By Erin Smith
Entirely East Lansing staff writer
The East Lansing Public Art Gallery will feature the artwork of Williamston native Cindy Evans, entitled “Welcome to the Zoo” on March 3.
The exhibit is open to the public during regular hours (6 a.m. – 8 p.m. on weekdays, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. on Saturday and noon – 6 p.m. on Sunday) and is located on the second floor of the East Lansing Hannah Community Center, 819 Abbot Road. Admission is free.
Yvette Robinson, the East Lansing public art gallery director, said she found Evans’ work among a band of local artists and knew she would be perfect for the East Lansing Public Art Gallery.
“Everyone had a booth at a local art expo,” Robinson said. “I’m always looking for new artists (so) I had a little conversation with (Evans) and asked if she would be interested. I got her two years later when she wasn’t too busy.”
Planning something like this isn’t just something that happens, Robinson said. It takes at least two years in advance to get a person’s art booked at the gallery.
“We’re completely booked through 2015,” Robinson said. “Everybody holds onto these spots – they plan their lives around the month and year they have their show.”
Evans said she was thrilled to have her art featured at the gallery.
“It’s always an honor for an artist to have a solo show and to be selected to feature their work,” Evans said. “I’m happy to have work there – it’s a wonderful gallery.”
Her inspiration for her work came from taking trips to the Potter Park Zoo, and from pictures her son Scott brought back from his study abroad trip to Africa.
“I thought it would be fun to put together a collage of animals,” Evans said.
Evans was featured in December’s “Watercolor Artist” magazine as one of the 2012 “ones to watch.” She also had paintings featured at the National Watercolor Show and at many local Michigan watercolor shows.
Robinson said the greatest thing about Evans was how she doesn’t know how her piece will end up until the very end.
“(Evans) doesn’t start out like ‘this is exactly what I’m going to paint,’” Robinson said. “She allows her creativity to take over – she doesn’t limit herself.”
Depending on what piece she is working on, Evans said she will take a certain workshop to increase her skills in that area. It all depends on what she wants to do.
Corunna, Mich., resident Susan McGuire said she came out to view Evans’ work because she will be taking a class with her in April.
“I want to learn from her for when I’m teaching,” McGuire said. “I just love her work and she’s such a sweet person.
“(Her paintings) have a lot of depth. It almost looks like a print — not a typical watercolor painting. I want to learn how to do that myself.”