UWF Art Department hosts semi-annual pop-up exhibition

By Allison Bew
Staff Writer

Artwork done solely by University of West Florida students lined the halls of the Theatre and Art building last Thursday. Along with paintings, drawings and sculptures, visual displays and performance art were also on display.

UWF students have been working diligently all semester on their pieces, and this was their chance to exhibit their work.

Valerie George, UWF associate professor of art, puts on the exhibition every semester for her students or any other student at UWF.

“Every semester my students make amazing work, and it just seems like a waste to not allow them the opportunity to put it on display and share it with the world,” George said. “It’s not fun to make art in a vacuum where nobody can enjoy it.”

This opportunity also allows the students to get a taste of the art world outside of school. “I think it’s really important for students to learn how to exhibit their work, write artist statements, how to present themselves formally in public, and understand what goes into putting on an art exhibition,” George said.

The exhibition offered a range of art varying from paintings to digital art to illustration and writing of comics.

UWF student Dylan Nadsady displayed both prints he had illustrated as well as a copy of his comic book that he wrote and illustrated.

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“I have worked in the medium [comics] for a couple of years now, and these are actually the second and third fully closed narrative comics I’ve done,” Nadsady said.

Many of the students, including Nadsady, have had their works featured in other art galleries both locally and internationally.

Art student Jasmine Holmes had eight portraits on display at the pop-up exhibition. “I have actually done 23 exhibitions before, all over the place. Some of them were downtown, but I have had a few in Ireland.”

Holmes is known for her portraits and gathers inspiration from mythology. “I always try to bring from different cultures, and I research intensely what certain things mean so that I can bring them into what ever narrative I am working with,” Holmes said.

UWF student Melissa Larimer put on a performance art piece in which she had two cups of markers – the left one for positive words and the right cup for insults, and she had people write on her. She had a white hood draped over her head so she could not read what everyone wrote, and she was dressed in a white bathing suit so most of her body was exposed.

Most of these students are finishing up their final semester at UWF, and this was a chance for them to display their work before heading into the job field or continuing their education.

Hilary Holden is a graphic design major who is graduating this spring and is looking for jobs around Pensacola. She designed the “Evita” play poster, the TAGGED poster, the UWF Symphonic Band poster, and many Pensacola Museum of Art (PMA) posters.

After graduating, Holmes will pursue her M.A. at Colorado State University.  Nadsady will do some proof-of-concept work for two full graphic novels, a total of 240 pages.

Seventeen graduating graphic design students will exhibit their work the week of April 25-30 at the Pensacola Museum of Art in a show called “Ellipsis.” Some of the work you can expect to see will be illustrated works, package design, logo design, and environmental design. The show is designed to help the students learn to put on any kind of event and how to showcase their work for potential employers.