Bess Jenkins Club hears program about A&S Center events


On a beautiful early, fall afternoon, the members of the Bess Jenkins Club met in the Oak Room of the Pine Bluff Country Club.

President Jeanette McGrew presided over the meeting, and Sandra Poore, vice president and program chairman, announced the theme for the year, “The Arts and Artists”. She also introduced the speaker, Lenore Shoults, executive director of the Arts & Science Center for Southeast Arkansas, who apprised the members of forthcoming events at the center.

The center was founded in 1968 and commissioned by the city of Pine Bluff in 1971, and is operated for the benefit of all citizens of Southeast Arkansas. Its mission is to provide opportunities for the practice, teaching, performance, enjoyment and understanding of the arts and sciences. Its collections emphasize African-American art, Arkansas artists, and the art of the Delta.

Current exhibits include “Kevin Cole: Straight from the Soul” and the Arkansas Discovery Network exhibit, “Exploring the Frontier: Arkansas 1540-1840.”

Nationally renowned artist, Cole, returns to his hometown of Pine Bluff with a retrospective of 25 years of art. “Straight from the Soul” is a selection of 30 works from 1986-2012. The exhibition registers Cole’s creative union of message and form, color and design, and showcases his aptitude for drawing, painting, and sculptural assemblage. His work is in corporate and private collections as well as museum collections that include the Smithsonian Museum of Art, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, and the Georgia Museum of Contemporary Art.

The Arkansas Discovery Network exhibit, “Exploring the Frontier: Arkansas 1540-1840” is a hands-on, science exhibit that asks the question, “how did people explore the new frontier?” A beautiful Arkansas River scene greets the visitor upon entering the “Exploring the Frontier” exhibit. Children’s photographs can be taken paddling in the Native American style canoe. Visitors can obtain provisions at the trading post, calculate what can cross the river on a raft, use compass and sextant, and learn about explorers, fur trappers and settlers.

Shoults also informed the members that Potpourri 2012 will be held on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 and Razzle Dazzle and Wildlife will be held later in the year.

After the program, chocolate cake and coffee were served at tables centered with crotons in brown baskets with big, orange bows. Hostesses for the meeting were the officers McGrew, Poore, Hall and Miller.