Andrew Heisey, chairperson of the fine arts department and curator of the faculty art show, reflected on its substantial influence while standing in the midst of the alumni and faculty crafted pieces.
“I like to do something like this, where the faculty can exhibit their work and students can see, ‘Hey, professors can do the things they ask their students to do!’” said Heisey.
The room showcased alumni artwork on the far wall, with faculty artwork adorning the left and right walls, as well as the center of the room. Artwork ranged from photography and illustrations in books, to earthenware busts and elaborate paintings.
While multiple shows are presented every year, Heisey explained the time frame of this specialty presentation.
“I try to do a faculty show every two years,” he said, “The last time I did a faculty show it was one faculty [member] that showed their work.”
This year, a new approach was implemented. Multiple alumni, as well as, faculty members were represented in the show. Heisey used his perspective to introduce the transition.
“I hate graduation, graduation is the worst day of the year because I have to say goodbye to people, obviously graduation has to happen…” he said. “For me it was awesome because I got to have some of my students come back and talk about how things are going, what occupations they’re in… it’s neat to see the progression in their artwork.”
The importance of the shows goes back to demonstrating the talents of the faculty and encouraging the students to know that art careers come in different shapes and sizes, Heisey explained.
“So many people tell students there is no work in the arts, that’s a lie, because there’s a lot of work” he said. “Look at our world, it’s very visual… art is in just about every field, there’s some kind of art skills needed whether it’s business…designing…. So, it’s great to see these students and where they fit in.”
Certain pieces in the show hold a special significance. Heisey’s earthenware bust entitled, “Fuzzy” is a tribute to a former deceased faculty member, James D. Randolph, who impacted not only Heisey but the entire campus, he said.
“He passed away about two years ago, but he still has a big impact in many people, he had an impact for me… he’s been an inspiration for me and I’d like to honor him” Heisey said.
Heisey’s bust entitled, “Never Too Far Gone” symbolizes the beauty in the brokenness of the world, he explained.
“We’re all broken individuals… we’re not perfect, yet God uses these imperfect beings to do great things. This piece is much more beautiful because it exhibits the brokenness of the figure” Heisey said.
There were about hundred visitors on opening night, Monday, Jan. 28, including many alumni. Heisey plans on continuing the new format due to the success of this event.
Art brings out experience and passion in students and faculty. Heisey fervently explains how notable events like the Faculty Art Show are.
“What good is art if nobody sees it? What good is a poem if you never read it to anyone? What good is a song if no one can hear it?” he said. “It’s really important not only to make art, but give people an opportunity to see it.”