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MFA Illustration as Visual Essay Thesis Projects

May 3 - 17, 2014
Class of 2014 Visual Essay


Tue, May 13; 6:00 - 8:00pm

School of Visual Arts presents “MFA Illustration as Visual Essay Thesis Projects,” an exhibition of thesis projects by graduating MFA Illustration as Visual Essay students. Curated by faculty member David Sandlin, the exhibition is on view May 3 through 17 at the SVA Chelsea Gallery, 601 West 26th Street, 15th floor, New York City.

Te Chao’s intricate brush and ink drawings are inspired by traditional Chinese activities with obscure origins practiced by women.

Claudia Griesbach-Martucci presents five portraits of famous female literary heroines from the novels The House of Mirth, Tess of the d’Urbervilles, Anna Karenina, Madame Bovary and Lolita. According to Griesbach-Martucci, “These heroines share the similar sentiment of being ‘stifled’ by their monochromatic environments. Their beauty presents them with alternative situations for happier, yet less socially accepted lives. The universe, however, has a way of controlling the uncontrollable; and their happiness is short lived.”

Katie Hwang’s editorial illustrations address contemporary depictions of women’s social roles in a male-centric society.

In Jai Kamat’s digital illustration series Wanderers, subjects explore unique environments in pursuit of an ambiguous goal.

James Kerigan’s graphic story Doppelgänger chronicles a man whose life is turned upside down when his own anger is taken from him and his doppelgänger is set on the loose. 

Aram Kim presents illustrations for three children’s books utilizing different methods of execution in order to further develop her ability to tell stories through images.

Jordan Lysenko presents a series of digital paintings that highlight unique environments of the past, present and future seen by an imaginary world traveler.

Harshad Marathe illustrates the history of the Chitpavan Konkanastha Brahmin community from India, addressing ancient mythic and historical theories of origin, their meteoric rise to power and prestige in medieval times and their equally dramatic fall from prominence. It also covers the role they played during the early modern era, the age of Indian independence.

Luisa Possas illustrates a story of a boy who, while cleaning his room at the request of his mother, discovers he has the power to transform animals. This discovery complicates his ability to complete his chore.

Ada Price’s illustrated narrative Wandering Retreats tells the story of an island situated between two halves of a city, where two men reflect on upon lost love and friendship.

Doug Salati’s A Tall Tale tells the story of a lad who grows (and grows and grows!) while finding his place in the world.

Ashley Seil Smith illustrates fragments of overheard conversations collected over five years of living in Harlem. Overheard in Harlem presents a palette and execution as colorful as the neighborhood that inspired it

Cun Shi’s Confluence: Lost in the Yongle is a series of illustrations using ink, watercolor and digital media that juxtapose elements from traditional Asian art and contemporary Western culture.   

Moonsub Shin explores the unpredictable in the everyday and chance events that can bring about new opportunities or relationships through a pen-and-digital-media-illustrated comic.

Laura Tibaquira illustrates common Spanish and English expressions in an effort to challenge her ability to express concepts through imagery, such as would be required in editorial illustrations.

Ben Wheatley’s Little Red Moon chronicles in ink the story of Sputnik-1, the first artificial Earth satellite, launched by the Soviet Union in October of 1957. 

Kevin Whipple illustrates the end of the world in 12 alternate apocalyptic scenarios.

Annie Won presents two children’s books, Granny’s Super Duper Cupcake and The Dragon Circus, which she has both written and illustrated.

Daniel Zender’s painting series Light Terrors reflects on personal narratives, scientific studies and the subconscious to explore the scary stuff that happens during sleep.

“The melancholy life of an orphan giant, humorous end-of-the-world scenarios, Freudian nightmares, the complications of contemporary multiracial Harlem, the changing roles of males and females in the modern dating game and the joys of quiet Sundays with extended family: These are just a few of the subjects dealt with in exquisite oil paintings, elegant ink drawings, charming children’s books and engaging graphic novels in this show by the MFA Illustration as Visual Essay Class of 2014,” Sandlin says.

MFA Illustration as Visual Essay at SVA is designed to maximize students’ opportunities as figurative artists, from the conventional gallery wall to the full range of digital, print and online media. The program fuses the development of creative thinking with technical and communication skills. Additional focus is placed on best practices in navigating the visual art marketplace while empowering students to choose making art as a way of life.

MFA Illustration as Visual Essay Thesis Projects
Free and open to the public
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