By Anthony Riley
The Hite Art Institute held the opening reception for its fall 2021 BFA thesis exhibition on Thursday in the Schneider Hall gallery from 5-7. this year’s arts, in various mixed media ranging from traditional painting, mixed media, sculpture and audiovisual. Each artist’s work of art focused on specific themes and motifs.
Focusing on themes of identity, image, femininity, societal expectations and bodily expectations, AnatÃ©a Cahill juxtaposed food and product advertising with the artist’s imagery. itself which highlights the themes and expectations embedded in society that criticize and control the female body. Marketing materials for various products such as Jell-O, Lucky cigarettes and lingerie, containing rhetoric of strict diets, slim figures, and standards of what is considered attractive, contrast directly with the confident imagery of the artist presenting a body type that has been deemed “undesirable” by society’s expectations.
Plaster, clay and acrylic contrast with moss and blackberry juice in the works of Andrea Mackin which present the artist’s journey into femininity and inner turmoil dealing with themes of life, fertility and purpose. Mackin’s works take the expression âfruit of your bellyâ literally, using blackberries to flesh out his skeletal pieces and convey the cycle of life and rebirth.
Working with wood, metal, and portraiture, Bethany Figueroa’s works address the artist’s experiences with religion, the hypocrisy of the Catholic Church, and themes of war and bloodshed. These pieces are intriguing augmentations of the portrait, altering imagery of Mother Mary and Pope Pius XII using images of barbed wire, Nazism, graffiti, and darts.
Michael McDonald’s digital illustrations paint striking images of wildfires, wilderness, and cities across California and the West Coast.
Other works by artists on display include Lou Conley, Samuel Lawson, and John Ricketts. The exhibition will be on view until January 28, 2022 in the Schneider Hall gallery.
Photos by Anthony Riley // The Cardinal of Louisville