News desk | ILLINOIS
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – An annual exhibition at the Krannert Art Museum will present the work of graduates of the School of Art and Design.
The BFA School of Art and Design exhibition will feature the work of students in art history, art education, graphic design, industrial design, new media, painting, in photography, sculpture and the art studio. In addition to work at KAM, students who graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Studio Arts will view their work at the Bloc Gallery in the School of Art and Design.
The exhibit opens May 7, with a reception from 4-6 p.m., and runs through May 15.
Kathleen Culligan, an industrial design student, has a large family and loves to cook. She has created shared cookbooks with family and friends, and her main project is an app called Clove, which she describes as similar to a digital cookbook. The app is a way to digitally preserve traditions and cultures by allowing users to digitize recipes – ensuring the longevity of old handwritten recipes – and share them on social media, along with photos and comments, he said. she declared.
“It bridges the gap between cross-generational cooking and recipe sharing,” Culligan said.
In the Interdisciplinary Industrial Design program, she focuses on digital user experience, working with new technologies and the human-centered design process – “talking to the user, knowing the needs and the challenge of creating a fun new design around it. I like the problem solving of it all. It’s really great to come up with a solution and see it implemented,” she said.
For his senior design studio project, industrial design student Ronald Gonzales designed a behind-the-ear hearing aid that is accessible to seniors. Its design includes a handheld remote to change volume and other hearing aid settings without having to reach out and adjust it behind the ear. The remote also allows people who aren’t comfortable around others knowing they’re using a hearing aid to be unobtrusive by changing its settings, he said. Larger buttons on the hearing aid allow users to easily adjust the device itself.
Gonzales said his research informed him of the social-emotional effects of hearing loss and he wanted to address common issues people have with hearing aids so they are more likely to wear them. He designed prototypes to find a shape that was both comfortable and attractive, using colors that blended with different skin tones to make the hearing aid less noticeable.
Graphic design student Ashley Jung’s family is originally from South Korea. Growing up in Canada, Jung said she often translated product labels on grocery store shelves for her mother. This experience led her to take an interest in exploring graphic design as a universal language to facilitate the identification of a product, even if one does not understand the writing on a label.
Jung designed a culture-related project – packaging and branding for a traditional Korean tea line that showcases the craftsmanship and art of tea making.
“Tea is part of many medicinal and herbal practices in East Asian culture,” Jung said. “If I was sick or tired, my mother would always make me tea. It’s inspired by a feeling of nostalgia.
Its tea brand’s tea bottle labels, tea caddy, information card and website design use bright colors and a traditional pattern found in Korean temples and palaces. Jung has created labels for plum, ginseng and barley teas, which she says are common in South Korea.
“I was able to develop a deeper appreciation for my culture,” she says.
Painting student Rachael Menke said she loves the physical side of making large-scale paintings. She is interested in the representation of people who are not historically represented in paintings. She has six large-scale portraits in the exhibition, depicting local members of the queer community in the style of elite-class Old Master portraits.
Menke said his portraits included objects surrounding the subjects in their homes. The paintings also feature collage elements – Menke has attached objects to some of the paintings, including a bandana and jewelry. In addition to oil paint, she used tattoo ink as tattoos are important in the queer community.
Menke said she views her portraits as a collaborative process and a way to emphasize that her subjects are not afraid to be themselves and are more than the moment she painted. She takes up the entire canvas with each portrait, the subjects’ heads reaching the top of the canvas and their feet at the very bottom.
Brendan O’Shaughnessy has degrees in sculpture and natural resources and environmental sciences, and his art reflects his interest in ecology.
O’Shaughnessy turned to sculpture and fiber art because he finds it visually interesting, especially its textures. He said his large, soft, colorful sculptures reflect the ecology of organisms such as bacteria and corals.
His work in the exhibition is a large sculptural garment for two, made of pom poms and quilting and inspired by a scientific paper he read about how intimate partners share similar microbiomes. He said he cultured bacterial swabs of himself and his partner and used the colors and patterns they formed in his sculpture.
“I’m really excited about this piece because I was able to take a bit of scientific knowledge and turn it into a work of art. Scientific papers in journals can be inaccessible and somewhat sterile. The way they are communicated can exclude a lot of people. I use sculpture as a way to improve science communication,” O’Shaughnessy said.
A second piece he has in the exhibit is a mix of soft sculpture, latch hook and beads, inspired by mold growth.