Trucks and cranes. Steel fencing, pipes and mounds of dirt. Construction workers wearing hardhats.
Not only can you find them all around Wright State’s Creative Arts Center, but you can also see them on the walls of the Robert and Elaine Stein Galleries in a new exhibition “Framework: Drawings and Prints of the CAC Construction.”
On display through Nov. 15 in the Stein Galleries, the exhibition features works by 39 students who documented the modernization project during the spring semester.
The students created their drawing and prints as part of advanced drawing and relief printmaking classes taught by Kim Vito, professor of art and co-head of printmaking.
In drawing classes, Vito said, she instructs students to approach thinking about the concept of drawing over a period of time and responding to what they observe.
The CAC construction site proved to be an ideal place for students to do this. The construction site constantly changed as workers brought in equipment and excavated the area, leaving gaping holes in the earth.
“The whole landscape changed and it became very intriguing,” Vito said.
The Creative Arts Center, home of Wright State’s performing and fine arts programs, is undergoing renovations and an expansion. The project includes renovating existing classrooms, studio spaces, labs and shared areas. The Stein Galleries will move into a new space, and the CAC will be expanded to include a new iconic, accessible entrance.
Students worked on the series of drawings and prints for eight weeks. Some pieces are abstract and open to interpretation while others capture life-like scenes and observations.
Although they’re all done in pencil, the drawings are varied. Some are quick sketches created in three to six hours; on other works students spent days observing and drawing, adding layer upon layer of marks as the construction site changed.
Vito challenged students to “think about the construction of their drawing itself, which relates to the construction of the subject matter.”
The majority of the relief prints are in black and white. Some are linocuts, others are woodblock prints.
“Deborah Kahn: Paintings and Drawings” also on display
Paintings and drawings by Washington, D.C., artist Deborah Kahn are also on display in the Stein Galleries through Oct. 4.
The exhibition features Kahn’s elegantly composed figurative abstractions.
“I believe that art, like emotion, contains coexisting contradictions,” Kahn said. “My paintings are an attempt to make this idea concrete. … Painting for me is a controlled connection to an inner world.”
Jeremy Long, associate professor of art, and Glen Cebulash, chair of the Department of Art and Art History, curated the exhibition.
Kahn received her B.F.A. from the Kansas City Art Institute and her M.F.A. from Yale University in 1978. She taught at the American University from 1989 through 2012.
Her work has been exhibited widely and in 2004 she received the prestigious John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Grant. She is a longstanding member of the Bowery Gallery in New York.
The exhibition is made possible with support by the Ohio Arts Council, friends and members of the Stein Galleries and the College of Liberal Arts.
Gallery hours are Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; Thursdays, 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; and Saturday and Sundays, noon-4 p.m.
All visitor parking areas on campus are free, and parking at the Creative Arts Center is unrestricted after 5 p.m. on Fridays and weekends. A dedicated parking space for galleries patrons is available during school hours.