Arts Galleries

Bardo Arts Center Summer Exhibits

Above, Winter Toes. Photo by Barbara Tyroler.

This summer, the Western Carolina University (WCU) Fine Art Museum at Bardo Arts Center explores elements of fine craft through exhibitions featuring printmaking and pottery. Through Friday, July 28, with a closing reception on Thursday, July 27, from 5–7 p.m., patrons can explore a unique medium called vitreography in the main gallery space.

Vitreographs are prints made with a glass matrix instead of a traditional material. Curated from the collections of the WCU Fine Art Museum and Asheville Art Museum, the exhibition Print Plus One: Beyond the Glass Matrix features the vitreographs of 17 artists, paired alongside objects made in their primary medium; most are painters, sculptors, ceramists or glass artists.

Also currently on display through August 25 is Water Portraits: Barbara Tyroler, exploring works that visually transform people through the reflective properties of water. “My prints in this exhibition are single images, not composites of two or more images,” says Tyroler. “Taken with a camera, they are made on a fine art photographic substrate.”

The concept for this series of water portraits began when Tyroler was photographing her young daughter in the pool with her aging father. “At age 80, he was learning to swim to recover from a heart attack and ease the pain of osteoporosis,” she says. “I realized that photos I intended as gifts to him were, in his eyes, horrible images of his aged body. In the tension-ridden intimacy between father and daughter, I had to ponder how the photographer, however generous her intention, can create and sustain a structure of inequality by exercising the power to objectify her subject.”

In conjunction with WCU’s 2017-2018 campus theme, “Cherokee: Connections. Culture. Community,” the exhibition Ancient Forms, Modern Minds: Contemporary Cherokee Ceramics features the work of 11 Cherokee artists, such as Joel Queen and Davy Arch. Bringing together both historic and contemporary pottery techniques, the exhibit was organized by the Asheville Art Museum and made possible through the generous support of the Cherokee Preservation Foundation. The WCU Fine Art Museum will be the last venue to host this important touring exhibition, running now through November 10.

The WCU Fine Art Museum at Bardo Arts Center is located at 199 Centennial Drive on the WCU Cullowhee Campus. All exhibitions and receptions are free and open to the public. The museum is open year-round Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Thursday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. For more information, visit or call 828.227.ARTS.

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