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February 6, 2014

Drawings, paintings showcase Wabash River at ISU exhibit

TERRE HAUTE — A series of drawings and paintings showcasing the natural beauty of the Wabash River will be on display today through Feb. 14 in Indiana State University’s Turman Art Gallery.

There will be a closing reception from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Feb. 13.

Inspired by Terre Haute’s 2013 Year of the River celebration, artist Nancy Nichols-Pethick set out in June to paint the Wabash River during the course of a few months as part of a sabbatical project.

“Working out of my ‘mobile studio,’ a Chrysler Town and Country minivan, I travelled nearly the entire length of the river from north (Huntington, Indiana) to south (New Harmony) and back again throughout the summer, fall, and winter,” Nichols-Pethick, an associate professor of art, said.

“The paintings and drawings in this exhibition are the result of those travels, and represent a form of visual note taking,” she added. “They are quick (no more than an hour in most cases) and meant to convey the particulars of atmosphere and topography with a minimum of detail.”

Born in Alaska and raised in Maine this was my first experience with the Wabash. “I’m a native of Maine, and thought this would be a great way to get to know my ‘adopted’ state.”

Her perspective of the river differs from the view many lifelong Hoosiers hold.

“I’ve actually been surprised at how beautiful it is,” Nichols-Pethick said. “That’s really what I’ve been struck by — the enduring quality of this river.”

The exhibition is free. The Turman Art Gallery is in the Fine Arts Building on Chestnut Street, just west of Seventh Street. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

For more information call 812-237-3720.

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