North Central College Fine & Performing Arts

Cultural experiences inspire North Central College student's art

Published on 10/5/2016

North Central College senior Kelly Eberhardt creates art designed to build bridges between cultures and inspire dialogue. Titled "Sculpture and Culture," her exhibit features sculpture with plaster, mixed media and ceramics. 
The free exhibit will be on view through Oct. 27 in North Central's Meiley-Swallow Hall Gallery, 31 S. Ellsworth St. An artist's reception will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 8, in the gallery; light refreshments will be served.
A Naperville resident since 2014, Eberhardt previously lived in Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Taiwan and Kenya with her husband and children. "I've had the privilege of living in different parts of the world for over a decade," says Eberhardt. "I have witnessed how art can build bridges between cultures and create dialogue. Art has allowed me to explore new places, meet amazing people and has given me a deeper appreciation of life."
While living overseas, she successfully promoted local artists among the expatriate and diplomatic community. Eberhardt initiated and curated the first "American Embassy Employee Art Exhibit" for the United States embassies in Kyrgyzstan, Tawain and Kenya. These exhibits were designed to strengthen relationships between local citizens and Americans and she personally experienced the way art can bridge the gap between cultures. 
Before returning to the United States in 2014, Eberhardt preferred mixed media painting and collage to other media. But at North Central College as a studio art major and art history minor, she discovered her passion for sculpture. The small class size and hands-on-approach allowed her to explore her cultural background through new mediums and techniques. 
"I enjoy the challenge of creating something out of nothing and exploring different materials and techniques," says Eberhardt. "I also like the physical exertion that comes with sculpture because I can work out my frustrations, push the envelope, foster new ideas or provoke a response. Sculpture is approachable and can be explored from different cultural perspectives." 
Art students at North Central College learn traditional and contemporary media, to communicate ideas visually, and engage in analytical, critical and abstract thinking. Students attend gallery and museum openings and exhibits in Naperville and Chicago, meet visiting artists, enter juried exhibitions and gain an academic foundation for graduate study in studio art, art education, art history, art therapy, arts administration, art criticism and visual communications. Visit to learn more about North Central's art program.
This exhibit is one of the many ongoing programs at North Central College to enrich and broaden the cultural and academic outlook for the College and community. North Central offers a variety of venues accommodating a rich range of local and world-class events, performances and space needs for the public. For a comprehensive schedule of musical performances, theatrical and dance productions, art exhibits and lectures, visit or call the box office at 630-637-SHOW (7469).