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Zena Vue | Senior Show

dab neeg thiab ntawv (folktale and text) | ZENA VUE

Throughout this exhibit. I work digitally through the Adobe creative suite with their applications such as Photoshop and Illustrator. The dab neeg found in this exhibit takes inspiration from the book, Folk Stories of the Hmong by Norma J. Livo and Dia Cha, as well as popular Hmong movies from the early 2000s.


Slideshow of Artwork

 

Give your feedback about the show, support an emerging artist.


Artist Statement

Stories have always fascinated me as a child. I watched and rewatched Nuj Nplhaib Thiab Ntxawm(folktale featured in the exhibit) more times than I can count. I reenacted almost every single scene as an impressionable child and loved the story dearly. Some of my favorite children’s shows were Dragon Tales and Cyberchase, both story driven and magical in their own ways. From there, I became an avid reader as I learned the English language. From the Percy Jackson series to Alanna by Tamora Pierce, I was filled with the fantastical. Eventually as I stopped reading, I began noticing my own stories and revisiting Hmong folktales(dab neeg).

The current Hmong language used by Hmong-Americans is called the Hmong Roman Popular Alphabet, introduced about 70 years ago. Being children of immigrants, English was the priority to learn and Hmong eventually became secondary. Therefore, I have no formal education in Hmong. It is an instinctual language and I wish to preserve it in the limited ways I can. Having exposure to typography and hand lettering throughout university, I now approach Hmong as another way to express my art. I am not fluent but by connecting through art, I will continue to use Hmong. Finding meaning in dab neeg and ntawv, I strive to preserve Hmong language.

Throughout this exhibit, I work digitally through the Adobe creative suite with their applications such as Photoshop and Illustrator. The dab neeg found in this exhibit takes inspiration from the book, Folk Stories of the Hmong by Norma J. Livo and Dia Cha, as well as popular Hmong movies from the early 2000’s.

 

Bio

Zena Vue is a Hmong-American visual artist and graphic designer based in the Twin Cities. She is currently seeking a bachelor of arts degree in graphic design and creative writing. She mainly deals with an interplay of typography and illustration. Her practice includes both digital and analog techniques.


Virtual Mock-up

Due to COVID-19 the show in the physical gallery space has been delayed. Here is a virtual representation of what it will look like in the Gallery720 space.

Hadley Howard | Senior Show

The Dreaming | Hadley Marie Howard

Through large-scale mixed-media dreamscapes, The Dreaming explores the place where the artist’s hopes and dreams live; a place somewhere between real and imagined, past, and future.


Slideshow of Artwork

Give your feedback about the show, support an emerging artist.


Artist Statement

I

The creator of worlds
Blind

Enter a world entirely of my own
A world of dream entangled with reality
Only seen and understood when given a home

On a physical plane

That bridges the gap between reality and the imagined

So Breath in and let go
Leave everything behind
Follow each line and curve

Let each color and texture tug at your heartstrings
Feel and remember the steps you took
The steps that lead you here
And then take one more
Cross the boundary of space and time

Let go of reality

For this is the world that I have made
Where love is free and safety promised
Where pain and fear are buried
Beneath you

For you shall tread upon them as they pave the road forward

So come, come forward
In strength and dignity
With head held high

To stand upon all that would tear you down

And breathe
Release your chains of regret

And step forth into a world bathed in light and wonder
For this is the world that I have made and I see that it is good

 

Bio

Hadley Marie Howard is an artist based out of Minneapolis, Minnesota. She received formal training at Augsburg University and primarily works as a graphic designer and multimedia artist. She uses digital software and a wide range of physical mediums to give life to ideas and make them a reality. With a BA in Graphic Design and a minor in Computer Science, she aims to expand her knowledge in the future and use all her skills to continue creating.


Virtual Mock-up

Due to COVID-19 the show in the physical gallery space has been delayed. Here is a virtual representation of what it will look like in the Gallery720 space.

THE ILLUSION OF LIFE by KOLE STILLWELL

APRIl 9 – 19, 2018

Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Artist Talk: Thursday, April 19, 5:30 – 7 p.m. Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

The Illusion of life mixes acrylic paint with digital art, analyzing how storytelling can be the means to better understanding the human condition.

Statement

Famed director, illustrator, animator Hayao Miyazaki suggests ( in the article The idea-the origin of everything) that a story doesn’t truly start with a story being made, it begins with the experiences we have stored up in our lives. “ The stories and original work- even initial project planning-are only triggers.Inspired by that trigger, what rushes forth from inside you is the world you have already drawn inside yourself, the many landscapes you have stored up, the thoughts and feelings that seek expression.”

Kohba merges digital illustration and design to express the emotions that defined the estrangement from my father. The story follows Kohba, A young wolf cub, who in the midst of being deserted by his father, must decide if he will fall into anger or accept the reality of what has come to be. Dealing with themes of abandonment, anger and regret, this body of work uses, color, landscape and character to explore the flaws of the human condition while also showing storytellings significance as a form of expression and communication in society.


