university and local communities.

A free exhibition of the Jackson native’s artwork is on display through Aug. 29 in the Colvard Student Union’s second-floor gallery.

Also free and open to all will be a Tuesday [Aug. 9] opening reception in Cowsert’s honor at the Colvard gallery. The event begins at 5 p.m., and refreshments will be served.

Located 12 miles south of the Starkville campus, the more than 48,000-acre federal reserve spanning Oktibbeha, Noxubee and Winston counties was established in 1940. It serves as a feeding and resting area for migratory birds and resident wildlife, including white-tailed deer, alligators and beaver. Wetlands, cypress groves, prairie grasslands and forest also are among its many features.

A master’s degree graduate in international business management from the University of South Carolina, Cowsert worked in the banking industry before moving to Spain to become a professional artist. His undergraduate studies also were completed at South Carolina’s Presbyterian College in Clinton.

In his current career, Cowsert said he enjoys exploring “an interplay of forms and colors and references from cubism,” adding, “I find inspiration from the colors, sounds, rhythms and flavors of the places I visit.”

He is the son of Virginia Veitch Cowsert and the late William S. Cowsert. Former Starkville residents, his parents lived for a time in Jackson before moving to Georgia.

In addition to MSU’s art department, the annual artist-in-residence program is a collaborative effort of the refuge and its Friends of Noxubee Refuge support organization, as well as the Starkville Area Arts Council.

Lori Neuenfeldt, MSU art department gallery director, said the program plays an integral role in promoting the creative process for innovative visual, performance and literary artists. Visiting professionals receive complimentary refuge housing and are welcome to experiment and further develop their skills during time spent at MSU’s art facilities, she explained.

“The refuge residency provides emerging and established artists the opportunity and workspace to research and create art within the beautiful natural surroundings of Northeast Mississippi,” Neuenfeldt said. “Residents have the freedom to explore and interact with native wildlife, as well as with members of the refuge staff and campus and local communities.”

Previous participating artists have included painter and Webster County native William “Bill” Dunlap; printmaker Kathryn Hunter of Decatur, Alabama; Pennsylvania ceramicist Lilly Zuckerman; mural artist and illustrator Michael Roy of Jackson County; New Orleans artist and critic Marian S. McLellan; New York artists Caetlynn Booth and Tyson Washburn; Mississippi Audubon Master Naturalist and artist Robin Whitfield of Grenada; Iowa artist Barbara Fedeler; MSU fine arts/sculpture graduate Shelby Nichols of Aberdeen; San Francisco artist and curator Jenny Balisle; and contemporary textiles and craft artist Elin de Jong of the Netherlands.

Additional refuge information is found at, and NWR project leader Steve Reagan also may be contacted at 662-323-5548 or

Read the story in The Columbus Dispatch.

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