Juried Exhibit provides student artists with professional criticism

The Lederer Gallery hosts a student-juried exhibit judged by a local artist each spring. This year’s entries boasted a huge variety in both medium and subject matter. Submissions were open to anyone, but juror Constance Mauro, a Rochester-based artist, selected artworks for display from the larger pool. The jury process also involves selecting three winners and three honorees.

“Several things I looked at were presentation, composition and degree of skill. The portraits were the hardest to judge due to the excellent quality of the work,” Mauro said in an email interview.

Mauro added that selecting the winning pieces is a complex process – an interaction between the work and the juror. “It’s almost as if they speak to you,” she said. A fair balance of mediums must be maintained while awarding the most deserving works.

Two-dimensional art was well-represented with works like “Transcendence” and “Sunset at the Lake.” Using only charcoal to create “Transcendence,” freshman Suma Hussien captures every detail in the face of a bearded man with piercing eyes. “Sunset at the Lake” by junior Jessica Kim, which took first prize, uses vivid colors and a serene background to complement a joyous portrait of two women in the foreground.

While there were fewer sculptural submissions, the medium made a strong showing with works like “Fish in the Sea” by senior Julia Andalora, where an eel and an angler fish create the silhouettes of two humans from their tail and lure, respectively. The fish are made of steel with pig intestine stretched over it to create a skin.

Director of galleries Cynthia Hawkins announced the winners and honorees at the juried exhibit opening on April 16. Following Kim’s “Sunset at the Lake,” junior Hannah Glaser’s “Michael and Tucker,” depicting a young boy dozing with his cat, won second prize. The third prize shifted from painting to jewelry. Senior Andrea Jerabek created a simple, beautiful design entitled “Leaf Necklace.”

The exhibit also featured a video showcasing “The Omeka Launch” from Bridget Kelly ’13. Omeka is a free web publishing tool that the art department is using to catalogue Geneseo’s large and varied collection of art. Kelly worked for over a year on getting the site launched before she graduated. In the video, Kelly talked about showing the Omeka website to a Malaysian woman who asked her what art is like in America.

Hawkins introduced the People’s Choice Award to let every student become a juror. The winner will be announced May 2. The exhibit will be open through May 6.