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  • Thea Foundation


The fourth installment of The Art Department, a quarterly young professionals series and project of the Thea Foundation, will feature the works of painter John Harlan Norris and debut with a reception Friday, Aug.8, 2014, from 6:30 to 9:00pm. at the Thea Foundation. The Art Department series, which launched in November 2013, has a mission to engage up-and-coming art patrons and to eventually cultivate a community of arts-focused philanthropic involvement among central Arkansas’s young professionals.

Aug. 8, $10 at the door covers heavy hors d’oeuvres, an open bar, a live musical performance (band TBA) and the chance to win an original painting by John Harlan Norris. Get $3 off the cover charge with the event password, to be unveiled on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at 5 p.m. Aug. 8. Norris’ work will be on display at the Thea Foundation through the month of August.

Norris’ current body of work, called “Cast,” features a series of portraits in which the identities of the subjects are concealed by the signifiers of the roles they assume in their daily lives. From the artist’s statement: “We all experience moments in which the roles we play in our daily lives come to define us in powerful ways. In the pursuit of prosperity, leisure, social status and personal meaning, we often assume identities that both define and fail to define us. My current body of work explores the possibilities and limitations of our daily occupations at a time in which we frequently change jobs, balance multiple roles and cannot easily delineate between private and public life.”

Norris, originally from Kentucky, earned his B.A. from Centre College in Danville, Ken., and his M.F.A. from Louisiana State University, where he served as adjunct art instructor. He resides in Jonesboro, Ark., where he is associate professor of art at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. He has exhibited work in venues including Jonathan Ferrara Gallery (New Orleans, LA), David Lusk Gallery (Memphis, TN), Contemporary Arts Center Las Vegas (Las Vegas, NV), Visual Arts Center of New Jersey (Summit, NJ), Arkansas Arts Center (Little Rock, AR), Florida State Museum of Fine Arts (Tallahassee, FL), Texas A & M University (Corpus Christi, TX), The Hilliard Art Museum (Lafayette, LA) and many others. In 2012 he was awarded an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Arkansas Arts Council. Learn more about Norris’ work at

“John Harlan Norris: Cast” will be on display at the Thea Foundation through the month of August. The Thea Foundation is located at 401 Main Street in North Little Rock. Gallery hours are M – F, 9 a.m. - 12pm, 1 – 5 p.m.


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