The University of West Georgia’s annual Juried Student Exhibition was held on Jan. 23. Twenty students were chosen and judged by former President of the Mid-South Sculpture Alliance, Isaac Duncan III.
Eleven students placed in the exhibition. The awards for Best in Show included 2D art, 3D art and Merit prizes were awarded as well. Best in Show for 2D art was won by Jordan Lewis for his drawing titled “Branded.” First place 2D art was won by Nathan Childers for his “Now Serving” painting.
Hannah Swofford won second place 2D for her “This That” charcoal drawing and third place went to Sofia Cunha for her “Doll House” photography. Fourth place 2D art was won by Megan McCoy for “Headache Cure” in mixed media and fifth place to Christian Johnson for his “Freshen Up” painting.
Best in Show for 3D art was won by Cecille Redding for her “You Push I Pull” ceramics piece. First place 3D art was won by McKenna Schmidt for her “Comfort” found object sculpture. Merit prizes were also awarded to Chase Guajardo’s “Home on the Range” screen print, Emme Marler’s “What is the Value of Our Society” ink drawing, and Dallas Griffin’s “Dallas Self Portrait” watercolor.
Although the awards and reception have been announced, the Juried Student Exhibition is currently ongoing in the Bobick Gallery in the Humanities Building until Feb. 20. Students and faculty are encouraged to visit the Bobick Gallery and support UWG students’ original works. Events like this are one of the many ways the art department supports and helps the art majors receive real-world experience with their art. For many students, these exhibitions are a way to gain exposure with their artwork.
“It was honestly a shock that I won any place, but I was so moved by the way our juror spoke about my work,” Cunha says. “Unlike most photographers nowadays, I am not always digital. I’ve learned to value and appreciate the physicality of a photograph, and I think the juror really understood that. My piece ‘Dollhouse’ was inspired by artists like William Eggleston and William Wegman.”
Many artists at UWG like Sophia Cunha are working relentlessly to spread their art and build their own personal brands while juggling full-time academics. Exhibitions like this help students who are not art majors see what the UWG art majors are learning and creating. For the artists it gives them an overwhelming sense of gratification to have their art recognized by an esteemed juror but also accepted by their peers.
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