"Shelter-in-Place", an exhibition by Culture Shock Arkansas, opened tonight at the William F. Laman Library gallery in North Little Rock, Arkansas. We had a good crowd with over 100 in attendance.
The exhibition seeks to explore physical or mental spaces where one could dwell or find shelter or refuge. Each participating artist took their own approach in responding to the exhibition theme by creating a physical "shelter".
Participating artists include Melissa Cowper-Smith, Melissa Gill, Sofia Gonzalez, Louise Halsey, Tammy Harrington, Dawn Holder, Holly Laws, Sandra Luckett, and Rachel Trusty. Not all Cultural Shock members are participating in this exhibition.
I served as the coordinator for this exhibition. The Culture Shock members take turns organizing group exhibitions and coordinating with gallery spaces.
"Shelter-in-Place" poster created by participant Melissa Gill.
Culture Shock Arkansas is a diverse group of women artists working in Arkansas. The Culture Shock Art Collective was founded in 2013. With an awareness that male artists continue to have greater opportunity and exposure, the Collective is committed to expanding the networking and exhibition opportunities for women artists in Arkansas. Other members of Culture Shock include artists Melissa Wilkinson and Jessica Mongeon.
Guests at the reception of "Shelter-in-Place".
My piece for the exhibition, "Home is only a Memory", is a mixed-media object made of paint and hand embroidery on a manufactured tent.
For me personally, the work discusses how "home" changes as my relatives have aged and many have passed away. More universally, the tent construction references themes of migration.
Ellis Widner of the Arkansas Democrat Gazette reviewed the exhibition on Oct. 10th, 2017 in his article "All- female exhibit explores ' shelter'".
He said this of my piece:
Rachel Trusty's unsettling 'Home Is Only a Memory' chills and fascinates. The tent's entrance is closed, our warm memory of home meets a cold reality -- it's gone. Trusty's creation also may stir psychological and familial landscapes and memories that inhabit the place we either run to or away from.
To read his whole review of the show, visit my main news page and search of the article:"All- female exhibit explores ' shelter'".
Culture Shock members at the opening. Left to Right: Holly Laws, ME (Rachel Trusty), Sofia Gonzalez, Melissa Wilkinson, Tammy Harrington, Dawn Holder, Louise Halsey, and Melissa Gill. Members not pictured: Jessica Mongeon, Melissa Cowper-Smith, and Sandra Luckett.