Ark Arts Center Family Festival Today

arkartsIn celebration of Rembrandt, Van Dyck, Gainsborough: The Treasures of Kenwood House, London, join us for an English Garden Party Family Festival. Families can participate in activities and games and experience what it would have been like for Rembrandt, Van Dyck and Gainsborough.

The program takes place from 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM.

The event is free for Arkansas Arts Center members.  Non members are $5 per person, $20 per family.

Rembrandt, Van Dyck, Gainsborough: The Treasures of Kenwood House, London exhibition is organized by the American Federation of Arts and English Heritage. It is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities with additional funding from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation. In-kind support is provided by Barbara and Richard S. Lane.

This special exhibition showcases 48 masterpieces from the collection known as the Iveagh Bequest. These magnificent paintings reside at Kenwood House, a neoclassical villa in London. The tour of Rembrandt, Van Dyck, Gainsborough: The Treasures of Kenwood House, London will provide a unique opportunity to view superb paintings outside the United Kingdom. Most of these paintings have never traveled to the United States before, and many of them have rarely been seen outside Kenwood. The highly acclaimed works represent the greatest artists of their periods, including Rembrandt van Rijn, Thomas Gainsborough, Anthony van Dyck, Frans Hals, Joshua Reynolds, J.M.W. Turner and more.

Philander Smith 2013-2014 “Bless the Mic” Series announced

???????????Philander Smith College has announced the 2013-14 schedule for its BlessThe Mic Lecture Series, set to kick off at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 19 with award-winning actor, director and inspirational speaker Charles S. Dutton.

Bless The Mic is a contemporary spin on the traditional President’s Lecture Series. These events, held on hundreds of campuses across the country, have been a way to stimulate the intellectual discourse on the campus. Even today, these series seek to bring in noted scholars, authors, politicians and public intellectuals to expose not only the campus community to their ideas and concepts, but the broader community in which the institution resides.

pscduttonA graduate of the Yale School of Drama, Tony nominee Charles S. Dutton’s career spans theater, television and film. From 1991 to 1994 he starred in the title role and executive produced the critically-acclaimed Fox comedy/drama Roc, for which he received several NAACP Image Award nominations. Dutton has numerous other television credits, having won Emmy Awards for his guest starring roles in Without a Trace and The Practice. Most recently he can be seen in guest star roles on top shows Criminal Minds and American Horror Story.

The Baltimore native is also a veteran of numerous feature films, including Aliens 3; Cry, The Beloved Country; A Time to Kill; Get on the Bus; and Cookie’s Fortune. On Broadway he has starred in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom and The Piano Lesson.

PSCjohnOn Thursday, Oct. 17 at 7 p.m., Daymond John, entrepreneur, investor, author and cast member of ABC’s Shark Tank will speak. John is perhaps best known for being one of the creators of the global fashion brand FUBU. As founder and CEO, FUBU has amassed over four billion dollars in worldwide retail sales. As a consultant and business/motivational speaker, John works with products and celebrities to create awareness of marketing and entrepreneurship opportunities, and brand extension projects. In 2009, he joined the cast of Shark Tank, a show in which he and other business executives listen to the business pitches of aspiring entrepreneurs to decide whether to invest in their projects.

pschuddlestonA native of Imboden, Ark., TV producer Bryant Huddleston, will appear at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 14.  Huddleston began his broadcast career in Fayetteville, Ark., at KHOG-TV. In 1998, he relocated to Los Angeles and began producing news, specials and live red carpet events for the E! Network. In 2004 he joined NBC’s Access Hollywood where he spent eight years. Huddleston recently helped launch the Bravo network’s new series Property Envy. The single father of a young son, Huddleston is also an ardent advocate for equality and adoption rights for LGBT citizens and speaks frequently on those issues.

pscsmithJudy Smith, the real-life inspiration behind ABC’s hit political thriller series Scandal, will lecture at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 9, 2014.  The founder and president of Smith & Company, a strategic and crisis communications firm with offices in Los Angeles and Washington, DC, Smith has honed her skills through experiences guiding her clients through some of the most sensational events of our time, including the Iran Contra investigation, the Los Angeles riots, President Clinton’s involvement with Monica Lewinsky and the congressional inquiry of Enron, to name a few. Celebrities she has consulted in times of crisis include actor Wesley Snipes, NFL quarterback Michael Vick, and more recently, celebrity chef Paula Deen. She has also worked with Fortune 500 companies such as BellSouth and Wal-Mart.

