Senior IB Art

Senior IB Art students select 8–11 pieces of their work for exhibition and write a curatorial rationale (700 words maximum). Writing the curatorial rationale is part of the process of self- reflection, decision making, and of understanding of the relationship between artist and audience.

Colin Caton,  IB Art SL

Curatorial Rationale

Colin Caton Exhibition

My body of work focuses on the theme of loneliness and privacy, influenced by my personality, which I project in my pieces. I want the viewer to get a sense of the way in which I feel, and my personality. All of my pieces share this theme, and are similar to snapshots of time, as I enjoy photography a lot.

My pieces are mainly made in ink, pencil, or watercolor/acrylic, mediums which work well with my personality and are quick to use.  I do this because I like to work quickly, to capture the moments in time. Besides this, there is no real reason for the mediums chosen; they’re more experimental, rather than metaphorical. As for the subjects of the works, most of them focus on architecture and buildings, or natural landscapes. They are devoid of people, for the most case, but when people are present their faces are obscured or turned away. For example, in Aquarium, the room of the aquarium is full of people, but they appear merely as silhouettes. In China, 1980, even the people facing the viewer have indecipherable faces. This represents my private nature, and how my shyness and quietness is reflected in the way I portray people; similarly to the artist Edward Hopper, who was also an introvert, the pieces focus on the beauty of the scenery, not the people, and often understate the subject matter as much as possible (or leave out people all together).

The presentation of the pieces is not meant to produce any sort of message of metaphor relating to my general theme; rather, I chose an order which I found to be visually appealing to myself.  I simply arranged the pieces in a way I saw symmetrical, with the largest work in the middle, smaller pieces wrapped around, and the smallest two placed at the top to the left and right. My vision is simply to give the viewer an understanding of my personality; I can express, indirectly, through the art what I cannot in words, and I hope this message is conveyed in my body of work.  In my body of work, there are no people, but instead there is a focus on the aesthetic qualities of the pieces.

Meghan Clancy, IB Art HL

Curatorial Rationale

Meghan Clancy Exhibition

Meghan Clancy Exhibition

With “light” as a metaphorical common thread that represents happiness and hope, my body of work examines the different forms of light in my life and progresses into the lack of light in areas surrounding social issues. I chose to explore these concepts in my pieces because being aware and appreciative of the things that make me happy has had a positive influence on my everyday life. Comparatively, it is my artistic intention to bring awareness to how we can knowingly or unknowingly take away the happiness from animals, nature, and society. I plan to pursue Art Therapy as a career, because I understand that art is a form of release, healing and can create awareness within. I have a natural affinity for animals and nature therefore their happiness is just as important to me as my own and has been a large influence on my artwork. I chose to explore issues within animal welfare such as domestic animal abuse and whaling, along with global issues such as pollution and industrialization. The viewer reaction is important because my work seeks to raise awareness within the viewer.

My piece titled “My Golden Light” made of oil pastels is one of the earlier pieces in my collection, displaying my Golden Retriever who is one of my biggest forms of light and happiness. This piece is one that wholesomely represents what my artwork is about. I accentuated the glimour of light in his eyes by creating dramatic strokes of bright white to make the viewer feel emotion within his eyes. I used foreshortening to represent the way dogs look up to humans in an all-loving and selfless way, yet some dogs are still vulnerable to human abuse. This is one of the pieces that influenced me to research animal welfare and start raising attention to not only the mistreatment of domestic animals but all types of animals and nature. After this piece I started to focus not only on my personal light but the light within the lives of these different creatures and the retraction of it.

Three of my pieces that exemplify my intention of animal awareness are “Ready to Serve” about the slaughtering of pigs for meat, “Nature in Danger” about trees being cut down for new buildings, and “Illness to Awareness” about depression in teens. They exemplify the loss of light of important issues in my life. They have a common use of stenciling, inspired by graffiti artist Banksy who has been an influential artist to me.

