Memphis – The Beverly and Sam Ross Gallery at Christian Brothers University (CBU) will feature the art of Pam Hassler, Nick Peña, and Jana B. Travis in the “CBU Faculty Exhibition” beginning October 29 through December 10. An opening reception will be held on Friday, October 29, 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the gallery on the lower level of Plough Memorial Library.
For the first time since CBU’s Visual and Performing Arts department was established, the faculty has selected artwork that reflect their personal artistic style for a comprehensive exhibit.
Throughout Pam Hassler’s artistic career, she has explored a concept that she titles mystery or contrast or light vs. dark. Having recently revisited pre-Columbian art, Hassler found that ancient peoples of America were also interested in duality, the aspect of nature and life. Duality in her work involves the attempt to understand and depict the opposites in life: good/bad, life/death, and joy/sorrow. A selection of Hassler’s work in permanent collections includes The Tennessee State Musuem, Assisi Foundation, AutoZone, National Bank of Detroit, Paragon National Bank, Bank of America and The Shrine of St. Martin de Porres. She is represented in Memphis by Lross Gallery. Hassler received a BFA from the Memphis College of Art and a MFA from the Instituto Allende in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.
Nicholas Peña was awarded a full tuition scholarship and teaching assistantship for the MFA program at the University of Missouri –Columbia in 2002. During these developmental years Peña’s artistic process diversified. His works ranged from painting to multimedia installations that encourage the viewer to question the ever-changing psychological landscape of America. For the past 6 years, Peña has focused on subjects that visually communicate the tension existing between nostalgia for past family structures in a culture that has abandoned traditional family modes. Peña’s recent work focuses on paintings that explore how the digital revolution is reshaping our landscape. His layered stretched paper paintings highlight the fragile nature of this shifting geography. Peña received a BFA from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, IL and a MFA from the University of Missouri – Columbia, MO.
Jana Travis began painting professionally in her twenties and has had several exhibitions in the United States and abroad. As a result, her art can now be found in private and corporate collections throughout the world. Over the years, Travis has discovered her art evolving in conjunction with her own life. The fact that she is true to this transformation of style allows her to produce art that is original and uniquely her own. Despite her Southern roots, Travis claims her art to be mostly influenced by the three years of her life she lived with her family in Guadalajara, Mexico. While extensively traveling the country, Travis noticed the culture and colors of Mexico naturally beginning to seep into her artwork. In 1996, she was chosen to exhibit at the Mexican-American Cultural Institute, where she was recognized for her culturally inspired work on a Latin news network. Travis received a BFA in Painting and a MFA in Painting from the University of Memphis.
Christian Brothers University offers a Bachelor in Fine Arts degree with concentrations in Art Education, Art Therapy, Graphic Design, and Studio Art. For more information on the BFA program visit: http://www.cbu.edu/cbu/Academics/SchoolofArts/fas/Art/index.htm
Hours at the Beverly & Sam Ross Gallery are Monday-Thursday, 7:45 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.; Friday, 7:45 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.; Saturday, closed; and Sunday, 1:00-11:00 p.m. Hours may vary due to university schedules. Call (901) 321-3243 to verify, or visitwww.cbu.edu/library/gallery. ###