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Pamela Kotila to Exhibit Comics at Reflection Gallery August 29 to September 30

Pam Kotila ArtworkHANCOCK, MI - The Finlandia University Reflection Gallery, Hancock, will host an exhibit of comic illustrations by Pamela Kotila from August 29 to September 30, 2010.

The exhibit, titled Pandora! Volume 1, displays the first volume in a series of books in which Kotila has rethought and revamped her original Pandora comics, a page-by-page webcomic she created in 2003.

An opening reception and artist talk will take place Thursday, September 2, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., at the Reflection Gallery. The reception is open to the public and refreshments will be served.

Kotila says she has wanted to tackle this project for many years, but felt it was important to continue the original storyline rather than spend time redoing what was already done. She has long been waiting for the right opportunity to lessen the clutter and add some scenery to the original Pandora illustrations.

She says that an advanced illustration class she completed at Finlandia in fall 2009, as well as her evolving talent for creating comics, gave her the motivation and enhanced skills to revisit the design of the Pandora comics.

She explains, "My talent for comics was increasing... I had also started drawing backgrounds. Finally, the time was right to open the box."

In using the first Pandora as a guide, Kotila assures fans of the original story that they will find "a lot of familiarity in this work, both in the story and the characters."

She adds that the story has been filtered, condensed, and sometimes expanded to create a smoother reading experience.

"I now have the advantage of using characters I understand, rather than characters I was working to understand," Kotila explains. "I have also chosen to change the style of the panels so that the story flows page to page, rather than depicting one joke or single situation per page."

Pam KotilaKotila notes she has chosen to work in a comedic medium because comedy is an excellent tool for change.

"Comedy is more effective than shock art as the viewer normally enjoys their experience involving humor and is more likely to reflect upon it," she says.

A Finlandia University alumna, Kotila completed a bachelor of fine arts at Finlandia University in 2010. She served as content and copy editor of Finlandia's student newspaper, The Roar, throughout her college career.

The Reflection Gallery is located on the second level of Finlandia's Jutila Center campus, Hancock.

For additional information, please contact Yueh-mei Cheng, professor of studio arts, at 906-487-7375 or e-mail


Photo cutlines:

The artist Pamela Kotila

An image from Pamela Kotila's Pandora comic series