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Monday, August 10, 2020

Spring student art exhibit postponed

Bachelors of Fine Art student exhibit postponed until Sept. 23

The Bachelors of Fine Art spring quarter student exhibit has been postponed until September. “Skin” by Ashly McBride will be one of the pieces featured at the show. // Photo courtesy of Ashly McBride.

By Sophia Galvez

The Bachelors of Fine Art spring quarter student exhibit has been postponed until September. The exhibit, “In-Site: A New Realism,” will take place Sept. 23-Oct.17.

“This will be the culminating exhibition for students in the BFA cohort this year,” said Julia Sapin, the College of Fine Arts Department chair. “Most of those students will be graduating spring quarter.”

The program is an extra year of study some students pursue after they have completed a bachelor’s degree. 

“It’s like a small master’s program. We try to keep it to a small group of 10-13 people and each student is paired with a couple of faculty,” said Lisa Turner, BFA coordinator for the 2019-20 school year. 

Usually the exhibit is during spring quarter, but it was postponed until fall due to the campus closure, Turner said.

“We were originally told the exhibition was canceled, so we were thinking about online exhibitions, but four of the students’ exhibit pieces are installation works so they need to be shown in person,” Turner said. 

Installations are environments where viewers can experience the art’s atmosphere through works like 3-D sculptures, she said. 

“It’s a culminating thing, that’s why a lot of students are drawn to the program because they want to have the opportunity to have their work shown in a public gallery,” Turner said. “We’re really grateful that the Western gallery gives us the space to do this.” 

Each student will have their own space in the gallery. 

Ashly McBride, a BFA student with a concentration in mixed media art studio, will have her project titled “Skin” displayed in the upcoming exhibit.  

McBride said the project is a tapestry with light shining through it made of cardboard in a honeycomb pattern dipped in resin.

“I made this structure and I started wearing it outside. It’s discussing our human connection with nature,” McBride said. ‘It’s like a skin, like a man-made project that’s an extension of myself.”  

When McBride started the program, she wanted to use recycled materials to mitigate her environmental impact as an artist. 

“A lot of art materials are not sustainable so it’s important to put a lot of thought into where we get the products for our art and how we as artists interact with nature,” McBride said.  

Joel Aparicio, a BFA student with an emphasis in art studio, used mixed media to combine photography and painting in a piece that will be displayed in the exhibit. 

Aparicio’s piece is called “Looking Thru A Screen,” and will be made up of four pieces: “I,” “II,” “III” and “IV.” 

Aparicio airbrushes colorized black and white photos that are 4 feet by 5 feet. The photos Aparicio works with are mostly vistas in the Puget Sound area or other landscapes. He colorizes them by adding spray paint through a window screen.  

“It’s about how things don’t translate on your phone and how we’re diluting a lot of our experiences by digitizing them because we can get that immediate self gratification,” Aparicio said. 

Amanda Kartes, also a BFA student specializing in studio art, will feature artwork in the exhibit  called “The Dining Room.” The piece is an installation of a middle-class dining room with objects two times the normal size.

“The idea was to take a space that most people are fairly familiar with and to take away that familiarity by increasing the space and taking away the function that it would normally have,” Kartes said. 

“The Dining Room” is made of ceramics, wood sculptures and paintings.

“I wanted to take the space where you’re supposed to eat and contrast that by taking away the functional aspect to represent the way I felt about food as a kid,” Kartes said. “It’s supposed to display the space as uncomfortable rather than the actuality.” 

All the smaller pieces of art come together to make one big art piece, Kartes said.

Aparacio said students understand it’s not anyone’s fault that the exhibition has been postponed, but it has still been difficult. 

“Our exhibit was supposed to open up next week and that’s usually a big way for students to finish their BFA and thank their professors,” Aparacio said.  

The Western Gallery is one of the few galleries to postpone its exhibit, rather than simply canceling it, according to Turner. 

“A lot of final exhibitions have been canceled, so we’ve been really lucky that our students still get to have an exhibition even though it’s been delayed,” Turner said.  

Sapin said the  program focuses on the students taking the entire year to prepare a body of work that they will exhibit.

“Students graduating from Western with a BFA in art studio dream about having the opportunity to show their work in the Western Gallery,” Sapin said. “It has become an integral part of the program.”

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