Ronna Pernell is an American artist who has been honing her skills since the age of seven. She was born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma during a period that inspired many of the pieces her diverse catalogue. Her experiences in life are often reflected in her choices of personal art creations. She is also open to applying the visons and ideas of others through commissioned works. The plights of women and children have profoundly impacted her as a person and has greatly driven her passion and desire to create tasteful, but “deeply rooted” art. Throughout her education, Ronna engaged in various art courses and seminars. She also attended Foster Estes Vo-Technical School, where she studied commercial art and was awarded the 1983 Young Talent of Oklahoma Award for “Memories of a Lazy Day”. This acclaimed work of art was displayed in the Oklahoma Governor’s Mansion.
Ronna’s stippling technique has been developed mostly through self-study and affiliations with talented artists who share their visions and interpretations. Her passion for drawing radiates through each portrait. She captures the beauty and cultural expressions of human life on Bristol paper using a radiograph pen normally with black or white ink.
Ronna’s catalogue, which consists of many portraits with various hues, is mostly comprised of works created at her studio in south Oklahoma City. The work in her studio portrays diverse ethnic groups, and family settings. Several of her images depict her emotional triumphs, joys, spiritual connections, and the need to express life. Walter “Clyde” Orange of the World-famous R&B band, The Commodores, commissioned a prismatic piece, stippled in black, red and gold. The piece is entitled “Stick and Lick/ Clyde’s Universe. In a comment about Pernell, Orange stated, “… wonderful, talented artist; her unique style and distinctive detail is something that you don’t see often.”
Ronna is a long-time member of OVAC (Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition).She supports the organization’s yearly fundraisers, including the annual “12 x 12” event. In 2013, she submitted “Ponytails”; 2014 inspired “Melody”. She further contributed “Love, Love etc. etc.” to “12 x 12” Patron’s Preview. The piece’s popularity created a demand for more work and prompted Ronna to introduce “Beauty in all Creation”. These pieces were swiftly acquired by private art collectors. Pernell Images has also been Commission by Deida Massey, a celebrity makeup artist for Makeup Maven and also Founder & Executive Director, of Reel Beauty Inc. Ronna’s piece, “Double Dutch” was specially created for 10th year Anniversary of The Faces of Reel Beauty, a girls mentoring program. During this event, the astounding actress, author and comedian, Sherri Shepard was the keynote speaker.
The special exhibition, “UNSPOKEN WOMAN” proudly presents new work which honors, the trials and triumphs of women. Ronna states, “The Oklahoma Capitol provides me the opportunity to empower women through art – to reach an audience of people that will began a conversation about the past and future of women in society”. UNSPOKEN WOMAN visually expresses the essence of every phase of a woman’s life from birth to death and accentuates the path in their journey.
This story and message of UNSPOKEN WOMAN is autobiographical in some regards, but expresses the lives of many African American women in society.
Sponsored by the Oklahoma Arts Council
Oklahoma State Capitol Galleries