The Independent Student Newspaper of Northern Kentucky University.

BFA students showcase their work in senior exhibitions

December 18, 2021

The 27 Club senior exhibition.

Provided: Jacob Wells

The 27 Club senior exhibition.

The fall and spring senior exhibitions for BFA students provides them with an outlet to broaden their critical artistic thinking before entering into careers after college. It has become an essential platform for seniors to showcase their capstone project to the community, other students, and future employers.

Sso-Rha Kang, director of galleries and outreach, explained that there is great importance to the senior exhibition, as she has witnessed firsthand what it has meant to students.

“It is a culmination of their entire time within the BFA program. It is a showcase of everything they have learned and each student has their own specific area of interest and they are essentially displaying their passions,” Kang said. 

Maddy Kunkel, senior VCD student and worker in the visual arts department, participated in this year’s fall senior exhibition and she helped Kang in the process of printing and creating wall labels. 

Not only was Kunkel able to take part in the overall preparation of the show, she was able to give Kang a student’s perspective and opinion throughout this process.

“Being someone that is new, it was really nice having a student that has been in the program for their entire student career that was able to give me context and student perspectives. Especially how a student views the senior exhibition or what it means to them to participate in something like this,” Kang said.

For Kunkel, this exhibition was a way for her voice to be heard on an important issue that is important to her.

“[My exhibition] was called Ouro Growth. The tagline is ‘a responsible and regenerative farm.’ Many people don’t know about regenerative farming, which is the act of lessening the impact that traditional farming has, while also adding nutrients to the soil at the same time. I am very passionate about food and I wanted to bring to light this idea and way of thinking, which I have not seen anyone showcase before,” Kunkel said.  

Therefore, not only does the exhibition allow the students to showcase their art, but their passions as well.

Senior exhibition student, Jacob Wells also added  why his project on the 27 Club was important to express through his art.

“I really like to bring art and music together. I wanted to do something that stood out, looked different and had a different expression. I decided to do the 27 Club, because it is a very heavy topic that isn’t talked about anymore and I wanted to bring it to light in a modern way,” Wells said.

As explained by Wells, the 27 Club is a list of creatives that died at the significant age of 27 from either suicide, car wreck or murder. He chose to highlight three musicians that are a part of the club.

The senior exhibition allows for students on campus of all majors to experience art. Kang says that just because one may not be involved in the arts, it doesn’t mean they can’t enjoy or appreciate it. 

Shows like the 27 Club and Ouro Growth allow for a connection between art and global issues which are showcased in the fall and spring exhibitions.

Kunkel notes that for BFA seniors, the senior exhibition is the only thing they must focus on during the semester, unless they have other classes. This allows students to dedicate their time to a project that helps them put into practice their learned skills.  

Kang believes that the exhibition can give senior’s experience that can be used once they are in the workforce after college.

“They are having to think really critically about space and presentation. So, how do they put together an installation with their work that can communicate to an audience concisely and directly what their interests are or focus is. I think that is very applicable to the real world regardless of what profession, because I think communication is incredibly important in telling the audience your story,” Kang said.

The next senior exhibition is in the spring, which will showcase work from mainly studio arts students.

For information about upcoming exhibitions in the galleries, go to Galleries : Northern Kentucky University, Greater Cincinnati Region (nku.edu).

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