Art, by definition, involves getting creative.
And creativity is exactly what the Beacon studio art department mustered this month after the COVID-19 pandemic shifted the college into remote learning mode and scuttled plans for a traditional celebration of the Seventh Annual Juried Student Exhibition.
The exhibit opened to the public March 2. It was scheduled to culminate April 2 with a reception and awards ceremony, but the pandemic put the kibosh on that.
With a traditional, in-person winner reveal out of the question, studio arts faculty unveiled the winners in a recording to ensure this year’s talented crop of student artists were not wholly shortchanged in receiving their due.
“While it saddens us that we could not share this occasion in person, we wanted to continue the tradition of announcing winners and pinning awards next to each selected work,” said Dustin Boise, an assistant professor of art, who oversees the Kristin Michelle Mason Art Gallery at Beacon College in Leesburg, Fla.
The student exhibition featured paintings, drawings, and sculpture from more than 30 students. Students of all classifications and various majors participated.
During the academic year, studio arts faculty (Russ Bellamy, Boise, and Kim Watters) collect student artworks and slate pieces for the exhibition based on the artist’s creative risk-taking and mastery of skill.
Faculty later prepare their selections — without the including the name of the artist or title of the work — for professional display, curate and install the works in the Mason Art Gallery later to be judged by someone outside the Beacon community.
This year’s juror, Tyrus Clutter is an associate professor at the College of Central Florida and professional artist who has a multi-media practice. He appraised the entries and assigned awards for: Best of Show; Best Two-Dimensional; Best Three-Dimensional; and five Honorable Mentions.
After the judging, studio arts faculty added title cards featuring the artist’s name and title of the artwork next to the piece.
Of this year’s competition, Clutter said, “in the end, judging this show was a pleasant experience. Many more pieces were just edged out of receiving awards, and another judge may easily have chosen different works. With a limit of awards, narrowing down is always difficult. Beacon College students should be proud of the work they are creating and encouraged to keep striving to that next level within their art.”
The Kristin Michelle Mason Art Gallery and Studio Arts Department hopes to reschedule a reception for this exhibition this fall.
In the meantime, here are this year’s Juried Student Exhibition winners:
Best of Show: Elana Karol, “Merry-go-round”
Best Two-Dimensional: Kyle Richardson, “The Colorful Swish”
Best Three-Dimensional: Connor Cremo, “Wooden Boxes”
Honorable Mention: Emily Marra, “Still Life No. 1”
Honorable Mention: Emily Marra, “Emerald Waters”
Honorable Mention: Elana Karol, “Ammonidea”
Honorable Mention: Marcos Allen, “Tree”
Honorable Mention: Jon Ritter, “The Well Taken Pathway”
To view the recording of the announcement of the winners, click here: https://youtu.be/qvzh2LQCvVo
To read the juror statement, click here: Art Show Juror Statement
To view all the honored works, visit: https://www.flickr.com/gp/beacon_college/t26Ad1