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Artwork Finds a Home at North Lake College

IRVING – The North Lake College library is now home to a 32-piece art collection by the late Mike Harlow, former North Lake College art student.

“I received a phone call one day from Mike’s wife, Carrie, asking me if I would like to display his artwork in the library,” said Dr. Enrique Chamberlain, head librarian at North Lake College. “I was thrilled at the invitation and when Carrie showed up at North Lake with a van full of sculptures, I knew the art was going to be well received and loved by the students and staff at the college.” 

The artwork features bronze busts of former U.S. Presidents, public figures and Texas heroes. After Harlow passed away in August 2003, his pieces had been wrapped up and housed in a barn. Mrs. Harlow, who had met her husband while taking a sculpting class at North Lake College in the 1980s, decided that the artwork needed to be out in the open and couldn’t think of a more deserving place than North Lake.

“It felt right to bring Mike’s artwork to North Lake College,” said Mrs. Harlow. “He would love that the students and staff here can enjoy his work. We have a lot of great memories of being students at North Lake. He would like that a piece of him is still here.”

The Harlow family has invested a lot of time into the college. Not only did they meet on campus, Harlow also taught a summer community service class in sculpting and the Harlow’s daughter, Veronica, attended North Lake last year.

One of the greatest honors Harlow received for his art was the acceptance of a bust he created of former President Ronald Reagan to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Library in Simi Valley, Calif. Former First Lady Nancy Reagan accepted the bust as a gift and has displayed it in the library. A copy of the letter Harlow received from Mrs. Reagan is presented with his artwork in the North Lake College library.

A reception was held on Wednesday, Sept. 16 to reveal the new display at North Lake College.


Editor's note: for interviews, photo opportunities and media support, please contact Ali Adams, marketing and advertising coordinator, at 972-273-3005, or the North Lake College Public Information Office, 972-273-3004.

North Lake College is a member of the Dallas County Community College system. Educational opportunities are offered by the Dallas County Community College system without regard to race, color, age, national origin, religion, sex or sexual orientation.