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AETN launches statewide arts initiative


CONWAY — The Arkansas Educational Television Network (AETN) has launched LOUPE, a statewide initiative magnifying Arkansas artists, arts organizations and art events. The initiative includes the one-hour broadcast of “LOUPE” Friday, Sept. 13, at 9 p.m., as well as the interactive LOUPE website, aetn.org/ The LOUPE initiative is intended to build an arts and culture collection by curating a gallery of information, visuals and events from across Arkansas. The initiative will also feature new stories about the arts in Arkansas, in addition to revisiting classic features from the AETN archives. The LOUPE broadcast special will share these video segments on-air, while a variety of special “artisodes” will be presented alongside articles, events and educational resources on aetn.org/loupe, an engaging aggregate website highlighting various topics related to arts and culture in Arkansas.

Films produced for the initiative, several of which will be featured in the “LOUPE” broadcast, include:

• “Love You, Too” — This film profiles Peggie Wallis, an 88-year-old ballet teacher who grew up in New Zealand and studied ballet in Europe. She now lives in northwest Arkansas where she trains young dancers to amazingly high levels of technique using her unique brand of energy and humor.

• “The Music of Friends” — This film follows the Meadow Lark Trio — made up of Rachel Herman, a violinist from western Pulaski County; Jenny Nulson, a pianist from Greenbrier; and Michael Stiritz, a cellist from Russellville — on their journey to prepare for the Faulkner Chamber Music Festival.

• “Westland” — This film explores the life and art of reclusive Winslow, Ark., artist Tim West. Filmed over a period of six years, the film details Winslow’s active career — which spans more than 60 years — from his early success to his battles with personal demons and return home.

• “LeeNora Parlor” — This film follows self-taught folk artist, Arkansan LeeNora Parlor, who creates paintings inspired by her ancestors and other beings who have given her insight into their lives and, by proxy, her own. Parlor depicts and shares how memories of her childhood in Camden drew her back to the country and how her return to the South has enhanced her work and health.

• “Robyn Horn” — This film documents the life of abstract sculptor Robyn Horn and invites viewers to experience the artist’s creative process. Describing her attraction to the artworks’ many elements and her exploration of form, texture and geometry, Horn leads the audience through her more than 25 years of active work and varied series and a recent installation at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

• “Carousel” — This film profiles the work of Becky Witsell, Little Rock artist and expert in historic restoration. With a career spanning more than 30 years, Witsell’s work has long been exhibited across the state. In “Carousel,” she explains the process of restoring the horses of the historic carousel at the Little Rock Zoo to their original colors and design.

• “Kevin Cole” — This film showcases the varied aptitude of Pine Bluff native Kevin Cole through interviews with the award-winning artist — now a resident of Atlanta, Ga. — about his thematic use of neckties in his work.