Transylvania senior art majors to present ‘Half Dozen’ beginning March 1

Six Transylvania University senior studio art majors will present their thesis works in Morlan Gallery from March 1 to April 10 in an exhibition titled “Half Dozen.”

The works represent a range of media and styles—from sculptures to an abstract painting to a collage that incorporates items from a drugstore.

The public is invited to the opening reception for the artists on Friday, March 1, from 5-7 p.m. Also, each artist will give a brief talk in the gallery about their works Thursday, March 7, from 7-8 p.m. A reception will follow.

The exhibition will be part of the March 15 LexArts Gallery HOP.

Morlan Gallery—which is on the main level of Transylvania’s Mitchell Fine Arts Center—is open weekdays, noon to 5 p.m., and by special appointment. Free, nearby parking is available. For an appointment, call gallery Director Andrea Fisher 24 hours prior to viewing at 859-233-8142.

In their own words

Jessie Dees
“I have been a maker all my life. I love bringing ideas and concepts into reality. Designing and bringing things into existence is an incredible experience and ability that I’ve cherished in all my years.”

Samara Lyons
“Ever since I was young, I have always loved and had a passion for art and architecture. Throughout my years, I have engaged in a variety of art mediums, but it wasn’t until taking two sculpture courses at Transylvania that I really started to appreciate the use of recycled materials and found objects. Therefore my work explores art and architectural ideas into opposite forms by repurposing everyday materials and transforming them into the new and unexpected, as a way to bring a fresh perspective to familiar objects.”

Josh Porter
“As an artist and art historian, I have a strong passion for socially engaged art and feel a strong connection to being an artist, activist and curator in my practice. Creating a balance between theory and practice is at the core of my aspirations in the art world. In my work, I like to challenge ideas of patriotism and identity with references to social issues as well as personal struggles.”

Sarah Schaaf
“I was born in Shepherdsville, Kentucky, in 1996. Having grown up on my family’s farm and veterinary clinic, I developed a strong passion and appreciation for nature and animals. I find inspiration in the natural world and the works of the impressionist painters, influencing my use of color and form. I work in a variety of mediums but find that oils, watercolors and photography allow me to best portray the world through vibrant colors, intricate details and a loving hand. In this exhibition, I explore the significance of remembrance and the men and women involved in the First World War. My work explores humanity in war and juxtaposes the violence and destruction of warfare with the brilliance and resiliency of the natural world. I emphasize both the individual and the masses and the toll that the war played on each. My work is intended to implore the audience to dwell on the idea of remembrance and its fleeting nature in our nation’s memory as well as calling for a celebration of peace instead of conflict.”

Sonora Schuck
“I am a mixed media artist with specialties in relief printing and ceramics, using the expressive qualities of line and form to create whimsical pieces with a darker twist. I draw inspiration from art history, my relationship with my physical surroundings, and my observation of patterns in thought and behavior in my personal life.”

Stephanie Wayne
“I have been fortunate enough to have lived not only in several states, but also three other countries throughout my life, and have visited even more. My travels and Panamanian heritage have strongly influenced my identity, and naturally my art practices as well. Recently, I have explored alternative ways of making molas (an indigenous art practice of Panama) and depicting joy in my works through lively colors and expressive lines. As Johannes Itten said, ‘Color is life because a world without it appears to us as dead.’ As an artist, I hope that I convey joy to my audience, but also, in general, bring more into the world.”

Transylvania’s studio art curriculum introduces students to the fundamentals through courses in drawing, design, painting, photography, sculpture, ceramics and art history. Art majors select an area of specialization in one of the studio disciplines. The major culminates in a capstone course in which seniors learn to craft a portfolio and, under the personal guidance of a professor, make a final, original body of artwork.