Ball State’s greenhouse will be used for more than flora and fauna this month — it will display art.  

The show will exhibit work from first and second year undergraduate students who are pursuing their Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees. The show is themed “Inspired by Orchids.”

The opening reception will begin at 4:30 p.m. Friday and the show will run until April 28.

The event, which planners hope will become a tradition, started in 2017 when two art shows were hosted in the greenhouse. 

Autumn Hunt, assistant professor of art, is teaching the class contributing work to the show. She believes the art show is a great way for her students to engage with a range of Ball State’s resources while bringing something new to the greenhouse setting.

“[The art show] not only allows them to get out of the classroom setting, but also to learn about exhibiting their work,” Hunt said. “As an artist, it is important to show your work to others and start an exhibition record.”

Sophomore Nicholas May will display his art. 

“Art inspires and influences my personality, fashion sense and even my own art,” May said. “I feel like art is my way to explore and understand my own life and condition as a human being.”

Cheryl Leblanc, Orchid Collection Curator at Ball State, said as a biologist and biological illustrator, she sees art as an expression of value of the topic or expression of a work. 

“With the opening of the Dr. Joe and Alice Rinard Orchid Greenhouse in 2014, one of my goals as curator is to encourage multi-disciplinary usage of the new facility. Both the Wheeler-Thanhauser and Betty Kendall Ladyslipper Orchid Collections within the facility are beautiful in their own right,” Leblanc said. “These art shows allow artistic expressions that value orchids, nature and the experience of the greenhouse to be shared with others.

“It seems fitting to pair the resultant work with the place of origin. Additionally, visitors who have not yet visited the greenhouse may do so if they have an interest in art.”

The greenhouse plans to host a similar art show show for November 2018.

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