NEW ORLEANS (Nov. 2, 2018) – A month-long exhibit of the works of New Orleans contemporary artist Reuben Cheatem has kicked off the fall season in DU’s Art Gallery in Cook Hall.
Next up will be a solo exhibit by Dillard alumnus Harry Cass, starting Thursday, Nov. 8, featuring a series of acrylic paintings that focus on African American women, according to John Barnes, program coordinator for DU art program. The art will be on display through Dec. 3.
Twenty-two paintings lined either side of the wall as Cheatem addressed attendees at the exhibit opening Oct 4. The canvases, done in acrylic, showcasing modern-day expressionism with a twist of New Orleans flair, including one of pop icon Michael Jackson. Cheatem, who’s become known for his paintings of musicians and celebrities, will display his work through Friday.
Cheatem began painting in high school and received his bachelor’s degree in fine art from the University of Kansas. His art draws heavily on his New Orleans upbringings and popular music culture, and he cited his mother as one of his earliest muses because she always encouraged him to pursue his passion.
He said art is his favorite form of self-expression because it never stops being perfected.
“It’s important to redo steps. With painting or any type of art, something can always be improved.”
Cass, who teaches art at John F. Kennedy High here, graduated from Dillard in 2003. The exhibit is Cass’ first, Barnes said.
“Harris is a true son of New Orleans and draws inspiration for his paintings from his daily life as a father, husband and educator,” said Barnes. “He uses the female form in his artwork as an icon of strength and beauty.”
John Barnes, program coordinator for DU art program, said first event of the semester was a “HBCU Showcase” at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art featuring New Orleans seniors Tyler Comeaux, Tyrone Hall, Ryann Sterling and Lionell Thomas; Jackson, Miss., senior Stephano Flowers; New Orleans juniors Darien Henderson and Myron Solomon; and Atlanta sophomore Esaba Hebert. Sponsored by the New Orleans Chapter of the Links, it ran Aug. 4-Oct. 15.
(Nicholas Ross contributed to this report.)