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Oklahoma State University students collaborate with state-born artist for campus project

Students from Oklahoma State University's art department are collaborating with Brooklyn-based artist Yatika Fields, a state native, on a mural that university officials expect to place in the Seretean Center for the Performing Arts.
by Silas Allen Modified: March 29, 2013 at 10:27 pm •  Published: March 30, 2013

The project is the first one of its kind Rutherford has been involved with. It's been a good experience, she said.

Several artists are working on the project, and each brings a different set of ideas and perspectives for how the project could be done, she said. That can make it difficult to decide on a direction to take the project, she said.

“It's definitely a challenge, but we made it work,” she said.

Also planned

Besides the live painting event, Fields is planning a mural for a new OSU art museum. The university is renovating Postal Plaza, a historic building in downtown Stillwater, to use as a gallery to house the university's permanent art collection. Officials expect to open the building later this year.

Fields' mural will be adjacent to an existing mural in the building, painted in 1963 by artist Grace Hamilton. The existing mural shows a history of the settlement of Stillwater and the surrounding area, including the displacement of the American Indians who were here at the time.

Although he doesn't have any definite plans for what to include in his mural, Fields plans to show a more modern view of what Oklahoma is.

Fields, a member of the Osage, Cherokee and Creek nations, said the depiction of American Indians will likely be different. In the existing panel, American Indians are shown riding horses and living in tepees.

“That won't be in there,” he said.

Much has changed in Oklahoma since the original mural was painted, he said. Stillwater itself has grown considerably since 1963, and Fields said he expects to show that difference in his mural.

“It's kind of like the old to the new,” he said.

“Live Painting with Yatika Fields” will be at 6 p.m. Friday at the OSU Student Union.

by Silas Allen
General Assignment/Breaking News Reporter
Silas Allen is a news reporter for The Oklahoman. He is a Missouri native and a 2008 graduate of the University of Missouri.
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