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Snooke and Friends Featured in Senior Art Exhibit

Mars Hill University senior Ebony Simpson said she has been getting to know Snooke since she was a middle-schooler. An upcoming exhibition at Weizenblatt Gallery featuring Simpson’s art will introduce Snooke to the rest of the world.

The exhibition, titled “An Introduction to Snooke” will feature a variety of Simpson’s enlarged, black and white comic strip art. Each piece will feature Snooke (pronounced “Snook”), a snarky and dramatic orange tabby cat, and any of a cast of supporting characters. Along with her strips, Simpson plans to exhibit her preliminary sketches.

Ebony Simpson Art2a

Simpson, a native of Wingate, NC, said comics have been a part of life since she read her first comic book - Marvel’s Ultimate Spiderman Issue #1 ­- in the eighth grade.

“I have been drawing Snooke since I was twelve years old, and somehow through the quantity of silly animal faces I drew, Snooke was the only one I always came back to,” she said.

“An Introduction to Snooke” will be on exhibit in Weizenblatt Gallery from April 15 to May 10, 2014. The exhibition will be free and open to the public each weekday from 10 am until 4 pm.

Ebony Simpson01aDuring her sophomore year at Mars Hill College, Simpson received a student research grant which enabled her to travel to Philadelphia’s ECBACC (East Coast Black Age of Comics Convention) where she interviewed various well known African American comic book artists and writers. Inspired by their life stories, their art and their advice, Ebony decided to embark on the path of developing her comic book art.

She will graduate from Mars Hill University in May 2014 with her Bachelor of Arts degree. She plans to attend graduate school where she will continue her art education and work toward her dream of publishing her own graphic novel.

As for Snooke, the upcoming exhibit is only the beginning, Simpson said. She hopes to one day create a comic book starring Snooke as the lead.

“An Introduction to Snooke,” will take place simultaneously with the Art Faculty Biennial Exhibition, which will include works of art from professors in the Mars Hill University art program.