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The art of recycling

Keith Chapman

Before UNT staff member Keith Chapman, above, left the house for the Aug. 1 On My Own Time exhibition reception, his wife told him to be prepared to win.

Yet, it still came as a pleasant shock when his name was called for Best in Show, the highest award given at the annual exhibition which highlights artwork that UNT employees have done in their spare time.

Grinning widely, he said of his piece, The Pepperbox Special, “I’m glad because I thought some people might look at it and say, ‘It’s not art, it’s a bike!’”

Chapman, who has worked on the custodial staff for UNT Housing for eight years, restores vintage bicycles through his side business North Texas Re-Cycles. But, for the art exhibition, he constructed a sculpture piece from a vintage bicycle.

He took the frame of a 1955 Columbia bicycle and stripped it down to the bare metal, putting it back together with parts from other bikes, parts from vintage cars and other pieces of metal that he reworked. It took him two-and-a-half months to construct.

“I don’t typically do things as elaborate as this,” Chapman said, noting that the artwork is also a working vehicle. “I rode it by the gallery before I dropped it off for the show.”

Chapman said he has always been artistic – “ever since I could hold a crayon in my hand” – and entered (and won a first place prize) a piece in last year’s On My Own Time. In his spare time, he works in mixed media and, this year, he also won a first prize in Mixed Media for his piece Binding Charm.

He said he enjoys participating in the On My Own Time exhibition because it gives him something to do in his spare time and a place to display his art for others in the UNT community to see.

Chapman’s piece and all first-place winners will go to the regional On My Own Time exhibition at NorthPark Center in Dallas. On My Own Time is an annual art show that encourages businesses to share their employees’ artworks with the community. It is sponsored by the Business Council for the Arts.

Organizers added literature categories this year, and those winners are expected to be announced Sept. 5.

On My Own Time 2014 Best in Show winner

Keith Chapman, housing, The Pepperbox Special


On My Own Time 2014 winners

Black-and-white Photography

  • Amateur category: Nancy Stockdale, history, The Nest Revisited
  • Professional category: Alyssa Hedenstrom, College of Music, Bliss

Color Photography

  • Amateur category: Jessica Phillips, libraries, Desolation

Works on Canvas

  • Amateur category: Alexia Thorpe, housing, Carlos Van Halen

Ceramics and Wood

  • Professional category: Laura Nance Lubos, admissions, Dala Horse Cookie Jar

Enhanced Photography

  • Amateur category: Brian Richman Information Technology Shared Service, Dreaming

Jewelry and Metal

  • Amateur category: Sharon Huang, administrative information technology, Chinese Knot Necklace
  • Professional category: Anne Jones,  College of Visual Arts and Design, Float

Mixed Media

  • Amateur category: Keith Chapman,  housing, Binding Charm

Works on Paper

  • Amateur category: Louis Smith III, printing and distribution, The Hand that Feeds
  • Professional category: Sam Ivie,  libraries, John


  • Amateur category: Keith Chapman,  housing, The Pepperbox Special
  • Professional category: Rene Muhl,  College of Visual Arts and Design, On the Edge

Textile/Fiber Art

  • Amateur category: Chris Campbell,  mathematics, Pineapple Parasol


  • Amateur category: Alexia Thorpe and Sallie Bowen, housing, Girl with Dog
  • Professional category: Benjamin Elio, admissions, So Fast

Honorable Mentions

Blakc-and-white Photography:

  • Brian Richman, Pirates

Color Photography:

  • Jessica PhillipsThe Life Aquatic

Works on Canvas:

  • Kenneth Nicholson,  Formal Concerns
  • Meredith Buie, 61 and 53
  • Timothy King, Nancy Sleeping
  • Mary-Kate Solomon, Jelly Tears
  • Kirk Lowe, Stevie Ray

Jewelry and Metal:

  • Kendra Donahue, Snow on the Moon and Marble Mountainscape (two awards)

Mixed Media:

  • Lisa Maxwell Brown, Where has my mind gone?
  • Kenneth NicholsonIf it was good enough for us, then it is good enough for you

Works on Paper:

  • Louis Smith III, Silent Veil
  • Kevin Shane Thompson, Not the Somebody I Thought You Were
  • Molly Pitcher, Primordial Buffet
  • Dianne Jansing, Valentina
  • Perry Hamilton, New Growth
  • Laura Drapac, In Droves

Textile/Fiber Art:

  • Chris Campbell, Blue and Grey Blanket
  • Doris Britt, Sunburst
  • Hannah Tarver, Ring Around the Rosy


  • Shawn Saumell and Lauren Cross

 —Margarita Venegas, news promotions

(Photo by Gary Payne / URCM)

Posted on: Fri 08 August 2014

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