Nicole Davis' "Elegy" in “Come Celebrate with Me … " at Cornell College -- through March 31.

Through Sunday, March 31

Cornell College's Peter Paul Luce Gallery, 600 First Street West, Mt. Vernon IA

On display in the Peter Paul Luce Gallery of Mt. Vernon's Cornell College through March 31, the fascinating exhibition Come Celebrate with Me ... will treat patrons to a collection of arresting pieces by the Illinois-based interdisciplinary artist Nicole Davis.

Davis’ work evokes personal, ancestral, and cultural memory as a form of sustenance and resistance in opposition to current societal structures that endeavor to minimize or erase her existence as a Black woman. Working with reclaimed textiles, Davis transforms them – cutting, tearing, assembling, and sewing – to create powerful artworks. These creations embody the past, present, and future, while simultaneously invoking memory, providing commentary, and containing prayers and protection from the violent power structures that dominate society. “At this moment in time, our society has broken down in ways we never expected,” Davis says. “It is my sincerest hope that on this ‘bridge between starshine and clay,’ we rise up and materialize something beautiful. Something worthy of celebration.”

A visual artist and educator who works primarily in textile, photography, and painting, Davis served as a special education teacher in public school systems for 21 years before pivoting to an art career. She received an M.F.A. degree with honors from the University of Iowa in 2020. Her artwork has been shown throughout the Midwest: at the Soo Visual Arts Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota; the Koehnline Museum in Skokie, Illinois; Legion Arts in Cedar Rapids, Iowa; the South Bend Museum of Art in South Bend, Indiana; and the Freeport Art Museum in Freeport, Illinois, among other places. She is featured in the publication New American Paintings, No. 153, and in 2020, she was selected to be an Artivism Fellow for the Broadway Advocacy Coalition.

Come Celebrate with Me …will be o  display in McWethy Hall’s Luce Gallery, and regular gallery hours for the exhibit running through March 31 are Monday through Friday from 9 4 p.m. and Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m. For more information, contact Luce Gallery Coordinator Brooks Cashbaugh at, and visit and Nicole Davis’s Web site at

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