The University of Arkansas-Fort Smith Gallery of Art and Design will host the Arkansas Women to Watch 2023: New Worlds exhibition from January 17 though March 3, 2023. The opening reception will be held on Friday, January 27, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Gallery of Art and Design, 535 N. Waldron Rd., in Fort Smith.

Chaney Jewell, then Curator of Collections and Exhibitions at The Arts and Science Center for Southeast Arkansas in Pine Bluff, nominated four artists whose work embodies the New Worlds theme:

The Migration or Stagnation of an Individual
Environmental Changes
The Physical or Emotional Growth of an Individual
Imaginary Worlds

Curator Statement – Chaney Jewell

Anaïs Dassé depicts a fallen world, a society made of tribes of children. Dassé voices, within these imaginary doomsday scenes, her concerns regarding how humanity lives beside the natural environment with little regard for the longevity of our culture or natural habitats.

Hannah McBroom explores themes of transgender identity, materiality, and the body. McBroom reflects the process of her transition, the metamorphosis of her outer self, and how the world perceives her, more accurately reflecting her inner self.

Aimée Papazian’s piece Which End Is Up? was created during the pandemic while in isolation with her family. As a result, Papazian produced an imaginary landscape, allowing her conception of the world to grow as her experiences with the outer world shrank.

Heidi Carlsen-Rogers’ By a Thread series analyzes how the world as we know it is disappearing; our environment crumbling around us. Vegetation portrayed is beautiful but frayed, as large amounts of string appear to fall from the tapestry.