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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Art students display culmination of talent at MFA Thesis Exhibit

    The academic year is coming to a close, and while many students are starting to see a light at the end of the tunnel, a different light is being shone on the graduating students of the Master of Fine Arts program.

    A showcase of 12 different artists will make up this year’s MFA Thesis Exhibition which begins Friday. The work will be featured in the Joseph Gross Gallery as well as the University of Arizona Museum of Art galleries.

    “While there is always a range of work developed for the show, as students come from several divisions of the School of Art, themes seem to be much more apparent this year than in years past,” said Brooke Grucella, curator of the School of Art Galleries. “I see students developing work regarding mediation and the digital/technological world, liminal space or spaces that are constructed to be ‘natural,’ and we always have works that explore childhood or the past in some way or another.”

    Grucella works with the students to help showcase their talents in their thesis demonstrations and help them with their development.

    “I helped lay out the allotted exhibition space for each student and I give my two cents when it comes to presenting the work in the best way possible within the Joseph Gross Gallery,” Grucella said. “The installation, development of the work and all the components that go into creating are the responsibility of the student, along with their faculty committee.”

    Those interested in attending this year’s showcase can expect to see, among other pieces, complex mechanized sculptures constructed by Lebanese artist Michael Fadel, who carefully weaves his heritage into much of his work.

    Clare Benson will be presenting installation art, which includes themes of hunting and family history, and displaying an impressive basswood construction of antlers.

    The exhibit will also feature the return of a performance piece by artist Neal Galloway.

    The thesis exhibit allows members of the community to interact with this year’s graduate students on a personal level.

    It’s not only an extension of the artists’ hard work and time spent at UA, it is also a way for them to let their art speak for them. Many of the themes in the exhibit will be deeply emotional and cultivate a connection between stranger and artist.

    “I really enjoy this exhibition every year because we get to see what our graduates are concerned with,” Grucella said. “They are the emerging artists and seeing the show keeps me personally connected to the concerns of, many times, young artists. It shows the creativity of the students, but perhaps in a way [that] spurs creativity in others.”

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