Part Four: Paintings and drawings surprise the audience with unpredicted compositions and artists’ perspectives
Editor’s Note: The review of the TCC (Tulsa Community College) Student Art Exhibition 2023 is a four-part series. Several program entries were profiled. This is the fourth review of the series.
TCC Student Art Exhibition 2023 reflects the world and culture of the younger generation of Americans. They are in search of new ideas and design decisions in art. In Part Four of the Reporter’s Notebook review, readers are invited to observe two-dimensional art displayed at the exhibition, such as drawings and paintings.
The “Still-life” colorful acrylic painting by Molly Jones has an innovative composition because it combines traditional still-life (inanimate) objects with the unusual: glass vases, a tea kettle, an animal skull, a desk lamp, and a table figurine are wrapped with different color fabrics, a chain, and a rope. On top of the table setting, a wooden structure, possibly, a chair or an easel is placed under the angle creating movement. Someone may call the composition of the painting “balanced chaos.” The strong contrast of dark and light colors reminds me of Tenebrism Caravaggio, an Italian painter of the Renaissance era.
Emmy Pollak revolutionized the still-life genre by combining painting and drawing into one piece. She used charcoal, white conte, and acrylic paint in her artwork “Pearl.” First, Pollak drew a realistic still-life setting on paper; a viewer can recognize a bottle of Coke, a burning candle, a purse, and other items on the table. Then, she painted an abstract design containing circles, dots, arrows, and lines on top of the original drawing. The still life is done in black, white, and grey tones, but the bold design decision brought a dynamic to its composition.
“Self-portrait” by Kiero Petross tells a story about a young man. He sits at the restaurant’s table and eats corn. His winter hat and warm sweater suggest that the man was outside in cold weather, and now he is inside a cozy diner thinking about, maybe, his difficult job or other life struggles, such as homework or coming tests in class, etc. The young man looks tired, his sight is blurred. The artist depicts the subtlest emotions of the character. “Self-portrait” is not just Petross’s portrait, it is a meditation about the future of the entire generation of young Americans.
Kerah Ward drew a gigantic portrait named “Cool.” It is charcoal on paper. The drawing delivers a strong message about the portrayed female character; she wears a leather-like jacket, jeans, a prickly metal necklace, and combat-style boots; her sight and pose are confident as if she would be saying, “I know what I am doing.” “Cool” is a sort of declaration of independence, a statement, that the new generation is eager to express.
Ward did a remarkable job with all details in the drawing, as well as did Petross. Both artists are good at drawing facial emotions, figures, folds of clothing, lights and shadows, and perspectives.
TCC Student Art Exhibition 2023 runs until the end of May at the Student Commons area of the Metro Campus.