Students Show Their True Colors in Collegiate Art Shows

Mary Cheung, Head Illustrator

   On Thursday, April 19, the Martin-Mullen Art Gallery, Project Space Gallery and Gallery Lobby Exhibition Hall hosted an opening reception for three student exhibits: Annual Juried Art Show, Obscured Human Expression and Digital Artistry. Members of the SUNY Oneonta jazz band performed for a relaxed and open crowd of around 50 spectators.

   The Annual Juried Art Show exhibit runs until May 16. It has a refreshing air of springtime and academic creativity in blossom. The pieces were chosen by a committee under the Art Department. The highlights were sculptural works such as “Beauty is in the Eye of the Beerholder” by Victoria Frohlich, which utilized recycled bottle caps.

   Spectator Katie Whitcomb, an environmental science major, gravitated towards more colorful works in the hand-drawn area rather than the computer generated media. She enjoyed Victoria Barna’s “Poppies.” Whitcomb said, “It’s really different than the other ones, just like, the look and feel. I didn’t notice any other oil/palette knife pictures.” “Poppies” is a small painting that can almost be overlooked when passing, however, art admirer Whitcomb mused, “I just love the water droplets. You can tell that you’re looking out a window even though we’re inside.”

   Senior Jessica Yonnone, a student in Bobby Goldman’s 3-D Design class, walked around wearing her paper sculpture work on her head and strapped around her chin during this opening. She stated “Our project was to use certain shapes and I decided I was inspired by Kentucky Derby Hats.” Though not all students made wearable pieces, she expressed her enjoyment of the process in which she designed and executed her creation. “I just went crazy with it,” said Yonnone.

   Similarly, Patricia Wilcox expressed a whimsical attitude in creating her piece. Wilcox displayed two pieces: one from 3-D Design class and another from Figure Drawing class. Her representational sculpture of a box-like pineapple in eye-catching green and square grapes transformed something familiar to a thoughtful, vertical fruit parade. “I wanted to do something silly,” Wilcox said, “I think silly art is the best art.” Later in the reception, she was awarded with a certificate for the George Zimmerman Memorial Award.

   Art Department Chair Thomas Sakoulas announced the winners in two categories of awards for the Annual Juried Art Show near the this reception. Eight students – Wilcox, Victoria Barna, Brigitte Bordeau, David Graham, Allyson Bates, Keri Kelly, James Orezzoli and Katie Marvel – were given the George Zimmerman Memorial Award. Then, seven students – Victoria Frohlich, Tomoyo Tanzawa, Ted Chin, Lindsey Lizio, Amanda Carroll, Max Johns and Adrianna Lambrecht – were awarded the Martin-Mullen Foundation Award. Both awards were chosen by two local artists and in memory of two past faculty members. Regardless of recognition, Sakoulas encouraged artists to participate in submissions while acknowledging that “juring a show is a dicey business.”

   In Gallery Lobby Exhibition Hall, Computer Art club members showcase Digital Artistry – graphic designed works that will be on display until May 2. Nature and art were mimicked in the digital craft. Works like Michelle Furman’s “Fading Flowers” and Ariel Smullen’s “Everything’s Not Lost” captured the mood and tonalities of organic subjects. Artist Isabelle Defino, who has an advertisement on this display, said that it was difficult to switch from hand-drawn pieces to graphic design, though it remains her goal to test this medium.

   Over in Project Space Gallery is the fifth student showcase: Obscured Human Expression. This exhibit features the breadth of Alex Yarinsky and Victoria Barna. Yarinsky branched his work into serigraphy where he has enjoyed the use of a new style. His methods include drawing on Lexan plastic, transferring onto the screen and then, stippling. One of his pieces is titled, “Figurative Soul,” incorporated eleven layers in five different colors.

   Barna focused on acrylic, oil, watercolor and graphic design medium. “I look for things that have a lot of detail in it and things that visually interest me. I am very into color and how colors interact with each other,” she said. With portraits of city dwellers and damsels with a twist, she showcases a range of human sentiment. Obscured Human Expression will be on display until May 2.

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