The Oberlin Review

Classic Craftsmanship Reimagined in Permutable

Michelle Polyak and Abby Hawkins

May 10, 2013

A common element visible in College seniors Lake Buckley, Lily Dithrich and Lenora Rigoni’s Senior Studio and Thesis show Permutable, shown at FAVA Gallery on May 3, was the presence of craftsmanship. Buckley, Dithrich and Rigoni work in various media ranging from woodworking to installation, from drawing to embroidery. Each artist begins her creative process with objects that already exist. In her artist statement, Buckley writes, “In developing process oriented works, I have come to reflect on the multidimensional quality that location holds in our memories.” The artist contributed multimedia embroidery work as well as large-scale furniture installation pieces to the show; in “Incorporating Self,” Buckle...

The Mechanics of Self-Creation, Abstraction, and Feedback in AUTOPOIESIS

Taia Kwinter

May 3, 2013

College seniors Thomas Huston and Ryan Caruso created an elegant amalgamation of work in their senior studio show AUTOPOIESIS: an exhibition of electronic abstractions. The show took place in Hales Gymnasium, creating a subtle and compatible backdrop for the work with the aged, retro atmosphere of the old gymnasium. The vastness and airy quality of the room, as well as the artworks’ free-standing placement throughout the space, created an atmosphere somewhat like the Park Avenue Army in New York City. The visitor was able to move through the space comfortably and uninhibitedly, able to view the art from all angles and distances. Autopoiesis as defined by the Web Dictionary of Cybernetics and Systems, is “the proces...

Beyond Paint Values Process Over Product

Michelle Polyak, Staff Writer

May 3, 2013

The focus on the process of creating a product of art was the central theme of Becca Kahn-Bloch’s and Samuel Wechsler’s Senior Studio and Thesis show titled Beyond Paint, shown at FAVA gallery on April 26. As one of the smallest Senior Studio shows, the duo collaboratively organized their work so that it was complementary. Kahn-Bloch works in series. Her primary artistic practice is printmaking, though it was difficult at first to distinguish how her pieces incorporated this medium. Her color palette of opaque shades of grey, purple and beige stayed constant throughout her collection, as did her use of masking tape. Kahn-Bloch prints on Plexiglas and vellum paper, creating ephemeral landscape sites interrupted b...

Cooling the Babylon Matrix Meditates on Consumption, Entertainment

Taia Kwinter, Staff Writer

May 3, 2013

A busy weekend of Senior Studio shows closed with College senior Lily Gottschalk’s Cooling the Babylon Matrix, a remarkable feat of installation, performance, sculpture and multimedia art. Utilizing many of the facilities in Philips Gym, Gottschalk created a labyrinth of spectacle, consumption and interrogation. The event opened at midnight on Saturday, just as Solarity’s Awaken the Wild event closed for the night. Although this planning was unintentional, the eccentric energy of Solarity’s attendees, as well as the number and level of inebriated students, played well into Gottschalk’s purpose and subject matter. At the entrance to the gym two women stood behind a greeting table, which was neatly arranged with...

Senior Studio’s Surface a Cohesive Visual Dialogue

Oliver Levine, Staff Writer

April 12, 2013

SURFACE, one of the larger Senior Studio and Thesis shows, opened in last Friday in Fisher Gallery. Featuring the work of College seniors Lydia Boehm, Clarissa Fortier and Francis Lee, SURFACE is a collection of large-scale paintings and studies.  Their canvases almost overwhelmingly saturated with color, all three artists use interrelated visual languages to show the viewer their vastly different objectives. Despite variances in subject matter, Lee, Boehm and Fortier all share a clear agreement on the common thread among their works: their surfaces. Lee’s pulsating paintings of articles of clothing and fabric instill feelings of warmth and security, beneath which lies an inexplicable darkness. The surfaces of t...

Restructured Senior Studio Fosters Direct Student Involvement

Audrey Saunders, Staff Writer

April 5, 2013

As graduation looms nearer and upperclassmen belatedly begin to work on the culmination of their Oberlin careers — the “capstone” — they can look forward to the stimulating distraction of an April and early May chockfull of Senior Studio exhibitions. April in particular, due to the larger-than-usual number of students who are participating in Senior Studio this academic year, promises to be particularly busy for the artists — and for us interested patrons. The students of Senior Studio have taken on the difficult task of coordinating the exhibition of their capstones in collaboration with their peers. Scheduling conflicts in regard to when each show would be held were inevitable with so many voices and needs...

