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Past Events

The Ferris Fine Art Gallery is located in the David L. Eisler Center.


April 3 – May 6

Gwen Frostic Nature & Art in Michigan

April 20 4:30 – 6PM Opening events

Curatorial Team: Dr. Rachel Foulk, Gallery Director Carrie Weis, Gallery Assistant Rosemary Graham, and students in Art History 325 (Women and Art) 

Design Team: Professor Alison Popp, and students in Design 320 (Branding Experiences II

Community Partners: Artworks in Big Rapids and community art collectors

Print Management: Professor Pat Klarecki, Christina Bregg

Gwen Frostic (1906 - 2001) is one of Michigan’s most successful artists and businesswomen. Her hand carved block prints illuminate nature, depicting the landscapes and the native flora and fauna of Michigan.  Frostic founded her own printmaking business in Benzonia, Michigan, which continues to produce work using her original printing blocks.  Colorful prints, stationery, and books written and illustrated by Frostic form the core of this exhibition. This show celebrates Gwen Frostic’s love of nature and situates her pioneering work within the larger history of women artists.

Gwen Frostic

My Michigan

January 9 – February 28

Lynette Vought, MFA
Kathleen VandeMark, MFA
Carrie Weis, MFA

Opening & Artist Talk – February 9th 5:00 – 6:30pm

Myth Making

Myths and myth making are at the crux of this collaborative exhibition between three artists with a unique connection.  Working with imagery steeped in symbolism and metaphor, Vought, VandeMark, and Weis are either referencing myths and fables or creating new ones.  

Stylistically their paintings contain a sense of the surreal where unnatural pairings between plants and animals occur, where animals are comingling in ways not found in nature, or where dream-like imagery sets the stage for referencing the world around us with the intention of sharing stories that reflect upon life, love, and the nature of all things

Lynette Vought

Lynette Vought


Kathleen VandeMark

Kathleen VandeMark


Carrie Weis

Carrie Weis


Nov 7 – Dec 17

Karen BondarchuK

Talk with the Artist: Nov 10th 5:00 – 6:30

This series was largely inspired by research into the evolutionary connections between dinosaurs and present-day  birds.  This work aims to suggest a larger continuum of life and death by using material and methods that embody those evolutionary cycles as well: the limestone base of the underlying gesso contains calcified fossils of ancient creatures, and the bony structures and images have been revealed — excavated – by digging and sanding beneath the pigmented surface of the panel itself. 


September 5 – October 28


Jason Swearingen

Talk with the Artist: September 15th 5:00-6:30
Talk with the Art Historian: October 11th at 11am

Activity: Black Out Poetry

Jason has captured the soul of Schuberg's Bar & Grill in downtown, Michigan in the after-hours between last call and turning off the lights. His portraits are intimate moments of the people who serve the beers, cook the food, and build camaraderie over long shifts and late nights. He encapsulates each individual within close environments letting the myriad of objects in view reveal the stories and goings-on that most of us never get to see.

Schuberg's Bar & Grill

April 11 – August 12

unexpected choices


The West Michigan Graphic Design Archives makes both physical artifacts and digital representations available to design professionals, educators, students, business people, researchers, and others interested in the rich legacy of graphic design, paper manufacturing, and printing in West Michigan. You can be inspired by how design has helped successful businesses achieve their goals. See the connections in the world of graphic design– from right here in West Michigan.

Graphic Design

January 10 – February 26

Rufus Snoddy
Disappearing Man

The Disappearing Man series presents itself as a symbolic clarion call. It evokes a personal narrative of concern for future human existence.

“I utilize an array of generic, wide-eyed, naïve appearing, repetitive portraits of man. Like artists from the past, I am reflecting a contemporary narrative of social and cultural concern.” - Rufus Snoddy

Snoddy’s “Construction Paintings” are beautifully organized assemblages of paint, wood, and found objects, as sculptural as they are painterly.  Originally from Los Angeles, Snoddy now resides in Traverse City, Michigan.  He has established himself regionally and internationally with shows in Michigan, California, New York, New Mexico, and France.

disappearing man


November 1 – December 18

November 4 - Humanities Colloquium with Dr. Adrian Ormsby

November 11 – Presentation by Lynette Vought: Printmaking: Old Techniques and new Technologies

