The new art exhibit in the library is not the work of art majors or instructors. It’s the work of some of UCF’s pencil pushers and number crunchers who have just as much a need to express themselves through a variety of mediums.

Thirteen UCF employees working in various departments ranging from the Office of Student Financial Assistance to the Registrar’s Office, comprise the artists of the new exhibit called “Hidden Artists.”

The exhibit, which opened Jan. 3 and runs through Jan. 23, features work by: Dawn M. Herrod, Kathy Hudson, Jacqui D. Johnson, Amy Kleeman, Simona Loh, Russ Muller, Brian Pate, Judy Bragg Pardo, Ken Rabac, Diane Colvin Reitz, Mary C. Roskowski, Tina Tran and Jimmy Watson.

“Art can be a therapeutic tool and a relaxation technique,” said Kathy Hudson, a UCF employee and one of the featured artists. “Art helps me unwind like nothing else.”

The Hidden Artists have been meeting for three years and are led by Judy Bragg Pardo, the senior art/publication production specialist in Student Development and Enrollment Services.

She organized the Hidden Artists group three years ago to bring employees of UCF from various departments together that all share the common love of art.

The exhibit features a variety of mediums including paintings, photographs and mixed media art.

Jimmy Watson, the assistant vice president of Off-Campus Student Services, expects people from all over Central Florida to come see the Hidden Artists exhibit.

“UCF is a very important part of Orlando’s art scene,” said Watson, who has been at the university for more than 30 years. “The two just feed off one another.”

Being a part of the group has served as more than a therapeutic outlet for some of the artists. Many involved in the group have seen their talents improve from working with each other.

“Others in the group encourage me to branch out and try new things,” said Dawn Herrod, an assistant director in the Office of Student Financial Assistance.

Herrod, a landscape photographer who has worked at UCF for more than 14 years, said that the two years she’s been in the group have helped her grow as an artist and cope with daily stresses and pressures.

Not all of the artists are satisfied with working in one medium, such as painting or photography.

Ken Rabac, the broadcasting coordinator in the College of Art and Humanities, uses a form of art known as mixed media to express his talents.

Mixed media art involves using random objects and other everyday material to make pieces of artwork.

Sophomore business major Garrett Callis was happy to attend the opening reception on Jan. 5.

“I would like to see more art exhibits on campus” said sophomore business major Garrett Callis. “I feel that art is often overlooked in college and I am glad others appreciate it, as well.”

Source: Central Florida Future, Artists’ Renderings, Library hosts the original artistic creations of UCF employees, by Jonathan Beaton,  contributing writer.  Published: Sunday, January 9, 2011,  updated: Sunday, January 9, 2011 20:01