Colorful works of art with a unified theme but of different texture and utility attract the gaze of the restless studier or the fast walker late for class as they stand stagnant within the four-walled fish bowl display space.
The Student Art Gallery (SAG) is located in a unique glass room where student artwork is shown inside the Lydia M. Olson Library on the main floor.
Throughout the semester, the space transforms between four to five shows with different themes. Currently the space is full of pieces created for the Mixed Media show which has been up since Monday, Feb. 24 and will fill the gallery until March 13. The criteria
for the Mixed Media show was to
create a piece containing two or
The various show ideas are developed and curated by SAG Co-Director junior graphic design major Jalen Sims.
“I was super excited with the mixed media turn out, these are all very unique. So that was super nice to see and there was quite a bit of participation which I really enjoyed,” Sims said. “The water can is really funny to me because it’s just found objects spray painted gold—art can literally just be that.”
When developing the show setlist for the semester, Sims was inspired by past projects and personal design techniques he’s experimented with in the past.
“In August I was doing a lot of collage work—just cutting out a lot of magazines and then reassembling it how I wanted,” Sims said. “I got a liking to that process. I thought to incorporate a bunch of different mediums would be super cool and something fun to see, and I think people would have fun making that.”
The Mixed Media show features
artwork from all mediums, concentrations and is not limited to art and
“Something that a lot of people don’t understand is you don’t have to be an art major to submit to the SAG, we encourage everybody to submit art here as long as you’re a student,” Sims said.
The SAG is a great way for student artists to display their work outside of the art building, Sims said. Junior graphic design major Paul Santi tries to submit artwork to every SAG show.
Santi has two pieces in the gallery for the Mixed Media show, “Global Warming” and “Northern Lights.”
“Having the SAG in the library is a huge help because just walking through the library I see how many kids are actually there,” Santi said. “And even if they’re not going in to look you can see my pieces through the glass.”
Senior ceramics major Jessie Miller also sees the value in the SAG and often submits pieces of her ceramic work.
“I think that it’s amazing that we have the opportunity to submit to the SAG. A lot of students need that for their portfolio before they graduate and it’s a good representation of the Northern art students that is in a public place not just the art building,” Miller said. “So it’s cool to get awareness for the art that the students here are creating.”
The gallery shows change about every three weeks so there is always an opportunity to create new work based off of different themes. The process of creating a new piece of work can also be a skill building experience.
“For me it was pretty easy because ceramics is a good medium to incorporate other things with,” Miller said. “So I really just tried to think of things that I could do to make a funny sculpture and something that would kind of be silly and not too fancy for a gallery, but something that I would enjoy looking at later in my room.”
Students can create work solely for the exhibitions or they can submit pieces they’ve made for class projects, as long as they fit the theme and criteria for the different shows, which can be found on the SAG website.
“Within the art and design program the projects are all super unique and teach you different skills and you don’t have to be creating new work for the SAG, you can take a project you made from class and bring it here if it fits the show,” Sims said. “But I know a lot of people who create new work just for the SAG too so they can take the skills they learned in the art building and take them over here. I think there’s a lot of opportunity to have a creative outlet and express yourself how you want and also while learning new skills to use in the future too.”
To submit work to the exhibitions students must pay a $1 fee which goes back into the SAG. Each show is anonymously juried by a faculty member. The Mixed Media show was juried by Assistant Drawing and Painting Professor Taimur Cleary. All 23 pieces submitted are now in the show.
The SAG is also responsible for organizing Pop-Up art sales normally held at the Ore Dock Brewing Co. The next and final SAG Pop-Up show of the semester is from 8-10 p.m. on March 19 at the Ore Dock. To sell work there students must sign up in the art building office.
Submissions for the next show, Archives are open now until March 13. Students have the opportunity to create art based off of old archive photos which are available on the SAG website as well as the criteria. The Juror’s Choice Award winner will receive a $200 prize while the People’s Choice Award will receive a $100 prize.
Whether the art work provokes the viewer’s curiosity which is a personal goal of Santi’s or it engages humor—the hope of Miller, the SAG is available in aiding student artist’s self expression.