Cantor Art Gallery to Feature Work of Senior Visual Arts Majors
in the Exhibition ‘re’
The Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Art Gallery at the College of the Holy Cross will show the work of graduating senior visual arts studio majors in the exhibition “re”, which will be on view from Thursday, April 27 through graduation day, Friday, May 26. Students Aiden Duffy, Katie Evans, Emily Mutkoski, John Silveira, Allison Thiel, Mary Welsh, and Kei Ving Wong will give presentations about their work in the gallery during the Academic Conference on Wednesday, April 26 at noon. The opening reception is scheduled for Thursday, April 27, 5:30–7 p.m.
Visual arts students who have participated in the year-long studio concentration seminar earn their place in the gallery by developing a cohesive body of work over the fall and spring semesters. In this capstone experience for the visual arts studio major, each student is given individual studio space and are encouraged to experiment with ideas and mediums, while cultivating an independent studio practice.
Susan Schmidt, associate professor of visual arts taught the fall semester of the seminar and Michael Beatty, associate professor of visual arts and acting department chair, was the instructor for the spring semester. Roger Hankins, director of the Cantor Art Gallery, serves as a professional mentor to the students throughout the process to help them conceptualize how their work will exist in a formal exhibition space.
Students engage in rigorous critiques with faculty and visiting artists to push their work to its highest potential. The senior exhibition experience provides students the opportunity to see their work transform through a professional presentation, in relation to the work of their peers, as well as through the reception of a public audience — a defining moment in which they transition from thinking of themselves as students to seeing themselves as artists.
Aiden Duffy’s installation work takes as its inspiration an imagined appropriation of Native American myth and culture as a means of exposing the ways in which Western society has sought to gain and maintain power over native peoples; Katie Evans’ series of paintings draws attention to themes of private suffering, and the inner strength of individuals behind metaphorically closed doors; Emily Mutkoski uses an analog film format to create black and white photographs that combine multiple negatives to produce her layered portraits; John Silveira has created prints and sculptures with the ocean and its uncertain depths as source material, expressing his life-long fascination and curiosity with the sea; Allison Thiel’s paintings combine human and plant forms to explore themes of transformation, symbiosis, and healing; Mary Welsh’s deconstruction of objects becomes a form of re-creation by imbuing them with a new relationship, a process related to her work in anthropology, which “focuses on everything that makes us human, working towards understanding the way in which we interact with our world;” and Kei Ving Wong crafts alternative dimensions of physical and psychological space which draw viewers into a multisensory experience.
Visitors to the exhibition will find the efforts of these young artists stimulating — both intellectually and visually — as they grapple with ideas and seek to discover meaning in the world which surrounds them.