Fine Art Museum to feature Cherokee children’s book illustrations

Above: An illustration by Luzene Hill for "Spearfinger."

Above: An illustration by Luzene Hill for “Spearfinger.”

The Fine Art Museum at Western Carolina University will feature “To Rise and Begin Again,” an exhibition of illustrations to be published in two Cherokee children’s books, beginning Thursday, Nov. 1, and continuing through Saturday, Dec. 1.

The 20 drawings and collages in the exhibition are the work of Luzene Hill, a senior in the bachelor’s degree in fine arts program at WCU. Hill also is an enrolled member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and has displayed her artwork across the United States.

“The Grouchy Old Lady,” written by Kathi Littlejohn and translated into Cherokee by Leroy Littlejohn, is one of the two books to feature Hill’s work. It also will be available in digital video format. The other book, “Spearfinger,” is Hill’s adaptation of a Cherokee legend. The works will be published in collaboration with the WCU Cherokee studies program, which is working with members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians to create children’s books in the Cherokee language.

“Hill’s drawings and collages offer a new and fresh direction,” said Martin DeWitt, museum director. “In these new works, Hill continues to explore the simplicity of line and color while evoking a powerful image to enhance the enchanting narrative of both the Cherokee classic fables of the ‘Grouchy Old Lady’ and ‘Spearfish.’”

An opening reception will be held in the museum Thursday, Nov. 1, from 4 to 7 p.m. Additional support for the exhibit is provided by the Cherokee Preservation Foundation.

Museum hours are Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursdays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturdays 1 to 4 p.m. The museum is closed Sundays, Mondays and university holidays.

For more information, contact DeWitt at (828) 227-2553.

Above: An illustration by Luzene Hill for "Spearfinger."

Above: An illustration by Luzene Hill for “Spearfinger.”