A visit to the Fine Art Senior Studios

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Tuesday, February 20th, 2018

PCA&D’s five Fine Art seniors, Thomas White, Leah Walt, Seres Hofundur, Samantha Ferrizzi, and Seth Crider,  offered a peak into their Senior Studios as they work on their senior thesis, the culminating project of their BFA degree here at Pennsylvania College of Art & Design. Their works areas varied as they are interesting, and all will be shown to the public at PCA&D’s Senior Show and Celebration Friday May 4.

Thomas White’s thesis incorporates a vatiety of materials that are both time sensitive and stable, to create his works. Exploring themes of permanency, childhood and innocence, he manipulates concrete, paint and text to create an integrated surface. He sometimes paints surfaces to make them appear softer, which he finds therapeutic. Thomas would eventually like to attend graduate school for an interdisciplinary MFA, but first he’d like to work outside an institution to experience and grow as an artist.

Leah Walt’s thesis focuses on her experiences, allowing her subconscious to influence her work. Her thesis ranges from a series of smaller “meditations” or studies to larger paintings. Featured prominently in her work is a figurine purchased in Asia by her great-grandmother, that Leah uses in her works to depict the dualation of struggles and overcoming them, to symbolize that good and bad coexist together. Leah has a few exhibitions in the works for the summer after graduation, and hopes to teach eventually.

In addition, Thomas and Leah are working to form an arts cooperative, a shared space where they and other artists can create, support and critique each other. They are hopeful that other members of the class will participate as well. Thomas said, “We have a unique situation with this group. We enjoy each other and learn a lot. You can’t simply rely on yourself.”

Seres Hofunder is focusing her senior thesis on folklore and exploring why people around the world tell stories about beasts. She’s creating beasts from the mythology of several world traditions including a Leshy, a Slavic tickle monster, a Sigbin, a Philippine beast which sucks blood through its shadow, and the Cockatrice, a European monster with a deadly glance. After graduation, Seres plans to move to New Jersey and build up a portfolio. She plans to  complete some residencies while exploring the world of folklore in her art.

Samantha Ferrizzi’s senior thesis is a series of functional sofas and chairs from reclaimed material. Sammy, who is inspired by weathered material, builds and upholsters her pieces, combining traditions of embroidering, sewing and furniture making to create pieces that explore weather and natural processes. After graduation, she plans to continue making one of a kind upholstered furniture, as her art practice.

Seth Crider’s senior thesis is a series of drawings derived from one video- a news video from the York Daily Record of a murder on a city street in his hometown of York. In his graphite drawings, Seth is focusing not on the crime itself, but on the viewer/spectator, including the reporter and the viewers. He is interested in how the observer processes various layers of infiormation. Seth has been accepted into the Master of Science in Data Analytics and Visualization Program at Pratt, which will allow him to blend his interests in art and science.