News Column

Cal State San Bernardino student art exhibition celebrates 44 years

June 9, 2014

By Wes Woods, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Calif.



June 09--Cal State San Bernardino is not the first place one thinks of when it comes to art, but for the 44th straight year the works created on and off campus by its students have been highlighted at the annual student art exhibition.

"CSUSB is known for nursing and business, but once you realize excellent artist/designers are coming out of CSUSB, you will have a different opinion after that. Our art department has passion and we help each other succeed," said Ricky Courtes, a 20-year-old computer science and graphic design major at the university.

The 44th annual student art exhibition is scheduled to open June 13 at the Robert and Frances Fullerton Museum of Art on the Cal State San Bernardino campus. The show is scheduled to conclude July 31.

Courtes is one of the approximately 50 artists featured in the show.

"This is a great opportunity for any artists to show their work and build their network," said Courtes.

Courtes entered a Yosemite poster he designed last year in a visual information design course using Adobe Illustrator and a second submission of a pencil/charcoal drawing of a "fearful horse lost in a misty place."

"We all probably can relate to this drawing, of how the concept of darkness can describe our fear, when we are hopeless and anxious about not finding light (happiness)," Courtes said.

Thomas McGovern, a photographer and Cal State San Bernardino professor who teaches in the art department, said the exhibition includes paintings, sculpture, photography, print making, glass art, ceramic art. installation art, graphic design work, metal working, woodworking and more.

"There's lots of opportunity for students to explore art-making mediums" in the exhibition, McGovern added.

In his 14 years of instructing art at the school, McGovern said the event has remained consistent in bringing out the best of young people.

"It's mostly young people learning their craft and learning how to express themselves," McGovern said. "They're working with content and form that's quite well done, interesting and thought-provoking."

Additionally, for the past 12 years there has been an outside juror to determine the winning entries because of the pressure on instructors in selecting a stand-out.

"We don't want to reject a kid because they're the first one in their family to go to school," McGovern said. "We're personal and protective of (the students). We like our kids a lot. It's like asking a parent to judge a show. So the good news is bringing in an outside professional juror."

Students are more appreciative of an outside juror selecting them as a prize-winner instead of an educator anyway, he added.

"If I select them, I get an 'Oh, that's nice.' When an outsider does, someone who has no reason to select them, they do so purely on merit. It's what we as professional artists have to do every day," he explained.

This year there will be about 50 exhibitions, down from 70 in previous years.

There will be a "rejection show" in the hallway of the art that didn't make the show selected by McGovern and other educators.

"You'll be able to wander through and see works that we think are worthwhile," McGovern said.

McGovern emphasized that whether selected for the exhibit or not, the goal is to champion the idea that art is incredibly important.

"It's one of the aspects that makes life a much more rich experience," McGovern said. "Art is an important way of learning about culture."

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(c)2014 the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin (Ontario, Calif.)

Visit the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin (Ontario, Calif.) at www.dailybulletin.com

Distributed by MCT Information Services


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Source: Inland Valley Daily Bulletin (CA)


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