Thesis Exhibition on Display
The 2013 Senior Thesis Art Exhibition in Founders Hall showcases works by 12 art majors through May 17.
The exhibition’s title is derived from the idea that the spine is central to a human body, giving it motion, form and sensation. Similarly, as the students learned from Twyla Tharp, who was a Bryan Series speaker in 2011, “Every work of art needs a spine – an underlying theme, a motive for coming into existence.”
This spine does not have to be obvious to the audience but informs an artist throughout his or her process and creates a foundation to work from. When strong, the spine encourages a body of work and its artist successfully into motion.
Participating artists and their areas of specialization are:
From Decatur, Ga., James is a candidate for a B.F.A. in drawing. Using a graphic novel format, he uses mixed media on paper to explore the possibilities of an original, wordless narrative. By removing text from his imagery, the viewer becomes an active participant in the story’s intricacies and outcome. His drawings and prints have been shown annually in the College’s Juried Student Art Exhibition (2011-12), in which he received a second-place award in the drawing category in 2011. James also received first place overall in the Art Institute of Atlanta’s Rising Talent Juried Scholarship Exhibition in 2009.
A native of Hastings, Neb., Martha is a candidate for an A.B. in oil painting. Her paintings depict surrealist dreamscapes that exist in the borderland between dreams and waking, dancing back and forth between the real and the perceived. She is a recipient of the Charles A. Dana Scholarship for academic achievement and community involvement and has been selected twice to present work in the annual Guilford College Juried Student Art Exhibition. She also studied children’s book illustration and has written and illustrated several books, including a collaborative project with photographer and fellow Nebraskan Todd Brown on the poetry of William Blake.
An A.B. candidate in ceramics, Katherine is from Shacklefords, Va. Her ceramic body of work portrays sculpted animals integrated with functional forms, alluding to an interaction of animate wildness with domestic human ritual. Inspired by cross-cultural animal symbolism, her ceramic forms persuade personal memory and sensorial curiosity. A Dean’s List student of four years, she is actively involved with student leadership and community service work as a Bonner Scholar and Quaker Leadership Scholar. Her artwork has been exhibited at the Homegrown Market in Urbanna, Va. and every fall in the annual Guilford Juried Student Art Exhibition (2009-12), in 2011 winning first place for ceramics and 2-D design.
From South Windsor, Conn., Jessica is a candidate for an A.B. in painting and sociology/anthropology. She is exhibiting a series of large, abstract expressionist paintings, created with oil paint and other media. She uses her painting process and knowledge of color theory to address issues of impermanence, a theme inspired by her participation in a study abroad program to Southwestern China. Invested in her community, she has organized the Art Department’s annual Draw-a-thon and has served as a teaching assistant for Two-Dimensional Design at Guilford, and as a communications intern at the Art Alliance in Greensboro. She has exhibited in four annual Art Department juried student shows and in the Grayscale show at The Center for Visual Arts in Greensboro.
Madison, Wis., native Samantha is completing her A.B. in art and biology. For her ceramics thesis she is creating a series of giant teapots whose odd play on humor and functionality relate to the production of beauty and the human need to maintain control. She has volunteered at the North Carolina’s Potters conference in Asheboro (2010-13) and taught ceramics at a youth summer camp in Wisconsin. Her work has been shown in multiple Guilford College juried student art shows and in craft shows in North Carolina and Wisconsin. A Dean’s List student, she had the opportunity to study art in Siena, Italy, during the fall semester of 2011. She plans to continue her studies in both art and biology after graduation.
An A.B. candidate in painting, Hannah Fillingim hails from Rome, Ga. Her mixed media works on paper focus on the pervasiveness of advertising and the relationship between commercial art, “low art,” and “fine art.” She has exhibited in multiple Guilford exhibitions and events, and in art spaces in Wilmington, Boone and Rome, Ga. A Dean’s List student, she served as a teaching assistant for Drawing I, and she founded and writes for the Guilford Art Department blog, Hand/Eye.
From Santa Fe, N.M., Jonathan is a candidate for a B.F.A. in printmaking. He is exhibiting a series of hand-colored etchings whose subject matter is inspired by concepts of community, diversity and nature. Jonathan interned at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and at SITE in Santa Fe, N.M., and while studying abroad in Siena, Italy, he traveled throughout Europe. He treads lightly upon boundaries in social settings, pushing people to engage in loving and cheerful interaction always.
Madison, from Lexington, Ky., is a candidate for an A.B. in art and religious studies. In her artwork, Heltzel explores the cycles and processes of the natural world through interaction with materials from the Earth. She observes and mimics the structures, textures, and fascinating irregularities produced by the forces of Life. The large symbols she creates from earth pigments, beeswax, and other materials represent the underlying poetry found in the chaos of life and death. Heltzel studies meditational and ritual art from various traditions, which inform her creative process and relationship to the Earth.
Originally from Arlington, Va., Ailey is Bachelor of Arts candidate in painting. Her large-scale oil paintings on canvas address the importance of relationship shared between two living things and focus on aspects of those relationship that are usually invisible in a visual sense. Grieg has served as a teaching assistant for Drawing II and Painting II/III courses at Guilford College and she was the recipient of the Art Department’s James S. Laing Art Scholarship in 2011. Her work has been exhibited in galleries in Michigan, Virginia, Illinois and North Carolina, and her goal is to have her art presented in all 50 states.
A candidate for an A.B. in ceramics, Keita is from Portland, Ore. His work abstracts the human form drawing attention to how it moves, and what happens to the visual and physical texture of the body. He is particularly inspired by the intricate, abstract details of the human form as a whole. His work has been exhibited in the Art Department’s juried student art exhibition in each of the past three years and was awarded first place in ceramics in 2012.
Hailing from Middletown, Del., Sadie is an A.B. candidate with a focus in painting. Her expressionist oil paintings depict portraits of people and places. Utilizing dramatic placement of color and light and shifting planes of space, she creates a collage of personal images. Her work has been twice shown in the Art Department’s annual juried student exhibition. She has found a passion for teaching others in her experiences as a teaching assistant for Life Drawing and Painting II/III classes. She assisted in planning the Art Department’s annual Draw-a-thon event in 2011.
Emily is a North Carolina native and a candidate for a B.F.A. with a concentration in painting. Her paintings explore issues with identity and representation of marginalized peoples. Making use of narrative and intimate composition, she aims to bring to light the personalities, struggles, and interests of those who lack representation in mainstream media and art. She was the recipient of the Dr. Edward Flud Burrows Service Scholarship for community building and organizing within Guilford College’s LGBTQAI community; served as a teaching assistant for Painting I; won first place in the Guilford College Juried Art Show for painting in 2011; and had artwork shown this year in University of Tennessee-Knoxville’s Gallery 1010 Out, Loud, and Queer exhibition.
To participate in the optional honors Senior Thesis Exhibition, students must apply in their junior year and have at least a 3.25 G.P.A. in art. Selected students partake in a rigorous program of independent work, group critiques and a required professional practices course, which culminates in their final group exhibition.
The Art Department at Guilford College is a fine arts studio program, which provides an in-depth experience in making images and formulating and crafting ideas. Painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, photography and ceramics are the primary focus areas.
The classroom/studio is highly interactive and dynamic, and provides one-on-one instruction and guidance, as well as the support and stimulation of interchange with classmates. The distinction of the art major at Guilford College lies in the development of each student’s creative potential.