My curatorial exhibit best demonstrates the evolution of my ideas of light. The order of my pieces for my exhibit is meant to illustrate the flow of my ideas as well as how they could aesthetically complement each other in hopes that it will have a greater emotional effect on my audience. My earlier pieces focus more on light within society and humans such as “A Natural Light” and “The Shoemaker”. They then progress into the industrialization by humans onto nature such as “Overpopulation” and “Illness to Awareness”. “Illness to Awareness” will be a good transition into my three stencil pieces which will be more closely hung relative to the rest of them; they create cohesion of ideas and aesthetics. These three stencil pieces represent my intention well so I would like to have them featured as the focal point. “Ready to Serve” will be furthest to the right in the set of three because finally, my pieces evolved into animal welfare where it relates to “The Killers” and “My Golden Light”. They focus solely on one type of animal centered on the canvas with bright blue backgrounds and they both have a common subject matter of abused animals. “Transparent Light” will be on a pedestal on the far right side and right above it will be my piece “In Chains”. This is important to my curatorial design because “In Chains” shows the retraction of light from elephants while “Transparent Light” goes hand in hand by showing how vibrant their light has the potential to be. Both pieces juxtapose my concept of light. My overall vision for the viewer experience will be an emotional and social journey of what light means to me.

Georgina Duffy-Hetzel,  IB Art HL

Curatorial Rationale

Georgina Duffy Hetzel Exhibition

Georgina Duffy Hetzel Exhibition

My body of work focuses on my artistic interest in texture and pattern within cultures. My work represents the power and significance of cultures connecting to my beliefs and individuality as a person. I have developed my interest in pattern and texture through traveling, people in my life, and surroundings. Through art I have discovered the freedom to be my own person. I use birds, people, objects, and scenery to show my growth in all areas of life, which represents the connections I have with these things. In many of my pieces there is a simple background to place the main subject in the foreground to express their nature in my life. My exploration of different mediums have also contributed to my theme of growing individually, because I have discovered new things within myself as my cultural experiences develop. I value learning about different cultures because I plan to pursue a career in either nursing or art education, both of which connect to a creative and social aspect of life.

My most significant pieces are Education for All, The Carrier, and Medieval Baking, which represents different cultures that have influenced me. In Education for All, I used fabric to create a patterned and textured background to create emphasis of Malala Yousafzai. The artist, Ekua Holmes has influenced my art work and this piece, because her artistic interest focuses on patterns and the use multimedia. Her work focuses on her culture within her community and neighbors, the nurturance and connections she has and has made, and how they have influenced her. I have similar beliefs of having a connection and nurturance with things of people and nature. Malala believes in education and equal rights for all. She taught me about not giving up in what I believe in and how I want to live my life. I wanted to emphasize her burqa to represent her culture of being Muslim and the limited rights in regards to educational freedoms, has in her country. I decided to use a bold color palette in warm hues to symbolize her strong belief in herself and the importance of education for all.

In my second piece, The Carrier, I used the symbol of a crow. I learned from a neighbor, who is a Native American, about how crows are not represented as death or as an omen, but as a carrier of the spirit to heaven and beyond. His strong belief of spirituality influenced my beliefs of spirituality within different cultures. I used different mediums of watercolor and oil to represent that many cultures have different ways of living. I have a respect for the Native American’s culture, as it teaches me to be an open-minded and spiritually connected with the world around me.

My piece, Medieval Baking, represents my experience in Greece. I went there on a three week long trip and discovered much about the people. At a Medieval Greek Festival, there was a women sitting focused about making pita bread. watching her made me aware of how different people lived throughout time. She was reflecting the culture of Medieval times, as people across Greece do with their unique cultures from ancient times to present times. The people there showed that some may not have a lot, but people do not need a lot to enjoy life for what it is and what we have. I used black and white charcoal, to realistically depict this women.

My intention is to illustrate the meaning and significance of different cultures. I wanted to communicate the personal connections I have gained from these influences. I want to display my work to show how the cultures have influenced my learning experience, in a linear gallery-walk style. The intention of my display is to create a chronological order that sequences my personal and artistic growth. I would like begin the exhibition with the artwork that depicts my earlier cultural experiences. Ending the exhibition with the artwork that was influenced by my own culture. I would like the viewer to experience how these cultures have helped my growth, and illustrate my love for learning.

