New public art sculptures installed on the Miss Sud campus

Fri, 08/10/2021 – 7:45 am | By: Ivonne Kawas

The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) Biennial Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition, sponsored by the College of Arts and Sciences, the Art and Design Program, and Partners for the Arts, showcases the work of nationally recognized artists and will remain on the Hattiesburg campus until March 2023.

A committee made up of a student, professor, and staff from the College of Arts and Sciences selected the pieces from dozens of entries through a blind jury.

“Public art aims not only to beautify the campus, but also to promote the exchange of ideas and enhance the campus experience,” said Jennifer Torres, professor of art and design. “This year we have some amazing large-scale outdoor works that will make you stop and engage in conversations, because you will find them inspiring and interesting.

Chris Wubbena’s “Action Reaction”, an acrylic and stainless steel spray paint is installed in front of the Liberal Arts Building. Wubbena, who is currently professor of sculpture at Southeast Missouri State University, has had her work exhibited in indoor and outdoor exhibitions across the United States. Wubbena’s work takes inspiration from classical figurative sculpture as well as geological and Neolithic rock formations, and takes a closer look at the individual, the person and the weight they carry.

“Portal”, a patinated steel piece by Kelsey Wishik, is located in front of the International Center. Wishik, USM alumnus and multimedia artist, focuses on works ranging from two-dimensional drawings and paintings to sculpture, performance and installation. Through sculpture, two-dimensional works, music and movement, she seeks to discover the diverse capacities of creativity as a unifying language, a form of reactive intelligence and a tool for empowered human development.

“When one door closes another door opens …” Matt Moyer’s steel pieces are located between the Cook and McCain libraries. Moyer, who maintains his active ceramics and sculpture studio in Columbia, Missouri, creates works that range from functional pottery to mixed ceramic sculpture and large outdoor welded steel installations. Its three ancient doors represent a timeless scenario, a closed door hinting at the possibilities that lie beyond if you are willing to be patient and approach with an open mind from all angles to find a new and unique perspective that will change and will improve your life.

“Yellow Roses,” a mild steel piece by Laura E. Walters, will be installed at a later date behind the Liberal Arts Building. Walters has her own studio based in Dallas, Texas where she began creating her Aqua Designs collection. Walters’ work channels the underlying energy and rhythms of the natural world, transforming metal into elegant sculptures that celebrate the beauty and complexity of our universe. From his early bronze works to more recent pieces in steel, delicate and organic forms emerge in a variety of scales.

The public is invited to tour the campus and view these sculptures. Learn more about the sculptures and the artists.

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