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'All my own': Studio art seniors display year of work in exhibitions

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UNC senior Isabel Schomburger poses for a portrait in front of her Honors Thesis Exhibition at Hanes Art Center on Wednesday, March 20, 2024. 

Exhibits all around town made from linocut prints, ceramic sculptures and a variety of other mediums explore themes of disenchantment, sports culture and modern interpretations of history.

Last summer, six students applied and obtained approval for their exhibition proposals to the Department of Art and Art History’s Senior Thesis Honors Program in Studio Art. These exhibitions will be rotating on display for the public through April 6 both on campus and around Chapel Hill-Carrboro.

Most recently, "You've Once Said" by Wang Yiming wrapped up its exhibition in February, and Timothy Joseph Anderson's "On Permeable Zones” finished earlier this month. 

"Most Improved Player"

In her thesis “Most Improved Player,” Isabel Schomburger drew from her identity as both an artist and club volleyball athlete to examine the culture of practice, repetition and labor in both art and sports. 

The installation is a group of textile multimedia works, using reclaimed sporting equipment such as secondhand jerseys, knee pads and a volleyball net. The materials came from various local sources, such as Schomburger’s own club volleyball team, Facebook Marketplace and other community members’ uniforms.

“It is important to the exhibition,” she said. “While it is personal work and it's born of my self reflection on my identity and doing both practices, it's about the greater experience of practice.”

“Most Improved Player” finished its display in the John and June Allcott Gallery last week.

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UNC senior Isabel Schomburger poses for a portrait in front of her Honors Thesis Exhibition at Hanes Art Center on Wednesday, March 20, 2024. Schomburger, awarded "Most Improved Player," is one of six senior exhibitions featured under The Senior Thesis Honors Program in Studio Art.

"Another Way of Going On"

Marin Carr-Quimet's  installation, "Another Way of Going On," is mainly composed of ceramic sculptures exploring the theme of disenchantment. The works use the style of surrealism, which often expresses the unconscious mind, to find a way to encompass the loss of magic, myths and ritual in the rational modern age, Carr-Quimet said. 

The exhibition’s representational sculptures are derived from imagery of Carr-Quimet’s dreams. Some of the pieces are small and abstract, while one is a 3 foot by 3 foot life-size figure.

The works dwell on a sense of hopelessness living in a modern world, they said, but were created in a somewhat playful way. Carr-Quimet said this can imply that sitting with despair can help one discover a new way of living. 

“Another Way of Going On” will be in the Allcott Gallery from March 24 to 29.

"Quantified Self"

“Quantified Self" is the thesis of Cora McAnulty and looks into  the social movement of individuals collecting data about themselves to optimize their life and self-discovery.

McAnulty’s exhibition is a narrative introducing an imagined Quantified Self zealot that tracks every aspect of their life. The installation follows the character’s obsession and descent into madness, grappling with insecurity and narcissism.

For the project, McAnulty collected data on herself to represent in her graph drawings, images that are also systems of data visualization. 

As a statistics and analytics major, McAnulty said she recognizes the beauty of data, but wants her work to emphasize caution.

“My work does look more at a critique of it, looking at the ways data can be manipulated and can reduce you to less than a human being and less than your whole personhood and into just a number,” she said.

“Quantified Self” will display in the John and June Allcott Undergraduate Gallery in Hanes Art Center from March 24 to April 6.

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"Dances of Infection"

Isabella Gamez’s installation “Dances of Infectioncombines Gamez’s two majors, studio art and biostatistics. The art takes historical research on infectious diseases, such as the Black Death, and contextualizes them in modern understandings of public health. 

Gamez utilized printmaking to represent the cyclical nature of disease, such as the flu’s annual occurrence. She reprinted designs on multiple layers of surfaces with recurring images of rats, fleas and bacteria to parallel multiplication in germ theory.

Her thesis started with small 12 inch by 12 inch linocut prints, then expanded into adding a large conceptual piece incorporating human elements such as a 14th century bed and a figure of a body.

As an undergraduate researcher, Gamez is also working on a more traditional senior thesis in a public health research lab. But “Dances of Infection” holds a special connection for her.

“This project was all my own,” she said. “It was led by me. The analysis was designed by me. All the choices were designed by me. This gave me a lot more confidence, honestly, in my critical thinking abilities.”

"Dances of Infection" will display in 128 E. Franklin St. Suite 130 — near Cosmic Cantina — from March 24 to April 6.

@dthlifestyle | lifestyle@dailytarheel.com