Kassie Hyde, IB Art HL

Kassie Hyde Exhibition

Kassie Hyde Exhibition

Curatorial Rationale

Throughout my pieces I maintain a common thread in my work which deals with the concept of overpopulation. Though my theme is overpopulation I choose to focus on the solitude and loneliness that is caused by overpopulation rather than the abundance and over crowdedness usually associated with over population. The concept of overpopulation was a concept that stemmed for my experiences, particularly in my family. I am one of five siblings and my house is seemingly crowded constantly, this brought about the awareness of how humans take up space on this planet. My work illustrates my thought process and inspiration of the world I am surrounded by. My work is inspired by Andrew Wythe and Edward Hopper, both of which use similar solitary subject matter in an almost desolate and barren environment. Their work speaks to me as they hold technical quality such as, color palette, use of values and subject matter that I relate to and hope to capture in my pieces. I am inspired by the work of Edward Hopper stylistically and thematically. Hopper’s realistic styling and theme of desolation immediately captured my attention, inspiring my style to be straightforward and representational.

My art work spans a variety of mediums that help to interpret my meaning of overpopulation. My mixed media titled, Conditional Adaptation is a collage of watercolor, acrylic, photo transfer and newspaper clippings. I incorporated objects symbolic of pollution and using acrylic to construct a foreground and background in an attempt to show an excessive amount of people with a limited amount of space. In this pieces I featured pollution in relevance to human created waste, for instance I added a city surrounded by water to illustrate global warming. I used photo transfer of a photograph I took of my younger sister in the upper left corner to relate my personal experience with overconsumption that I have witnessed in my own home. The mediums I used created a contrast that draws the viewer’s eye to all portions of the composition. In my piece Bare I used watercolor paint in order to show more of a realistic completion in the skin tones and more opaque colors. Bare is large scale to contrast my other works chosen for the exhibition to be used as the focal point of my exhibit. I aimed to create a mutated figure by creating an image of a three headed figure in the foreground. The concept of the three heads was to create an emphasis on the idea of limited space as if the three women were forced in such a small area that they become one person. My piece Charles is three dimensional sculptures in the form of a marionette puppet created out of clay, recycled materials, and balsa wood. I used clay to construct a skull in order to symbolize an extreme sense of loneness. I used the clothing for Charles from my siblings’ old clothing to tie the connection with my siblings. Charles represents the life and death of many young children who die due to malnourishment, in some cases which is related to the overabundance of people.

I realize the viewer might not see my connection to the concept of overpopulation in my work. My work is not a literal representation of this idea, but it represents the emotion or feeling associated with the concept.

For my curatorial exhibit I wanted to create a clear focal point for the viewer that emphasizes my concept. I organized my works by subject matter. For instance I separated my work that centralizes around figure and my environmental statements so that the viewer can create connections between the pieces without hassle. I plan to hang my puppet from the ceiling to create a looming sense above the viewer. I am going to hang my pieces in a close proximity to one another I want the viewer to be able to see all of my pieces without moving in order to create a dense, clustered atmosphere creating a similar to create a crowded sensation. I want the viewer to be able sympathize with the intention of my work.

Kimberlee Jeghers, IB Art HL

Kim Jeghers Exhibition

Kim Jeghers Exhibition

Curatorial Rationale

My body of work examines the relationship between humans and animals. I chose to explore this because animals are with me all the time. I live with three dogs. At first, I had no exact theme to it. I found myself naturally drawn to using animals as my subject matter. I tried many different techniques before I decided what I wanted my theme to be. I wanted to focus on something that is in my everyday life. Having this as my main focus helped me to come across the theme of animals and their connection to my life.

I use fanciful figures because most of my work is not technical or as realistic as other art students. I have explored many ideas that had to do with animals. Animals are a part of my everyday life and are a part of my family. As inspiration for my work, I examined Franz Marc work because he uses animals as his subject matter, and a similar color palette. His style focused on the simplicity of shapes and lines. He focuses on animals and they are not seen as realistic.

