The Mims and Gravely Galleries at The Dunn Center

In support of the cultural mission and quality entertainment of The Dunn Center, the Mims Art Gallery annually produces a series of art exhibits by nationally recognized and local professionals from various and diverse populations. All Gallery events are FREE to the public and bring music and art together for reception parties where visitors and art collectors can talk with visiting artists one on one. Most artworks are for sale and we encourage collecting from our exhibits.

The Gravely Gallery in The Dunn Center is a new space for edgy, young art made possible by a generous gift in honor of the late Janice Gravely. As a showcase for student talent at both NCWU and other local schools, it’s a great entry point for emerging artists and a tremendous benefit to the local art community. With so much to see and do at The Dunn Center, here’s a brand new gallery fulfilling that promise!

dunn center galleries logo

Mims & Gravely Gallery Season

The Mims Art Gallery at NC Wesleyan University’s Dunn Center continues to present the available best, most diverse international and regional art for our patrons’ interest and enjoyment. Each season we exhibit oil and watercolor painting, photography, pastel and mixed media artworks, some abstract with emphasis on artistic process, some with emphasis on subject matter. Our reception parties for our artists are FREE to the public where there’s opportunity to meet artists and enjoy live music. Most artworks are for sale and we encourage collecting for the home and office.

bob ross promotion

Fantastic Little Paintings by artist, Bob Ross, is set to adorn the walls of The Mims and Gravely Galleries at The Dunn Center in fall 2023. The exhibition will be open to the public with tickets available starting late summer 2023. This will be the first time a Bob Ross exhibit has been to North Carolina and the largest exhibition ever seen under one roof globally.

Robert Norman Ross, an American painter, art instructor and television host known by so many for his permed hair, showed the world how to paint fun pieces of art. He was the creator and host of The Joy of Painting, an instructional television program that aired from 1983 to 1994 on PBS in the United States, CBC in Canada, and similar channels in Latin America, Europe and elsewhere. Ross subsequently became known through his posthumous internet presence.

Spending 20 years in the U.S. Airforce, this is where he developed an interest in painting after attending an art class at the Anchorage U.S.O. club. While still in the Airforce, Bob discovered a show called The Magic of PaintingThis is where he learned a 16-century painting style called “alla prima” (Italian for “First Attempt”) widely known as “wet-on-wet.” This allowed him to create a painting in thirty minutes. Ross became a master at this technique and began to successfully sell his work.

During each thirty-minute episode of The Joy of Painting, Bob would teach his viewers the quick, wet-on-wet oil painting technique. He would paint a scene without sketching it first, creating the image directly from his mind in real-time. He explained his limited paint palette and made the process easy for everybody to understand in simple, easy-to-follow steps. Ross soothingly reminded his viewers that “we don’t make mistakes, just happy little accidents.”

Ross was said to have painted an estimated 30,000 pieces of art in his lifetime– many of which will be on display in The Dunn Center. Guests are invited to come experience the joy that Ross brought to the art world. For more information, contact Greg Purcell, Art Curator, at

For more information or to schedules tours and showings, contact:

Greg Purcell
Gallery Art Curator

Hours:  Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Upcoming Art Gallery Events


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Past Art Gallery Exhibits

Laura Berendsen Hughes

Durham artist and acrylic painter, Laura’s recent work features both equines and abstractions. Categorically, her works of art reveal her painterly “dance” (so to speak) between their designed structure and freedom. Her classical silhouettes of horses are realized in wild color and improvisational brush strokes. With creative skills from many years working as a graphic artist, Laura’s abstract expressionist works engage us with an exciting, tensional equilibrium between hard-edge form and the freeing dynamic of loose brushwork. In both equines and abstract expressionist works, you will see an uncompromising point of excellence found in her exploration of the aesthetic process.

