The Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art recently released a new exhibition on Oct. 8, titled “The Joy Fields." This work is made up of 24 oil paintings, with most on large-scale canvases with some works on paper.
The work came to life at the hands of Auburn alumna Whitney Wood Bailey who graduated in 2005. She currently lives in Brooklyn and has received many awards over the years including the AT&T Audience Award at the Brooklyn Arts Festival (2012), Grant Recipient and Finalist for Forward Arts Foundation Emerging Artist Award (2010) and the New Artist Initiative Award at the Hambidge Center (2009).
Cindi Malinick, director and chief curator of the museum, said the museum's theme this year is "juxtaposition."
"The exhibition schedule has been filled with a range of artistic voices and time periods presented — from the works of the Roman Baroque to the very best in American craft," Malinick said.
With the ending of this year coming in the next couple of months, Malinick said the museum is comparing and contrasting two contemporary artists' works: Whitney Wood Bailey and Anila Quayyum Agha.
"While Agha creates using shadow and light in three-dimensional work, Wood Bailey masterfully paints with a vibrant color palette," Malinick said.
Bailey's vibrant color palette is apparent in the Joy Fields Exhibition, which will be on display until Jan. 2.
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“This exhibition is special because not only does the survey feature recent work, but the artist is an alumna whose work is collected and exhibited nationally and internationally," Malinick said.
Malinick and Bailey worked together on content for this exhibition. However, the name came from Bailey herself.
“Wood Bailey began producing this work following a difficult diagnosis," Malinick said. "She discovered that she was intolerant to all components of her painting process, most foods and environments."
Malinick said Baliey told her that the diagnosis had put her in a dark place until she discovered a solution.
"She [Baliey] did research into the extraordinary science of neuroplasticity and was able to return to painting and other activities by 'rewiring' the mind-body connection," Malinick said. "In her words, she encountered 'a new kind of joy, one that is not dependent on life circumstances.'”
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