The Faculty Art Exhibit that took place at Auburn University of Montgomery last week was, in one word, disappointing. When I hear the world “exhibit”, I think of a large room filled with breathtaking art, but this exhibit met neither of those qualities for me. As I entered the small, white room in Goodwyn Hall, I saw only ten pieces of art. Even worse, of those ten, I found only four to really catch my eye. Not only that, but the room seemed to be quickly put together, and the pieces just strewn about on the walls and pedestals.
There were a few things about the room that could’ve easily been changed to make the exhibit a bit more professional and eye-catching. Instead of having to navigate your way through the exhibit with a mere piece of paper numbering the pieces one through ten, plaques beneath each piece would’ve been nice. As most artists know, one of the key elements in art exhibits is placement. The piece entitled Help! By Greg Brown definitely seemed to be the star of this exhibit, yet it was hidden behind the wall when you walk in, rather than placed for immediate attention.
As stated before, Help! seemed to draw everyone in the room’s attention. The abstract feel of the piece made everyone fawn over it. As I glanced across the room, I saw the word Help in big letters and thought nothing else of it. As I began to wonder what the big deal was, I took a few steps closer. Upon closer review, I began to understand everyone’s infatuation. The background was made of pictures filled with pain and anguish. The people in the pictures seemed to be either screaming for help literally or begging for it with their eyes. After a minute, I found it hard to continue to look at.
As my time in the exhibit went on, I found that the pieces that the other viewers throughout the room seemed disappointed with were the ones that drew me in. Cold Water 1 and Cold Water 2 by Heidi Lingamfelter seemed, at first sight, to be bland and computer generated. However, I found myself not able to pull my eyes from them. The pieces seemed to be playing on the water and how it reflects the sky. The collagraph really helped with aspect of water and how it ripples, while the acrylic looked exactly like the sky would on a cloudy day. Some other understated pieces from the exhibit were the Dependence pieces by Will Fenn. They were little pictures of nature (pine cones, leaves, and flowers) that were transparent through pieces of glass. They didn’t seem to catch many a glance, except from me. I found myself wondering how they were made, what they represented, and who the maker was as a person.
Although the exhibit was a bit less than I’d hoped, it was worth the visit to see the pieces that did interest me. I’ve found myself already searching for the date of the next big exhibit.