Waco artist unveils new exhibit, ‘Into the Mystic’

"Into the Mystic" is a new exhibit at the Susan L. Sistrunk Gallery in dedication to her father's passing. Grace Fortier | Photographer

By Skylla Mumana | Reporter

On Saturday, Susan Lee Sistrunk unveiled her art exhibition, “Into the Mystic,” during the Waco Uptown Art Walk at the Susan L. Sistrunk Fine Art Gallery.

The Waco Uptown Artwalk took place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and featured plenty of art, music and food for the Waco community to enjoy. It was located at multiple uptown locations, such as the MC Art Supplies, Brown Electric, Monument Barber Co., Ana’s Taxes and the Susan L. Sistrunk Fine Art Gallery.

In addition to being an artist all her life, Sistrunk said she’s also taught art for over 15 years. She started her gallery out of her home in March 2019, and her goal was to help sell the work of other artists, as well as her own. Within the last year, Sistrunk has created up to 100 pieces of work, and through her gallery she has sold around 60% of her inventory. Sistrunk dedicated her new exhibit to her father, who passed away in 2002, and to her brother.

With interconnection in mind, Sistrunk hopes that her new exhibit, and her gallery, will be able to bring people together, just as how she feels art does.

“It’s [a] connection,” Sistrunk said. “Anytime you get people who are of different races, different socioeconomic situations in the same room and they start conversing with each other and looking at art, it’s powerful medicine.”

Robinson senior Meagan Noranbrock, a local artist, was one of the art vendors outside the gallery. Noranbrock is the owner and creator of Coaster & Canvas, an art business that produces jewelry, clothing, canvas work and more. Noranbrock currently takes orders through her Etsy and has an Instagram account that shows pictures of her merchandise.

Noranbrock said she became serious about opening up a shop during the pandemic. In lockdown, her creativity boomed. Once the country started to open up again, she needed a way to sell off her excess art.

“They just kind of piled up in my house,” Noranbrock said. “I started going to local markets and selling my stuff and people loved it. So I kept making more, and now I love it.”

Sistrunk’s exhibit is displayed in the back room of the gallery, but the main room contains art that is rotated every two months and typically features artists that are local to the McLennan County area.

The current rotation features Russell Campbell. Campbell, a mixed media and abstract artist, is based in Waco. His art is featured in places such as Skellington Curiosities, Cultivate 7Twelve, his Instagram and much more. His exhibit featured a series of paintings that included a song from Spotify attached to it, so visitors could listen as they viewed the painting.

Taped next to his exhibit on a white sheet of paper, there was a short biography about Campbell. In the biography, Campbell said he hoped the song would allow for his audience to find a deeper meaning while viewing his work.

“Read the title, scan the barcode and listen to the song,” Campbell said. “It might seem completely random, but there is going to be something in there that has meaning.”