Student Art Alliance holds first juried art show at Section 708 in Andersen Library
Senior Elle Benway won the coveted “Best in Show” prize for her Plexiglas piece titled “Cowboy.” She said her decision for a painting was simply based on pleasing herself and her audience.
“I simply thought, ‘What do people want to see? What do I want to see? and I thought … cowboy,’” Benway said. “Not the majestic cowboys most people associate the icon with, but a gangly, tired, old cowboy with years of experience and the start of a stooped back.”
The juried art show was sponsored by the Student Art Alliance. A juried art show is simply an art show that is only displayed for a temporary period.
Artists submitted pieces to be judged by a panel. The best artists were then selected to have their art on display in the Section 708 Gallery.
SAA President and senior Allison Timmins said the show was juried by a panel of students in the SAA. Eight student artists had their work featured in the gallery.
“The panel [decided] whether or not the piece [was] suitable for the show,” Timmins said. “Once displayed, voting for which piece would receive the ‘Best in Show’ title, along with first and second place, was open to the public.”
After the public voted, Benway’s “Cowboy” was selected for the “Best in Show” award.
“It’s a very American piece, which is interesting because I know that over the past six years or so, Elle has done extensive international traveling,” Timmins said.
Benway’s piece was made with acrylic paint on Plexiglas, which she said is a difficult process to master. On Plexiglass, the image needs to be painted backwards.
“I started with the details, filled in the line drawing with shades, tints, and colors, continuously flipped over the glass to make sure it looked correct and then did the background and covered all the previous work,” Benway said.
Benway said although inspiration is huge in the art department, she didn’t have any particular inspiration for “Cowboy.”
Other students who entered used various means to create their artwork. Timmins said there are paintings, digital and traditional prints, ceramic sculpture, photography, drawings and a handmade book featured in the show.
Besides “Best in Show,” first and second place awards were also given. First place went to Timmins for her piece, “Portrait of a Stranger.” Second place went to Alyssa Miles for her work, “Blistering Forestry.”
The 13 art pieces, including the winning pieces, will be on display in the Section 708 Gallery until March 28.
As for the name Section 708, 708 is the Dewey Decimal Classification for “galleries, museums [and] private collections,” according to the Andersen Library blog.