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St Cloud, MN—August 8, 2014— Local mixed media artist Sarah Drake launched her new collection, Inspired, on August 1, 2014 at the St Cloud branch of the Great River Regional Library. There is a reception on Thursday, August, 14th, from 5:00-8:00 p.m. with an artist talk at 6:30 p.m. The exhibited work was inspired by and also features work of mixed media artist Harouna Ouedraogo. The artists are donating 25% of sales to herARTS in Action’s water project, the Kofa Sawyer Foundation for Infectious Diseases, and Mary Bruno, a local artist recovering from breast cancer. Decontee Sawyer, widow of the first American to die from Ebola, and Mary Bruno will be present at the event.

The exhibit is in the main lobby of the Great River Regional Library- St Cloud at 1300 W. St. Germain St. The display is up for the month of August and contains over 20 abstract creations, in addition to 4 pieces of Ouedraogo’s recent work. The library is open 10am-9pm Mondays-Thursdays, 10am-6pm Fridays, 10am-5pm Saturdays and closed Sundays.

In 2011, Drake visited Ouedraogo’s home country of Burkina Faso. After working with the women artisans in the village of Tiebele, it forever changed her artistic spirit and creations. Sarah researched Burkinabe art and liked the work by Harouna. When she reached out to him, he was receptive and they began a dialogue about art and the water project she created in collaboration with the villagers. It seemed like a great fit to exhibit works together and donate a percentage of sales to the With A Drop water project by herARTS in Action. 

When asked about the inspiration for the exhibit, Drake said, “This was an opportunity for me to try something new and continue my exploration with art. I was so honored that Harouna was willing to partner with me and it has inspired future projects with him and other Burkinabe artists to raise the visualization of not only our artwork, but the development work in the village back home.” Earlier this year Drake partnered with another Burkinabe artist, Ramde (Tambi) Artistide, and she hopes to continue partnerships with other artists. Sarah Drake is a visual artist who sees art as an educational tool to engage viewers in critical thinking and expand their comfort zones. 

As a teaching artist she not only uses art as tool in the education process, but allows the space to experiment with and inspire through art. With a mixed media medium, Sarah is able to reuse materials in her creations as part of her education on sustainability. Artworks often include themes that inspire social change, whether in abstract, surreal or representational form. 

Drake is the founder of her ARTS in Action (non-profit) and Sarah Drake LLC (for-profit) where she is an artist, conducts teaching artist residencies, facilitates trainings and coordinates projects/events. Sarah has exhibited her artwork internationally in New York, Moscow and London, received awards and has a piece in the permanent collection at the Marina Tsvetaeva Museum and Cultural Center in Moscow. She has a Master’s of Science degree in Social Responsibility and her undergraduate degree focused on Ethnic Studies and Geography, both from St. Cloud State University, and design diploma from St. Cloud Technical & Community College.

Harouna Ouedraogo is a native of Burkina Faso living and working in France. He has exhibited his work internationally throughout the USA, France and Burkina Faso. He is inspired by roads and society and creates through exploration; not thinking, just freeing the mind and creating. When asked about the Inspired collaboration and making a 20% donation of sales to herARTS in Action, Harouna stated, “I appreciate the project. It’s a good thing for people. I’m honored to be a part of it. Even though I haven’t
been to this village [Tiebele], I was raised in a village, so I know what it’s like. Even a little helps to make things better.”

For more information, please contact Sarah Drake: Email: sarahdrakeart@gmail.com Facebook/Twitter: @sarahdrakeart and @herartsinaction
Website: www.sarahdrakeart.com and www.herartsinaction.com
Phone: 320-266-4316


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