An artist’s journey into a stranger’s past — interpreted through drawings, collage and digital tools — is the subject of “Fragments,” a new collection by artist Sophie Newell, which opens Friday, Feb. 2, at The Little Gallery in Benson.

Newell is a mixed media artist from Manchester, England, who has lived in Omaha since 2014. She attended Edinburgh College of Art and received a BA in Visual Communication in 2009. Newell has exhibited work both in the United States and the United Kingdom.

“‘Fragments’ is a response to a found scrapbook made by teenager Louise Plunkett in the early to mid-1920s,” Newell said. “Louise grew up in Council Bluffs and Omaha, and the book documents her high school years at Abraham Lincoln and then Omaha South high schools. The pages include letters from friends, newspaper clippings, photographs and event tickets, including handwritten captions and comments scrawled in the margins.”

By using imagery and text from the book, Newell aims to elevate and preserve the ephemeral. “The intimate process of sifting through a stranger’s memories allowed me to form a personal connection to Louise through the mementos she kept,” Newell said. “This collection is my exploratory attempt to ‘connect the dots’ and construct a narrative from these remnants.”

“Fragments” by Sophie Newell opens Friday, Feb. 2, at The Little Gallery, 5901 Maple Street in downtown Benson. The reception runs from 6 to 9 p.m. The show runs through Feb. 24. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday from 3 to 6 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and by appointment. For more information, call 402.681.1901.

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