Photos, ceramics displayed as part of March 8 opening


Peyton Alonzo

Art sphomore major, Carly Kowalick, pauses to view the art displayed in the Juanita and Ralph Harvey Art Gallery, from artist Judy Sharrod and S. Gayle Stevens.

As the staff of the Wichita Falls Museum of Art opened the doors students, faculty, and members of community trickled in to view the two new opening art galleries on display.

Judy Sherrod and S. Gayle Stevens, Nocturnes and Other Murmurations focused on the work of Sherrod, a pinhole camera builder and artist, and Stevens, a wet plate collodion artist. There were 53 pieces of artwork displayed along the walls of the Juanita Harvey Art Gallery.

“We decided to create a series of photographic pieces of the gulf, as mammoth wet plate pinhole tintypes. As no women were working in mammoth plate collodion pinhole tintypes style of art,” Stevens said.

Sherrod who died in 2017, was a Wichita Falls native and attended Midwestern State.

“Gary Goldberg, professor and gallery director, had called me and explained that he would like to exhibit our ‘Nocturnes’ and other work of Sherrod’s at MSU as a memorial to her. As the opening coincided with International Women’s Day, a fitting tribute to a woman who was both a great artist and great supporter of women in the arts,” Stevens said.

This exhibition coincides with the annual gathering of the photographic collection Shootaplooza, which Sherrod founded.

Stevens said, “Art can’t live in a vacuum. It needs to be seen and discussed to thrive. As I understand it, Midwestern State University has an ongoing mission of showing a variety of exhibitions each academic year to augment the entire art program. Whether it is a student show or a visiting artist exhibition it is important to have an exchange of ideas. It is important to the entire community to expand.”

The Wichita Falls Museum of Art is hosting a Shootaplooza workshop with an opening reception on March 15.

Carly Kowalick, art sophomore said, “I went to watch her lecture and wanted to see her technique and artwork in person, it gives students the ability to show off their artwork and gives a creative outlet for others who aren’t artists”

Nocturnes and Other Murmurations will continue to be displayed until April 12.

“After hearing what she had to say about her inspiration behind each piece I enjoyed seeing the motivation and the point she was conveying. I enjoyed her technique of taking ordinary or atypical objects and bringing them a sense of life,” Kowalick said.

The Wichita Falls Museum of Art also is displaying artwork from resident artist Austyn Taylor, and other works from the Ceramic Studio 12. Taylor is an artist and educator as well for the continuing education ceramic students.

Taylor said, “I really want to teach at a college level and have that experience with those students. People want art. It’s so important to have a place where people from the community and continuing education to use as a resource and to have that dialogue. Sculpture used to be the most powerful art form. It is great to see the sculptures and how people are creating it today.”

Taylor has 16 individual stylistic pieces of her gestural and eclectic sculptures throughout her exhibition.

“Art can help people pay attention and think differently and appreciate every day a little more, and to see how it is a limited time experience. I hope that people get to feel that they can make art too,” Taylor said.

Artwork from Taylor and the Ceramic Studio 12 will be on display until April 12.

Savannah Lopez, general business sophomore said, “I really enjoyed all the art on display, in the galleries. You can tell that the artists are very passionate about each and every individual art pieces. It was great to see how many students, not just art major, who attended to see the different works of art.”