Student gallery highlights reflective artistic mediums

Andrew Shermoen

“In, Around, and Between” is the newest senior showcase art gallery featuring commissioned art from a senior student in the art department. Christina Garcia, who is a studio art major, is the featured student and her gallery opened on Jan 16 on the first floor of the Art Building. “Being a studio art major lets me try out every medium, which is what I love,” Garcia said, eyeing her artwork in the gallery. “The title of the show ‘In, Around, and Between’ plays with the idea of using many different mediums.” Around six different mediums make up Garcia’s show, these include drawing, painting, photography, and even a quilt is featured.

The most noticeable piece in the gallery is “Constant Change.” A large collection of rigid squares made of reflective paper line a long wall before splintering off into branches reaching towards a large window and the floor. As the line of squares begins to stretch and change direction, so do the shapes, transforming into elongated rectangles. The branching of the originally rigid piece is meant to symbolize Garcia’s growth during her time at Washburn. “You have to roll with the punches sometimes. It’s about seeing the world around  you and going along with what is handed to you and doing the best with what you’ve got,” Garcia says. Not only did Garcia go through a change in major, but her time as an art student has seen her adapt several different mediums and strengthen many different skills. Thus the branching resembles her tendency to reach out and try new things that all stem from one place, art. The reflective pieces of paper making up the piece also, of course, reflect Garcia. This makes the artwork a self-portrait, which is a common theme in Garcia’s work.

“The only figures in my work are myself, the pieces are very introspective,” Garcia said. A photo collection named “In Plain View” hangs on the top floor that uses a unique optical trick. “There are two figures in the photos and they are both me. The interactions between the two are casual, and the piece is about being alone. “Isolation can be good and bad, this conflict between being okay with your loneliness and also being sad at your isolation. A lot of these works have to do with emotion. Initially, ‘In, Around, and Between’ was a testament to how humans, despite all their emotions, can still communicate in, around, and between all of those things. It’s fascinating to me. The gallery is about weaving around all of these emotions and that human beings are so complex.”

Garcia’s work is introspective and varied, using multiple mediums to capture her variety of interests from elephants, anatomy, nature, psychology, and isolation. “In, Around, and Between” is on display until Wednesday, Jan 27. Garcia’s gallery talk is 12 pm on Jan 25th at the Art Building.