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FAU’s Jupiter Campus Library Presents Two Exhibitions, “Fe-male: Transitions” and “Elegant Wasteland”

JUPITER, FL (August 25, 2009 ) – Florida Atlantic University’s John D. MacArthur Campus Library Gallery is hosting two exhibitions, “Fe-male: Transitions” and “Elegant Wasteland,” from Monday, August 24, through Friday, October 16, on FAU’s Jupiter campus, located at 5353 Parkside Drive.

             “Fe-male Transitions” is a multi-media contemporary exhibition by Diane Arrieta and Jackie Kern that celebrates womanhood with a loud and positive voice of color, forms, text and texture. The show includes paintings, collages, boldly colored graphic illustrations of women transforming into superheroes, decorated mannequins, paper dolls, dresses, sculptures and video.

            “Elegant Wasteland” is a photography show that explores the wasteland of empty parking lots and abandoned stores by Texas artist Karen Williams. Her work reflects the formal aspects of abandoned buildings, as well as the nostalgia, space, isolation and waste.

            This is the second time Arrieta, the gallery’s exhibition coordinator, and Kern, former assistant director of diversity student services for the MacArthur campus, have shown their art together.

           Arrieta’s work in the exhibit includes a life-size silhouette cutout of an “average sized” woman with a “window” in her torso.  There viewers can watch a retro video of women in a beauty contest.  Another interactive work of Arrieta’s features a satirical look at teen pregnancy.  The viewer can spin the wheel of chance to determine the identity of the baby’s father.

Arrieta, an FAU alumna, was born in western Pennsylvania to parents of Czech/German and Native American decent. She was influenced by her father, who was a musician and artist.  Arrieta received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from FAU in 1996 and became seriously focused as an artist in 2000 while doing her graduate studies at FAU. Arrieta’s work has been shown in New York, Los Angeles, Miami and other U.S. galleries. She is a recipient of the 2008 South Florida Cultural Consortium Fellowship for Visual and Media Arts.

            Kern’s work for the exhibition is a journey of paintings of houses, paper dolls, figures, dresses and text, and decorated mannequins and objects in Mother Figure, Father Figure and Baby Shoe.   Mother Figure is covered with flowers, beads, drawings, writing, babies and other surprising items.  Father Figure, while more simple in design, contains a bird’s nest and bird inside the male form.  A crocheted scarf ties the art works together with the theme of child/woman/wife/mommy and the quest of identity and transformation. 

            Kern was born in Schenectady, New York and has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting and drawing from the State University of New York College at Purchase. She also holds a Master of Science with a major in education and minor in visual arts from the University of North Dakota and a Ph.D. in teaching and learning with a focus on multicultural education and a minor in visual arts from the University of North Dakota.  She has shown in New York, North Dakota and Florida.

            Arrieta chose the wasteland series of Williams’ work to exhibit at the gallery because it represents the current climate of the U.S. economy.  One of Williams’ goals is to create a dialog about an awareness of the buildings in her photographs and how they fit in with today’s fast paced, get it quick, get it now trends. She highlights a distinctive characteristic of abandoned buildings that makes it unique.

            “I treat these buildings as subjects of a portrait,” said Williams. “Presenting these photographs in a simple, straightforward way allows the viewer not only to study the generalities of the subject implied by the building’s classification, but also to see what is unique and individualistic.”

Williams grew up as an Army brat and spent most of her childhood traveling from place to place. She was introduced to photography by becoming the family photographer. Williams received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in photography at St. Edward’s University in Austin and her Master of Fine Art in photography at Savannah College of Art and Design.

Library hours are Sunday from 12:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Call 561-799-8530 or visit


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