New Exhibit Opening At WNMU

Silver City – The Francis McCray Gallery of Contemporary Art on the campus of Western New Mexico University announces the first fall exhibition AAKRIT: Portraits of North India with an opening reception on Friday, September 9 at 4:30 p.m. followed by Vedic Kirtan (interactive music) through 8:00 p.m.

The exhibition includes photography, Madhubani style paintings, intaglio prints and cultural vignettes by Dr. Manda Clair Jost, associate professor of Biological Sciences. Jost is a returning Fulbright Neru Scholar. The artistry documents her experiences in Kurukshetra, Haryana, India plus her travels in the Himalayas. Each work is labeled with its specific story and/or cultural description.

Jost was the recipient of the Fulbright-Nehru Visiting Lecture Program Award. She begun her six-month lectureship on December 21, 2010 with her host institution Kurukshetra University, Kurukshetra, Haryana located in North India. As a Fulbright Scholar and an Ambassador for the U.S. Department of State, Jost represented Western New Mexico University, the State of New Mexico and the United States of America. While in India she taught and worked with scientists and students at more than 10 academic institutions. Although Dr. Jost traveled to India to teach applied research methods in evolutionary biology, she returned with a new interest in understanding, documenting, and working to help improve the social conditions of women and young girls in North India.

Jost received her Ph.D. in biology at Harvard University and over the past 15 years has taught courses in evolution and biological diversity at a number of universities including Harvard and the University of Texas, Austin prior to coming to WNMU.

Dr. Jost is a trained field biologist and has conducted field studies in a number of biologically diverse countries including Columbia, Ecuador, and Southern Africa as continuation from her Harvard University doctoral research studies in phylogenetic relationships of crickets and the evolution of the acoustic signals they produce during courtship.

A lecture about Jost's Fulbright Award will be presented on Wednesday, September 28 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the McCray building, Room 118. The lecture is free and open to the public.

The exhibition will run through October 14, 2011. McCray Gallery hours are Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Groups interested in a private tour or gallery talk may call the McCray Gallery at (575) 538-6517 during gallery hours or contact Professor Maya at or (575) 538-6515.

Extended hours are scheduled for Weekend At The Galleries during the second weekend of October.