Raven Lente’s Art that she is submitting. Photo taken by Raven Lente
Each year, the Eastern New Mexico University Runnels Gallery hosts the K-ENMU for all to
enter. The exhibition is open for anyone to apply, from kindergarteners to college seniors. There
are some that apply from different colleges around the state, and others from elementary, middle
and high schools throughout New Mexico and Texas, including homeschool students. All types
of art are welcome, including watercolors, mixed media, acrylics, photography, and any other
Entering your work is free, but not everyone’s work actually makes it to the show. The show is
juried, meaning that the submissions are selected for display at the art show by a panel of
individuals made up of art educators and enthusiasts. They rank the top three pieces of each
division as well as a best in show. Students whose work is selected for the show are invited to a
reception and awards ceremony on March 20. Their work will be displayed from March 2 until
after the reception.
Raven Lente, a junior at ENMU, entered a mixed media painting called “Painting the Heavens.”
The work is three spray paint cans that each have a different vision of the night painted around
them. One has a full moon that is setting above an ocean, the next has a crescent blood moon
above a field and the third is the Milky Way above trees perched on mountains. Her idea behind
the work is that each scene “would have come out of the cans.” She also mentioned the main
color of each spray paint can is the same color that was originally in the can. Raven said that she
has been doing different types of art for “as long as [she] can remember,” but it wasn’t until her
junior year that she really started to focus on it. Her boyfriend, who is a spray paint artist,
inspired her work.
Trenna McKinley, another student at ENMU, submitted a mixed media sculpture. The sculpture
is of ballet shoes that are coming out of the pages of a book. McKinley said that she “wanted to
show what it’s like to dance,” because she has been dancing ballet since she was 8. She wanted
to show that “when you dance, you also tell a story” in a similar way that art tells a story.
McKinley also mentioned she has known since kindergarten that she wanted a career in art. She
said, “The idea of imagining something in my mind then making it in real life excites me.” She
has also submitted other works to ENMU and Clovis Community College that have placed in
The K-ENMU Art Show officially closed for submissions on Feb. 14.