McAlester couple donates alumna’s artwork for display at Eastern


Nancy McGowan (far left), artist Anita Caldwell Jackson and President Dr. Stephen Smith stand in front of Caldwell Jackson’s painting “Infant Milkyway” in the Library building on Eastern’s campus in Wilburton.
WILBURTON, OK (June 12, 2013) – As award-winning artist and McAlester native Anita Caldwell Jackson walked through the halls on Eastern Oklahoma State College’s campus in Wilburton recently, she had a hard time believing what she was seeing. The Eastern alumna’s artwork was hanging throughout the first floor of the Library building on the campus she used to call home.

“When I was going to school here at Eastern, I never would have dreamed my artwork would be displayed here,” Caldwell Jackson said. “I’m very proud of my time at Eastern, so this is a great honor for me.”

Mike and Nancy McGowan, also of McAlester, are longtime fans of Caldwell Jackson’s Native American artwork. For several years, Mike grew their collection of paintings and prints. He displayed several pieces in The Bank N.A. of Oklahoma in McAlester where Mike served as chairman and CEO. Upon Mike’s retirement, Nancy said they decided to donate 19 pieces from their collection to share the artwork with the community.

“It’s wonderful to have a place where the art can be viewed and enjoyed. Anita is from this area and is a graduate of Eastern, so it’s a perfect fit,” McGowan said.

Caldwell Jackson is a 1971 graduate of Eastern. She is known for her Native American art that features acrylics, pencil and mixed media using calico cloth and acrylic paint. She is a former art teacher and counselor at Kiowa Public Schools and is currently a featured artist at the SOFA Art Gallery in McAlester.

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