When neurons share messages in the body in a burst of electricity, they achieve “action potential.”
Ohio Wesleyan University’s graduating Fine Arts majors are using the phrase as the title of their senior show, using “Action Potential” to describe their four years as OWU students and their future promise as artists.
The eight-student exhibition will be on display from April 9 through May 7 at Ohio Wesleyan’s Richard M. Ross Art Museum, 60 S. Sandusky St., Delaware. Featuring works juried by OWU Fine Arts faculty, the show will open with a free community reception from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Saturday, April 9, at the museum. Two Delaware Countians are included.
The exhibition title was suggested by graduating senior Colin Hiester of Delaware, a triple-major in Fine Arts, Neuroscience, and Psychology.
“I made the connection that we all have the similar potential to do action by passing along our own messages,” Hiester said, “which, similar to the brain, can propagate and have a far larger impact than simply from one person to the next.”
Students taking part in this year’s senior show are:
- Olivia Anderson of Toledo, Ohio. She is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art, concentrating in painting and ceramics, with a minor in Theatre. “I use art to seek comfort in the seemingly unfamiliar,” Anderson said. “The Americana pop art of Wayne Thiebaud and the jazz-influenced abstraction of Stuart Davis drive my aesthetics. These vibrant inspirations are harnessed in tandem with found materials to generate my works.” After graduation, Anderson plans to spend the summer working with The Arts Commission in Toledo and, she hopes, join the Toledo School for the Arts in the fall.
- Jack Beyer of Oakwood, Ohio. He is pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art Education with a multi-age education minor, which prepares him to teach K-12. His art focuses on painting and ceramics. “My artwork reflects my childhood spent making little clay figures with my siblings and friends because then and still now when I make art, I want it to bring me joy,” Beyer said. “Life can get very glum very fast if you don’t seek to find fun in what you do and make yourself and those around you smile. In making humorous, weird, and whimsical art, I am able to do just that.”
- Sarah Bunch of Tulsa, Oklahoma. She is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art with a concentration in photography and graphic design. She also is minoring in Botany. “Storytelling has always been a passion of mine,” Bunch said. “Everything from the way the story is told and who is telling it can influence how others perceive it, which in response affects the story itself. This is one of the reasons I was drawn to art, and photography in particular.” After graduation, she plans to continue working as a content creator and social media manager for a small business in Tulsa and launch her own studio.
- Pascal Fraire of Chicago, Illinois. He is pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art, concentrating in painting and graphic design, with a minor in Business Marketing. “I work in a mix of abstract painting as well as digital and film photography,” Fraire said. “I focus on the human form, creating shapes that seem like figures in my abstract works and creating images that are slightly hazy and distorted in my realistic works. The distortion is an attempt to capture what the memory of a dream feels like, not quite in focus, but with objects that are still recognizable.” In the fall, he plans to participate in Ohio Wesleyan’s New York Arts Program, which includes living and working in New York City.
- Colin Hiester, Delaware, whose Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art includes a concentration in drawing. “I work primarily in charcoal because I am swept away by the intense tone shifts from black to white, and how there are an infinite number of shades in between, and how there are an infinite number of ways to express those shades,” Hiester said. “My work centers around the human form. Our ability to detect subtle details in tone, posture, or expression is something inherent to the human race.” After graduation, he hopes to attend medical school.
- Mukami Mboche of Nairobi, Kenya. She is pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art, with a concentration in painting and photography. “In my paintings, I try to capture moments with my friends and family that elicit these nostalgic feelings,” Mboche said. “[T]hrough photography, I tend to capture the beauty in random and unplanned moments in my daily life. … I’ve learned how to not only think outside the box but to not create a box entirely, and I hope to continue this growth for the rest of my life.” After graduation, she plans to spend some time in Kenya before moving to New York in the fall.
- Julia Mostow of Highwood, Illinois. She is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Classics and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art, with a concentration in painting. “I love paint and the process of painting,” Mostow said. “I think it has a unique subjectivity that gives a deeper look into reality that cannot be captured in the same way as a photograph. I may not be able to change everyone’s world, but that’s alright. Maybe there is something special that I can give to the world just by reflecting mine.” After graduation, Mostow plans to attend graduate school to study history and then become a teacher.
- Harley Murphy of Powell, Ohio. She is pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art, with a concentration in computer imaging and graphic design. “My art allows me to feel what I need to feel and work through all of the chaos that is in my mind,” Murphy said. “It allows me to make sense of my thoughts and emotions without the expectation of having a solution. … I hope that through my art, you will be able to see my journey. Not just my artistic journey, but the journey to becoming who I am today.” In time, she hopes to run her own art business.
During the academic year, the Ross is open Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The museum is handicap-accessible and admission is always free. Call (740) 368-3606 or visit owu.edu/ross for more information.
Created in 1864, Ohio Wesleyan’s Department of Fine Arts was one of America’s first college art departments. Today, it offers both Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) and Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.) degrees. Learn more about the department, its majors and minors, and its faculty at owu.edu/finearts.