Seniors Nominated for AICUO Art Award

Taia Kwinter

November 2, 2012

Are you an art major? Lily Gottschalk: I’m a Visual Art major, with a concentration in cinema studies. I do a lot of video. Matthew Gallagher: Yeah, Studio Art. Unofficial honorary TIMARA major, I do a lot of TIMARA stuff. Tell me a bit about the projects that you’ve done here at Oberlin. LG: I really don’t paint and draw for my main body of work. I’ve always done mostly video and stuff like that. Trying to incorporate video into installations, and that has kind of led me to performance art, which is really what I’ve been doing. I started moving into more kinetic sculptures, stuff like that, and [there] is a costume [I wore] that is loosely based on the virgin Mary, kind of like her antithesis but al...

Senior Studio Duo Turn One Room into Two Collections

Senior Studio Duo Turn One Room into Two Collections

April 20, 2012

It is not unusual for artists to alter familiar spaces dramatically as part of their projects, but rarely is this transformation as extreme as last week’s Senior Studio Show, The Collection, which appropriately fell on Friday the 13th. The Collection represented the collaboration of College seniors Chase Stone and Gregory Wikstrom, and the two integrated their aesthetic vocabularies so fluidly that distinguishing between their contributions was impossible. Indeed, Stone commented, “I found that G...

Senior Studio Photography Show, These are Just my Memories

Georgia Horn, Arts Editor

April 6, 2012

Memories are complicated, their clarity tinged by rosy tones or obscured by dark smudges. In this space of recollection, the worst is exaggerated and the best forgotten, and our mind frames our past without regard to objective truth — if there even is such a thing. But yet, in spite of the impossibility of it, our preservational instinct remains strong, compelling us to record our daily thoughts in journals, save ticket stubs in scrapbooks and write songs to remember. We have a fascination with pictures, and it is with this fascination that Review ThisWeek! editor Zoe Strassman’s senior studio show, These are Just my Memories, resonates. And although this review will be published three weeks after the March 1...

Breath Between Us Proves Fresh Take with Delicate Intimacy

Kara Brooks, Arts Editor

March 9, 2012

In 1963 Betty Friedan provided the roots for the Second Wave Feminist Movement with her groundbreaking book The Feminine Mystique. In it, she drew back the curtain on society’s false, limited conception of the role of the female as one that is exclusively domestic. Years later, perhaps the means of feminine mystique can be redefined more literally: the charisma, charm or allure of a woman. The work presented by College senior Alison Karasyk in her Senior Studio show played off of this modern conception of femininity. There was no “problem.” Karasyk’s Breath Between Us brought a courageously effeminate feel to Fisher Gallery on March 2 for the first of this year’s Senior Studio shows. Soft colors, along...

“Imprinted Legacies” Takes on Family History

“Imprinted Legacies” Takes on Family History

April 29, 2011

“They used to call me chop-suey in Hawaii whenever I went there with my family,” said College senior Claire Stepherson, explaining the first part of her artist statement. “My skin would get really dark, and my hair would be really light.” Hidden in the back room of the FAVA Gallery, students and faculty alike acclaimed Stepherson’s exploration of her identity with praise and awe. Her media of choice — molasses, hair pomades and shoe polish— were particularly impressive and related...

Once Removed Plays With Identity, Memory, Jars of Condoms

Alex La Ferla, Staff Writer

April 22, 2011

Last Friday, Fischer Gallery played host to Once Removed, a show by College seniors Emma Louise Rodriguez and Rose Hermalin that turned out to be yet another solid Senior Studio partnership. On its surface, the show appeared to display the artists’ radically divergent approaches; however, the works actually shared significant underpinnings of history and preservation, providing visitors with two distinct perspectives on the common theme of memory. Focusing on self-exploration and collective memory, Rodriguez’s work traced her family lineage through a wide array of technically challenging methods. Using photos, letters and history provided by her grandfather as stand-alone pieces as well as source material, Rod...

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