Art administrator has his first one-man show in Wichita

1:26:50 PM CDT - Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Don Byrum's works are part of the collections of museums and corporations and have even shown up in a daytime soap opera and movie blockbuster. Now he's displaying an overview of his works in his first one-man show in Wichita.

Nineteen of Byrum's drawings and prints are on display in his "Works of Art" exhibition at the Steckline Art Gallery in Newman University's De Mattias Fine Arts Center. The exhibition runs through Sunday, Feb. 22.

Byrum, a printmaking professor and chair of WSU's School of Art and Design since 1993, has shown his art in 146 art exhibitions, including some faculty exhibitions at WSU, and is represented in 39 public and corporate collections.

Among the pieces in "Works of Art" is "Dryden No. 3," which was part of the set of ABC's "One Life to Live." All but one of the 19 pieces are for sale. "Dryden No. 3" has already been sold.

Byrum created several of the pieces while on university-sponsored creative project grants from his previous institution, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and from WSU.

"Often when the creative faculty do work on a research grant, we don't have an opportunity to show the city or campus what we've done," says Byrum. The Clayton Staples Gallery at WSU was too small to mount his show; the Steckline Gallery is double its size.

This is also an important art event for Byrum because most people may not realize that while he's been an art administrator for 20 years, he's also been a productive, professional artist.

Listed in "Who's Who in American Art," he has shown prints, drawings and paintings throughout the United States, plus France, Morocco, Spain, and Germany. His artwork has been purchased by the National Endowment for the Arts, Bank of America, Wachovia Bank and Trust, Hilton Hotel, Lehrman Institute, Dillard's Corp., and Lee Jeans Corp. The Chrysler Museum of Art, Asheville Art Museum, Minnesota Museum of Art, and the American Embassy in Madrid, Spain, include his art in their collections. A silk-screen print he created, a one-of-a-kind print not in the show, made an appearance in the movie "Pelican Brief," starring Julia Roberts and Denzel Washington.

About 200 people attended the opening reception for the exhibition Jan. 23.

"Works of Art" can b e seen in the Steckline Gallery 1-4 p.m. Tuesdays-Fridays and Sundays through Feb. 22. Admission is free. For more information, call 942-4291.

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