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Artists work together for fourth annual student-run exhibit at Loyalist

By Shelby Wye

JJ Gascho, a curator of the student-run exhibition, refers to directing her colleagues over the past few months as hard as “herding cats”.

Creating art is a personal thing for many of the art and design foundation students and it took some discipline for them to come together as a working machine, said Gascho.

The exhibition’s opening ceremonies will be held on April 9, at 5 p.m., at the second floor of the Skills Center. Other galleries can be seen in the Link Lounge, and in the art and design foundation’s studio in the Pioneer Building.

Gascho said that the experience has been stressful, exhilarating and even frightening. The exhibition is entirely run by the students of the program, with no interference from their teachers.

“They’re distant, in a way that a parent is distant when their kid is learning new things. We know they’re in the background, but as long as we’re fine, they’re good at letting us ride it out.”

The Quinte Arts Council has also been a guiding force in older shows, and although they are helping them this time, Gascho said that their past experience with the council taught them a lot.

“I think we’d be a fish out of water, if we didn’t work with them last semester,” she said.

The council taught them a lot about how to display their artwork in a creative, insightful way, so the audience can really pay attention to each piece individually, Gascho said.

She is most proud, however, of how the students came together.

“We are thriving. We are so supportive of each other, and we’re always there for one another. We’re always here to give each other constructive criticism. We’re great friends, we’ve bonded because we’re always [in the studio] so late, working.”

Every year, the students are required to work together. The most spectacular show of this collaboration is the annual art piece the students create together. They choose a famous piece of work to imitate. Each student is then given a canvas, which represents a specific portion of a painting. They complete their canvas in any style they want, and at the end of the year, the canvas is strapped together.

This year, the multi-canvas painting they chose is titled the “Assembly Line”, by famed muralist Diego Rivera.

“This piece in particular is so focused on cohesiveness, and what it means to be part of a team, since it’s a factory scene. Each piece of the canvas is so different and unique, but you put them together, and it makes it a beautiful, cohesive piece. It’s incredible, since it also really represents our class, coming to work together.”