"Aerial" is part of an exhibit by BHSU assistant professor of art Desy Schoenewies which is currently on display at the Ruddell Gallery in the David B. Miller Yellow Jacket Student Union.
In the newest exhibit at Black Hills State University’s Ruddell Gallery, Desy Schoenewies, assistant professor of art, displays five years of her work encompassing an overall theme of everyday distractions.

“Those paintings represent me being lost in my everyday distractions,” said Schoenewies. “I’m somebody who tends to plan everything in my life, but life never happens that way. No matter how much you plan, something always throws your plans off. I’ve come to recognize that this is a constant, and learning to live with the interruptions has been a common theme in my life.”

The exhibit will be up throughout this weekend with a closing reception Friday, Sept. 27 from 3-5 p.m. Schoenewies will give a Gallery Talk at 4 p.m.

The exhibition encompasses several subject areas including a few pieces from Schoenewies’ master’s thesis. “If you look closely, you’ll notice those pieces have several figures and patterns weaved in and out forming ethereal backgrounds,” explained Schoenewies. Some of the patterns embedded in the paintings include airplanes, paper dolls, old-fashioned wallpaper, maps, and blueprints.

Perhaps the most prevalent pattern displayed through the exhibit is the use of airplanes. According to Schoenewies, she grew up very close to Lambert Airport in St. Louis. As part of a new runway addition, her family’s home and eventually 2,000 other homes, several schools, churches, and businesses in her community were purchased and destroyed by the airport to make way for the addition. “Growing up, I often had nightmares of planes landing on my house, and heard adults say the airport wouldn’t take our house,” she says. “A huge community was essentially wiped out over 20 years because of this project. So, airplanes became part of my everyday awareness since they were literally taking my home and flying overhead every single day. I have a love-hate relationship with flying, so I tend to embed airplanes in my work,” she said.
"Magpie Collection" is one of several paintings by BHSU assistant professor of art Desy Schoenewies currently on display in the  Ruddell Gallery. Schoenewies' exhibition will be in the gallery until Sept. 28.

Other subjects in Schoenewies’ art include self-portraiture, magpies, and emulating vintage photography. Most of her work in the exhibition is done with oil paint on canvas, but there are three pieces made from encaustic on board, which is using heated wax with added pigment as paint.

Schoenewies has been a member of the BHSU faculty for two years. In addition to her classes, she is also the advisor of the BHSU Art Club, and has been active with the Dahl Fine Arts Center in Rapid City including helping to establish the Rapid City Arts Council’s Dr. Sketchy Anti-Art School.

Schoenewies attended Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Mo., for her undergraduate degree and Fontbonne University in St. Louis for her master of fine arts.

She currently has work in the South Dakota Art Museum in Brookings in a Juried University and College Faculty Exhibition.

The Ruddell Gallery is located on the second floor of the David B. Miller Yellow Jacket Student Union and is open during the Union’s regular business hours. All shows are free of charge. For more information, contact James Knutson or David Wilson at 605.642.6706 or the Student Union information center at 605.642.6062.