This past Wednesday, March 13, an exciting new post-baccalaureate art exhibition opened in the Dreitzer Gallery. Titled “Visceral Reflections,” the exhibit features four artists and a variety of art mediums. The four featured artists are Brianna Howard, Kelly Mangan, Pavol Roskovensky and Noelle Ventura. Each artist explored different themes, often drawing on their own backgrounds to help influence their work. At both entrances to the gallery there is a table with a black binder on it which contains information on each artist, the themes within their work, and their artistic process.

When entering the gallery, Noelle Ventura’s sculpture work is the first thing on display. The work is made out of vinyl fabric, tape and ceramic. The sculpture “Occupancy” is installed in multiple parts along the walls and a centerpiece rises out of the floor. The black vinyl fabric twists, turns, folds in on itself and juts out of the wall toward the viewer. The stark whiteness of the wall further contrasts with the sculpture. Fixed among the sculptures on the wall are small ceramics. These bright ceramics are meant to “engage in dialogue with [the] soft sculpture, examining the density of objects and the impact of gravity.” 

Kelly Mangan’s work centers on childhood and memory which she portrays through a series of paintings and one ceramic work. The paintings have a deep and dark color scheme and the memories depicted within them loom through a shadowy past. Mangan said the paintings “depict an upbringing of unabashed joy, acute moments of anger, and intense fears, all told from my adult perspective and colored by knowledge and trauma accumulated throughout these formative years.” Each painting is meant to capture a single moment and the accompanying emotional feeling it invokes. 

Brianna Howards’ work is a series of prints and paintings that focus on texture and form. Howard utilizes a variety of materials such acrylic, caulk, insulation foam and spackling paste. The works’ unique physicality makes them very interesting to look at. “Ambrosia,” in particular, highlights these qualities. Made of caulk and acrylic on panel, the combination of the caulk’s thick texture with the pink and purple color scheme draws in the eye. Howard said that the goal of her pieces is to “intentionally explore a spectrum that oscillates between profound beauty and daring grotesqueness, that speaks to the complexity of my own experiences.”  

Pavol Roskovensky also draws on his childhood as inspiration for his work, specifically his experience immigrating to the United States from Czechoslovakia as this severely impacted his identity. He specifically highlights his work “Two Triangles” using acrylic on canvas. “Two Triangles” consists of two partially deconstructed canvases placed side by side. The wispy threads of each canvas are conjoined together into a thick grey braid that rests between the two canvases. Peeking through the inside of the canvases are two bright yellow triangles. Of “Two Triangles” Roskovensky writes that “the unraveling threads symbolize both a rupture from the past and the challenge of building anew, while the raw canvas represents a boundless potential.” 

The works discussed in this piece are only a small sample of all the art pieces featured in “Visceral Reflections,” the exhibit is open until Sunday, April 7 so be sure to stop by!