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Works of Nathan Mullins on exhibit in TU Art Gallery through November

Thomas University’s Art Gallery currently features the work of Nathan Mullins in the exhibit “Source Material” through Nov. 20. A reception with the artist will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8., in the Art Gallery.

“The works in ‘Source Material’ reflect the varied fonts from which I draw inspiration,” Mullins explained. “My work is largely concerned with what I consider to be archetypal characters and relationships. I pull from literary sources both high and low, from the lyrics to songs I listen to in my studio, and from real life. For instance, ‘Venus and Adonis (V+A4ever)’ takes cues from sources as divergent as Titian, Shakespeare and Target brand underwear. ‘Your Prayers Will Never be Answered Again’ is a reference to both Wilco lyrics and the current state of climate change denial taking place in the GOP. The large drawing ‘Too Late’ depicts a scene from David Foster Wallace’s ‘Infinite Jest,’ which itself pulls from the likes of ‘Hamlet’ and pop culture heroes like John Wayne.”

Born in Clarksdale, Mississippi, Mullins received a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2012 and a Master of Fine Arts Degree from American University in 2015. His first solo exhibition was “Supernatural, Superserious” at Almost Circle Gallery in Biloxi, Mississippi, in 2017. His group exhibitions include “Carte Blanche” at Adah Rose Gallery in Kensington, Maryland, in 2017 and 2016; “Berlin and Back” at the Goethe-Institute in Washington, D.C., in 2016; and “Blueprint” at the Katzen Arts Center in Washington, D.C. in 2015.

“I am personally concerned with the construction of heroes and myths, and I think of these paintings as kinds of icons,” Mullins stated. “While all of this may be informative as to my interests, I am truthfully only using these as excuses to play with light and color, which is my true main concern as a painter. It is my hope that the exaggerated subdued colors of these works will clue the viewer in to the fact that while real life may inform these paintings, they are not themselves real life. They exist outside of reality in a land of questionable myth-making.”

Mullins wrote for the online and print publications produced by Mississippi Modern, Inc. and served on the company's Board of Directors as Community Outreach Coordinator from 2014 to 2016. He taught painting and drawing at Savannah State University in Savannah, Georgia, from 2015 to 2018 and currently teaches at Southern Regional Technical College.

Located in the Student Life Center on TU’s Magnolia Campus, the Art Gallery is open 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, and 8 a.m.- noon Fridays. The exhibit and the reception are open to the public. There is no admission fee.

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