DESIRE TO EXPLORE by KEEYONNA FOX

MARCH 26 – APRIL 5, 2018

Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Artist Talk: Thursday, April 5, 5:30 – 7 p.m. Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Desire to Explore is a series of digital collages that invite the viewer to examine daily busyness. By exploring regular routine, Fox asks if there is more to life than the schedules we create.

Statement

Through reflection and making these pieces, I began to see the routine of life that can put restrictions on new experiences. Exploration starts a journey one may take to an unfamiliar place or a familiar place they have been but didn’t explore and learn from those experiences. The range of ideas flows naturally based on past and present events. These events are created by cultural knowledge of what is going on in today’s society or what has happen in the past.  As I began preparing for this show, I came up with so many ideas that they could not all be expressed in one show. I didn’t know what I would do or how it was going to happen, but suddenly it hit me like a burst of water hitting my face as I got ready for the day. Everyone has a routine in the morning to start the day. This routine of work, school, social media, and entertainment are what I think of as busywork or distractions for today’s society; it is something we consume regularly. You may not know whom to blame, but it has been regularly becoming more ingrained for decades and will be an ongoing practice that frankly will be hard to break. As I look at my work, I notice my pieces reflect what is happening or what happened in my life whether it was with my own experience or listening and learning from others. This time around, I wanted to change; I wanted to look at what could be possible, to see what we as humanity could do without an institutionalizing society. I desire to explore more.

I have been drawing for as long I can remember. I would even draw my favorite cartoon characters with my little brother. Throughout my life, I have wondered. My wonders became daydreams and my daydreams became reflections. As I get older, these became my art pieces. DESIRE TO EXPLORE has been my favorite wondering. I wondered what life would be like if no one had to work or attend school; what would society look like? What kind of person will I be? Although I know I am hardworking and I do love school and work, I question if there is more? One day knowing I could leave and walk without a location in mind would be a dream come true. As I walk, I would begin an authentic journey learning about today’s society. I would not only learn something new about myself but also about the environment, the human condition, and how everything connects. I feel I would begin a journey connecting with the earth using my senses to explore the universe. I remember as a kid looking at the lines in the blinds. They appeared to be moving or lying on the ground, and, as I looked up into the sky, I began to feel as if I was floating. DESIRE TO EXPLORE is a series of digital collages that reflect my longing to capture my senses and walk into the universe using photography and drawings. However, DESIRE TO EXPLORE isn’t just for me. It questions the sense of reality and if there are multiple realities to explore.  A reality where people might find their true selves and connect to the universe.


BEYOND THE EYES by HANI MIRE

FEBRUARY 19 – MARCH 1, 2018

Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Artist Talk: Thursday, March 1, 5:30 – 7 p.m. Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Beyond The Eyes is a series of photographs documenting three uniquely different African-American women. Inspired by the strong women that surrounded her as she grew up and the cultural intersection of Somali-American, the artist explores the identities that we create and their perspectives on the world around them.

Bio

Hani Mire is a digital illustrator and photographer based in Minneapolis inspired her projects that focus on community. She is currently working on her Beyond the Eyes senior show. She is anticipating her BA in Studio Art from Augsburg University.

Statement

My inspiration comes from my own personal background,especially growing up around strong women and as well as being young a Somali-American who grew up at the intersection of two different cultural viewpoints. Growing up with polar opposite cultures, I’m always finding a way to balance these two different worlds. My identity is an important role that shaped me into who I am as a person today.

Throughout my work, I focus on documenting three uniquely African-American women. I go along on their journey, and I explore my subjects through the lens of a Somali-American woman with a series of portraits and smaller images of each person’s viewpoint. My first subject sees her surroundings, including possessions, to be the most important to her. She brings a glimmer of her artistic upbringing everywhere she calls home. She sees the world through a creative mindset which has always led her to be aware of the world. My second subject uses her makeup sets of foundations and brushes to bring joy into her life. She is motivated to find new ways to be creative but also keep her natural features intact. My third subject finds her faith to be the most important thing in her life. She balances a world of influence with always keeping in mind where she wants to head in life. These three individuals demonstrate not only identity but a statement of being.

I am motivated to continue capturing individuals with complex backgrounds within overlooked communities. I want to show the world not only what they are dealing with in cultures very different from their own but that they are mixing the best of both worlds to make an identity of their own. Each individual uses what they find important to shape their own reality to depict their own understanding of their identity. I’ve followed my three subjects on their journey of finding their own identity, and my goal for this project was to discover how our identity plays a role in our perspective of the world.


images from exhibit

 

CONNECTIONS by TY TOMCZAK

february 5 – 15, 2018

Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Artist Talk: Thursday, Feb. 15, 5:30 – 7 p.m. Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Connections is a visual journey into a complex family of eight individuals. By using line work and mixed-media watercolor techniques, Tomczak invites the viewer to connect to the loving family dynamic through an adventure of self-analysis.

