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The Art Group was founded nearly two decades ago when several Little Rock artists came together to share an art studio. In 2013, the artists officially opened a gallery, The Art Group Gallery, in Pleasant Ridge Shopping Center. Follow along as At Home in Arkansas interviews each of the group’s 17 artists to find out more about their inspirations and processes for creating.
At Home: What are your earliest memories of creating art?
Patricia Wilkes: Art has always been a part of my being, my makeup—it’s inseparable for me, like breathing. I can’t remember a time when it wasn’t with me. When I was very little, I made tiny storybooks and tea sets, farms with barns and animals, and little sculptures made from blue Play-Doh. My mother saved them, and I still have them! She saw at an early age that I had an artistic ability. In my early years, she enrolled me in art classes in Little Rock and was always my biggest cheerleader.
AH: Tell us a little bit about your background and training.
PW: I was able to attend Washington University’s Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts in St. Louis where I had the benefit of a traditional, academic art education. I earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and majored in graphic design. I’m thankful for my freshman year figure drawing professor, Edward Boccia, and for my sophomore and junior year figure structure professor, Barry Schactman, whose instructions I still follow to this day….