"Fire Survival" by University of the South student MaryBeth Yancey reflects her study of natural history in her paintings.

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Senior art majors look for 'Common Ground' in Sewanee exhibition

Curious about the future of local art? Get a glimpse of what's to come as three area universities present showcases from senior art majors leading up to graduation.


At Lee University, the showcase starts Tuesday and runs through May 4 at various sites on campus (Communication Arts Building, Helen DeVos College of Education, Humanities Center and Squires Library), as well as Cleveland WorkSpace at the Old Woolen Mill, 445 Church St.

The artwork at Cleveland WorkSpace may be viewed from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, by stopping by Glassworks next door or calling Barry Currin at 423-618-3219 to arrange an appointment. An open studio reception will be held there Friday from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Each student also has one piece on display at the Museum Center at Five Points, 200 E. Inman St., which will host a closing reception 5-7 p.m May 4.

"This is our largest class of graduating art majors and features students with outstanding talents in both studio and graphic design emphases," says John Simmons, assistant professor of art.

Artists were free to focus on a theme of their choice. Senior Ruthie Martin says her piece attempts to embody and honor the people who have influenced her during her time at Lee and helped shape her into the woman she is today.

"The use of color across the piece from cool to warm depicts the warmth that comes with feeling fully like yourself and the true peace that comes with loving yourself," she says in a news release. "The ebb and flow that the colors make throughout my piece represents the fluctuation of my own journey, reflected through the people that have been present for it."

Mary Mathias-Dickerson, assistant professor of art, says Martin is "a fine example of what all the students are doing, which is displaying talent mixed with experiences they have attained throughout their college careers."

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Six senior art majors will end the academic year at the University of the South with an exhibition that "pursues understanding of difference and the reconciliation of conflicting ideas and spheres."

Titled "Common Ground," the exhibition is on view at the University Art Gallery on Georgia Avenue. Artists will make formal presentations on the works beginning at 9 a.m. CDT Friday in Convocation Hall on University Avenue. The UAG also will host a reception from 1 to 3 p.m. CDT on commencement day, May 13, to close the exhibition.

The artists have created works in diverse media, including analog and digital photography, painting and traditional fabric craft. They are Elizabeth Bleynat, Catherine Estes, Douglas Fout, Mary Margaret Johnson, Mary Perez and MaryBeth Yancey.

For more information, call 931-598-1223 or visit


At the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, two shows have been held to accommodate the number of works in the Senior BFA Thesis Exhibition, the capstone event of senior art majors' final year. The exhibit features works by student in concentration areas of graphic design, painting, drawing, photography, media arts and sculpture.

Show 1, held April 4-13, featured the work of Lawrence Chien, Anne Daniels, Amy Devan, Sarah Dolmovich, Chloe George, Emaleigh Grantz, Madeline Hankins, Alesha Lee, Kirby Miles, Nicole Reynolds, Caroline Romersa, Athene Ruiz, Kaylee Sheldon and Jenna Tomaszewski.

Show 2 opened April 18 and continues through Friday. It features the work of Chris Anderson, Erika Brooks, Bonnie Buffington, Devin Caldwell, Ian Lawrence, John Le, Stephanie Loggans, Dana Ortega, Dylan Pew, Chris Pickering, Selena Sanchez, Buddy Simpson, Liberty Smith, Taylor Thompson, Hayden Todd and Rhiana Von Fosson.

Works are on view in the Cress Gallery in the UTC Fine Arts Center, 752 Vine St. For more information, visit