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Culture takes shape in recent student art exhibit

Students used a variety of mediums to showcase their creations that were on display at Valley’s art gallery.

By Milan Rafaelov, Staff Writer


The Valley College Art Department held its annual student exhibition on Wednesday, showcasing faculty-selected pieces chosen from students' assignments.


The artwork demonstrated proficiency in a wide range of mediums and techniques like linoleum prints, ceramic sculptures, metal welding and oil and acrylic paintings. These captivating creations were dispersed in artful disarray across the room. Students were excited to see their work showcased and share their accomplishments with family, friends and peers.


Isabel Montalvo, a 20-year-old graphic design major, featured a piece of her art titled "Gratitude.” Using corn husk and glue, she expresses her appreciation for her mother and grandmother's cooking. The sculpture features skillfully folded and glued corn husks, forming robust hands delicately cradling a bowl filled with tamales, all resting atop a lazy susan.

Isabel Montalvo poses next to her art piece titled “Corn husk and glue” at the Annual Student Art Exhibition. (Violett De Jean/The Valley Star)

“When I got the idea I was thinking of strong hands,” said Montalvo. “I got the inspiration from my mom and my grandma. I never got to meet her [grandmother], but I’ve heard lots of good stories about her tamales. Both of them are good cooks. It’s called gratitude to show my appreciation to them.”


Ani Manukyan, a student who migrated from Armenia to the United States in 2019, crafted a deeply personal painting. Devastated by the loss of a dear friend due to the ongoing war in her home country, Ani divided the canvas into four distinct pieces, weaving together a powerful native of uncertainty, conflict and grief.


Among expressive and emotional work, there were also technical and skillful pieces. Harper Fordsmith is a 20-year-old psychology major taking Art 700 and was introduced to welding. For her piece, she made a multiform assortment of metallic shapes welded together in abstract bliss.


Each student showcased their unique style and personal motivation, eagerly anticipating future opportunities to refine their skills. The event celebrated art student's efforts and shone a spotlight on their dedication. The exhibition served as a meaningful culmination of the semester.

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