From Setup to Takedown

Junior art students display work in rotating exhibits for Junior Art Show 

by Christina Spencer

Junior art students at Whitworth are displaying their creativity in the Junior Art Show. Each third-year student shows pieces of his or her choice downstairs in the Lied Center for the Visual Arts.

“I’d encourage people to come look at the show because we are really proud of our work,” junior Jo Buxton said. “This is our moment to shine.”

Buxton, a graphic design major, will be presenting photography along with a few screenprints. She described her pieces as abstract because she likes to notice forms and make things that are insignificant become significant.

Buxton will display her work along with photography of two other student artists. She said each artist will display her pieces on separate walls of the gallery.

The Junior Art Show consists of several consecutive exhibits on display through May, each with two to three artists.

Each group is allowed to decorate the gallery however they choose as long as it is returned to its original state for the next group. For some, this means painting the walls. For others, this simply means hanging photos.

“It’s nice because the exhibit allows a lot of freedom in how you want to display your work,” Buxton said.

Unlike the Senior Art Show in which each student displays his or her pieces together in the Brian Oliver Gallery, at the junior show each group of artists will have one week to display their work.

Lance Sinnema, art lecturer and coordinator of the art shows, said the different setup of the Junior Art Show is beneficial because the student artists must figure out how to hang and take down their artwork.

“The students get experience with display and have to see how their pieces mix with the other artists’,” Sinnema said.

Junior Olivia Strohm said the possibilities are endless as to how she will prepare the gallery for her show.

She will display her work alongside junior Cody Dejardin. Dejardin, an art and graphic design major, creates clothing designs for his clothing brand, Perspectives.

Strohm said she is passionate about portrait photography, especially in nature.

She also works with Dejardin to take photos of people modeling his clothing from Perspectives.

Strohm plans to present her favorite photos, strung with twine on the wall, which will give the exhibit a simple, clean feel, she said.

Dejardin will present the graphic design work he does for Perspectives clothing.

Junior Matt Comi is currently displaying his screen prints and constructions made out of cloth and wood through Friday.

His three-piece series, “Hieroglyphics for Early Living,” contains three-dimensional objects made of wood with stretched muslin on top. The pieces are meant to serve as a stand-in for his identity because he said it’s not always easy to communicate who you are.

“The pieces are attached to some things that I’ve been writing that deal with problems that arise when communicating self-identity,” Comi said.

Comi’s artwork leaves much of the interpretation  to the viewer. He said the purpose of this is to exaggerate the problems of language. Because there is so much ambiguity and misinterpretation in language, it is sometimes necessary to use symbols, Comi said.

Another artist displaying her work is junior Lucy Liu.

The freedom to choose any of her pieces to display gave her the opportunity to showcase her culture in her artwork, she said.

Liu, an international student from China, learned Chinese calligraphy as a young girl and plans to use it as the base of her show.

“It will be a bridge to combine Western and Chinese culture,” Liu said.

With the busyness of life, Liu said she hardly gets time to practice her calligraphy. The freedom of the Junior Art Show gives her the chance to pick up the hobby and use her graphic design skills to present the Chinese culture of calligraphy.

The Junior Art Show is located in the Cowles Student Gallery on the lower floor of the Lied Center for the Visual Arts. Junior students will be displaying their work through May.

Junior Exhibitions Schedule: 

March 11-15: Christa Prentiss and Hannah Hirano

March 18-22: Matt Comi

April 1-5: Jessica Shepherd and Hannah Charlton

April 8-12: Jillian Shy, Jo Buxton and Cassidy Stevick

April 15-19: Hannah Flaherty and Becca Takle

April 22-26: Kayla Harris, Vida Hutchison and Lucy Liu

April 29-May 3: Cody Dejardin and Olivia Strohm

May 6-10: Hillary Millard, Bre Taylor and Jordan Collins

Contact Christina Spencer at cspencer15@my.whitworth.edu

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