Motlow recently welcomed back former student Jared Pragel for the closing reception of his art show in the Motlow Art Gallery in Eoff Hall. The exhibit featured numerous works by the artist including drawings, paintings, mixed media pieces and photography.
Pragel took an interest in art at a young age and spent much of his youth in Middle Tennessee drawing, painting, and working in his father’s workshop. After graduating from Lincoln County High School, he worked for five years contracting as a telecommunications engineer before deciding in 2001 to quit his job and focus his energy on his real passion – art. Pragel began taking art classes at Motlow and showing his work at local art galleries, festivals and fairs.
In 2004 he was offered an apprenticeship with renowned artist Nall Hollis in the South of France. With the help of Motlow College, Pragel was able to raise the $7,000 that he needed for the program in just two weeks. He spent three months in France studying art and soaking up the culture. Traveling and adventure remain an important part of his process to this day. “Making art is a journey,” says Pragel, “I never know how a piece might change or where it may end up.”
After graduating from Motlow in 2006, Pragel returned to his job as a telecommunications engineer. He now lives in Austin, Texas and still finds time for art. “Jared manages to make art and still have a career and that’s really important,” says art professor Brian Robinson who has stayed in touch with Pragel since he graduated, “He was a good student then and a great friend now.”
Pragel’s work can be found online at his website.