Nature takes over in the next installment of Thea Foundation’s The Art Department featuring the work of Arkansas-born artist Katherine Rutter on Friday, May 4.

After spending a week turning the Thea gallery walls into a temporary mural, Rutter will display her exhibition titled Meet Me in the Water in the quarterly series, which dives into femininity, beauty and connection to nature through mixed media.

"My work explores the complex ideas of femininity and beauty within fantastical and delicate environments," Rutter says. "Strongly influenced by the Southern region in which I was raised, I create ambiguous narratives of plant life merging with human and animal forms. My drawings usually begin by ‘painting’ with hair-like algae, an intuitive process that allows me to connect with my subconscious, like one might find images in clouds. The algae provides a natural aesthetic quality, but also nods to my Southern roots and its folk tradition of found materials in art.

"Conflicting themes of nostalgia, vulnerability, sexuality, wonder, subtle humor and the unknown reveal a tender experience of humanity. The vernacular expressions and innate desires we have as humans to connect to ourselves and to nature are addressed consistently throughout my work, requesting a deeper understanding of our existence."

The opening reception kicks off at 6:30 p.m. and is $10 at the door. That includes hors d'oeuvres, an open beer and wine bar and the chance to win an original print by Rutter. Her exhibit runs through May 31.

The Thea Foundation gallery’s hours are 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. and 1 - 5 p.m. Monday - Friday, and it is located at 401 Main St. in North Little Rock. For more information, call (501) 379-9512 or click here.

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