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Wildwood Writer and Artist Selected by Metro Arts in Transit

Dawn Dupler and Jessica Fox

Two individuals connected with St. Louis Community College-Wildwood will have their work displayed at MetroBus stops around the St. Louis region or inside MetroLink trains or MetroBus vehicles.

Dawn Dupler, an adjunct instructor of English, is among 15 writers named a Metro Arts in Transit MetroLines Poetry Contest winner. Jessica Fox, a student and auxiliary services employee, is one of 10 artists selected for the Metro Arts in Transit MetroScapes program.

Dupler’s submission is titled, “Ben Franklin Experiences Jimi Hendrix Backstage at London’s Astoria.” According to Dupler, this poem delves into what it would be like if Ben Franklin questioned Jimi Hendrix about his Stratocaster.

A panel of literal professionals from the St. Louis region judged and selected the winning poems. The winning poems range from no more than a few words to up to 15 lines. As a winner, Dupler had the opportunity to read her poem at a special reception held at the Regional Arts Commission at the Delmar Loop.

Although Dupler originally pursued a career in engineering, her passion for writing led her to teaching. She has been on the faculty at STLCC since 2010, where she has taught courses in creative writing and composition.

“It’s gratifying to bring some of my real-world examples into the classroom, demonstrating how effective writing benefits a person regardless of which field he or she chooses,” she said. “Along with writing skills, I enjoy teaching students how to think critically. I encourage them to question ideas – put the idea into their hands and turn it over and over, examining all sides.”

In addition to her selection by Metro Arts in Transit, Dupler’s poetry and fiction can be found in “Natural Bridge,” “Paper Nautilus,” “Chiron Review,” “Whiskey Island Magazine,” “Blue Earth Review,” and most recently in the anthology, “Thinking Continental: Writing the Planet One Place at a Time” by the University of Nebraska Press. Her non-fiction book, “St. Louis in the Civil War,” was published in 2014. She holds a master’s degree in writing from Lindenwood University and bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the Missouri University of Science and Technology.

Fox’s piece is titled, “Organized Chaos.” It is a 16-inch by 19-inch prismacolor pencil with ink drawing. This piece is part of a larger body of work and it is the first large scale drawing in the series.

“Even within chaotic things there is order,” Fox said. “The pieces in this series use repetition and patterns to evoke a sense of mindfulness.”

With the MetroScapes art contest, artwork of all types were submitted and reviewed by a panel of artists and art professionals, before the 10 winning art pieces were finally selected.

As a winner, Fox received a usage fee of $1,000 and three limited edition prints of her work. MetroScapes will also produce 20 limited edition prints offered for individual sale to support Metro Arts in Transit.

From design and drawing to figure drawing, Fox has taken a number of art courses at STLCC to enhance her knowledge. Outside of STLCC, she sews patches and clothing and does leather work. She sells a variety of her custom designs through her Etsy shop, Nomadic Bubble.

“I’m an artist at heart,” she said. “My dream is to be a self-supporting artist, and this is an exciting step toward that end.”

While Fox drives to campus these days, she used to ride public transit. So, when her mom mentioned the MetroScapes contest, she knew she wanted to enter a piece.

“It’s not only awesome to have my piece shown in a public space, but one that I used to sit,” she said.

Metro Arts in Transit runs three programs, MetroLines, MetroScapes and Art in Motion, in an effort to enrich the experience of transit passengers and enhance the community’s appreciation of the arts.

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