North Central College - Naperville, IL

Art exhibit celebrates American road with images from each state

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Contact: Ted Slowik, Director of PR and Media Relations, 630-637-5307,

June 10, 2010—Just in time for summer family vacation road trips, a new art exhibit at North Central College celebrates vintage Americana with paintings representing all 50 states.

Visitors are welcome to view the free exhibit, “States: Paintings from the American Road,” by artist Karen Stinnett of Amissville, Va., June 20 through July 22 at North Central College’s Oesterle Library Gallery, 320 E. School St., Naperville.

The artist will greet visitors during a closing reception from 6 to 8 p.m. July 21 at the gallery.

Stinnett’s warm, watercolor and oil paintings depict barns, landscapes, highways, agricultural scenes, signs and wheels from each of America’s 50 states. Stinnett paints places that are often architectural and always about the abstraction that light creates on structures. Alleys, rooftops, barns, trailers and hotels make up some of the subject matter, but the theme is always the abstract forms the subjects create.

“My life has been defined by travel and the work has been informed by it,” Stinnett says of her new exhibit. “The States series paintings are views of American highways. I have chosen to find a trailer, an iconic altered landscape, agricultural building and a sign in each state. Kudzu in Georgia, potato fields in Idaho, cotton in South Carolina and road dust in North Dakota and Iowa are representative of the landscapes.”

Stinnett has won numerous awards, including first prizes in the American National Miniature Show, “Watercolor: Southeast,” Westmoreland Nationals and a special merit award at the Savoir Faire Juried National Exhibition. She earned a bachelor of fine arts degree from Western Carolina University, studied painting and printmaking at the University of Georgia and earned a master of fine arts degree from the Cranbrook Academy of Art. Her work is in many corporate and private collections, including R.J. Reynolds, Inc., Wachovia National Bank, Embassy Suites Hotels, Equicor Corp., The University of Virginia, Charles E. Smith Co., and Gullet, Sanford & Robinson, Inc. Visit to learn more about the artist.

During the summer, the Oesterle Library Gallery is open 8 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturdays and 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sundays. The gallery is closed July 4-5. Contact Nickole C. Lanham, North Central’s gallery director, at 630-637-5375 or for more information.

This exhibit is one of many ongoing programs at North Central College to enrich and broaden the cultural and academic outlook for the College and community. North Central offers a variety of venues accommodating a rich range of local and world-class events, performances and space needs for the public. For a comprehensive schedule of musical performances, theatrical and dance productions, art exhibits and lectures, visit or call the box office at 630-637-SHOW (7469).