I chose to work with different mediums for each piece. When painting, I like to add texture, color, and I try to think of the viewers’ reaction. I want the viewer to know my love for animals and how they are such a big part of me. My three pieces “Colorful Dog”, “A Sleepy Dog” and “Shiloh” focus on the animal’s face; this is my main focal point. My color palette is mainly bright colors, because I think the use of bright colors stands out much more. I wanted to think about the theme when I was making these pieces. For “Colorful Dog” and “Shiloh”, I used oil paints and watercolors. I wanted one of them to be more realistic than the other but still show a dog’s real face. To do this I added value to both of them with quick brush strokes.

One of my pieces is a photograph called “A Sleepy Dog”. I made sure that my camera focused more on him than on the background. The techniques that I love to use are the rule of thirds, and also changing the lighting of the photo.  Whenever I look at this photograph my eyes focus mainly on his face because that is where the light is. My pieces intention is to show how animals are involved in my life. Animals are a huge part of everyday life for all societies, whether we protect and advocate them, or whether we eat them. Animals play a big part in our world whether we decide to protect and care for them, or make them part of our families. The mediums used focus on an animal in a different way. Whether the animal is happy, tired, or just colorful, the purpose is to show how much an animal’s life means to me. My arbitrary color palette relates to my intention of my pieces and how I want the viewer to feel.

My overall vision for presenting my body of work is to separate my pieces into two groups, one with just animals, the other grouping with inanimate objects and people as the subject matter. I also put some of my paintings on the floor. By doing this, my exhibition is balanced and separated into two groups. My reasoning for this is that I want to represent the animals in my life, and show the other things that I love. I want the viewers to have a different reaction when looking at my set up. This shows how I make pieces of my animals by themselves, but then I show how they are in my everyday life by adding them to my camera drawing or my ballerina dancing. I know that I want the viewer to see how much I love animals being in my life. The intention of my pieces is to show my love for animals and how they are involved in my everyday life. By using a similar color palette as Franz Marc, I hope to capture the viewer’s attention and to express how much concern I feel about an animal’s life.

Skye Kuppig, IB Art HL

Skye Kuppig Exhibition

Skye Kuppig Exhibition

Curatorial Rationale

Throughout my body of work I explore the relationship between the self and the imagination, and how we use the imagination as a form of escapism. Throughout my life I have always loved to read, and as I got older I started writing my own short stories. I think this influenced my choice of subject and theme very strongly. To illustrate this idea, I’ve used contrasts between color palettes: muted colors I connect with reality and brighter colors signify the presence of imagination and fantasy in my pieces. A common thread through all of my portraits is the lack of a direct gaze: in the pieces where the eyes are visible the look is always distracted, as if the characters are daydreaming. In many of my pieces the eyes are covered, showing that the character in the picture is not seeing reality, but rather the world inside their mind. I like to create portraits of people because people inherently have stories. The moment you see someone, you wonder who they are, what their story is.

The theme of imagination links with the way I grew up: constantly living between the imagined, fantastical world I found in books and the real one often finding my imagined worlds far more interesting and colorful than the reality. My choice of theme is strongly influenced by the artist Clive Barker. I read his book Abarat when I was in elementary school, a fantastical story with one of his original oil paintings on almost every page. He paints otherworldly scenes and people, and places physical manifestations of people’s thoughts sitting on their heads. I adapted this idea to my own work by putting physical symbols of what people see in front of their eyes. I intend to show a progression of imagination throughout my work, starting with the most realistic pieces and then working towards the most fantastical, as if descending more and more into a daydream.

The first three pieces in my exhibition are the most realistic. The first piece titled “Self- Portrait: Daydream”, is a portrait of myself looking off into the distance, as if I am daydreaming. I wanted to start the show off with this piece because it is the most realistic of my collection of work. In addition, it marks the beginning of a creative journey: from my daydream in the first piece stem all of the imagined people and scenes of the following pieces, and that my face is pointed forward toward the rest of the exhibition prompts the audience to follow my gaze into the other pieces.

