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An exhibition of artwork by graduating art major Anne Marie Wodrich and two art minors, Brittany Alberson and Ashley Doerrer, begins Thursday at Rocky Mountain College's Ryniker-Morrison Gallery with an opening reception honoring the artists from 4:30 to 6 p.m.

Wodrich's exhibition, "Stolen Childhood," will contain a number of paintings concerned with neglected and poverty-stricken children. To assist needy children in the Billings community, canned goods will be collected for the Montana Rescue Mission throughout the exhibition.

To help on a larger scale, a portion of the proceeds from the sale of Wodrich's paintings will be given to World Vision, an organization that benefits children in Third World countries.

"I became interested in disadvantaged children when I experienced them firsthand through a mission trip to Juarez, Mexico, and have since contributed to child-oriented organizations like Toys for Tots and World Vision," Wodrich said.

After graduation in December, she plans to take a short break before pursuing work in the Billings area utilizing her combined business management/art degree.

Selected paintings, drawings and textile pieces by Rocky art minors Brittany Alberson and Ashley Doerrer will complete the exhibition.

Alberson is a graduating senior with a major in English education and minors in Spanish and art. She enjoys bringing to fruition the many disparate ideas in her head through at least as many different media. In this show, Alberson will present pieces of metalworking, painting, drawing and more. Given the often surreal quality of her subject matter, she prefers a more dreamlike, abstract style, but she also has a penchant for portraiture and photorealism.

"I'm a hard-working perfectionist at heart and art provides me with an opportunity to relax and give up some control over my work," she said. "I love practicing automatism when I'm painting and I prefer to have a specific plan to realize when I'm drawing. Both methods, however, offer something of a meditative experience, which is necessary, I've discovered, to keep one's sanity."

Ashley Doerrer graduates in spring 2009 with a major in equestrian studies and a minor in art. Her work in acrylic, pencil and watercolor will primarily be of animals. "Growing up in the Pacific Northwest inspired me at a young age and has given me the love of animals and nature," Doerrer said. "I owe my mom credit because she always encouraged me to paint and draw. I have been fortunate to gain new perspectives by traveling outside the country."

Doerrer said that several artists have given her ideas and inspiration, including Titian, Carol Hagan, Da Vinci and all of the Rocky art teachers.

The exhibit runs through Dec. 10. Call gallery director Jane Deschner at 248-7494 or artist Anne Wodrich at 591-7855 for any comments or questions.

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