Exhibition at WF Museum of Art strives to show audience they aren’t alone during pandemic

Local News

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — After dealing with a pandemic for over a year now, your perspective on so much around the world may have changed.

“Our lenses may change on how we view things… How has context changed? How do we react differently to things?” Wichita Falls Museum of Art at MSU Curator of Collections & Exhibitions Danny Bills said.

This new exhibit at the WFMA at MSU hopes to help capture some of those feelings, and to let people know they aren’t alone.

“I also saw this piece as a contemplative piece, now I see some isolation and some other things in it,” Bills said.

The exhibit explores different experiences of COVID-19 and the pandemic, like gratefulness, help, stigma, violence and grief.

“We also want you to be able to process a little bit about what you’ve been through, have an opportunity to do that, you know I think it takes time to stop and slow down and think ‘wow we’ve been through this and it’s been hard’ and I hope you can recognize you are not alone,” WFMA at MSU Director Tracee Robertson said.

It also features Indiana artist Jessica Calderwood, in partnership with the Harvey Art Gallery at MSU.

“Her work has evolved because of the pandemic as well, so it’s kind of a metaphor for the exhibit as well,” Robertson said.

Calderwood zoom called with Stephanie Rhoads and her students at Burkburnett Middle School.

It gave them a tour of her workshop and inspiration to create sculptures of their own to be on display.

“One of the things that’s hard, when you become aware of suffering, it’s hard to be left without a way to help,” Robertson said.

One way they want to help: the story wall.

“We wanted to give audiences an opportunity to express their story about their home or whatever experience you want to talk about that you’ve experienced this past year,” Robertson said.

While most of the exhibit features works from the WFMA permanent collection, Bills said the pandemic morphed so many views, that even pieces you’ve seen before, may take on a whole new meaning.

“You sort of look at them a little differently,” Bills said.

While some have taken comfort in the isolation, Bills wants you to know you’re not alone if you didn’t.

“And the people who have had negative ones need to know their not alone, and i think bringing this and seeing this exhibit can help with that,” Bills said.

Officials also added none of this would be possible without the individual and annual donors along with anyone who gives to the museum.

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