BFA painting major, Chloe Wenger, noted that the pieces she had featured in the exhibition were portraits, as she has taken to the skill of painting faces.
In Anticipation, Wenger was inspired to create a painting that paralleled that of famous painter, Frank Duveneck, with a mix of dark and vivid colors. With her talent in painting portraits, she wanted to convey strong expression in the face of the figure.
Wenger was happy to have 2 pieces featured in the exhibition, especially because she graduates in May.
“To be able to see everybody else’s work along with getting accepted the last semester I can, is a pretty big thing,” Wenger said.
Her second piece, entitled R. Sho. P features Wenger’s partner and emanates the topics of diversity and inclusivity. She notes that because her partner is Japanese, many make premeditated assumptions and judgements about him, even before meeting him.
Elements of the painting are meant to convey the societal stressors that impact both Wenger and her partner.
“I have my hands really close to his head and his eyes just to get that uncomfortable feeling. To convey that it makes me uncomfortable trying to make other people feel comfortable,” Wenger said. She wanted her audience to feel as uncomfortable as possible when peering at her piece, as they have made her significant other feel that way.
In this painting, she used multiple references to death, particularly in Japanese culture. The dark figure in the background and the kimono being draped from right to left is also a death reference.
Wenger likes to allude to elements from the Victorian era and manipulate the costuming of her painted figures.
Wenger explained, “The Victorian era specifically is a really good bridge between the past and the present, because, in the past, people were a lot more spiritual and wary about mythical things and spirits.”
Wenger shed light on the difficulties of being multicultural in a predominantly white environment. Audiences are able to relate to her partner’s experiences and make them assess just what hidden meanings are behind her work.