Look and Listen

Gallery Reflections and Inscapes Playlist

Inscapes immerses visitors in a vibrant spectrum of color, illuminating Evelyn Dawson’s exploration of her inner psyche. In collaboration with students, the Museums paired each painting with a song to elevate the viewing experience. Due to COVID-19, you can explore their reflections and curated songs below. The exhibition is in partnership with wluLex, supports the 20th anniversary of the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program, and is part of the Museums’ new mindfulness initiative. Visitors can now listen to a curated selection of songs and are invited to look and listen when visiting the gallery. Admission is available to current W&L community with advanced timed-entry.


Amelia Lancaster '22
Majors: Chinese and Art History
Music Pairing: The Gadfly Suite, Op. 97a VIII Romance by Dmitri Shostakovich
"I first felt drawn to this piece because the colors and blooming yellow centrality reminded me of a garden bursting forth with life. The splatters of yellows on a cool green and purple background feel explosive and full of energy, but the surrounding muted blues and greens balance out this feeling into something slower, more dignified. This warm harmony led me to choose a piece of music that feels the same, hopeful and swelling with life that moves along a measured, growing path."

Summer Clouds

Angela Tu '24
Majors: Chinese and Business Administration
Music Pairing: Heaven Falls by Surfaces
"When looking at the piece “Summer Clouds,’ I am taken back to a warm day with sunshine streaming though the treetops and fluffy clouds decorating the sky. The burst of warmth and light on the painting paired with cooler tones near the edges gives me the same feeling of “Heaven Falls,” especially when the harmonies burst through the chorus. Looking at the splashes of light colors, I can see all of the energy and brightness in the rhythm and chords. At the same time, there is a sense of comfort and serenity in the piece that the green and blue hues bring, along with a sense of hope I can certainly feel that in the song, especially in the lyrics, “fall on me.” The song makes me feel like I am floating in the sky, as does the painting."

Violet Grotto

Laurie Lee '22
Major: Computer Science
Music Pairing: On Sight by Free Nationals
"On first sight, I’m stuck by the chaos and freedom in the blend of colors. I love how the painting has this water-stained texture that reminds me of taking off colorful makeup with coconut oil. The colors (violet, pinks, and blues) also evoke this strong sense of femininity—the way it moves into new and intense colors simply as it feels. The painting reminds me of Megara from the Disney movie “Hercules.” She was this violet and marron seductress character who seems to effortlessly navigate this world in this free-flowing yet enviously elegant way, I chose “On Sight” because I think it’ this similarly sexy, yet purposeful song."


Emmie McElroy '23
Majors: Environmental Studies and Studio Art
Music Pairing: Black Moon by Wilco
"Looking at Chills, I felt as if something was hidden from me, obscured by the encroaching black borders of the painting. The swirling splashes and sprays of color are wildly beautiful but simultaneously foreboding. The beginning of Black Moon has always sounded mysterious and dark to me, before opening up into something slightly more flowing, less daunting. As the song alternates between these moments of cautious uncertainty and emerging relief, I look at the painting and can imagine the wisps of smoky color swirling, becoming more transparent or opaque with each rise or fall of the music. The painting seems to desire movement; like clouds rolling or waves crashing, and I love how it pairs with this song that flows similarly."


Diwesh Kumar '24
Major: Economics
Music Pairing: In the End by Linkin Park
"For me the painting is an ocean of emotions splashed on a canvas. It allows one to let out these feelings too. Dawson has used a variety of dark colors which for me, symbolize the inner turmoil she was facing. It also allows the viewer to come to term with their own inner turmoil. I can feel anger, rage, but most importantly, I can feel the hurt this painting symbolizes. Moreover, the different shades accompanying the overall red exemplify the mixed emotions—there in the dark black is anger and hatred, the yellow for the softer experience, and the overall red for hurt. Overall, this does a great job in making the viewer accept this inner turmoil."

Midnight Blues

Jerónimo Reyes '21
Majors: Biology and Art History
Music Pairing: Spiegel im Spiegel by Arvo Pärt
"A clash of recession, or seeming lack thereof, questions of whether the planes in the image, those of dripping darker purple are closer or further from the viewer, if this is all on one plane, or perhaps, a mix of the two? Conflicts of the organic flow of diluted paint versus the artist’s own hand, the accidental and perchance versus the deliberate and resolute. An apparent cosmos of pinks, blues, lavender, cyan, magenta, purple, and a few dashes of scarlet. An amorphous conversation between the seemingly enveloping darkness, from above and below, and the brightness of the center, perhaps fighting the former off in its defiant vibrancy, or accepting it as an inevitability. The mixture of colors, the spectrums they create, the gradations of hue, there is complexity in every inch of the canvas, and the marked contrasts between instances of light and dark speak to a purposeful layout and design process. There are clear borders between the upper darkness and the lower light, and yet, also, brief intrusions and combinations of color, accessions between the two. A haptic experience given the shadows cast down from by the clumps of paint, canyons and valleys of light and dark dot the canvas. The title, “Midnight Blues,” speaks to many things, the haze amidst the late-night mind, the spark of memories passed shown as brief and vibrant flashes of light, a solemn account of could-have- and should-have-beens, the outer darkness of the world blanketing the inner vibrance of the mind, the emotional ‘blues’ of the nighttime, the fact that so little of this piece boasts blue, having instead washed-out purples, all plays together with the emotions this piece could invoke in the viewer."