Renee Couture’s, “in the quiet of these great distances.” Tea bags, collected plants and mapping pins (2012).

Gallery’s first fall exhibition features work of Oregon artists

Contact: Cory Peeke | Nightingale Gallery Director
541-962-3584 |

September 24, 2013
- The fall exhibition season for EOU’s Nightingale Gallery opens with a presentation of works by two distinct Oregon artists.

Renee Couture, of Glide, is featured in the main gallery space presenting a body of work entitled “To the Rumored Garden.” The smaller front gallery area is dedicated to showcasing the mixed-media installation “Cascade” by Carolyn Hopkins, of Portland.

The exhibition opens Friday, Oct. 4 and also coincides with La Grande’s new First Friday Art Walk. There will be a reception from 6-8 p.m. in the gallery in Loso Hall.


Carolyn Hopkins’ “Cascade.” Mixed media installation (2013).

“Couture and Hopkins each examine the complexity of our world through their highly engaging works,” said Cory Peeke, Nightingale Gallery director. “Visitors are presented with an exhibition of compelling objects and installation that ask us to reflect on and reconsider the familiar. We are pleased to bring the work of these two exciting western Oregon artists to the attention of the eastern Oregon community.”

Couture’s work is exhibited nationally and examines the relationships between capitalism, community and the environment.  Through the lens of bio-regional ethics and postmodern environmentalism, her work considers the interdependence between people and the environment in a quest to uncover the modern connection and disconnection people have to their surrounding landscape.

Primarily in the form of sculpture, photography and installation, Couture’s work tends to be more conceptual in nature. She is most attracted to materials that come from daily activities—ubiquitous materials that become invisible, forgotten or thrown away.

Couture graduated from Buena Vista University with a bachelor of arts in studio art and Spanish in 1999. She spent the next four years traveling throughout the U.S. and South America. She moved to Oregon in 2004 after completing Peace Corps service. She earned her master of fine arts in visual art from Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpelier in 2010.

Hopkins’ work pulls the wild and unfamiliar into the domestic realm. Through combining items, materials and imagery from culturally oppositional territories, she creates a new hybrid space which allows for a reconsideration of the familiar. Her work questions the conventional cultural roles of the feminine and masculine, as well as the tamed and untamed, and creates moments from which to reflect on the world.

Hopkins received her master of fine arts in sculpture from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2011, and a bachelor of fine arts in interdisciplinary arts from the Kansas City Art Institute in 2006. In addition to her studio practice she is the founder of “Homeschool,” a non-traditional venue for community-based projects and events run primarily out of her home and backyard. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and has been published in Sculpture Magazine.

The show will run through Friday, Oct. 25. Gallery hours are from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. For more information visit or follow Nightingale Gallery on Facebook.

Laurie Marker_banner

Cheetah conservationist speaks at EOU during Homecoming

News contact: Laura Hancock | University Advancement
541-962-3585 |
Source contact: Jessie Brett | Alumni Coordinator
541-962-3740 |

September 6, 2013
LA GRANDE, Ore. (EOU) – A rare opportunity to hear from a leader and innovator in wildlife conservation is coming up this fall at Eastern Oregon University.

Laurie Marker, Ph.D., founder and executive director of the Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF), will be on campus during Homecoming to talk about her ongoing field research and conservation efforts in Namibia, Africa.

The public presentation is planned for 3 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4 in Badgley Hall and is the highlight of a reunion for former EOU science students. A reception is planned at 2 p.m. in the Badgley foyer.

Marker is also EOU’s 2013 Distinguished Alumna. She and fellow award recipients will be honored during a ceremony Friday evening in the Gilbert Center.

A 1990 graduate of Eastern’s distance education program, Marker founded CCF the same year. She went on to earn a doctorate from Oxford University in England and is now considered one of the world’s foremost experts on cheetah biology, ecology and conservation.

Marker’s work with cheetahs goes back 16 years prior to establishing CCF. Her first introduction to the fastest land animal was at Wildlife Safari in Winston, Ore., where she helped develop the most successful captive cheetah-breeding program in North America.

Since 1990, CCF’s conservation strategy has contributed to increasing the wild cheetah population in Namibia by approximately 50 percent. Despite this success, cheetahs remain Africa’s most endangered big cat with roughly 10,000 remaining in the wild.

CCF’s long-term studies analyze and monitor the factors affecting the cheetah’s survival in the wild. Results are used to develop conservation policies and education programs that have reached more 300,000 people.

> Visit the Cheetah Conservation Fund website.



