Mississippi College

Pimento’s Café Features Mississippi College Artists

February 20, 2013

Pimento’s Café serves terrific southwest chicken paninis and marvelous veggie sandwiches, but now the new Mississippi College restaurant is also treating customers to a superb smorgasbord of  art pieces.

Going up in mid-February, the exhibition at the café in Olde Towne Clinton features the works of instructors and graduate students in the MC Department of Art.

The diverse artistic creations have spiced up the restaurant’s cuisine and will stick around for the entire spring semester before a new show is installed this summer.

Works range from instructor Kent Mummert’s photograph of an old wooden chair resting against a tree to graduate student Han Chun Chen’s oil painting of flowers.

MC art professor Steve Cook, the exhibition coordinator, is already receiving lots of positive feedback from Pimento’s customer.

There’s more art work that will be arriving at the cozy Olde Towne Clinton restaurant in the months and years ahead.

“At some point, there may be theme shows, guest shows, or alumni shows,’’ Cook said. “But for now, it was considered very important to get the project underway.’’

The art is also getting rave reviews from leaders at Mississippi College and folks with Campus Dining, Inc. who run Pimento’s Café next-door to the university’s bookstore. They believe it’s a good way to spotlight creative MC artists, and attract more customers for those delicious pimento cheese sandwiches.

“The administration and staff of the university and food service have cooperated splendidly,’’ Cook said.

There’s not a tremendous amount of space to hang the works, so Cook had a tough assignment to  make the first selections.

All nine pieces “showcase the creativity of the artists and will be enhancing to the atmosphere of Pimento’s,’’ he said.

Cook  is inviting other MC artists to submit items for the summer’s exhibition.

Derek Walker, an award-winning Mississippi College art graduate student, is delighted with the new exhibit at the café. The Madison resident hopes to see one of his works hanging there this summer.

“I think it’s a great opportunity for the graduate students,’’ Walker said Wednesday. “It’s great that Pimento’s allowed the Art Department to show off its works. The whole community will see it.’’

Walker and Mississippi College art instructor Guy Stricklin, an MC alumnus, recently received awards at the annual Mississippi Collegiate Art Competition in Jackson.

Stricklin’s woodcut print dubbed the “Horn Island Dunes’’ is one of the new pieces of art hanging at Pimento’s Café.

Other MC adjunct art professors selected for the first show at the restaurant include Carisa Galloway, Meredith Wilkaitis, Martha Hamburg, and Jasmine Cole. Graduate students Katie McCann and Jeri Flinn were thrilled to see their art pieces chosen for the initial exhibit.

For more information, contact art professor Steve Cook at 601-925-3452 or scook@mc.edu

Photo: Han Chun Chen’s oil painting of flowers

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