The following two works, “Distracted” and “Masquerade” are created in charcoal and graphite, respectively. I chose these media because they are monochromatic and create a contrast in color with the rest of the show, emphasizing their link with reality. The next group of three paintings, “Masquerade 2”, “Alter-Ego”, and “You’re a Wolf, Boy”, are all different takes on portraits, becoming more and more dramatic. “Masquerade 2” is done in pastel pencil, which I chose because it is more muted, which creates a soft transition between the shades of gray of the preceding pieces and the more vibrant hues of the following. “Fuka-Eri and the Crow” is a direct nod to the roots of my inspiration- reading. It portrays a scene from the book 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami, and is done in an illustrative style to allude to its origin.

The final two pieces in my show, “Split Personality” and “My Head is Killing Me,” serve as a warning to getting too lost in the world of imagination and fantasy. Both reference mental illness, showing the extremes of escapism and delusion and in their portrayal of these actual problems bringing my exhibition back around to reality- signifying the end of the daydream.

With the arrangement of my pieces, from reality to imagination to reality again, I hope to softly ease my audience into and out of a daydream, encouraging them, too, to play make believe for a little while.

Isabella Luff, IB Art HL

Isabella Luff Exhibition

Isabella Luff Exhibition

Curatorial Rationale

Irving Berlin said, “Life is 10 percent what you make it and 90 percent how you take it.” (Goodreads). The world is run by the experiences and stories of us, culturally diverse humankind. That in itself is a piece of art. I have always been a sentimental person. I definitely believe everyone has a place in their heart for the special moments of their past and present. Now that I am older and ready to finish high school I have done allot of reflecting on the different experiences that make up my life. I couldn’t help but create art that reflects my perspective on the world. The common theme in my work explores the human experience from my perspective. No one is alone in this world. Many ideas portrayed in my artwork can be shared in some form by people all around the world. I was inspired by the artists Andrew Wyeth, Edgar Degas, and Christopher Zang. They inspired me to experiment with media, composition, and technique. It was Andrew Wyeth that prompted me to work with watercolor and loose brushstrokes along with an earthy color palette. Observing the many nudes painted by Edgar Degas influenced me to paint a nude, something I hadn’t done before. Christopher Zang taught me to form shapes when painting by placing paint on the canvas in different directional brushstrokes. This will help create form which is reflected in some of my work.

I want my art to speak to people, for example the monoprint series Stuck in the Middle. Almost everyone can relate to the feeling of being stuck in an argument and the grasp conflict has on a person. I am so fascinated by my chickens. My egg tempera piece Dumbfounded represents my concern for their complete vulnerability. The egg tempera I created was made by using the egg yolk from her eggs.  A huge part of the human experience is culture and travels. I was influenced by my travels in Africa which inspired three pieces. Deyon was a real person that I met; captured by her beauty I realistically rendered an oil pastel drawing to capture her beauty for people here in Cape Cod 7,601 miles away to experience. Stuck in the Mud depicts a metal shack held up by an elephant stuck in mud. The elephant represents Africa itself and the oppressed living conditions many are faced with. The media that was used for this sculpture directly connects the viewer to the shanty towns. I wanted to convey their story, one of desperation. While on Safari the tour guide described the zebras as In the Striped Pajamas. This brought to mind the saying “Striped Pajamas” referring to the uniforms worn by the prisoners in the Nazi concentration camps. My inspiration at this moment blossomed into a piece depicting a herd of zebras, in their stripes, with the same color triangles worn by the Nazi prisoners. All of my pieces connect in the way that they depict a human experience from my viewpoint.

For my exhibition I decided to arrange my pieces in chronological order which would most uphold my theme of human experience from my perspective. Just how events in real life take place over time, my layout will resemble a timeline. This way the viewer can walk along and step by step absorb each piece as an experience. When seen from afar my exhibition embodies both time and emotion, key qualities of the human experience.

Works Cited:

“A Quote by Irving Berlin.” Goodreads. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Feb. 2016.

