Student Artists Explore “The Human Conditional” in November Exhibit at Wilder Art Gallery

K. Isaac Kim '22, CrucifictionSaint Mary’s College art students are getting their work exhibited in a professional show thanks to the Lamorinda Arts Council and Wilder Gallery in Orinda. These students are part of the California GRID Art Club at SMC and have been energized by this opportunity to share their artwork with the larger community. The online exhibit featuring their work, titled The Human Conditional, has been called an “exploration of the relationship between the unknown and the re-inventor truth through subjective human belief systems.” 

Each student’s work focuses on themes varying from the romanticism of youth to human nature and connectivity. One of these artists, Carly Hodes ’21, utilizes satire “to explore the gender binary and how it shapes the self-perception of males within contemporary society.” All of these students have intriguing and insightful pathways of exploration and influence in their art.

“My pieces are very different both conceptually and visually,” said Hodes, an SMC senior and interdisciplinary artist. “My video piece was created right as the lockdown began in March and was very much a representation of the physical isolation that myself and many others were (and still are) experiencing. My painting, on the other hand, is a humorous critique of the blind privilege that white males tend to possess.” This is Hodes’ second time having her work professionally exhibited, her first being at the Laguna Art Museum in Laguna Beach, Calif.

Professor Laura Miller, faculty advisor of the GRID Art Club at SMC spoke to the importance of students having the opportunity to exhibit their work. "My students are each developing their artistic voice, honing their craft in multiple mediums, and defining themselves as the next generation of professional artists,” she said. “This exhibition is a thrilling opportunity for them to realize a collective vision, and they are so energized to share their work with an expanded audience." 

This was the first professional art exhibition for many students. “The process was an incredible learning experience,” said Miller,  “as students collaborated to create the curatorial vision and writing for the show, as well as curated and professionally documented their artworks for public display. This opportunity has supported their professional art practice in a multitude of ways, opening doors to continue exhibiting in the future.” 

The students are also “connecting with the Lamorinda community in a newfound way,” said Miller, “which gives them exposure while offering the community a glimpse into the artistic visions of the next generation of Contemporary Artists… As an educator and mentor, it was so exciting to work with the students to help position them in the professional art world, while witnessing them each establish their artistic personas and define their practices outside of the classroom.”

The virtual exhibit includes a video in which GRID students discuss their preferred mediums and the inspiration behind their featured work. The link for this video is on the Lamorinda Arts Council website, and on YouTube here

View the online exhibit here.