M. Hill’s ‘Mesquite’ Showcases Books as Art
Clark County Parks and Recreation will present “Mesquite,” an exhibition of artist books by M. Hill, Monday, Oct. 7 through Friday, Nov. 22 in the Clark County Government Center’s Rotunda Gallery, 500 S. Grand Central Parkway in downtown Las Vegas. The exhibit also is a part of the 2013 Vegas Valley Book Festival’s “Illustrated Word” programming. An artist reception is set for 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18 with an artist talk at 6:30 p.m. in the Pueblo Room, near the gallery. The Rotunda Gallery also will be open for First Friday from 6 to 10 p.m. on Nov. 1.
Working with nature is a design instinct, according to Hill, an artist and graphic designer. On the wide-open terrain of ideas, designers and artists approach the desert, sifting through dusty surfaces and overturning natural evidence. Hill uses the principles of design, including typography, color, shape and images, and she detects, deciphers and builds cultural codes that reflect her community.
The inspiration for Hill's current exhibit of handmade artist books and display towers was again found in nature, in the form of the mesquite. The artist was coping with an illness in the family at the time, and the mesquite offered her hope with its extraordinary beauty and resilience. Often honed by the hand of man in parks and other landscaped settings, this humble tree is filled with noteworthy visual patterns, texture and colors. In the wilderness, the mesquite's form and function is also worthy of observation. It has a core role in the desert ecosystem, provides food and hard, durable wood that burns slow and hot. Understanding the mesquite offers insight on our own relationship to the desert, and on perseverance and survival.
Hill earned her master’s degree in fine arts from the Academy of Art University, San Francisco, and her bachelor’s degree in fine arts from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. She is currently the lead graphic designer for the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District, as well as a freelance designer working on various public art projects. Recent exhibits include local shows “Asleep in Vegas” at RTZvegas, "AIGA Work Show" at the Historic 5th Street School and the Open Air Printers Members Gallery. She also has exhibited her work at the Brooklyn Art Library, in Brooklyn, New York.
Those interested in “Mesquite” can contact the Winchester Cultural Center at (702) 455-7340 or visit the website at www.ClarkCountyNV.gov/parks. Additional information also can be found on the Clark County Public Art Facebook page by searching Clark County (NV) / Visual Arts and on Clark County Parks and Recreation’s social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook.
Clark County is a dynamic and innovative organization dedicated to providing top-quality service with integrity, respect and accountability. With jurisdiction over the world-famous Las Vegas Strip and covering an area the size of New Jersey, Clark is the nation’s 12th-largest county and provides extensive regional services to more than 2 million citizens and 43 million visitors a year. Included are the nation’s 8th-busiest airport, air quality compliance, social services and the state’s largest public hospital, University Medical Center. The county also provides municipal services that are traditionally provided by cities to almost 900,000 residents in the unincorporated area. Those include fire protection, roads and other public works, parks and recreation, and planning and development.