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‘Built to Last’ art exhibit showcases senior pieces

This+piece+by+Shayne+Oseguera%2C+titled+Octopusish%2C+is+one+of+the+many+art+pieces+on+display+at+the+exhibit+%22Built+to+Last.%22
This piece by Shayne Oseguera, titled Octopusish, is one of the many art pieces on display at the exhibit

This piece by Shayne Oseguera, titled Octopusish, is one of the many art pieces on display at the exhibit "Built to Last."

Photos by Danny Dyer

Photos by Danny Dyer

This piece by Shayne Oseguera, titled Octopusish, is one of the many art pieces on display at the exhibit "Built to Last."

by Kayleigh Venne, Staff Writer

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San Diego State’s School of Art and Design students hosted a reception for the Built to Last exhibit on Nov. 16 in the Everett Gee Jackson and Flor y Canto galleries on campus.

From 4-7 p.m., students gathered in the galleries while enjoying wine, snacks and each other’s art in the senior showcase.

The group show was put on by friends who have been creating art together for about two years.

“A group of us became really close when we took a painting class together,” interdisciplinary studies senior Hannah Grimes said. “Over the years we have continued to hang out and have really respected each other’s artistic talent and decided to have a showing together, which was kind of a fun thing for us to do.”

Grimes had three textile self portraits on display throughout the galleries. The exhibit was curated by her friend and studio art major, Chelsey Magaoay Blair.

“I have this style of collage that I do,” Grimes said of her vibrant piece. “I twist strips of fabric and glue it on the canvas, or wood, or whatever palette I use. I wanted to do some different textile things, because textile is a medium that is usually discounted in the art world, especially because it is primarily female.”

Grimes said she wanted to create something that was a bit different from her talented friends’ paintings in the gallery. She cut up strips of colorful shirts in order to create her piece. She said she completes most of her work in intense 48 hour art binges.

“A lot of (my work) gets done in really long periods where inspiration strikes and I just have to roll with it,” Grimes said. “I actually had done this piece in another class and decided I was not super happy with it. Since it is a self portrait, it is very personal to how I see myself. So, every time I do one I kind of have to consider where I am in my life. Covering the old one was kind of therapeutic for me, just to be like, ‘This isn’t who I am anymore, this is the new version of myself in this new medium that is more my style.’”

Grimes’ self portrait represented the four elements through the colored strips of fabric. Another one of her pieces, “Mostly contained emotions,” exemplified personal feelings through jars full of various materials, such as wire, yarn or chalk.

There was no shortage of talent in the exhibit. Detailed paintings of faces, eyes, and succulents hung on the white walls. Octopus tentacles crafted out of recycled material were sprawled on the floor.

Studio art senior Chelsey Magaoay Blair curated the exhibit and had many of her own pieces on display as well.

Most of her pieces featured haunting, realistic paintings of eyes.

“The eye pieces are just me exploring the whole idea of anxiety, and how we have our own lenses to look at the world,” Blair said. “I view everything through my anxiety and have always grown up with the feeling that I was always anxious. Everyone would tell me it was all in my head.”

Blair said that she is currently fascinated with eyes, and her pieces are inspired by the fact that her younger self hated when people would stare at her.

“Now that I am an artist, people are staring at me all the time,” Blair said. “They are expecting me to talk about my work. They look at me and they look at my work and I don’t have those fears anymore, so a lot of my work explores that idea.”

Blair said that her pieces allow her to explore anxiety in a meditative way. In addition to eyes, she is inspired by bouquets of flowers as they represent congratulatory expression and sincerity. She also likes to give her pieces ironic titles.

“‘Built to Last’ was actually originally a temporary installation show that I had in mind,” Blair said. “It’s just like, why would it be titled ‘Built to Last’ when it is going to be taken down next week? I think those things are funny.”

Blair said that she aspires to have her own studio later in life featuring shows that are full pieces by her friends.

"Baejing" by Sean McDowell

The Built to Last exhibit run until Nov. 21.

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