September 7, 2017 | Katherine Adams
For fifth-year senior graphic design major Tiffany Ferris, trying to envision what kind of art she’d be creating when she transferred to University of Houston-Clear Lake two years ago was nearly impossible because she couldn’t find any examples of student-created art on campus. That’s why she and senior art education major Jason Case decided to change things for incoming freshman or transfer art students. Together, they organized an exhibition to display art created by students in every art course offered at UHCL. The exhibition, entitled “UHCL Art Course Exhibition,” opened Aug. 21 and will run through Sept. 22 in the Arbor North Building, 2700 Bay Area Blvd., Houston.
“When I transferred into UHCL from San Jacinto Community College three years ago, I went looking around campus to see what kind of art students created here,” Ferris said. “When you see the art that’s displayed, you can tell it isn’t student-made art. I wanted to see examples of things I might be making in my classes, and I didn’t really see anything. So I decided that this year, new art students should be able to see what they’re going to be creating in their courses while they’re here.”
Ferris and Case are kicking off the fall semester with “UHCL Art Course Exhibition,” spotlighting visual representations of the art generated in every one of the 32 courses offered at the university. “The exhibition is very specific,” Ferris said. “As a transferee myself, I want to show new students everything they can do — for example, art from beginning ceramics as well as advanced ceramics. It’s a great way for new students to see what each class entails.”
Case hopes to graduate in spring 2018 with a bachelor’s degree in art and design with a certification to teach early childhood to 12th grade. He said that he co-curated this exhibition with Ferris to highlight a wide variety of artists along with their work, and to give others a peek at what UHCL had to offer. “I hope in some way this exhibition pushes students to analyze on a more critical level, even if it’s just one piece that catches their eye and captivates their mind for just a few moments,” he said. “I really hope it helps students find an interest in visual art and allow curiosity to lead them on the journey of creating art themselves.”
The exhibition features about 80 samples of work of all kinds submitted by more than 30 art students, both current and alumni. “The only stipulation we had for submissions to this show is that the artist had to have created their piece in a UHCL art class,” Ferris said.
This exhibition, she added, is a great way for new artists to show their work in a public forum.
She said it’s important for incoming art students to see all the variety in the courses because it’s important to becoming a well-rounded artist. Ferris, who also hopes to graduate next spring with a bachelor in art and design with a graphic-design concentration, said that art is her life. “I’m going to be a graphic designer, but I’m still interested in printmaking and ceramics and photography. When you take those classes, you understand the processes for so much more than just graphic design,” she said. “Art isn’t just drawing or painting. It’s so many different kinds of media.”
For more information on UHCL’s Art and Design program, visit www.uhcl.edu/human-sciences-humanities/departments/communication-studio-arts/art-design.