Catherine Smith Gallery host BFA artwork

Article Published: Dec. 3, 2009 | Modified: Sep. 7, 2011
Catherine Smith Gallery host BFA artwork

Dream I by Lauren Jonas

Appalachian State University presents the BFA Senior Studio Exhibition: Fall 2009 at the Catherine J. Smith Gallery in Boone.

The exhibition will be on view from Dec. 3 through Dec. 11 and includes work by four candidates for the BFA in studio art. Works in this show are composed of a variety of materials including painting, ceramics, photography, and metals.

The gallery will present works from artists Lauren Jonas, Michelle Lavine, Stephanie Sims and Brandon Thompson. For the past year these students have been working with Margaret Yaukey, a professor in the Department of Art.

"The Bachelor of Fine Arts Exhibition at Catherine J. Smith Gallery provides the Department of Art, the Boone community, parents, family and friends an opportunity to gather together and celebrate the accomplishments of our graduating BFA Studio students. A painter, a photographer, a ceramist and a metalsmith have worked together over the course of an entire year in order to create this diverse group exhibition," Yaukey said.

"The diverse work to be shown by this group of seniors will encompass a wide range of ideas, formats, materials and processes. It promises to be an exciting exhibit of which the graduating students can be proud."

The reception for the BFA Senior Studio Exhibition: Fall 2009 is on Dec. 11 from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

About the Artists

Lauren Jonas was born in Belmont in 1987. Currently, she is a senior at Appalachian State University. She will complete her BFA in studio art, with a concentration in photography and printmaking, in the fall of 2009.

Recent gallery inclusions are the Photographic Documentaries: Food and Hunger in North Carolina show at the Looking Glass Gallery in Boone in 2009, and Art Expo at the Catherine Smith Gallery in the spring of 2009. Currently, Jonas's work is on display at the UNC-Chapel Hill administration building in Chapel Hill.

As an artist, Jonas is fascinated with the disappointment in life, and the fine line between reality and illusion. She believes, "We all want to have hope but sometimes it fails and things do not work out as we wish. Inevitably, reality fails to live up to our hopes and dreams - that is the disappointment."

Michelle Lavine will complete her BFA in studio art in the fall of 2009, with a concentration in painting and a minor in psychology. Lavine came to Appalachian State from Jacksonville, Fla., and plans to stay in North Carolina after she graduates. Her love for the outdoors and the change of the seasons influenced her decision to move to the mountains.

Lavine believes that what makes a good painting is not how well it portrays reality, but rather how much better the painting is than reality. The unique method of using tissue paper in conjunction with paint expands the depth of color and creates a texture that paint alone cannot achieve. This technique transforms a painting into a unique and personal interpretation of reality.

Each painting is like a still life, based on a trivial object or scene, such as a leaf. It is not the subject, however, that the painting is about. It is about the painting: translating reality onto canvas. It is about color, texture, composition, technique, and, most importantly, expression.

Stephanie Sims was born in Pinehurst in 1987. She is currently completing her last semester at Appalachian State University, and will receive her BFA in studio art in the fall of 2009, with concentrations in both painting and metalsmithing/ jewelry design. Sims uses found, organic and decaying objects and combines them with metal to create jewelry and mixed media compositions. She mixes structures of metal with fragile and beautiful materials to create unpredictable juxtapositions in jewelry and sculpture.

In the summer of 2008, Sims interned with Patricia Reil at Jewels of Pinehurst. She has displayed work in Art Expo at the Catherine Smith Gallery in 2008 and 2009. In 2008, she received the Plemmons Student Union Purchase Award. In Art Expo 2009, she won Best in Show for the Juror's Selection, Best Painting for the Juror's Selection, Best Drawing for the Faculty Selection, and the Student Selection for Best Painting and Best Drawing.

Brandon Thompson was born in Morganton in 1984. He will earn his BFA in studio art, with a concentration in ceramics in the fall of 2009. He attended Freedom High School where he was the president of the high school pottery club. Thompson participated in a group show at the Nth Gallery in Boone in December 2007, entitled "Mud and Fire." He has done two summer internships with potters Ken Sedberry in 2007 and Ron Slagle in 2008, both located near Bakersville. Thompson worked as the assistant to Mark Peters for a wood firing workshop in June 2009, and is currently selling work through the Todd General Store, 10 miles north of Boone.

Thompson's sets of functional pottery are fired in a wood-burning kiln with soda ash that is introduced during the firing. The process of using wood to fire a kiln plays an important part in the theme of the work. The pieces are meant to be used to share with friends and make even daily interactions a new experience, just as a group of people comes together to tackle all the work involved in loading and firing a wood kiln.

The Catherine J. Smith Gallery is located in Farthing Auditorium at 733 Rivers St. on the Appalachian State University campus. Admission is free. Hours are Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call (828) 262-7338.

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