Billy RenklThe old, retired, images and documents that I use, many from antique didactic texts, allow for the possibility of meaning and metaphor in their peculiar beauty and often accidental ├Žsthetic. In these images, diagrams, and maps, the world is represented as both sensible and miraculous, systematic and astonishing. These images were originally made to be clear and objective, a rational distillation of a mechanical world; it turns out they are also rich in beauty and poetry. In many of these works my focus on information graphics is combined with my interest in the ways that abstraction has been used to mediate the natural world (especially in traditional botanical imagery used on textiles).

I grew up in Birmingham, AL. I attended Auburn University (BFA, Visual Communications) and the University of South Carolina (MFA, Drawing). I currently teach drawing and illustration at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, TN.

My work has been featured in many solo and group exhibitions, including solo shows at The Cumberland Gallery (Nashville, TN), The Jule Collins Smith Museum of Art at Auburn University, Taylor/Bercier Fine Arts (New Orleans), Vanderbilt University, The University of Kentucky, Auburn University, Manifest Creative Research and Drawing Center (Cincinnati, OH), The Tennessee Arts Commission, and the Gallerie Neue Raume (Berlin, Germany). I am represented in several permanent collections, including The University of Alabama at Birmingham, Kiwanis Club International, The Tennessee State Museum, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Hemlock Semiconductor Corporation, First Bank of Nashville, The Jule Collins Smith Museum of Art at Auburn University, and The College of Notre Dame, Baltimore.

In addition to gallery exhibitions, I have worked with many clients on illustration assignments, including SouthWest Airlines, How Magazine, Vanderbilt University, Klutz Inc., Strategy & Business, The River Styx, Poems and Plays, and Rigby Publishing.