The Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art and the UNLV Office of Undergraduate Research are proud to present A Drawing a Day, a group exhibition documenting the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic through the work of twenty-two artists. Curated by Emmanuel Muñoz, A Drawing A Day consists of over thirty artworks including drawings, sketches, collage, painting, and a musical instrument. Muñoz’s curation serves as a small but important sample of the more than 790 works of art submitted to the Barrick’s interactive online project, A Drawing a Day Keeps the Pandemic Away. Materials from the curator’s interviews with the artists will also be available for visitors to explore.
The project, which was launched soon after Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak issued a stay-at-home order in March 2020, offered a way for a newly isolated community to reconnect. Every day from March 18 through to April 30, 2020, the Barrick posted a unique prompt on its Instagram account (@unlvmuseum) and invited the community to respond by making works of art.
With no restrictions on age or experience level, the participants ranged from professional adult artists to children collaborating with their parents. Images of the artworks were shared online, creating an evolving digital gallery that reflected the thoughts, feelings, and experiences of its audience.
A Drawing a Day brings a selection of these artworks from the virtual world to the physicality of the gallery wall. Revisiting them one year after they were created, the exhibition presents them as evidence that art can help us continue to move forward when our questions about the path ahead of us become unanswerable. It intends to celebrate all of the artists, young and old, who helped us stay in touch during a time of crisis and isolation. As one of the artists, Jeff Musser states, “We didn’t know what was going on. Drawings weren’t going to solve the problem of the Coronavirus, but as far as something that people could reach for and aspire to, that’s something that we could all do as a community.”
The curator says “At its core, the goal for the show is not only to explore the influence art has on a community but to prove that its impact is important. It started as an online project and that was all that we intended at first, to create a space where people could find peace for a while. But after the incredible participation from people all over, we knew there was much more going on. The artists shown here are proof that art has a place in any conversation.”
A Drawing A Day features work by Sue Havens, Brent Holmes, Georgina Lewis, Daniel Magaña, Jeff Musser, Beverly Neas, Glenn Nowak, Kate Parnell, Christel Polkowski, Heidi Rider, Marianne Snow, Stephanie Sumler, and ten students from Pat Diskin Elementary School. A complete list of the artists who participated in A Drawing A Day Keeps The Pandemic Away, along with images of their artworks, can be found in the Museum’s online catalogs for the project at https://issuu.com/unlvmuseum
The exhibition runs from April 19 - July 24, 2021. Entry to the museum is free. Please see the Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art website to read our safety guidelines.
Support for this exhibition is provided by the WESTAF Regional Arts Resilience Fund, a relief grant developed in partnership with The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support arts organizations in the 13-state western region during the COVID-19 pandemic. Support and funding also comes from the UNLV Office of Undergraduate Research, who help undergraduates in their efforts to discover, innovate, create, and experience research at UNLV.
About the Curator
Originally from Guadalajara, Jalisco, Emmanuel Muñoz is a funded student researcher through the UNLV Office of Undergraduate Research, studying architecture and art history. Most of his time is spent looking at the ways art touches the individual and collective experience. His own art is often just a product of pencil and sketchbook. He is currently living somewhere in North Las Vegas, Nevada, working from his bedroom late into the night. He is an educational outreach assistant and co-captain at the Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art at UNLV.
About the Artists
Wife, mother, and retired USPS worker, Beverly Neas moved to Nevada from Boston Massachusetts in 2005. She started drawing when she saw a post placed by UNLV for the Pandemic Drawings project on social media, hasn’t stopped since. She is on Instagram @vegasmammy.
Brent Holmes is an artist, activist, and cultural animator whose work investigates contemporary social structures through a historical lens. Much of his work examines epistemological warfare, the body, food, play, and cultural discourse. He has exhibited at the Torrance Art Museum, the Nevada Museum of Art, and is part of the permanent collection of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art. He is the co-organizer of local performance art event RADAR, an arts writer, and curator.
Christel Polkowski is a UNLV alumna, born and raised in Las Vegas. She teaches elementary art at E.W. Griffith Elementary School. In addition to art, she enjoys birding, listening to podcasts, and watching reality TV.
Daniel Magaña spends time enjoying everything around him, trying to make something out of simple things and seeing where that takes him. He has lived in Las Vegas for a greater portion of his life, affecting how he perceives the surrounding man-made landscape and realizing that in his drawings. His observations lead him to draw little sketches while studying the city’s past.
Georgina Lewis (she/her) lives in Boston and received her MFA in Sound from Bard College. Her work has been presented at numerous venues including the Visual Studies Workshop, Boston University's 808 gallery, Fountain Street Gallery, Grapefruits Art Space in Portland OR, AREA CODE art fair, and Acogedor in LA. During the pandemic, she has focused on quick drawings and small sculptures as well as singing to her pet rabbits.
Glenn NP Nowak, Associate Professor of Architecture, is the founder and coordinator of the Hospitality Design (HD) Concentration at the UNLV School of Architecture. His work and design research often involves community-integrated projects that focus on social, environmental, and economic sustainability. He earned his Master of Architecture from Cornell University and his Bachelor of Architecture and Bachelor of Science in Environmental Design from Ball State. He is a licensed architect in Nevada.
Heidi Rider is a visual and performing artist based in Las Vegas, NV.
Jeff Musser is a graduate of The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and is currently based in Northern California. His style has changed dramatically over time, but his love for portraiture and narrative figurative painting has always been at the heart of his practice.
