Herb Williams displays crayon exhibit at UK

By: Taylor Riley

Herb Williams, an artist from Nashville, Tenn., takes the art of his childhood and applies it to his work as an adult. Starting Monday, his Crayola crayon sculptures will be on display at the Rasdall Gallery on campus as the “Herb Exhibit.”

He is one of the only artists in the world who has an account with the famous children’s brand Crayola, and his original sculptures feature hundreds of thousands of the colorful art tools, according to his website.

“I am interested in identifying iconic objects that society perceives to fit one role and then reintroducing them in different subtexts,” Williams said on his website, which discusses how he uses the crayons to address sexuality, religion and social hierarchy.

SAB cultural arts director Shannon Ruhl said she became interested in bringing Williams to campus after realizing that he could connect with different audiences through his work.

“Herb Williams takes these simple, familiar objects as his primary working medium and gives them new meaning,” Ruhl said, “He challenges peoples’ initial impressions of his work by applying thousands of crayons to the surface of these sculptures, and taps into the inner-child while addressing the social culture of today.”

According to his website, Williams says his work in the construction field as a teenager gave him a deeper understanding of form and materials. His sculptures have been placed in children’s hospitals and lobbies of corporate buildings. Williams will be bringing more than 30 pieces of his art, all of which explore crayons in form, color and content, according to Ruhl.

“This exhibit is fun and interesting and accessible to everyone; who hasn’t grown up coloring with crayons?” Ruhl said.

The Herb Williams exhibit will run beginning Monday through Sept. 21. It will be open during the week from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. A reception will be held on Monday from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Rasdall Gallery in the Student Center. Admission is free, and food