The Ellis County Art Museum will present an evening of art in Memory of Shelley Nance from 6-8 p.m. Saturday, May 7.

The event will benefit the Shelley Nance Memorial Art Scholarship Fund and will showcase Shelley’s artwork.

Cynthia Nance, Shelley’s mother, said it is an exhibit of her daughter’s work and not a sale.

“We will be accepting donations for the scholarship fund, but donations are not required. We just want the public to see what a special artist she was,” Cynthia said, saying 213 pieces, mostly framed and matted charcoal and pencil drawings, will be on exhibit for the event. Additionally, several pieces of sculpture will be on display.

Shelley Nance was a talented young woman fulfilling her dream of becoming an artist when her life was taken in September 2009. She grew up in Italy and graduated from Italy High School in 2007. After placing fourth in a national competition, she was awarded a scholarship to the Art Institute of Dallas, where she majored in multi-media arts and animation. She was within weeks of completing her second year at the Art Institute when she passed away.

Shelley started drawing in elementary school and her vision was to create video games and design characters for video games, Cynthia said.

The Shelley Nance Memorial Art Scholarship will be awarded to a graduating senior of Italy High School. The first scholarship will be awarded in May. Cynthia said students who plan on pursuing a degree in art are eligible and go through an application process and exhibit their own artwork.

“We have made our decision. The students that applied were very talented,” Cynthia said.

After the opening event, the exhibit will remain on display at the Ellis County Art Museum for three weeks. For information, contact the Ellis County Art Museum at 972-937-3414. The museum is located at 501 W. Main St. in Waxahachie.

“My husband and I are both graduates of Waxahachie High School and we were both raised in Waxahachie. We consider Waxahachie our hometown,” Cynthia said. “The fact that the murder trial (in Dallas County) is coming up in July, we wanted to allow the community to see the type of artwork she created.”

Contact Rebecca at rebeca.hertz@wninews.com or call 469-517-1451.