You’re virtually here

Sarah Daentl, Then & Now, Intaglio.

Graduating art students share their work online

No worries if you can’t make it to campus to see the work of art students who graduated in May. The 12 graduates didn’t let the pandemic get in the way of the traditional biannual senior art exhibition.

The students are sharing their work in an online exhibit titled, “UW-La Crosse Senior Art Exhibition: Highly Improbable; a very unlikely situation, but not impossible.” It opened in early May and runs through Sunday, Nov. 15. Find it at: www.uwlax.edu/go/HighlyImprobable.

The students chose the name for their senior show, “Highly Improbable; a very unlikely situation, but not impossible,” in February — before they understood the full meaning it would take on. The artists say they began by determining that the creation of art is often highly improbable.

“Creating art is a vulnerable task and one that takes a lot of discipline, determination, and bravery,” they say in an opening statement to the online exhibition.

“Making art is not easy,” they continue. “The culture we live in worships tasteful forms of artistic expression, but does not encourage it entirely. To speak proudly about wanting to be an artist comes with a lot of criticism and inquiry. The pursuit of a degree in the fine arts is bold because the money may seem like a waste and the success of the artist is often doubted.”

Due to the pressure, negative feedback, and their own doubts, group members say they are unlikely to be where they are today. “We are the highly improbable,” they note.

This exhibit’s title soon became an apt description of the semester, or even year, group members say. “If you would have asked us four years ago where we would be today, a virtual gallery is not it. Finding the most bizarre ways to create art trapped in our homes is not where any of us pictured we would be.”

The artists note the unarguably highly, improbable situation. “Nevertheless, change is inevitable, and we believe that making and sharing art is an important way for humans to process life and its improbabilities,” they conclude.

 

The artists include:

• Rachel Alderton

• Ben Christensen

• Sarah Daentl

• Andrea Debauche

• Alydia Downs

• Connor Givens

• Sam Hinz

• Molly Korinek

• Rachel Shae Maxfield

• Isaiah David Ohman

• Alexia Sonnek

• Alexandria Wittmann

Deborah-Eve Lombard, an associate lecturer and the University Art Gallery director, says the students and faculty used their practice in art and creative problem-solving to adapt to the first-ever online exhibit on campus.

“One positive is that alumni, friends and supporters can participate in this event even if they can’t get to campus as was necessary in the past,” Lombard notes. The online exhibit may become a regular practice the future, she says.

Those viewing the exhibition are welcome to comment on the show via the online prompt.