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MSU artists exhibit work

March 15, 2011

For Starkville Daily News

Eighteen Mississippi State University students will unveil the finale of their undergraduate careers and prove they have what it takes to build careers as artists.
“Unmasked,” the senior thesis exhibit for 2011 Bachelor of Fine Arts students at Mississippi State, will open March 29 at the Department of Art Gallery in McComas Hall and the Visual Arts Center Gallery at 808 University Drive.
The exhibit will run until April 8, with public receptions April 7 at the Department of Art Gallery from 5:30-6:45 p.m. and at the MSU Visual Arts Center from 6:45-8:30 p.m. Refreshments will be served at the receptions, which are open to the campus and the public.
The art to be displayed includes photographs, paintings, drawings and sculptures, and each student’s work portrays a unique perspective. One senior from Meridian, Gracie Nichols, will exhibit small abstractions of moths in oil and watercolor paintings, and she said the diversity of the artists and their art made her feel fortunate to be part of the group.
“For being such a large group, we have really bonded closely, and to be able to share this experience with them has been wonderful,” Nichols said. “As the opening of the show draws near, I have become even more excited to be able to be a part of such a fun and diverse family.”
Much larger than Nichols’ moths are Amber Orgill’s thesis paintings, which use color, shape and texture to capture an organic, natural atmosphere. Orgill, originally from Brandon, said she, too, had grown close with her fellow seniors.
“I am excited about getting to see everyone’s work, especially my classmates that I have had in my classes since my freshman year,” Orgill said.
At the same time, students featured in the exhibit also said they felt prepared to move forward with their careers, including Drew Robertson, originally from Newton. The small, ceramic worlds in Robertson’s work echo the worlds he imagined and the unfamiliar places he explored as a child.
“Having so many people come see a body of work that I have spent so much time creating is a little unnerving,” Robertson said. “However, knowing that the work will have reached a climactic point and can be presented to the world instills me with a great sense of pride. Even more so is the fact that this is only the beginning.”
Ashley Hubbard, from Joliet, Ill., also said she was eager for the next step. She uses double exposures in her photography to render nature unfamiliar.
“It is hard to believe that this experience is almost over, but I am excited about moving on from the undergraduate level,” Hubbard said. “I do not know where that next door is, but I am ready to continue growing as an artist, and that will never change.”

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