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Exhibit highlights artists for Women’s History Month

Marisa Nuñez
Price Center committee member Margaret Adie stands in front of her artwork, Friday, March 22, 2024, at the Price Center.

From the beginning of March to April, “The Female Gaze: How We View the World” art exhibit will be open at the Price Center. The sixth annual International Women’s Day exhibit showcases over 100 female artists, 12 women-related events and six commissioned pieces by the Price Center.

The showcase originally started with Debangana Banerjee, who curated an art show celebrating International Women’s Day titled “A Room of One’s Own” in 2019 at the San Marcos Public Library. Clay DeStefano, executive director of the Price Center, offered to host the showcase for a longer period of time.

“It was beautiful and powerful,” DeStefano said. “I was here at the time already so afterward, I reached out to the [Bangerjee] and said, ‘This was really beautiful. Would you want to bring it to the Price Center in the future because we could do a longer show we can leave it up and on display.’ She was delighted, and that led to our first one here.”

Banerjee continues to help plan the exhibit and the complementing events in December every year. What started with about 20 local women in the community has now become the Price Center’s largest exhibit of the year, with over 100 artists’ work on display from cities such as Seguin, Canyon Lake, New Braunfels, Wimberley, San Antonio and Austin.

“We have 30 new [artists] out of 100 pieces,” Joan Nagel, the Price Center art committee president, said. “We’ve gotten to where we can only take one piece of art per person. Five years ago, [artists] could bring in a couple of pieces, and we were like, ‘Hopefully, we can get enough art.’ Now people come in with two and we’re like, ‘No’.

Each piece of artwork follows the theme “The Female Gaze: How We View the World” loosely based on the International Women’s Day theme of 2024: “Inspire Inclusion.” 

Margaret Adie, a Price Center committee member, has participated in the annual event with Banerjee since 2019. This year, the Price Center commissioned six pieces of art for the event and Adie’s was one of them.

“I was honored,” Adie said. “I was happy because I do a lot of assemblage work… I do small assemblage work and large, but it’s very difficult for me to find space for my large pieces. It was great for me to be able to do that.”

Assemblage work is an art technique through creating 3D pieces from found objects. Adie used sock stretchers from the late 1800s, bolts and metal machine pieces to create her piece. She said her piece signifies the motion of life and positivity; her take on the female gaze theme.

“I think the women’s gaze is of utmost importance, especially these days,” Adie said. “It’s really important, especially with the show of all women. It’s our biggest show of the year, and women come out of the woodwork for the show, and it’s lovely… [The community] needs to embrace women.”

The events and exhibit were introduced in 2023. Due to a large turnout, the Price Center decided to stick with the events this year. The exhibit has already participated in three events. The opening reception on March 3 was a huge success for the Price Center.

“We had 200 women at the reception on Sunday. The energy was really powerful,” DeStefano said. “These women are coming together for the first time, but they walk away friends, and these connections lead to other things throughout the year. That’s really our goal, to build community. We see that happening, it’s really exciting.”

The Price Center takes pride in being one of the only galleries in San Marcos and surrounding areas to take in pieces from whoever from wherever to build community. DeStefano said the turnout of the only women’s gallery is an unexpected benefit of staying true to its purpose.

“I didn’t know going into this that it would be all of that, that it would be so meaningful and important and [we’d] be touching lives as much as we do…There’s a lot of time involved in working with artists, but all in a good way…really unexpected but very cool,” DeStefano said.

The exhibit has nine more women-related events through the end of March and April.

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