September 12, 2012
12-240

Jessica Pope
Communications Specialist

Linda Mitchell Brings 'Truth in Animals' Exhibit to VSU's Fine ArtsGallery

 

VALDOSTA -- Born in 1960, Atlanta artist Linda Mitchell was raised by a family that nurtured her interest in both animals and art. She enjoyed painting, creating animal figures, and sewing -- which remain evident in her work more than 50 years later.

At 3:30 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 17, Mitchell will present a gallery talk about her work in Valdosta State University’s Fine Arts Gallery. Her mixed media exhibition, “Truth in Animals,” will open with a reception at 7 p.m. The public is invited to attend.

Mitchell earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in drawing and painting in 1982 from the University of Georgia. As a student at the state’s flagship institution of higher education, she “developed a special interest in lithography,” according to her online biography. “… she credits printmaking for spurring her feelings for layering images and textures.” She earned a Master of Fine Arts in drawing and painting in 1990 from Georgia State University.

“Mitchell’s early work focused on animals in multi-panel paintings, featuring cut-out figures and other dimensional elements,” according to the biography. “The paintings focused on fluidly painted four-legged creatures in dramatic situations, emphasizing their human qualities.”

Mitchell earned a Master of Fine Arts in sculpture from Georgia State University in 1994.

“Mitchell turned to sculptural work using exposed wire armatures to create animal forms,” according to the biography. “She created disturbing scenarios of stalking and predation with multiple figures, some of which were fleshed out with fabric and black sand.”

A collage class near the end of her graduate school experience opened the door for her to develop her own unique visual image.

“Collage allowed her to combine her impulse for image-making with her sculptural facility,” according to the biography. “In the dream-like juxtaposing of the real and the imagined, she feels a kinship with four modern masters -- [Mark] Chagall, [Joan] Miró, [Yves] Tanguy, and [Henri] Rousseau.”

Among the works featured in Mitchell’s “Truth in Animals” exhibition in VSU’s Fine Arts Gallery is a major installation completed in 2007 titled “Louis XIV: Too Much Will Never Be Enough.” It features a fabric sculpture of Louis XIV of France as a horned animal avatar, flanked by paintings inspired by the artist’s travels in Europe.

“I love the subject matter of animals,” said Julie Bowland, art professor and Fine Arts Gallery director. “Also, her use of color and mixed media is fantastic. Fabric, wood, molding, glass, odd bits of this and that are utilized throughout the work. One of my favorite installation pieces, ‘Louis XIV: Too Much Will Never Be Enough,’ incorporates a giant handmade stuffed animal portraying the Sun King. It’s all very creative and imaginative. I think the Department of Art students will be very inspired to try different techniques, and visitors in general will love it. I think the show will really get people talking. Each piece has an implied narrative, though it may be ambiguous and, at times, dark.”

Mitchell has enjoyed a number of solo exhibitions throughout Georgia, as well as in Alabama, Tennessee, Texas, and California. Group exhibitions include galleries and festivals in New York, Canada, Maryland, Virginia, and Kansas.

“Truth in Animals” will run through Oct. 5 in VSU’s Fine Arts Gallery, on the first floor of the Fine Arts Building, located at the intersection of Brookwood Drive and Oak Street. The gallery is open from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Fridays.

Contact Julie Bowland at (229) 333-5835 or jabowlan@valdosta.edu to learn more or to schedule a guided tour of the exhibition.

On the Web:
www.valdosta.edu/art
www.lindamitchell.30art.com

Visit http://www.flickr.com/photos/valdostastate/sets/72157631528002171/ to view more photos.