By Becky St. Clair
The faculty of the department of visual arts at Pacific Union College invites the community to the opening reception of their 2019 faculty art show in the Rasmussen Art Gallery on the PUC campus in Angwin. The reception begins at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 16, and is free and open to the public. The art will be available for viewing through March 17.
“Faculty in visual arts constantly push themselves to stay relevant within their fields and create work relative to their disciplines,” explains Rajeev Sigamoney, department chair and associate professor of film and television production. “Art is meant to be shared with others, and the process of putting one’s work out there for others to see takes vulnerability, honesty, and bravery. This is something we challenge our students to pursue in their academic development, so it is our privilege to engage in the same practices as faculty.”
Faculty with art in this year’s show are: Amy Cronk (mixed media); Cheryl Daley (ceramics); Jayme de la Torre (sculptural assemblage); Brian Kyle (photography); Milbert Mariano (design); Bob Pappas (ceramics); Cliff Rusch (photography); Tom Turner (watercolors).
Here are some thoughts from some of the faculty in the show, reflecting on what they do and why they do it.
Brian Kyle, Assistant Professor of Visual Arts
One of the things I enjoy most about art-making is the challenge of finding innovative ways to communicate ideas and the constant need for creative problem-solving throughout the process. When faced with challenges I have found that many times an understanding of artistic disciplines outside of my current focus has offered options for innovative solutions to these problems. For example, while my most recent work is photographic, I’ve been able to integrate elements of graphic design, illustration, and printmaking into the creation of props that have become valuable communication tools within the photographs in the series. As a multidisciplinary artist, I feel it is important to continue gathering a wide variety of skills and knowledge within a variety of artistic (and non-artistic) disciplines. I am currently interested in continuing my exploration of motion & animation and finding ways to begin incorporating these disciplines into my other work.
Jaymie de la Torre, Visual Arts Assistant
I really love to work with found objects, particularly recycled materials or things that might be considered trash. I’m fascinated by the juxtaposition of things decaying and newly created, rejected and desired. I think they can be used to speak about our relationships to things that are different than us, what we consider us and them and how regardless of our feelings we are still intertwined.
Milbert Mariano, Professor of Graphic Design
As a graphic designer and professor since college, I’ve stuck with it because the field is so wide, varying, and changing that it’s constantly offering different challenges. I admire the designers Stefan Sagmeister and Paula Scher because of the constant adaptiveness and evolution of their craft. UX (User Experience) design has been intriguing me over the past several years, and the more I learn about it, the deeper and wider it gets. It’s the core of successful design and, actually, everything we do; it surrounds us whether we’re aware of it or not.
Amy Cronk, Assistant Professor of Fine Art
I’m showing encaustic paintings inspired by some photos I took of beached sea nettle jellyfish this summer on my walks in Bodega Bay. My work is influenced by biology in all aspects and often combines nature with anatomy in some form. I love how encaustic painting (a medium that combines beeswax and damar resin) creates an aesthetic that so beautifully mimics the textures and feel of both of these influences. This series conceptually depicts a conversation with the creative process that an artist might have while wrestling with their imagery and medium.