One of the perks of being an artist is the ability to express reality in any manner you see fit. That’s just what Armstrong senior artists did at the fourth and final senior exhibit, Chronic Hyperreality.
Lydia Craddock, featured artist and leader of the show, said that the overarching theme was “the fusion of fiction and reality.”
The reception for the “Chronic Hyperreality” show was held at Ashmore Gallery April 18 to, largely, the same supportive crowd who appeared at each senior show so far.
Friends and family surrounded the six artists showing their capstone work: Megan Stucky, Allen Love, Fiona Johné, Lydia Ookami Craddock , Lisa Co, and Kayla Van Sice.
Stucky had a diverse collection of pieces, from photographs to paintings, but her most visually interesting piece was a sculpture of a hand. It was hooked up to a motor to rotate it, and there were two honeybees placed on the hand.
“A few bees died,” Stucky said in her artist’s talk. “Yes, these bees are real.”
Stucky’s theme of her work, mostly some form of self-portrait, was her personal rediscovery after an accident prevented her from being an athlete.
Allen Love, a graphic design major also known as Pando, presented different paintings of pandas. One of them depicted him as a young panda lost in the woods, one of his childhood memories from New York.
Interested in fashion and fabrics, Johné brought several prints and fashion sketches to show off her future plans. She said most of her work has some sort of pattern or design in it.
Craddock, a sculptor, presented stoneware and a sculpture of a dragon. All her pieces reflected her love of Japanese mythology, culture, and tradition.
“I grew up with anime,” Craddock said, “and I fell in love with the tradition.”
Co presented woodcut prints that seemed to embrace a natural theme, as each piece had humans interacting with animals. The woodcuts were all printed on Japanese paper.
Perhaps the artist who was closest to their theme was Van Sice. Each of her pieces had something to do with biology, from colored HPV cells to a painting of space.
All the artists presented skillful and creatively-done pieces. None of the pieces stood out as a show favorite, and only some artists had a cohesive theme. However, each piece was well-done and certainly a great addition to the artists’ portfolios. There weren’t any weak pieces to be seen. Some of the artists could have delved deeper into their theme – for example, it would have been interesting to see Stucky do a piece about her life prior to the accident that left her unable to keep swimming – but the pieces that were brought were more than good enough.
As with the shows before it, “Chronic Hyperreality” displayed great talent from the Armstrong senior artists. The overall theme played it a bit too safe, but the idea still ran strong throughout the pieces.