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  • Writer's picturePeggy Nichols

Randy Simmons, an artist whose large scale drawings re-evaluates memory and fragility...

About Drawing:

Taking a sabbatical during the Covid-19 pandemic in the fall of 2020 coincided with Randy's mother deteriorating physical and mental health and is documented as the drawings progress from early 2020 until the final piece completed just weeks before the exhibit. All of the works have never been exhibited in Paducah before and will include some drawings of family members made during undergraduate time at Murray State University in contrast to recent drawings of his family.

'The result is a new series of surrealistic drawings mainly focusing around my mother’s heartbreaking decline and our feeling of helplessness,” notes Simmons. 'Interestingly, her decline may have brought us together even closer than we have ever been.” The works are large scale charcoal with one large digital photo in the exhibit.'

Randy Simmons exhibit, Achromic was debuted on October 28th, 2021 at the Bill Ford Gallery, Paducah School of Art and Design, Paducah, Kentucky. The majority of drawings in this post are from the Achromic exhibition.

'You And The Clouds', charcoal on paper, 47 x 47 inches.

A nationally recognized artist, Simmons has this year exhibited in “The Valdosta National 2021” at Valdosta State University, Foundry Art Centre, St. Charles, Missouri, “12 Annual Contemporary Drawing Discourse” Ashville, North Carolina, “Hope” at the Art St. Louis, “Ordinary Lives 2021: National Juried Exhibition at the Arts Council of SEMO, Cape Girardeau, Missouri, “The 29th Cedarhurst Biennial”, Mt. Vernon, Illinois, “28th Annual Juried Art Exhibition” at the Thyen-Clark Cultural Center, Jasper, Indiana, and in March of 2022, “Coined In The South: 2022”, The Mint Museum, Charlotte, North Carolina.

Simmons work is in the permanent collection of the Evansville Museum of Arts and Science, Murray State University, and private collections around the world. Simmons is also a recipient of the Kentucky Arts Council Al Smith Fellowship.

In addition to being a Professor of Drawing at PSAD, Simmons teaches for the Kentucky Institute for International Studies with the Italy and Costa Rica program. He travels abroad with students each summer, preparing them to be globally competent by exposing them to international culture, art, and history, an effort that enhances Paducah’s reputation as an UNESCO Creative City. His education includes a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting and Master of Art degree in drawing, both from Murray State University and a Master of Fine Art degree in drawing from the University of Cincinnatti.

'Was It A 180 or 360', charcoal on paper, 36 x 24 inches.

'Stendhal Syndrome', charcoal on paper, 48 x 47 inches.

'Self Portrait at 15 ( If The Vision... )', charcoal on paper,

48 x 36 inches.

'Mighty Like A Rose', charcoal on paper, 50 x 36 inches.

'Long Way Home', charcoal on paper, 48 x 47 inches.

Randy Simmons, in his studio.

Instagram: @randysimmonsdrawings

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