Francoise Gilot: 100 Years of Perseverance in Life and Art

curated by Dr.  Adrian Ormsby

2021 marks the 100th birthday of Francoise Gilot, painter, printmaker, writer, poet, mother and grandmother. A half century ago (1971), Ferris State University hosted a special exhibit of graphic works following Francoise’ generous donation of rare color proofs to the University for the learning and enjoyment of fine art students, faculty and the viewing public. The exhibit brought together 29 rare graphic works from 15 private Michigan collectors demonstrating the popularity of her work in the United States. Ferris State University Fine Art Gallery once again celebrates the remarkable life and artistic career of Francoise Gilot, bringing together many of the same lithographs exhibited 50 years ago and key graphic works representing important developments in her artistic career as a fine art printmaker spanning an incredible five decades. Works on paper, especially color lithography, is a major theme and focus of this exhibit, demonstrating Francoise’ genius and talent for printmaking and her success across multiple artistic media

Grancois gilot

September 16 – October 23

September 16, 4-6PM  Reception & Presentation by Artist

Mabel visits Palo Duro Canyon

By Kathleen VanDeMark

Mabel, one of VanDeMark’s beloved horses, spirits to Palo Duro Canyon to pay homage to her ancestors and unveils the truth of a history left untold.

Maybel Visits is a commemoration to the horses that perished during the altercation between First Nation peoples of the Comanche, Cheyenne, Arapaho, and Kiowa tribes and the 4th US Calvary lead by Colonel R.S. Mackenzie.  Archiving with symbolic imagery, this group of 100 paintings raises awareness of this historical event.

Mabel visits Palo Duro Canyon

June 7 – September 11

September 2 Founders Day Reception 2-4pm
Remarks from Dr. David Pilgrim, V.P. Diversity & Inclusion Office 2:30-2:45pm

Time of Change: Documenting the Civil Rights Movement

through the lens of Bruce Davidson 

The exhibition, Time of Change, presents 30 photographs, each representative of Davidson’s talents, but more importantly, the images document the struggle for justice, equality, and desegregation during a time of Freedom Rides, protests, marches, and police violence. We see glimpses into the everyday lives of the people who fought against the daily cruelties of life under Jim Crow, including racial terrorism, delivered upon them by their fellow citizens, often under the cover of law.

In 2018 the Jim Crow Museum of Racist Objects was the recipient of a sizeable donation of works by the renowned photojournalist Bruce Davidson.  Davidson is best known for his photo-essays documenting subversive and counter-culture groups.

How Far Have We Come

The exhibition, Time of Change is made possible by a grant from the Michigan Humanities, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. These original Bruce Davidson images were a gift from an anonymous donor to the Jim Crow Museum.

March 1 – April 23

    How Far Have We Come?

Mini-Moso is a carefully curated exhibit showcasing main themes within the Museum of Sexist Objects.  Through funding from a Ferris Foundation Grant a group of committed Ferris faculty collectively designed and curated this exhibition that is now available for traveling.  Topics researched and highlighted include The Body Image, Gender Norming, the Happy Housewife, Body as Object, gender stereotypes and many others.

How Far Have We Come


February 1  – February 28

Kaitlin Beebe
    Diary Pink

 Diary Pink is a collection of paintings and drawings documenting a time of self-reflection. Exercising the faith-based method of blind contour, abstract self-portraits are created.  With an exacting intent to map out the evidence of growth, drawings are layered abstracting the portraits more and more. In a meditation, overlapping shapes are highlighted allowing time to reflect and clarify a new perspective.

bio: Kaitlin Beebe is an artist that lives and works on the North Fork of Long Island. Beebe received her BFA in Printmaking from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2017. Additionally, Beebe has participated in several artist residencies, including, Vermont Studio Center (Johnson, VT), Drop Forge & Tool (Hudson, NY), and Golden Apple Artist Residency (Harrington, ME). 


Diary Pink

January 13th – February 15th

Reception & Artist Talk: January 16th 5-6:30pm
MFA Graduate Competition Exhibit – Emily Mayo
Chorbah - Chadash

"Pronounced “khor·bä' “ and “khä·dash' ” these two words originate from the Hebrew writings of the Bible. Rarely seen together, “Chorbah” was used in reference to “a place laid waste, ruin, waste, desolation” and “Chadash” means “to be new, renew, repair.” Butting these two words together I suggest the transition between these two states, and reference the undeniable hope for this transition - not specific to the home or the plight-ridden neighborhood, but also to the human."

Chorbah - Chadash

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