Kate Parnell is a Washington DC based artist whose Instagram project @garfieldfrommemory is entering its third year. She is a graduate of the Cooper Union and received her MFA from Bard College.
Marianne Campbell is a parent-artist, early childhood educator, and former child whose work explores intersections of motherhood, childhood, memory, play, and place. A native Houstonian, she currently lives in Virginia with her husband and two children.
Stephanie Sumler grew up in Marina, California and obtained a B.A. in Visual and Public Art at California State University-Monterey Bay. Her mediums include mixed media collage, illustration, and photography, utilizing diverse topics such as pop culture icons, femininity and nature.
Sue Havens (born 1972 in Rochester, New York) is an artist based in New York and Tampa. She is currently Assistant professor of Art at the University of South Florida. Since accepting a R1 Research University position at The University of South Florida in 2015, she has expanded her practice to include ceramics. Her works are born out of previously mined shaped paintings and paper constructions, and recombine the energy found in the world's vernacular (thrift store scraps, pavement, Turkish kilims, supermarket packaging, bark) transmitting these through objects.
Pat Diskin Elementary School Artists
Carol Flores Ochoa: The artist mentions, “My name is Carol Flores Ochoa and the things that I liked about my artwork is the cat because I love cats! Another thing is that I thought that the drawing I made would be a good drawing for the museum. Finally, I made that drawing because it kinda describes me because I love cats! I love watermelon! And I love the beach! That‘s all of what I like about my artwork and why I did it.”
Chloe Alexa Ibañez Lugo: The artist mentions, “My name is Chloe Alexa Ibañez Lugo. I start a thought that reminds me of good times. I love putting something about my feelings and that’s what I draw.”
Edwin Martinez: The artist mentions, “My name is Edwin Martinez I am a 4th grader kid. I like art, my teacher is the nicest person that teaches me a lot of things about art, and the history of art. I like to be creative, paint, draw pictures and create things people have never seen. I enjoy doing draws and crafts. I like to explore to see new things and then I can draw it and do a beautiful piece of art. Art means to me the beautiful part of life.”
Ethan Martinez: The artist mentions, “My name is Ethan Martinez. I like to use tools to help me to draw better pictures. I enjoy doing art because I can draw pictures and also I like to be creative, add color on it, the most that I like is draw holidays events, because it help me to open my mind to have a better imagination to do draws and I love to do Art because it help me to be calm and peaceful. I like to try new art drawings and do it with all my heart and mind.”
Justo Almanza: The artist mentions, “I like realistic drawings because they look cool and I like it because it is a challenge to draw. I also like cartoons and I draw Sonic the hedgehog a lot. It is fun to draw. I also like to draw Mario and Luigi.”
Iker Flores Ochoa: The artist mentions, “I’m Iker Flores, I like to create art inspired on anime. My most common inspiration is the Kakashi Hatake anime character that appears in three animes. Why I like to draw anime is because it's entertaining to watch and it has many characters with many personalities and styles and it is a very good inspiration for drawing.”
Kylee Zimmerman: The artist mentions, “My name is Kylee. I enjoy creating art that blends colors especially using chalk. I think the colors are very beautiful.”
KC Ramos: The artist mentions, “My name is KC and I like art because it is really fun to make. I like to make any kind of art that I can. I like drawing, coloring, building with legos, sculpting with clay and sometimes I like painting. I like art because it is fun and makes me feel happy.”
Osvaldo Navarro Jimenez: The artist mentions, ”My name is Osvaldo Navarro. I am 10 years old, in 4th grade, and enjoy art. I like drawing anime characters, especially the characters from Naruto and Dragon Ball Z. I really enjoyed drawing because it relaxes me, I can be creative, and makes me feel proud of myself when I finish it.”
Sophia Almanza: The artist mentions, “I like art that is cartoonistic. My art is inspired by some characters in movies or in TV shows like Star Wars, Shopkins and Tom and Jerry, and other TV shows. Most of the time I use bright colors like the spring colors. Sometimes I go on YouTube and search up art for kids and there are YouTubers that inspire me to start my own art and also I copy some of their drawings.”
About the Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art
The Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art believes everyone deserves access to art that challenges our understanding of the present and inspires us to create a future that holds space for us all. Located on the campus of the most racially diverse university in the United States, we strive to create a nourishing environment for those who continue to be neglected by contemporary art museums, including BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ groups. As the only art museum in the city of Las Vegas, we commit ourselves to leveling barriers that limit access to the arts, especially for first-time visitors. To facilitate access for low-income guests we provide free entry to all our exhibitions, workshops, lectures, and community activities. Our collection of artworks offers an opportunity for researchers and scholars to develop a more extensive knowledge of contemporary art in Southern Nevada. The Barrick Museum is part of the College of Fine Arts at the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV).
The Barrick Museum of Art is open to the public Wednesday - Saturday, 10 a.m.- 5 p.m.
The Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art is located in the heart of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas campus. The museum is easily accessed from the west side of campus at the intersection of Harmon Avenue and University Center Drive. Drive east on East Harmon Ave until the road enters the campus and terminates in a parking lot. The Museum will be on your right, next to a desert landscape garden. Directions here.
Visitors may park in metered, staff, and student spots free of charge after 7 pm on weekdays, 1 pm on Fridays, and all day Saturday. Daily, weekly, or monthly permits can be purchased from Parking and Transportation Services. Metered parking spaces for visitors can be found in the parking lot outside the Barrick’s entrance, along East Harmon Ave, and in the lot behind the Lied Library. Other metered green zones are available in the Cottage Grove Avenue Parking Garage and parking areas throughout campus.