Paintings, video pieces, sculptures and digital photos align the walls and floor space in the bottom galleries at the Weatherspoon museum. Six artists, Nickola Dudley, Matthew Hayes, Harriet Hoover, Branch Richter, Amy Stibich, and Clark Williamson, are all apart of the exhibition that presents their thesis work.
When I entered the first space, there were painting displayed by Branch Richter, which were small in size but contained a vast amount of imagery. Harriet Hoover compiled a collective grouping of work which focused on recycled objects, such as magazine clippings to form sculptural collage-like pieces. Hoover also had a digital print image which appeared to have detail on it, similar to her sculptures. Entering the next room, I was more visually captivating by the art that resided there. The sculptural pieces by Hoover and Richter needed artist statements and there were none to be found so I found myself puzzled and yearning for answers while walking around the gallery. Even though the installation and video pieces by Hayes and Williamson could have used artist statements as well, these works were much more visually affective for me personally. I have recently taken up an interest in performance art and one of Hayes’ pieces, “Baptism” inspired me with its execution through video and installation in the gallery. For four minutes, Hayes pours water onto his face while sitting in a bathtub, the performance is similar to “water boarding”, where the individual has a towel or cloth over their face as the water is being poured onto them; causing a horrifying suction noise and suffocating/claustrophobic feeling and atmosphere. There were other video installations in the room which included Clark Williamson’s interactive video piece called, “Searching Box”. This piece was by far my favorite in the entire exhibition due to its interaction and the video aspect that was found inside. Walking up to the piece, there are two rather large boxes that have tiny smaller boxes cut out. Once you lift each top of the box, there is a home video underneath for the viewer to see.
There were various other video installations in the space and callographs by Nickola Dudley which hung in vast size along the walls. I would have to say that my experience in the UNCG exhibition was half and half; I was expecting more from such a program with great facilities compared to our own. Reflecting on the exhibition and returning back to Guilford’s campus, I appreciated our artistic environment much more and now I’m even more excited to see what our artists present during our undergraduate thesis show this weekend.