The University Art Gallery is delighted to present two honors thesis exhibitions: Kara Adams’ Down Yonder and Bailey Stevens’ The Obscured Finish Line: Once More the Fool.
With the warm photographs of Down Yonder, Kara Adams invites viewers into a deeply personal and intimate experience of rural Southern life, showing us “mothers and daughters and sisters and fathers and lovers, rather than characters.” Looking at Adams’ many small scale photographs in series on the wall, turning the pages of her photo albums, we are invited, for a moment, to join her family, and, in Adams’ words to “see in us, yourself.”
In The Obscured Finish Line: Once More the Fool, Bailey Stevens confronts the viewer with large scale, brightly colored paintings of young men and women caught in the revelry of party culture, using painting to “investigate the journey [she] and her peers have been on.” Isolated against their vivid backgrounds, these figures elicit a complex response from the viewer. They at once look foolish, joyful, and vulnerable, and seem to ask the viewers to identify and to choose. They present specific, recognizable portraits, but are also archetypal. In each painting Stevens represents an experience or personal position - inspired by tarot cards - that we all inhabit at different times in our lives, and that will repeat. In Stevens’s words, “We begin, we learn, we change, we start again. Using my paintings to represent the stages of a universal timeline, I encourage the self-reflection that can help teach us about ourselves and how to move forward.”
To protect the health of those on and off our campus, in-person visits to the exhibition are reserved for students, faculty, and staff of the University already on campus. To view slideshows of their thesis work, please follow the link below.