Artist with Sculpture

Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College will host the exhibit “The Art and Heart of a Sculptor: Portraits in Bronze and Fired Clay” featuring the artwork of Michelle Drane Smith at the Jackson County Campus Fine Arts Gallery. The show will open to the public at noon on October 21 and will run until December 17.

Smith began her experience in sculpture at the age of 15 when she began learning taxidermy.  “It never occurred to me that building the artificial bodies to go into the skins was sculpture. That lay dormant for over 40 years. In the meantime, I got a degree in nursing and a Master’s Degree in Pediatric Nursing and had four children.”

At age 38, she began painting.  “I enjoyed that enormously, balancing that with 4 children and working in the O.R. in later years.”  In 1993, she began her venture into sculpture, making seven portrait busts in one summer.  “When I got my hands on that clay, I had come home. As far back as I can remember I have enjoyed creative activity of one sort or another, but sculpture continues to be the most exciting, most satisfying thing I’ve ever done.”

Gallery hours are Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.  There will be an Artist Talk/Q&A in the gallery for the opening on October 21. A reception will be held on October 23 from 2-4 p.m. in the gallery.

For more information on the exhibit, visit or contact Marc Poole, Gallery director at

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