MFA Artists Invite the Public Into the Studio

October 15 2019
Artist: Kylie Millward Artist: Kylie Millward

"The skill of being able to present and discuss your creative practice and research with the public is a vital part of an arts education and an open studio event is the perfect way to help our students fine-tune those skills," explains Lewis J. Crawford, Assistant Professor of Art & Art History. 

"Every fall semester the faculty of the Department of Art & Art History ask our graduate students to conduct an open studio event. We invite the university community and public to tour our graduate studios, view the students’ artwork and research, as well as engage in direct criticism and dialogue about the work. It is a great opportunity for our graduate students to network with the larger Wasatch arts community, gallerists, and collectors." 

This week, seven MFA candidates in the department of  Art & Art History will invite the community to take a closer look at their indiviudal artistic processes in a tour of their campus studios. Visitors can explore the artists' diverse styles and also learn about the context, themes, and techniques underlying the final art works. 

MFA candidate Kylie Millward reveals, "This semester I am working on projects that serve a purpose of empowering females, specifically young girls. That includes writing and illustrating a children’s book, designing a board game, animating gifs and creating single-image illustrations. Some of my recent work shines a light on issues within religion, with the hopes of creating a dialogue to inspire change." 

For Hannah Nielsen, painting extends expression around the human experience. "I focus on oil painting as a medium to discuss internalized experiences. Currently my theme is centered around expressing self-doubt and anxiety as interactions with the body and self. I am also working to include elements of kinetic movement and audience interactivity in my pieces, though that, as everything, is a work in progress," Nielsen shares. 

Dana Hansen's scupltures mirror the mind's ability to alter personal reality: "I attempt to represent an accepted reality, the seen and the unseen.  By using alternate realities, digital processes and the basis of the digital reality manifested in our physical realm (the wireframe) I try to connect what we physically are and appear as to the unseen experiences, memories, and thoughts that churn over time."

It is clear that there is more to be discovered within each of the MFA artists' work.

The MFA open studios are a rare opportunity for artists, both within the visual arts and across the performing arts, to connect in person -- sharing process and challenges, revelations along the way, and the ultimate impact of one another's work. These occasions for dialogue enrich the experience outside of the classroom and punctuate the many hours of solitary practice. 

Come see the developing work of Etsuko Kato, Kylie Millward, Dana Hansen, Hannah Nielsen, Holly Nielsen, Bryce Billings, and Candace von Hoffman on view from 5-7 pm on Wednesday, October 16th in rooms 171, 343 and 364 in the Art building