Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA graduate student curates exhibition for Griffith Gallery

November 11, 2013 - Robbie Goodrich

NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Art will present the exhibition "Undefined Expectations: 1970s Era Prints by British Artists" from Nov. 14 through Dec. 13 in Griffith Gallery in the Griffith Fine Arts Building on the SFA campus.

An opening reception is planned for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 14, in Griffith Gallery.

The exhibition, curated by graduate student Liz Nanney of Rowlett, will feature a selection of prints from the School of Art's permanent collection. Curating the show has provided a unique learning experience for Nanney, who hopes to combine her love of art and art history to build a future career.

As the curator, Nanney, who is pursuing a master's degree in interdisciplinary studies and certification in museum studies, selected the pieces to be shown, researched the artists and wrote the panel descriptions.

"After the show is hung, I want to create a new database for the collection," Nanney said, "because it hasn't been updated since 1992, and everything is on paper."

Describing herself as "a visual person," Nanney said an internship with SFA Galleries Director John Handley at The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House during the Summer II session and fall semester and her involvement in curating the "Undefined Expectations" exhibition has allowed her to use skills in which she believes she excels.

"I get to use the skills I'm good at - visually organizing and thinking about what will be aesthetically pleasing and creating a taste of what kind of art was out there in 1970s Britain," she said. "It's fun; I get to move around and learn new things constantly - everything I'd want in a job."

Nanney would like to some day organize a show of the artwork of the late Blaze Foley.

"He was this amazing Texas singer/songwriter who was tragically killed in the late '90s," she said. "He left behind all these wonderful sketches and drawings that are very simplistic but very powerful. He was an incredible self-taught artist, and while he's known in the Texas music scene for his songs, I'd love to bring recognition to his artwork."

It's this same desire to bring validation to the talent of up-and-coming artists that inspires Nanney as she strives toward her goal of working professionally in art.

"I could definitely see working in this field forever," she said, "because there are so many new artists creating these fantastic things; it's always changing, so there's never anything to get bored with."

The Griffith Fine Arts Building is located at 2222 Alumni Drive.

All SFA art exhibitions and opening receptions are free. For more information, call (936) 468-1131.