Opening Thursday, January 16 in Lake Tahoe Community College’s Haldan Gallery is a group exhibition that highlights the Master of Fine Arts Program at the University of Nevada, Reno. Eight students, currently enrolled in the graduate program, are displaying works ranging from traditional painting to interdisciplinary installation art.
In addition to focusing attention on the individual talent and vision of these eight artists, this exhibition also showcases the relatively new graduate program at UNR. Whereas most graduate programs in the past have divided students along traditional fields of technical discipline, UNR’s graduate program takes an interdisciplinary and multimedia approach. This creates an environment which encourages artists to think and experiment in a variety of media and techniques as they develop their artistic vision.
Painters, Bahareh Shahrabi Farahani and Mahsan Ghazianzad, present works that both in their own distinct styles, describe imaginary space. Each uses design elements and painterly techniques to create tension within the two-dimensional space.
Photographers, Priscilla B. Varner and T. Vasquez, explore their medium in distinctly different ways. Through portraiture, Varner brings to us an awareness of often unseen and unheard spouses of military personnel. Vasquez, conversely, tells the stories of women through the everyday objects that unite them.
Rory Laven, Claire Stephens, and Colby Stephens create site-specific installation pieces that address social, political, or environmental issues. In addition to stirring debate or self-reflection on the part of the viewer, these installation pieces also command a stunning visual presence.
Benjamin C. Poynter uses digital media to create virtual experiences that take the viewer out of their original environment and invite them to participate in a virtual reality.
A reception for the artists will be held in the Haldan Gallery on Thursday, January 16 from 5-7p.m. An informal artists’ talk will begin at 5:30pm and the public is welcome. The show will be on exhibit through March 14, 2014.