2013 Homecoming celebration features diverse lineup of events

News contact: Laura Hancock | University Advancement
541-962-3585 |
Source contact: Jessie Brett | Alumni Coordinator
541-962-3740 |
EOU Homecoming-file photo1

A series of “Mountie Challenges” for students kicks-off on Wednesday.

September 6, 2013
– Eastern Oregon University is celebrating Homecoming early this year with activities slated Wednesday through Saturday, Oct. 2-5.

Events coincide with the first week of fall term classes at the university, and campus will be filled with fresh-faced students and faculty.

A series of “Mountie Challenges” presented by Eastern Student Entertainment (ESE) kicks-off on Wednesday, when an open mic also brings entertainment to the club fair from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the quad.

Thursday evening, EOU alumni will meet up at Ten Depot Street Restaurant to enjoy some jazz piano by Matt Cooper, professor of music. The informal gathering starts at 8 p.m.

Friday morning at 9:30 is the annual Mountaineer Athletic Association Scholarship Golf Scramble at Buffalo Peak Golf Course in Union. Registration is $75 for individuals and $300 for teams, with all proceeds supporting scholarships for student-athletes.

Later in the day a reunion and reception for former science students takes place in Badgley Hall at 2 p.m. Guests include retired faculty members Richard Hermens, Burr Betts, Dennis Swanger and David Kerley who each taught hundreds of Eastern students during their tenure.

Laurie Marker

Submitted photo / Hear from alumna Laurie Marker, founder and executive director of the Cheetah Conservation Fund, at 2 p.m. Friday in Huber Auditorium.

Friday at 3 p.m. a public presentation from Laurie Marker takes center stage in Huber Auditorium. Marker, who is attending the science reunion, is the founder and executive director of the worldwide Cheetah Conservation Fund and recipient of EOU’s 2013 Distinguished Alumna Award.

> Read more about Marker’s work with cheetahs.

The afternoon finds students, alumni and community groups taking to the streets for the Homecoming Parade. The procession of entries led by Grand Marshal Lee Insko starts at 5 p.m. and traverses from 4th St., past Max Square and then east along Adams Ave.

Keeping the celebratory feeling going is the annual Alumni Honors and Athletic Hall of Fame Reception and Ceremony at 6:30 p.m. in the Gilbert Center on campus.

Award recipients are: Don and Zola Dunbar, Distinguished Alumni; Laurie Marker, Distinguished Alumna; John Howard, Honorary Alumnus; and Bob Moody, Dixie Lund Service Award.

Hall of Fame inductees are: Bill Burns (Baseball) and Nicole Christian (Softball).

When the sun goes down Friday night, ESE invites everyone to the Mountaineer Spirit Bonfire at Snowflake Field on the south end of campus near Gekeler Lane.

Weekend athletic activities include co-ed games of slow pitch baseball and softball open to all alumni. Participants should meet at 8:30 p.m. Friday at Pioneer Park. Those hoping for a fast pitch game of softball are also in luck, with one planned for 10 a.m. Saturday at Peggy Anderson Field.

Saturday’s main events start off early with the inaugural Homecoming Run. Registration is at 7 a.m. with the run beginning at 8. Participants choose a 5K run/walk or a 10K run with routes through the heart of campus and downtown. Pre-registration is $25 or $30 the day of the event.

The John J. Howard and Associates Tailgate Zone opens to football fans at 10:30 a.m. Saturday prior to the big game between the Mountaineers and the University of Montana Western. Kick-off is at 1 p.m. at Community Stadium. Win or lose, everyone is invited to a 5th Quarter Celebration in the Hoke Union Building at 4:30 p.m.

Also on Saturday is the Alumni Association’s reunion breakfast and annual meeting. Members meet at 9 a.m. in the second floor lounge and patio of the Hoke Union Building.

Tours of the newly remodeled Hoke, Zabel Hall, Pierce Library and Quinn Coliseum start at 10 with a reopening celebration at Hoke planned for 10:30.

Lee Insko

“An Evening with Lee Insko” is planned for Saturday.

As the grand finale, the EOU Foundation is hosting “An Evening with Lee Insko” beginning at 6 p.m. Saturday in the Gilbert Center. Athletic alumni from 1968-82 are especially encouraged to attend and catch up with one of Eastern’s longtime coaches and faculty members. Tickets are $25 per person and include a buffet dinner.

ESE is also bringing South Carolina musician and YouTube sensation Noah to perform Saturday at 6:30 p.m. A beer garden with other refreshments will be set up in the tennis courts. Families and those under age 21 can enjoy the music from a separate area. There is no cover charge.

For more information and to register for events visit, call University Advancement at 541-962-3740 or e-mail To reserve a space in the tailgate zone go to