Regarding beauty, Laura states, “Beauty isn’t the same as prettiness. For me, beauty is deeper and must contain chaos, decay and imperfection.” About her work she says, “What looks intuitive and spontaneous in my work actually starts with a computer sketch. As an unapologetic copyist, I steal brush stokes, colors, shapes and techniques from my other paintings… every step of the process is open to new inspiration. I’m a materialist at heart, [ultimately] I love to see what the paint wants to do and let it have a say in what finally shows up!”

Laura has a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Sculpture from UNC-Chapel Hill and has worked as a professional graphic designer for several years now. She uses her graphic design expertise as an integral part of the creative process of painting. As an active exhibiting artist in a variety of venues, she is experiencing both recognition and success. Laura is represented by The Carlton Gallery in Banner Elk, NC and The Centerpiece in Raleigh, NC.

Pow Wow Dancer in Hollister

Ivan Richardson

As a Haliwa-Saponi tribal native, Native American photographer, Ivan Richardson concentrates much of his photographic work in the Hollister, NC community. His photographs chronicle contemporary history of regional events and the annual tribal powwow where members from a variety of east coast tribes join in fellowship and celebration. A ready-to-serve portrait photographer, he especially values the opportunity to make photographic portraits of tribal elders. In his gallery exhibition, you will see a wide variety of subjects. Portraits of powwows show ceremonial dancers in their colorful, traditional regalia captured in dynamic dance movement.

Ivan’s success and professional reputation have grown since beginning Fotoworkz in 2014. Life itself opens photographic possibilities for him, between family, tribe and twenty-five years as a volunteer fireman. He has regularly exhibited, and received accolades, at the Annual Native American Unity Conference in Raleigh, NC. One of his photographs was featured in the Roanoke Rapids Daily Herald in 2019. He was awarded the front cover of McLane Industries’ MERIT Magazine with one of his colorful powwow photographs. Along with continuing his usual photographic work in portrait and chronicling community events, Ivan is looking forward to expanding his interest into wildlife subjects. This will be his second exhibition at the Mims Art Gallery and many of his photographs will be for sale.

patricia Horne painting

Patricia Horne

Fantasy Fantastique by artist Patricia Horne’s, dreamy world of fairy tales and fantasy, where everyday realities lie somewhere else. The artist shares her own improvisational surprises with the viewer as her cast of people, creatures, plants and planets, each have their unique personas and exist in narrative harmony with one another. Outside of sculpture and traditional painting, the computer has more and more become the perfect medium and paintbrush for Patricia. The immediacy of pictorial form, phosphene color, shape-shifting change, and layering of environment and space keep her flights of fantasy and narratives fresh and alive.

Patricia, a life-long North Carolina native, has raised her family in Fuquay-Varina where she lives with her husband. Since childhood, making art has been one of her favorite things to do. In her teens, she competed at a national contest in NYC where she received the Gold Key Award and honorable mention for a pen and ink entitled “Lady In Command.”  After high school, she attended Chowan University between 1982 and 83 and then Hardbager Jr, College from 1983 to 84. Married with the responsibilities of raising a family, she put making art on hold. With children grown and on their own, it was a 2015 Zentangle class in art that recharged her artistic pursuits and ongoing non-stop career. Largely self-taught like so many other greats, she exhibits regionally, accepts commission art projects and is a resident artist in the 311 Gallery.

Don’t miss this opportunity to view Patricia Horne’s work. Her prints and paintings are for sale and will make a favorite addition in a home or special collection.

ashley fabrizio paintings

Ashley Fabrizio

Ashley Fabrizio
Ashley Fabrizio, local artist

Already famous in local community, Fabrizio is the artist behind the 125-foot by 30-foot CSX mural on the side of Station Square in downtown Rocky Mount. Fabrizio will discuss her experiences as a muralist, commission painter and paint party hostess, as well as a creative force in regional expressionist painting. A “fearless” artist, there is no subject she will shy away from, including portraits of friends, celebrities and dogs in vivid color and bold brushwork. You can feel the energy and excitement in her paintings, as well as envision her ideas and thoughts about her subject matter.

