Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Fine Arts

Spring 2009

Robert Helm, 65 – Acclaimed Northwest artist, teacher

Robert Helm, an acclaimed Northwest artist known for surreal imagery and exquisite craftsmanship, died October 21, 2008. He was 65.
Helm was born in Wallace, Idaho, and attended North Central High School in Spokane, where he met Tamara Kimpel. They married in 1966 and had a daughter, Brenna, and a son, Boone. He earned his M.F.A. degree at WSU in 1969 and taught at the University of Colorado before returning to teach at WSU from 1971-84.

After leaving WSU, Helm and Tamara continued to live and work in their studios in their beloved wheat fields between Pullman and Moscow. From there, his art went … » More …

Spring 2006

Growing as an Artist

windows along the north wall look out over Martin Stadium. They offer quite a view, especially on game days, says Powell.

On one wall hang two of his latest pieces, paintings on birch plywood, a medium he says gives him more of a feeling of permanence than canvas.

When starting on a piece, Powell creates a situation for himself and then sets about reducing it. He begins by filling the wood plane with multiple lines and forms with graphite and ink, and then painting over them with a neutral-colored acrylic, sanding it down, tweaking and tuning, finding and isolating forms, until just a few … » More …

Spring 2006

The Clothesline Project

Haunting and colorful, the Clothesline Project usually stops students in their tracks as they head across the Glenn Terrell Mall to class. It’s a display of several hundred t-shirts made by people connected to Washington State University with messages about how violence, particularly against women, can affect individuals, families, and communities. For a week last October, the campus community had a chance to read the words of victim/survivors and their friends.

Spring 2006

Growing as an Artist

Isaac Powell, a graduate student in the Department of Fine Arts, recently won national attention for his work when a piece took grand prize in a juried competition for young artists with disabilities. The competition winners are now part of a traveling exhibit that opened at the Smithsonian last fall. Photo by Robert Hubner.

It’s an artist’s dream to be recognized by experts and curators and to have your work shown by an internationally known museum.

Isaac Powell, a 26-year-old fine arts student at Washington State University, realized that dream last fall when his painting won a spot in a traveling exhibit that opened at … » More …