|EXHIBIT FEATURES LANDSCAPES BY SOUTHEASTERN ALUMNUS
HAMMOND -- “Louisiana Landscapes,”
an exhibit of works by the late Dennis James Ruiz, a 1975 Southeastern
Louisiana University graduate, will be on display April 21-May 12 at the
university’s Sims Memorial Library.
The exhibit will open with a
reception at the library from 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 21.
Ruiz, a New Orleans native, is
described as having a natural artistic talent, which he nurtured from an
early age, apprenticing as a teenager with landscape artist John Campbell.
As a Southeastern student, however, he was also known for his involvement
with the theater program, where he performed, designed, directed and assisted
with numerous productions.
In between shows and on weekends,
however, Ruiz continued his work as an artist, painting portraits in Jackson
Square and exhibiting his work throughout the south. He was also selected
as the artist for several of the popular Ponchatoula Strawberry Festival
In 1976, Ruiz opened his own
studio in New Orleans, where he continued to create and teach. When he
was diagnosed with cancer in 1979, he moved to a farm in the forests of
northern Louisiana to live, paint and write at a slower pace.
His experience with catastrophic
illness changed the scope of Ruiz’s art, and he began to create wood wall
reliefs and sculpture. He also continued to travel, teach, lecture, paint
and exhibit new works, and to work in theater and television productions.
Until his death in 1990, he exhibited throughout the United States and
kept a studio in Louisiana.
Library hours are 7:30 a.m.-11
p.m., Monday-Thursday; 7:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m., Friday; 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Saturday;
and 2-11 p.m., Sunday.
For additional information about
“Louisiana Landscapes,” contact the Southeastern visual arts department
and Gallery Director Dale Newkirk, 985-549-2193.