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  • Nancy Lewis '76
  • Beloved
  • 2017
  • Mixed media (wire, pearls, and plant material)
  • 40 x 20 inches
  • Courtesy of the artist

Nancy Lewis always knew she would attend Hendrix College. Her grandmother graduated from Galloway College, and her father, Tom Clark, worked as a Biology professor at Hendrix. Because of these familial ties, Lewis felt at home at the college by the time she enrolled in 1972.

As a Hendrix student, Lewis worked primarily with Professor Bill Hawes, whom she describes as her most influential mentor. Hawes encouraged her to explore all her artistic interests, regardless of whether those interests were commercially or socially popular.

Lewis graduated in 1976 with a B.A. in Studio Art and completed her M.F.A. in Sculpture at Arizona State University in 1986. She currently lives in La Honda, California, where she continues to create and exhibit work. Her work is primarily inspired by natural landscapes and their beautiful subtleties. Lewis’s love for the environment stems from childhood, when her botanist father took her into the woods of their Illinois farm to study plant life.

Beloved’s natural subject matter is thus representative of Lewis’s general artistic style, as is the use of recycled materials in its creation. Lewis implemented pistachio shells and freshwater pearls with wire from a recycled metal yard to construct the piece. It represents a beloved gift, one which can be both given and released.