Da’Vette Peoples

(Rock Hill, S.C.) — The Fine Arts Department at Winthrop University is hosting its annual senior exhibition, entitled “Everything We Meant to Say,” in the Rutledge Gallery and Lewandowski Student Gallery, which showcases the skills students have learned during their time in the program.

Successful completion of the senior exhibition is a requirement for graduation and an important step into the real world for fine arts students.

The course is designed for seniors to discuss, exhibit and market different ideas on how to best display their work publicly.

“This is sort of reflecting on the time in these students’ lives. They’re wrapping school up, they’re moving on to become professional artists,” said Claudia O’Steen, an assistant professor of fine arts.

“In this course, they are developing course work, they are developing skills and really showcasing skills they’ve learned throughout their four years here at Winthrop,” said O’Steen.

In a normal academic school year, families and friends would be able to view the student artwork during a special reception.

“We had to cancel our reception day, because normally what we’ll do is we’ll have a big day. We’ll have snacks, we’ll have food, so that all of the seniors can show off. They can invite their friends and family to have a big ‘we have finished our senior thesis’ (event), but because of COVID we weren’t able to do that,” said Avery Setzer, a senior fine arts major and exhibition artist.

Despite not having a reception, the gallery still remains open to the public and this year’s theme gives 18 students the opportunity to showcase a reflection of themselves as growing artists.

“My piece ‘Worry Not Miserable Marble’ is my first step in branching or combining the image and object together. All the works in my BFA thesis exhibition are made by using found objects and covering them with a unifying material,” said Jonathan Bolton, a senior fine arts major and exhibition artist.

Senior Exhibit
Winthrop’s fine arts department celebrates the achievement of 18 graduating students in its annual senior exhibition, which showcases a variety of art mediums including sculpting, painting, photography, videography and more (photo: Da’Vette Peoples).

When viewers enter the exhibit, they can expect to see work representing a wide range of disciplines that students have spent the last year researching and constructing. This includes interdisciplinary art, sculptures, paintings, ceramics, drawings, printmaking, videography and photography

“It’s obvious that all of the people here are on a different plane. I don’t see anything that is similar, but overall it’s a very unique exhibit,” said Tecla MacDonald, who visited the Rutledge Gallery to see the exhibit.

The Galleries are open with special hours, Monday, Wednesday and Friday’s from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visitors are asked to wear a face mask, maintain social distance and limit to 10 people at a time while in the gallery.

The last day to view the senior exhibition is Friday, May 7.