Eight graduating master of fine arts students at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will present their art in the Ackland Art Museum’s “New Currents in Contemporary Art: MFA 2012” exhibition starting April 13.
On view until May 13, the various media display the culmination of two years of graduate study by featured artists Lee Delegard, Ashley Florence, Cora Lim, Chris Musina, Jason E. Osborne, Neill Prewitt, Jonathan Sherrill and Seoun Som.
A free and public opening preview reception will be held 6 p.m.-8 p.m. April 12.
Delegard, a native of Edina, Minn., uses sculptures made from everyday materials to install environments that explore inherent tensions in society. Items such as bandsaw boxes, laundry baskets and surveyor’s string are brought together in her papier-mâché pieces and used to place familiar objects into unfamiliar juxtapositions.
Florence, of Charlottesville, Va., uses photography to raise issues of human existence, intimacy, domesticity, isolation and motherhood. Her work presents familiar forms and domestic materials in jarring and sometimes violent ways.
Lim, of South Pasadena, Calif., explores ideas of absence and presence, function and form and prefabricated and custom-built through her multimedia installation. She extends a partial invitation to share her world by creating a nonfunctioning display of her studio space and asks viewers to consider what she describes as the “in-between quality.”
Musina, of Tampa, Fla., draws from a wide array of inspirations, including history paintings, folklore, scientific illustration and museum dioramas. Throughout his work, animals appear as representations of the human experience, drawing attention to nature as a product of culture.
Osborne, of Durham, questions the boundaries between high and low art by combining materials – such as linen, dropcloths, wooden supports and pipe cleaners – that serve both functions in his paintings. He also uses the pieces to observe peculiarities of the art world.
Prewitt, of Raleigh, represents his reflection on his self-described preconceptions of and fascination with the “other” in his installation. It is perpetuated by a popular periodical, as well as his proposal to regularly reexamine “what sustains us and what restrains us.”
Sherrill, of Greenville, S.C., turns to his preoccupation with the potential for art to be recycled and transient. He uses found materials and self-described “failed paintings” to consider the ways in which painting might become a communal effort.
Som, a native of Adelaide, South Australia, who also possesses strong ties to Cambodia and the United States, investigates the manifestations of cultural identity in what he describes as “an increasingly heterogeneous world” through his installation and video work.
This exhibition and all related programming are made possible by the William Hayes Ackland Trust, the UNC department of art and friends and members of the Ackland Art Museum.
Ackland Art Museum contact: Emily Bowles, (919) 843-3675,