Lindsay Rice, IB Art HL

Lindsay Rice Exhibition

Lindsay Rice Exhibition

Curatorial Rational

It is imperative to me that my work contains a narrative. Throughout my artistic experience it has been a constant calling to me even when drawing in animate objects. Every face contains a story, and every pencil stroke is poetic sentences strew across the emptiness of a piece of paper. As I continued to create art I couldn’t help but create a contrast between perceptions and reality. I no longer only wanted to tell a story, but I was focused on exposing the differences in my own mind compared to the rest of the worlds. One of my biggest influences was my trip to Japan. The year before I went I had been taught the American version of World War Two and the justification for dropping an atomic bomb on thousands of innocent civilians. I believed that America was justified, I believe that it was what had to be done, but as I looked around the city of Hiroshima I saw a single statute to all of the hundreds of innocent children whose lives were destroyed and I realized I was wrong. This revelation led me to question all manner of things, and not just accept what my teachers tell me. If something as important as the justification of an atrocity could be so easily believe what else was behind the veil. I couldn’t stop wondering what else was hidden from me. During this search I realised the issue of war in general, death and even gender was different from what I had been taught. The vision of my art became focused solely on depicting the difference, between perception and reality.

I chose every one of my pieces that has some form of a contrast within it. For example I tend to use traditional media in my pieces in order to make the pieces appear at first glance to be normal, even though the themes are meant to make the audience think deeper about the topic being illustrated. For example in my piece 1000 Cranes I chose to use origami to portray my message. The beauty of the cranes is meant to contrast with the dark theme of death, which the piece is about. I made sure that this type of contrast was a common thread in my work; this is why I chose some pieces over others. I need the audience’s focus to be on what is the alternative meaning behind what they had previously believed.

The viewer relationship is extremely important to my work. Specifically how the work is organised could give the viewer a completely different message than the one I intended. Because of this I knew that a chronological order would not work and that instead it was imperative that I organised the pieces in level of intensity, and to mimic this Idea I decided to have the least intense piece be the highest in the line and the most intense being at eye level where it is easiest to see. I begin my show with the most subtle piece Words, which shows how a thousand words is sometimes more effective than a picture. Then I will ease them into the end with my most dramatic series about death and war. This will lead the viewer gradually become more disturbed. The piece, entitled The “Glory” of War, is the last piece in the entire show because I used the subtle media of graphite to a harsh subject. Juxtaposing graphite with one streak of red ink simultaneously expressed the glorification of war by our media versus the reality of war. This idea will hopefully alert the audience to the contrast in all of my pieces and will demand the viewer to look deeper into the truth and meaning of things rather than take them at face value.

Isabella Roberge, IB Art HL

Isabelle Roberge Exhibition

Isabelle Roberge Exhibition

Curatorial Rationale

My body of work focuses on the reaction I have toward the environment and the ways in which humans impact the world. What I have created thus far, with symbolic meaning is based on my prior knowledge and my educational growth in my environmental science class, which has left a large impact on my life. I am very interested in environmental systems and societies and I try to convey this in my pieces. When I travelled to Haiti I saw with my own eyes how the poverty affects the way we treat the environment. Most of my work features shape and colors yet it symbolizes something much deeper and darker in how we humans need to change the way we live otherwise we will continue to destroy the earth.

Jean-Michael Basquiat was a Haitian American painter who creates significant, storytelling work in an abstract style. I have been inspired by how he displayed his feelings and thought procesies. There is a similar connection within our work, in which our images may not be easily understood at first glance, leaving individual interpretations up to the viewer. His abstract style and the connection to his culture signifies a meaningful connection in his work. For my curatorial exhibit, I have decided to place my pieces in an order that would help the viewer recognize what I appreciate about our environment starting with the sun. Then moving into the effects that humans have on the environment. I also place artwork of similar significance next to one another. My teapot drawing is next to my tea bag sculpture.

