The SIU art museum features an exhibit filled with Richard Cox’s recent artwork on Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020, in Carbondale, ILL. Cox weaved together wool, hand-dyed, and mohair to create “No Title.” (Tiffany Young | @photographybytiffa)
The SIU art museum features an exhibit filled with Richard Cox’s recent artwork on Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020, in Carbondale, ILL. Cox weaved together wool, hand-dyed, and mohair to create “No Title.”

Tiffany Young | @photographybytiffa

SIU Museum continues to house exhibits despite pandemic

October 5, 2020

The SIU University museum has seven exhibits this semester and will be featuring all different kinds of art from stitchings to masks and more. 

Paula Kovarik, SIU graphic design alumna and one of the featured artists at the museum, creates all of her art with fabric and thread.

Kovarik had her own graphic design business Shades of Gray for 25 years. and has been working on fiber art for ten years now and she spends most of the day working in the studio. 


Kovarik said she makes a lot of political pieces commenting on the current chaos in the U.S. government.

 Kovarik’s favorite piece that will be in the exhibit “I watch too much news TV.” This piece that took years to make is about the news and how it can affect viewers. Based on how disturbing the news often is. 

“Most of my work comes from ideas that I come up with after reading or observing something in nature,” Kovarik said. 

Kovarik has had many pieces accepted into exhibits all over the world.

 Kovarik also has a piece titled “contagion” that was inspired by the COVID-19 pandemic, which includes some bacteria on it. 

Lavinia Roberts is an artist from New York featured at the museum. Roberts is primarily a theater artist and playwright who builds masks and puppets. 

All of the masks that Roberts has built over the last decade for plays and other events will be on display at the SIU museum. 


Roberts said that the masks are on many different subjects including trees, skeletons, and more. 

Roberts has a collection of gold masks made for a production of the twine that was made while in grad school at NYU. 

 While working on “The Twine,” a play that featured many prominent Greek characters, Roberts made a series of masks from minotaurs to Aphrodite and others. 

Roberts worked with Exquisite Corpse Company, an art company in Brooklyn, and made many different masks for plays that they put on. Many masks were made as part of exhibitions for famous painters. 

“It’s interesting something like this happening right now when all of us are in masks and wearing them all the time,” Roberts said”

Roberts said that it’s interesting how this is going on in time where everyone is wearing masks, as that makes people look at them differently. 

Paula Kovarik’s exhibit “ Stitched Intent” has been on display since August 20 and will be on display until November 6.

Lavinia Roberts’s exhibit “ [UN]masked” will go on display on October 6 and will be on display through December 12. 

The SIU museum is currently open at 25% capacity and masks are required. 

According to the SIU website, exhibits going on this semester  are:

Continuum Gallery – Aug. 28-Dec. 12: “Woven,” a collection of textiles from the museum’s permanent collection.

Atrium Gallery – Sept. 1-Oct. 10: “Curator Choice: Selected Works from the Museum’s Permanent Collection.”

South Gallery – Aug. 18-Oct. 31: “The Color of Gardens,” the works of Southern Illinois artist Joan-Skiver-Levy.

West Gallery – Aug. 18-Dec. 12: “Richard Cox 2020.” Cox is a mixed media artist.

Study Gallery – Aug. 26-Dec. 12: “United We Stand,” a photo exhibition of work from peaceful Black Lives Matter protests from throughout the region.

International Gallery – Aug. 28-Oct. 3: “Healing Touch,” featuring selections from the museum’s medical collections; 

Hall of Art – Nov. 3-Dec. 12: “The Seven Deadly Sins of Trump,” painter and artist Tim Atseff

Staff reporter Ryan Scott can be reached at [email protected] or on twitter @RyanscottDE. 

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