The judge of the 2017 Russell Original Art Review is Wayne Conyers, professor of art in McPherson (Kansas) College’s Visual Arts Department.
Conyers is entering his 34th year of teaching at McPherson College in McPherson, KS. He has served as chair of the Visual Arts Department at McPherson College for 19 of those years, overseeing the evolution of the curriculum for four different “tracks” in the art department, and playing a major role in the recruiting of art majors. Conyers began his teaching career at the high school level in 1974, teaching art as a one-person department for 10 years in Baldwin, KS.
Conyers has taught a wide range of classes in drawing, painting, ceramics, art education, concentrated studies, and senior concentration. In addition, he curates art exhibitions for McPherson College’s Friendship Hall Gallery. His most ambitious accomplishment at McPherson College was laying the foundation for a vibrant, expanding graphic-design program, which is now in its 17th year. He was also instrumental in creating the Art Restoration Design program, a hybrid major which combines the technology and visual arts departments.
Conyers has exhibited his watercolor paintings and his functional pottery extensively at the local, regional, and national levels. His work has received numerous awards, and his paintings can be found in private, corporate, and museum collections. In April 2010, Conyers experienced his first international show in Tokyo, traveling to Japan as a member of an American delegation of contemporary water-colorists. In 2014, he was part of an international water-media exhibition in Seoul, South Korea. He has been a participant in 78 exhibitions, both invitational and juried, during the past ten years. Hes has twice been named “Professor of the Year” at McPherson College. Recently, the Kansas Art Education Association named Conyers as the “2017 Outstanding Art Educator-Higher Education.”
Conyers enjoys being a juror for exhibitions. For the past 12 years, Conyers has juried at least one high school league contest each year, and numerous college/university student exhibitions. He has served twice on a panel of jurors for the Kansas Governor’s Outstanding Artists, and three time on a panel of jurors for the Bradley Fair Art Festival in Wichita. On the national level, Conyers and two other artists juried the Winter Park National Art Festival, 12 miles north of Orlando Fla.
Conyers was born in 1952 in Wichita and was raised in Marion, Kan., graduating from Marion High School in 1970 as valedictorian. Conyers earned his BA in art (teaching license) from Bethany College (1974), his MA in painting from the University of Missouri-Kansas City (1981), and his MFA in painting from Fort Hays State University (1997).