Nine of my eleven pieces are created with different materials relating to my theme of our natural world and how the many different environmental systems and societies that are a result of the depletion of our planet. For my piece “Acid Rain” I chose to use liquid watercolor to mimic the effects of real acid rain. By using black India ink, enabled me to depict the burning of coal. I used torn paper in the piece to add to the chaos of coal burning industries. I was inspired by my environmental class to create a piece about how destructive the burning of coal is after we did a unit on Co2 emissions.

To further explore my environment of living on Cape Cod, I researched Sailors Valentines. My Sailors Valentine is made of used teabags which relates to the reason why I made the piece. How tea is a much better recourse to drinking coffee. Just using tea bags and a hot glue gun it adds to the raw fact that tea uses less water than coffee. I was inspired by living on Cape Cod and learning about Sailors Valentines and how I could relate what I appreciate and what is better for water conservation.

The “Hamsa” piece was created using oil which is a medium that is very solid and not easily mixable by including linseed oil. I didn’t want this piece to have blending features; I wanted the hamsa to be representational for the viewer. The ability to view and understand the evil eye and how it protects wildlife. However, the background is blended because this was not the focus of the piece. My intention was to make the focus the evil eye and how our number one priority as humans should be to conserve earth’s resources. I blended the background simply by using a paper towel to forcibly mélange the vibrant colors. The viewer should recognize the evil eye as the focal point of the whole Hamsa.

As the viewer is walking through the exhibition I hope they make the connection that the circular display is meant to represent the shape of the world. My exhibition is in a circular form with my “Sailors Valentine” in the center, because that piece represents my love for my home and the world. The pieces along the outer circle exemplify how we treat our earth and our disconnect to its future.

Kaitlyn Smith, IB Art HL

Kaitlyn Smith Exhibition

Kaitlyn Smith Exhibition

Curatorial Rationale

Throughout my body of work the concepts of femininity, beauty and strength are explored. I wanted to illustrate a more diverse idea of beauty through my pieces, stepping outside of western societal beauty standards to show a more holistic grouping of people. I also wanted to illustrate the connection between femininity and culture, exploring a melding of modern subjects portrayed in different period typical styles along with looking at where women fit into our modern society. To illustrate this I use a strong color pallet, expressing bold themes with the bold hues. My pieces all have harsh, fierce expressions upon their faces and, apart from La Rabbia Della Venere, are looking straight at the viewer. This is to show unwavering strength and to challenge the petite and dainty archetype that has been created for women.

As a woman, I felt that it was important to depict the strength through femininity and also exemplify the sense of self-confidence. I found inspiration in the artist Anna Razumovskaya, a contemporary artist that paints colorful portraits of women dancing.  I wanted to emulate the movement and the sense of beauty that her subjects display in my own works. I was also highly inspired by the Harlem Renaissance. This movement gave way to pieces with vibrant colors along with realistically portraying the world in which the artists existed. Though I haven’t faced discrimination in the way that these artists have, the fight for equality still exists. In the way that the artists from the Harlem Renaissance communicated the strength of their communities, and the culture that was cultivated, I strove to show the strength, beauty and perseverance that exist in all women.

My pieces are a grouping of different mediums and techniques. I have used charcoal, photography, egg tempera, oil paints, acrylic, watercolor, paper and ink to create my pieces, along with using techniques such as paper cutting and printing. There are pieces in which the mediums that have been used are significant to further the message of the pieces. For example, La Rabbia della Venere is based off of renaissance art, and has been painted in egg tempera-a common medium for the time. This is to further accentuate this mélange of modern and classical. I have also placed gold throughout half of my pieces to show the worth and importance that I place upon my subjects, along with adding a sense of royalty. Where’s my Head? is an interesting piece to note as it is more of a social commentary. At first it seems like another triptych of beautiful women, however the meaning is far more than that. As the head is separated from the body the viewer is supposed to understand that sometimes beauty, if attained for superficial reasons, can separate a person from who they really are. It shows the darker side of my theme and how beauty can be needed to fit into society and not for the self.