Bio

Ty Tomczak is a watercolor painter living in Minneapolis, Minnesota working to receive his BA in Studio Art at Augsburg University. He specializes in portraiture, sceneries, and linework to convey individuality through watercolor paintings.

Statement

My work utilizes the materials of watercolor and food coloring to demonstrate the importance of family bonds. This demonstrates that family is important and would like others to see its importance. I am representing my own family as paintings and cut silhouettes that encircle a mirror. The central mirror reaches out to the viewer by including them in my family and reminds them that who they are isn’t limited by their reflection. Silhouettes respond to humanity’s judgment on appearances and demonstrate that what’s on the outside isn’t what makes a person. I am appealing to what’s on the inside, underneath the surface, because I believe that everyone’s different.

My work aims to represent the whole of a family by breaking down its complexities into parts. This can be seen by my choice to have two sections in my exhibition: a simplified, individual side, and a grouped, less defined side. Its simplified side shows the beauty of how well family knows one another. Its complex side shows how the family works through life as a group. I would like others to understand that family is important to me through both sides of the spectrum and that it is positive to be a part of something.

For me, family has been an encouraging force driving me towards loving who I have become. Through this encouragement, I am drawn to study human identity. This study on human identity relates to my contemporaries by my close analysis to the differences in humans.


Images from exhibit

DENOUEMENT by DAVID BABOILA

February 5 – 15, 2018

Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Artist Talk: Thursday, Feb. 15, 5:30 – 7 p.m. Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Denouement combines photography and installation to ask questions about the notions of home and our relationship to it. Baboila depicts change in the physical context of home, moving beyond the physical space into one of emotion as he as he explores and poses questions about our memories and experiences of home.

Bio

David Baboila is an artist based out of Saint Paul Minnesota. He primarily makes photographs exploring themes of transition and vacancy. His practice stems from his formal training at Augsburg University and artistic engagement within his community of artists.

Statement

Denouement refers to the point in a literary work where the chain of events come together and the end result of the plot is made clear. This body of work started as the result of my parents marriage ending and impending sale of my childhood home. As the floors were refinished, the furniture moved out, walls repainted, carpets reinstalled, and as sentimental objects were placed into storage, I began to examine my own relationship to the physicality of home as it relates to the memories of the past.

Static, void, and sometimes violent, my images explore the physical home and why it holds emotional significance. The longing for the comfort and familiarity of a home we had or always wanted can be found in the now exposed and deconstructed spaces these images depict. As I confront this experience through this installation, the images move from the context of an objective study to a subjective reflection on our personal memories as they relate to the home.

Denouement calls into question the relationship between the physical space of home and our own emotions, memories and experiences with it. Is our memory or history defined through our experience our objects and spaces? What is the nature of our connection between memory and emotions and these physical elements of home?


Images from Exhibit

CULTURAL IDENTITY by TOU XIONG

JANUARY 22 – FEBRUARY 1, 2018

Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Artist Talk: Thursday, Feb. 1, 5:30 – 7 p.m. Christensen Center Student Art Gallery

Cultural Roots is a series of digital portraits that explore the ways in which culture affects our upbringing and our everyday life.

Bio

Tou Xiong creates digital portraiture through the layering of photography, exposure of images, making photomontages and collaging photos. Xiong explores art through the lens of a first generation Hmong American, exploring both the Hmong culture and the American culture. Prominent themes of his works include self-identity through cultural exploration. Xiong is a Graphic Designer who will receive his BA at Augsburg University in 2018. He currently lives and works in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Statement

Cultural Identity is a series of digital portraits that explores the ways in which culture affects our upbringing and everyday life. Culture is everywhere, whether it is the language we use in our everyday life, the way we dress, the way we think and act, our religious belief, and many more. As a Hmong American, I represented a part of the Hmong culture along with six other individuals.

Adobe Photoshop is the tool used to manipulate these portraits. They consist of blending effects, photomontages, and collages. This method is used to express the characteristics of these people, showcasing different aspects of the Hmong culture. The connection digital art have with culture is a change of generation from traditional art to digital. How I relate this generation gap to the Hmong culture is the idea Hmong Americans have both agreements and disagreements with the current customs and traditions. Growing up as a Hmong American, there are morals and values we learned from the culture of American society which conflicts with some of the Hmong customs and traditions and vice versa.

My artwork is inspired by Marumiyan, a Japanese graphic artist, and Minjae Lee, a Korean artist. These artists work with portraits and incorporates nature into their portraits. Their style really intrigues me as I would recreate it with my current artstyle. All of these ties back to culture as culture is always changing. The influence of another person’s work changes one’s own work. I have experienced several forms of art which includes drawing, painting, ceramics, sculpture, and digital art. My style of artwork has changed throughout the years working with art, from traditional drawing to digital art. Change is necessary for one to learn and grow from throughout their journey of finding oneself.

Throughout my experience here at Augsburg University, I have discovered more about my own self-identity. I have grown interest in learning more about my own cultural background and why it is important to learn about one’s own culture. As people look around the gallery, I want people to think about their own cultural identity when they see my work.


Images from Exhibit