Student Select 2021, an exhibition featuring artwork created by 29 SUNY Cortland students, runs through Friday, May 21, in the Dowd Gallery of the Dowd Fine Arts Center.
“I was impressed by the diversity of media, range of concepts, and modes of expression displayed in the submissions — all created during the physically and emotionally challenging COVID-era,” said Gary Sczerbaniewicz, the professional artist invited to be this year's juror by the student-run Art Exhibition Association, which organized and sponsored the exhibition.
This year’s exhibition featured a Virtual Opening Reception and Awards Ceremony via Webex on Thursday, May 6.
Gallery hours, in Dowd Center located on the corner of Graham Avenue and Prospect Terrace, are from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays; and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursdays. Walk-ins are welcome. Individuals also may schedule a visit.
The exhibition will remain accessible on graduation day, May 15, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Student Select 2021 follows a gap year, when in 2020 the exhibition took a virtual form titled “Art from Isolation” due to a campus closure as the result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A practicing artist and educator based in Buffalo, NY, Sczerbaniewicz’s work was featured earlier this year in a solo exhibition at the Dowd Gallery.
On May 4, Sczerbaniewicz selected more than 70 works from 29 artists representing animation, ceramics, drawing, painting, photography, fibers, graphic design and video.
After careful consideration, the guest juror chose three students as winners of the Student Select 2021 exhibition. An Honorable Mention also was selected.
“A portion of the selected works referenced the contemporary interface between traditional forms of studio practice and the impact of the digital — yielding an engaging viewing experience that perhaps mirrors our cultural fascination with this very relationship,” Sczerbaniewicz commented on the awarded projects.
“Their subject matters ranged from a playfully constructed narrative choreography to the more sinister implications of our societal need for security and its seemingly inevitable consequences — chief among these the loss of our individual privacies,” he said. “Also resonant was the articulation of the disorienting physical/psychological state between waking and dreaming forms of consciousness known as the hypnagogic; which, in addition to being a condition that many individuals grapple with — seems an apt metaphor for the alarming times in which we currently live; on the threshold between varying ontological states.”
The students whose works also were featured in this year's Student Select 2021 exhibition are:
The annual showcase offers students an opportunity to learn about formal artwork presentation while sharing their creations with the audience in a professional environment, Sczerbaniewicz said.
“The two-week exhibition demonstrates that creativity thrives even under tenuous circumstances and confirms that learning can be delivered effectively in alternative formats,” he said.
Across campus, students come together from other majors and concentrations to show tangible outcomes not only from art and design-focused classes but also from students’ own personal creative activity outside of classrooms, Sczerbaniewicz said.
“The diverse selection of art produced by art majors, non-traditional students and non-art majors alike demonstrates that their imagination, acquired skills and enthusiasm honors the quality and dedication of the faculty at SUNY Cortland and the strength of the student community,” he said.
Exhibition tours at the gallery are available for campus community members or a group of five or fewer people. Visitors are expected to follow safety protocols to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
For more information, to inquire about an appointment, tour or additional images, contact Prihodova at 607-753-4216. Visit the Dowd Gallery website for details about exhibiting artists, other programs, safety protocols or on-line booking.