Educated in local schools and a student of painting and art education at Barton College, Fabrizio has found her artistic voice as an expressionist where emotion and bursts of excitement drive her vision and painting style. She is an active member of both the Wilson and Rocky Mount art communities, as well as other regional venues.

A mother of two young children, Fabrizio balances her creative life with parenting. Her determination to make a living as a career artist is to be admired. You can find Ashley at the Bel Air Art Center in downtown Rocky Mount where her lively, free-spirited mural is already a Bel Air landmark.


Micah Mullens

Micah Mullen makes gleefully arresting paintings that transform conventional realism into a visual world that the artist offers up as an alternate reality. Mullen’s painting style is centered on his improvisation of pattern and color to make his pictorial subjects vibrate with optical energy. His evident labor-intensive process requires patience and time. In his own words he says this method, “allows my paintings to reflect my varying emotions and moods and in a strange way create a sense of balance and harmony in what are sometimes very detailed and confusing compositions.”

Mullen studied at State University of New York at Brockport and Duquesne University. He is the Marketing Director at Jerry’s Artarama in Raleigh, North Carolina.


Japanese Embroidery Guild: Centuries-old tradition of thread-work images and designs.

Englewood & Winstead Avenue Elementary Schools: Students of Ms. Carmichael and Ms. Hamilton in the Civic Gallery

Jan Volz: Light. Paintings and assemblages that focus on light.

Oona Lewis & Pegi Barnes Sharpe: Sublime and Seen. Wilson painters exhibit abstracts, landscapes and portraits.

Mr. Chips Invitational: Group exhibition of Mims Gallery artists from 1996-2019

joseph bounds

Joseph Bounds: Echoes of Portraiture. Exquisitely painted fractured portraits and cubist figures.

Bound’s oil paintings are not conventional portraits; his portrait subjects seem ethereal in fractured and layered abstract compositions that are carefully executed with delicately modulated tonalities. These images are profoundly psychological, even mystical, with personages appearing to exist simultaneously in the present, past, and future. What one might compare would be a slowly tumbling and rotating freeze-frame hologram.

When one takes in the artist’s imaginative approach to the human form and portrait, it is not surprising to find out that Joseph Bound’s earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the famous Chicago Art Institute, home to some of America’s most unconventional imagist painting since midcentury. Home based in North Carolina, Bounds nevertheless exhibits his art internationally from the Saatchi Gallery in London to Limner Gallery in Hudson, NY. He has soloed at the Horace Williams House in Chapel Hill and Studio Oh in Chicago. 2018 he took First Place in a competitive exhibition at the Cape Fear Studios and Special Merit in Figurative Art at the LST Gallery on line.

He taught figure drawing in the Barton College Art Department in 2018 where his admirable reputation and artwork caught the interest of Wesleyan’s Mims Gallery.

Koncept Art Show

Koncept Photography Club: Area photographers expressing us and where we live.

The Koncept Photography Club has 21 members from around Edgecombe, Halifax, Nash Northampton and Warren Counties. Each member has their specialty and some members have broader interests in taking photographs. Twelve members are exhibiting their work in this exhibition.  Some club members specialize in portraits, formal and informal; candids are popular, where unplanned, the photographer captures someone doing something interesting or just looking good; events bring people together like car shows, ceremony especially like the Haliwa- Saponi Native pow-wow provide lots to photograph; wild life and nature are tricky…sneaking up on a bird and waiting for a sunrise are all a part of this interest; city and country environs are subject matter, architecture new and old and in different extant states and conditions, modern, historic and falling down….all such concerns and fascination interest club photographers. Subjects in a photograph are important, but equally important are the seasoned photographer’s skill and artistic instincts for composition, color and atmosphere qualities, capturing action and movement, also clarity and sharp contrast…all aspects featured in the Koncept Photography exhibition.

Today the camera has changed and changes all the time….digital photography by camera and iphone dominate the photographers equipment…no more spool film and darkroom technology. But the Koncept Photography Club’s Mission Statement says it best: “The camera may change, but the concept stays the same.”