Oklahoma Baptist University

Senior Presents Art Expressing Grandeur in Simplicity

Oklahoma Baptist University senior Summer Perkins expresses her worship of God, her interpretation of nature and her understanding of life through her artwork.

The 21-year-old from Luling, Texas, will showcase her artwork on campus March 10-21 in the Art Division Gallery. OBU is hosting a series of senior art shows throughout the spring semester depicting each artist's favorite pieces in accordance with their chosen theme.

"My art speaks of how I view life; how I process and attempt to communicate with God; how I make sense of mankind's proclivity in forming relationships; and how I find beauty in the mundane," said Perkins, who is a studio art minor.



Most of the pieces in Perkins' show are oil paintings with some multimedia additions, pencil drawings and a few ceramic works. She focuses her display on a series of four paintings, each representing one of the four seasons.

"I find that creation's response to its Creator in a natural annual rhythm is no different than mankind's often cynical response to its Creator," Perkins said. "There are times of blossoming, energy, recession and shadows in our relationship to God, just as there are seasons of spring, summer, fall and winter. It is a beautiful reminder that we, too, are a living and breathing creation of God, just like the changing leaves of trees and the butterflies in metamorphosis."

Perkins uses her relationship with God as her inspiration for producing artwork. She said art is a form of worship to her by connecting with her Creator in a real and personal manner through various mediums.

"My artwork seems very simple - using line contours and monochromatic schemes - but its simplicity is merely the result of forced submission, really realizing that the grand orchestra of thoughts, concepts, ideas and images in my mind are most simply and most deeply captivated by the simplest of artistic techniques," Perkins said.

A passion for creating art has been a part of Perkins' life since she was a child, when she would draw in her notebook and play in mud puddles while utilizing her creative side. Perkins said she seeks to create something exceptional out of something simple.

"I start with the ordinary and use different methods, mediums and perspectives in an attempt to use what is ‘little' as a means of insight into that which is much grander," Perkins said. "I'll always have the grandiose things of the world to amaze me, but as long as I can continue to find profundity in simplicity, I'll never run out of things to remind me of how mysterious and how resonant the beauty of God is."

After graduation, Perkins hopes to develop a program that will teach children and youth about God through the use of art.

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