Art Talk Monday: A Lifetime of Friendly Faces

This week’s Art Talk Monday is written by Laura Hunt Miller, NCLAC Executive Assistant.

     The artwork of local Loretta Shadow Owens is now on display at the Dixie Center for the Arts in downtown Ruston. “A Lifetime of Friendly Faces” is a collection of portraits Loretta has painted of friends and acquaintances over the years.

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     Loretta has always been a passionate person and an active community member; from a Girl Scout and 4-H member, to being nominated for the first “Outstanding Woman” award by the Lincoln Parish Chamber of Commerce, but Loretta did not become a painter until she was 40 years old.

     Loretta graduated from Louisiana Tech University, and then continued her studies in textiles and design at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, the University of Hawaii, LSU, and in Europe through a tour with the Stout State University of Wisconsin.  

     In 1989 Loretta began to study painting under the direction of local artist Douglas Walton. She studied under other local artists as well, such as Ann Eberle, Peter Jones, and Robert Burridge. Loretta found that she very much enjoyed the drawing process and its relationship to painting, working prolifically in watercolors and oils. Her work is known to engender joy and laughter from fellow artists and outside viewers alike, but for Loretta her work and the process of creating it is “a spiritual experience where time becomes irrelevant.” 

     Loretta debuted her work at the Booksellers in Natchitoches in 2008. She exhibited later that year at The Barnwell Art Center in Shreveport, and was featured as the opening exhibition for Ruston’s Lincoln Parish Library Community Center in 2010. She has won numerous awards for her art, and now occasionally teaches art classes herself.

     Loretta continues to pursue her textile and embroidery work, and other artistic explorations at Loretta’s Stichin’ Post & Gallery, 302 West Texas Ave., in downtown Ruston.

     Loretta’s work will be on display through mid-September. Come and get your first look at the show this week during a performance of Ruston Community Theatre’s The King and I!

     Artwork exhibited in the Lobby space is handled by the North Central Louisiana Arts Council in coordination with the Dixie Center for the Arts. If you’re interested in purchasing a work of art on display, please contact the NCLAC office at 255-1450. 

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