In 1991, Smith joined the White House with her appointment as special assistant and deputy press secretary to President George H. W. Bush. During her tenure she provided the president and his cabinet with communications advice on a wide range of foreign and domestic issues.  Smith earned her B.S. in public relations from Boston University and graduated from the American University Washington College of Law where she was the first African American woman to serve as executive editor of the Law Review. The author of Good Self, Bad Self: Transforming Your Worse Qualities into Your Biggest Assets, Smith’s writing her been featured in numerous publications and she frequently appears on major TV networks offering commentary on topical issues of the day.

pscdelvalleThe series continues at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 13 with poet and spoken word artist Mayda del Valle.  Chosen by O Magazine as one of 20 women on the first “O Power List,” the Chicago native is the youngest poet and first Latino to win the 2001 National Poetry Slam Individual Championship. Soon after she was chosen to perform on the first season of the HBO’s Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry, followed by a stint as an original cast member and contributing writer of the critically acclaimed Tony award winning production of Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam on Broadway. Del Valle, who has been featured in numerous publications including Urban Latino, Latina magazine and the New York Time, holds a B.A. in Art from Williams College.

pscwhiteTeacher, pastor and international evangelist Paula White will visit Philander Smith College at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 20.  White is senior pastor of New Destiny Christian Center in Apopka, Fl., “a non-traditional church with a multicultural mission” whose membership ranges in the thousands. Through her Paula White Ministries, she works to support hundreds of local, international and global outreaches, and presently is focused on building orphanages, schools, churches, clean-water wells and feeding stations around the world; providing medical care and ministerial training internationally; and organizing crusades in areas such as Haiti, Africa and India.  Host of the nationally-syndicated television program Paula Today, White is the former senior pastor of Without Walls International Church of Tampa, Fl., a ministry she co-founded with her former husband, Randy White.

Free and open to the public, all lectures are held in the M.L. Harris Auditorium. Tickets are not required; seating is first-come, first-serve. For more information, call 370-5354.

Extended Hours, Lecture, Nighttime Dining all at Arkansas Arts Center tonight

Rembrandt van Rijn Portrait of the Artist, ca. 1665 Oil on canvas Kenwood House, English Heritage, Iveagh Bequest (88028836) Photo courtesy American Federation of Arts

Rembrandt van Rijn
Portrait of the Artist, ca. 1665
Oil on canvas
Kenwood House, English Heritage, Iveagh Bequest (88028836)
Photo courtesy American Federation of Arts

Tonight at the Arkansas Arts Center, there is a lecture in conjunction with the Rembrandt, Van Dyck, Gainsborough: The Treasures of Kenwood House, London exhibit.

The Arkansas Arts Center is presenting “Collecting Rembrandt: Perils and Pleasures One Hundred Years Ago,” a lecture by Catherine B. Scallen. Professor Scallen is Chair of the Department of Art History and Art at Case Western Reserve University.

The program begins at 5:30 p.m. with a reception followed by a 6 p.m. lecture at the Arkansas Arts Center.  The admission is $10 for non-members; free for members and students.

Professor Scallen received her BA from Wellesley College, her MA from the Williams College Graduate Program in the HIstory of Art, and her PhD from Princeton University. After receiving her doctorate, she held a graduate internship in the Paintings Department of the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles. A specialist on the paintings and prints of Rembrandt van Rijn, her book, Rembrandt, Reputation, and the Practice of Connoisseurship, was published in 2004.  She has been a faculty lecturer on trips to The Netherlands and Belgium for Princeton University and CWRU, and is the author of two courses for The Great Courses Company, Art of the Northern Renaissance and Museum Masterpieces: The National Gallery, London.

Attendees are welcome to stay after the lecture to view Rembrandt, Van Dyck, Gainsborough: The Treasures of Kenwood House, London during the exhibition’s special extended hours.

Best Impressions restaurant will also be open during the extended hours.

Adults can go “Back to School” with Science after Dark tonight

scienceafterdarkaugust13The Museum of Discovery’s monthly adults-only Science After Dark goes “Back to School” this month.

Tonight, Wednesday, August 28 from 6-8 p.m. the program is celebrating back to school with a trip to fifth grade. They will have some hands-on science activities that you’ll remember from elementary school along with a few other things you once learned but have probably since forgotten.

And because no back to school themed event would be complete without a homage to the cafeteria, there will be a signature drink called a hot tater toddy. We might even have a cafeteria lady serving up some grub.

Tickets are $5 or free for members. There will be a cash bar.

Science after Dark occurs the last Wednesday of each month from 6pm to 8pm. Museum educators pick a science-related topic, and develop an event around it. The event is for ages 21 and older.

It is a great chance to explore the museum’s exhibits and enjoy downtown Little Rock.

Clinton School features two programs this week

Clinton-School-of-Public-Service-LogoJust as the school year is underway, the Clinton School’s speaker series is getting back into full swing.  This week there are two different lunchtime programs.

