Husband and wife JP Owens and Melinda McCallister Owens have collaborated for an exhibit of their art titled “Mountain State Muse” (which will open in September at the Art Emporium in Downtown Charleston)
 
 JP is a graduate of West Virginia State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in printmaking.  His work consists primarily of bold graphic designs created through a series of sketches using mixed media.  The scenes often contain animals and landscapes with an occasional addition of Appalachian folklore.  His intense color combos, aboriginal influenced shapes and alien like rhythmic designs are common throughout his work.  His artistic influence derives from Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Henry Moore.  

Melinda received a Bachelor of Arts degree from West Virginia University and a Master of Arts degree from Marshall University. In the past her art has been predominately realistic.  She loves the gritty realism of the printmaking of Kathe Kollwitz, while also admiring the loose and colorful abstractions of Pablo Picasso.  Her husband JP’s style has further enhanced her appreciation of the abstract style.  Melinda also enjoys photography and uses this medium as a bridge to deconstruct her realistic style.  Using her photographs of recognizable environments she alters them with vivid colors to create vibrant compositions.