Treehouses and Photos: Student Art on Display

Fall term’s student art is now on exhibit.The gallery in the G.W. lobby is filled with work that gives the community a glimpse of the creativity and hours of painstaking work that make PA art classes so unique. Passers-by could find themselves captivated by a provocative sculpture or drawn into the intricate world of an architecture student’s whimsical tree houses. A few of the remarkable works on display include a double tree house by Scott Silverstein ’04, a floral photograph by Johanna Marmolejos ’04, a panorama by Meredith Wing ’04, and a sculptural installation by Amanda Senatore ’04. Scott Silverstein’s tree house is an interesting creation. The tree house is one of the first pieces seen upon walking into the student art gallery. The design is based on two trees from the Rabbit Pond vicinity, which are represented in the model by two thick tree branches. Small sections of wood are perfectly overlapped to panel the sides of the house, while window panes of clear plastic are integrated into the walls. A staircase made of sheet metal and flat wooden pieces spirals down from the main building to meet the wooden platform upon which the design stands. Meanwhile, a bridge of corded wood and wire links the house to a smaller building in another “tree,” a single-roomed edifice with large windows. Right beside Silverstein’s model, an attractive basket filled with colorful pears stands on a stark white base. Beautifully crafted by Amanda Senatore ’04, this piece displays three pears, one crimson, one golden-yellow, and one emerald-green, in a basket made of strips of brown wood. This piece is especially unique because the entire piece is crafted of wood, even the pears. Constructed of two wooden shapes, the pears are created by fitting the planks together at a 90-degree angle. Finally, the pears are finished with oil paints. The coloration of the work is spectacular: the red of one pear gradually lightens to orange, which transfers to the golden pear beside it, which is tinted with a green similar to the emerald one at its side. Across the gallery stands a wall of stark black-and-white photographs. Against the background of black, white, and gray tones, a single color picture of a pale yellow flower stands out. Taken by Johanna Marmolejos ’04, this lovely photograph is a nostalgic reminder of the summer, a season that seems so long ago. The image’s subject, a flower that would have been brilliant in full-color, is dimmed to a pale yellow hue with a slightly pink center. Pastel jade blades of grass frame the blossom against the gray-brown and white backdrop. The foreground colors, mixed with those of the background, make for a beautiful image of yearning for what is now gone, of a longing for times past to which all can relate. Beyond the wall of photos, and through the white doors that lead into the art wing, is a scene built by Meredith Wing ’04, entitled “Safe Arbor.” Made of moss, bark, and twigs, this piece is a cool combination of multiple mediums including paint, wood, and pieces of natural materials. It depicts an abandoned haunt, a work of art reminiscent of times past and a desertion of childhood, according to Wing. Three trees made of lichen-covered branches and Spanish moss stand on olive-green plinths. A sky trolley hangs loosely beside one tree, linked to another by a thin rope. Meanwhile, a deserted swing dangles from the branches of the remaining tree, one of its ropes covered in a tangle of moss. All of this is set against a painted background of a brown, green, and blue, a forest scene that comes from Wing’s memories of childhood. These are just a few of the captivating creations on display in G.W. The show spans the range of PA art classes and student artists. Other mediums of art not mentioned previously include pottery, paintings, charcoal sketches, and works that are combinations of multiple mediums. However, the gallery is always changing so the pieces mentioned above may not remain there for much longer. So, if you get a chance, check out the west wing of G.W.; it is well worth the visit.