Tuesday, August 27 – 12 noon “Feet, Forks and the Fate of our Families: Fighting Childhood Obesity,” Dr. David Katz

The epidemic of childhood obesity is having a significant impact on the future health status and workforce productivity of the people of Arkansas. Join us for a lecture about fighting the tide of childhood obesity in Arkansas and beyond by Dr. David Katz, founding director of Yale University’s Prevention Research Center. Katz is the editor-in-chief of the journal Childhood Obesity, the only journal that provides a central forum for exploring effective, actionable strategies for weight management and obesity prevention in children and adolescents.

He is also president-elect of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, founder and president of the nonprofit Turn the Tide Foundation, which was created to help combat obesity by developing, evaluating and disseminating creative, yet practical programs that can be used in the real world for free. In 2009, he was a widely supported nominee for the position U.S. Surgeon General. He was named one of the 25 most influential people in the lives of children by Children’s Health Magazine.

The program will take place at 12 noon today, Tuesday, August 27 at Sturgis Hall in Clinton Presidential Park.


Wednesday, August 28 – 12 noon “Immigration Reform in Arkansas,” a panel discussion

Immigration reform advocates are making a push in Washington, DC, and across the nation to rally support for an effort to overhaul our country’s broken immigration system. The US Senate has passed a bipartisan comprehensive immigration overhaul, and members of the US House of Representatives are at home during August Recess hearing from constituents about immigration reform among many other issues.

Immigrants have a tremendous impact in Arkansas. The immigrant population is the fourth fastest growing nationally, with a net economic impact of $3.4 billion in 2010 according to a study by the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation. Join us for a panel about immigration reform in Arkansas with a diverse group of speakers including:

– Jeffery Hall, Associate Director of National Affairs for the Arkansas Farm Bureau
– Dr. Zulma Toro, Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock
– Dr. Sherece West-Scantlebury, President and CEO of the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation
– Randy Zook, President and CEO of the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce / Associated Industries of Arkansas

The program will take place at 12 noon, Wednesday, August 28 at Sturgis Hall in Clinton Presidential Park.

*Reserve your seats for both programs by emailing or calling 501-683-5239.

Oxford American features Charles Portis film adaptation

2e6b4_1320267846-oxa_logoToday, August 26, 2013, the Oxford American website features the world premiere of a film adapatation of Charles Portis’ “I Don’t Talk Service No More.”

In addition to the film, the website features an interview of the filmmaker Katrina Whalen.  Jay Jennings, who edited Escape Velocity: A Charles Portis Miscellany chats with Ms. Whalen about Portis and the process of making films.

Whalen worked in production for directors Charlie Kaufman (Being John MalkovichAdaptationSynecdoche, New York) and Julie Taymor (TitusFrida; Broadway’s The Lion King) after her undergrad education at Yale.  She then enrolled in graduate school at New York University.

Jennings is a freelance writer whose journalism, book reviews, and humor have appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, the Oxford American, and many other newspapers and magazines.

To see the film, which features Peter McRobbie and Richard Marshall, visit the OA website.

Ark Arts Council announces 2013 Fellowship Recipients

Arkansas_Arts_Council_logo_2Last week, the Arkansas Arts Council announced the recipients of its Individual Artist Fellowship awards. The artists will be recognized at a reception from 5:30-7:30 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 6, at the Arkansas Arts Center in Little Rock. The reception is open to the public. Space is limited and reservations are required. RSVP by calling (501) 324-9766.

The Arkansas Arts Council awarded nine artist fellowships in the amount of $4,000 each. Fellowships are awarded annually to artists in Arkansas in recognition of their individual artistic abilities. These fellowships enable artists to set aside time for creating their art and improving their skills. Three artistic disciplines are selected each year as categories for the awards.

The three categories for this year are Literary Arts: Playwriting; Performing Arts: Directing of Narrative and Documentary Films; and Visual Arts: Creating Contemporary and Traditional Crafts.

The fellowship recipients were selected by a jury of out-of-state professional artists, writers, performers and art administrators.

Literary Arts: Playwriting

Kelley Smith Pruitt, Little Rock – In a Year’s Time

Clinnesha D. Sibley, Fayetteville – Tell Martha Not to Moan

Werner Trieschmann, Little Rock – Disfarmer


Performing Arts: Directing of Narrative and Documentary Films

Joshua H. Miller, Little Rock – Pillow

Mark Thiedeman, Little Rock – Last Summer

Nathan Willis, Little Rock – “The Van”


Visual Arts: Creating Contemporary and Traditional Crafts

Ed Pennebaker, Osage – blown glass, stone and metal work

Timothy LaTourette, Fayetteville – wood, lighting and printmaking

Adam Posnak, West Fork – functional ceramic with stark black, white and red imagery


The Arkansas Arts Council is an agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage.