“I always say that art isn’t done until it’s seen by the public.”
Before announcing the winners for the Annual Juried Central Michigan Student Art Exhibit Saturday, University Art Gallery Director Anne Gochenour explained the importance of allowing students to showcase their work to the public.
“This is an opportunity for students to not only experience the juried exhibition, but also allow their work to be finished by giving people around campus the chance to view the art,” Gochenour said.
The gallery hosted two jurors: fine arts judge an Grand Rapids photographer Filippo Tagliati and CMU University Libraries Coordinator of Exhibits and Projects Janet Danek, who judged graphic designs. The gallery accommodated about 200 guests and 85 art pieces submitted by 54 students. Alongside Gochenour was intern and Okemos senior Karley Hoffman, who helped organize the event.
“This was a perfect opening for me to experience … It gave me the first-hand experience with behind-the-scenes work,” Hoffman said.
The works illustrated the individuality of each artist. Romulus senior and art major Kaela Torres created a 2D acrylic on canvas called “The Beasts,” which she thought would be a unique addition to the show.
“This presents two dominant figures in my life, my dad and boyfriend,” Torres said regarding her art piece. “This represents how they are two big role models in my life, and it expresses my love and compassion for them.”
With 85 art pieces to choose from, there were three different awards: one grand award, two juror awards, five merit awards and six honorable mentions.
The jurors chose two juror awards of $100, one fitting the fine arts category and the other fitting the graphic designs. Ortonville senior Crystal Hartman received one juror award for “Hanging Slabs,” and Mount Pleasant senior Rebecca Goulder also received the juror award for her piece, “Night Sky 1.”
Winning the grand award of $200 and the first place title was Grosse Pointe senior Kathryn Hoffman for her work, “The Drop.”
“I always take personal experience from my life and put them into my art work,” Hoffman said. “’The Drop’ represents the feeling of getting to a really high point or part in your life, and then a drop comes. A bird can only fly so high.”
This display presented a bird made of bronze, wood, feathers and ceramics that face-planted into the ground, signifying the drop.
“Submitting this piece was probably one of the best ways for it to get seen, and hopefully someone will want to buy it,” Hoffman said.