Juried Student Art Show brings honors to art majors

The annual Juried Student Art Show took place Feb. 14 through March 18 in the Cummings Art Gallery.

Nine of the Mercyhurst University art students received special awards at the opening reception.

Local artists, Patty Baldwin and Brian Pardini, selected the 58 original works in the exhibit, which included ceramics, sculptures, photography, paintings and drawings.

Jill Barrile photo: Senior Sarah Hlusko, senior Natalie Grospitch, junior Bridget Finn, senior Claire Hogan, senior Kelly Clymer, junior Kayla Clark and senior Rachel Brown pose by senior Shane McCabe’s scuplture.Jill Barrile photo: Senior Sarah Hlusko, senior Natalie Grospitch, junior Bridget Finn, senior Claire Hogan, senior Kelly Clymer, junior Kayla Clark and senior Rachel Brown pose by senior Shane McCabe’s scuplture.

The highest award given, the Mercyhurst University Purchase Award was given to seniors Tyler Stauffer, Jillian Barrile and Sarah Blair and junior J. John Thiede, who said that “it is an exciting time to see your classmates put forth their best work, and I feel that this year’s show was quite successful.”

Those who received honorable mentions were senior Erin McCandless, juniors Durim Loshaj and Karma Smith and sophomores Tracey Howland and Rodolfo Claros.

Stauffer’s “Selmer Mark VI #6” was a large piece with yellow, navy blues and black.

It was very detailed and interesting, inviting the onlooker to stare for quite some time. There was a contrast of some faint markings as well as definite geometric shapes.

Thiede’s “Drag Queen and Chair” was full of energy and color, as well as interesting patterns and shapes.
Barrile’s “Untitled” digital photograph was reminiscent of looking through a kaleidoscope.

When the light shone through, the different facets of the picture’s focal point and the ombre color were captivating and created a beautiful image.

Blair’s “Dress Patterns” was a collection of collaged clothing patterns, creating an imaginative way of repurposing.
Claros’ “Restaurant Door” evoked a feeling of loneliness, yet the way the light beamed through the doors in the photo gave it a sense of hope.

The way a simple chair and double doors can be so interesting and evoke such feelings is impressive.
Claros explained his feelings about being a part of the juried art show.

“The juried show was just an amazing opportunity for us artists to get our name out into the Erie art community,” he said.

“Having sold a piece not only makes me feel like I’ve earned the title of artist but it also gets me wondering what’s next for me in the art world,” Claros said.

McCandless’s “View from Notre Dame” was captivating because the photo captured a very iconic building.
The sunset in the background only added to the already unique photo.

McCandless’s other photograph, “The Palace of Westminster,” was also stunning.

The combination of the lights of the sunset in the background with the magnificence of the building and architecture created a beautiful picture.

McCandless said, “I was honored to be a part of the juried art show. I always enjoy participating in these events. I felt all of the pieces in the show were of a high caliber.

“I feel that participating in these events is a good way to get your work out there and also become inspired by the work of other artists.”

Another piece of artwork that stood out was Hilda Navarro’s “Kuna Indian from Panama.”

Navarro’s photograph of an older woman sewing a kind of traditional Panama cloth really captured and shared the culture, allowing viewers to step into that tradition and understand it.

A very interesting sculpture called “The Raven” by junior Rachel Playso was colorful with a full rainbow of colors and different pieces of furniture painted on the base along with words and phrases from Edgar Allan Poe’s famous poem.

Senior Shane McCabe’s “Celestial Ocean” was almost mesmerizing with the way the colors of the planets stood out against the night sky.

Junior Kaylyn Stack’s photograph titled “Send Me on My Way” shared the beauty of simple things in nature.

It was able to remind the onlooker that even the simple things in life can hold importance.

The way her lens captured just a few small twigs in the cold sunlight was beautiful.

The art show showcased the diverse artwork of Mercyhurst students and is a pleasant display of the many kinds of talents within the community.

The Cummings Art Gallery, located in the lobby of the Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center, is open Tuesday-Sunday from 2 to 5 p.m. and Thursday evenings from 7 to 9 p.m.