I chose to display my work on display panels, not in a typical liner fashion. The display panel is meant to grab the attention of the viewer walking by. Rather than being placed on the wall, where they might have blended in, I wanted each piece to have its own unique impact on the viewer. This is to make the connection between the subjects and the confidence that they are displaying to the exhibit itself. Pieces such as La Rabbia della Venere and A Nude are inspired by well-known fine art pieces. As both show connections to Roman and Renaissance art, I believe that a gallery-style exhibit will help communicate this feel to the audience.

My hope is that viewers feel empowered by my pieces. They are to find a certain respect in the self-assuredness that my pieces represent. As they walk through the gallery, with the women looking at them straight on, they are supposed to comprehend and appreciate the beauty and confidence that the subjects of my pieces exude.

Amanda Sullivan, IB Art HL

Amanda Sullivan Exhibition

Amanda Sullivan Exhibition

Curatorial Rationale

My body of work examines the beauty of a moment; the harmonious relationships that exist within the natural world. This theme developed spontaneously as I am inherently drawn to the beauty and tranquility of life. It’s this attraction towards the natural world that magnifies my concern for its preservation. While my theme was not intentional, it’s fitting as it has implications that cohere to aspects of my day-to-day life. My artwork has a tendency to be deeply emotive and usually pays homage to its subject matter. Through involvement in my school’s environmental club, outing club, and classes like biology, my passion for nature is always growing. Aside from my love of nature, I’m constantly surrounded by the people that I love. My loved ones inspire profound emotions and feelings of gratitude within me.

My work is heavily influenced by artists Charmaine Olivia, Tomasz Rut, Kathy Klein, and Frida Kahlo. Much of these artists’ work differs from my own in that they are realistic portraits. Because I wanted to highlight the simplicity of the natural world, I tended to stray away from including portraits in my exhibition. However, Girl with Bird was inspired by a portrait photograph I found online that so beautifully captured the organic relationship between humans and animals I wish to express that I felt compelled to recreate it and include it in my exhibition. Likewise, portrait photography, as used in A Familiar Laugh and Friend, allowed me to capture the beauty of a single moment in a manner that’s strikingly organic.

Personally, I was inspired by the fluidity of Olivia’s abstract paintings and the way they seem to mimic the flow of life. Rut’s use of space and form in creating his nude portraits prompted me to think of how these elements could better convey my message of simplicity in my own work, particularly in Affinity and Peace of Mind. Both Kahlo and Olivia alike embellish their portraits with details inspired by nature, like plants, animals, and insects. This is an element I’ve adopted and used in the few portraits I did choose to include in my exhibition (A Familiar Laugh and Friend). This allows me to portray them to an audience in the way they are seen from my perspective. Kathy Klein’s work is comprised of natural elements. Her mandalas made from all natural materials and the impermanence of her work underlines themes of tranquility and simplicity that I wanted to convey in my own work. To do this, I made sure to use natural mediums like Klein in a majority of my pieces (like dried flowers in A Familiar Laugh and Friend, beans and twigs in Let Love Grow, and egg tempera in Peace of Mind). I believe that the inspiration I have drawn from Kahlo is most notable and plays the largest role in my exhibition. Learning about her as an artist has helped me see how different aspects of her life inspire and appear in her work. As someone with an incredibly eventful life, her distinct and dynamic emotions are always evident in her art. This is something that I hope comes across in my own work as well.

In my exhibition, I will display my pieces in order of those that present a more archaic and simplistic view of the relationship between humans and the natural world to those that that are more personal and reflective of a more modern relationship, but one that is still simple and natural. My intention is for this to evoke feelings of peace, comfort, and familiarity in the viewer as they progress through the exhibit. The first pieces that I will present, Peace of Mind and Affinity, best underline the very basic relationship between humans and nature that I wish to promote. Following this, I’ll include Orchid and Allure of Nature to highlight the stark beauty and mystique of the natural world. Lastly, I’ll include A Familiar Laugh and Friend. The intention behind displaying my work in this manner is to encourage a more conservative and hence balanced relationship between humans and nature in a way that will feel achievable to the audience by the end of the exhibition.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

 

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: