By Myshala Liddick |
September 13, 2023
Yellow toned image of the outside of the SVAD building, specifically the set of two staircases with a few students walking by.

UCF’s School of Visual Arts and Design (SVAD) celebrates the achievements of faculty, alumni and students as they unleash their potential in various creative endeavors. Join us in recognizing them for their efforts within the art field this fall.

UCF Assistant Professor Robert Aiosa will participate in SculptFest23, the annual outdoor exhibition event at the Carving Studio and Sculpture Center, which includes a variety of amenities such as a gallery, on-sight sculpture park and many other exhibitions. The 2023 theme is “Communing with Nature” and will take place on the new CSSC forested sculpture trail by the sculpture garden. The exhibition is on view September 9 through October 22.

UCF Professor of Art History Ilenia Colón Mendoza Ph.D. has been awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award for the School of Arts and Architecture from the Pennsylvania State University. This achievement is “the highest honor bestowed by Penn State upon an outstanding alumna or alumnus.” The award ceremony will be hosted on October 5, 2023.

Yellow words "passion and belief" on a red background with a blue overlay outline of a woman playing soccerSVAD lecturer Ashley Taylor recently received recognition from both Adobe and the National Women’s Soccer League for her work on innovative projects featuring the fans and the sport of soccer. To learn more about these projects, check here. Ashley also created work for the United States Women’s National Team sendoff match in Carson, California and for the FIFA Women’s World Cup US Soccer with sponsor: Truly Hard Seltzer fan experience in New Zealand earlier this month.

UCF Lecturer Theresa Lucey featured two pieces in Manifest Gallery’s NUDE exhibition, the 15th Annual International Competitive Exhibit Exploring the Uncovered Human Form in Current Art in Cincinnati, Ohio. Out of 642 entries from 159 artists, the exhibition’s jury chose 21 works by 14 artists from across the U.S. and Canada. The show was on view August 18 through September 15.

UCF Associate Professor and SVAD Assistant Director Keri Watson, along with co-author and Pegasus Professor of Theatre Julia Listengarten, recently published their new book, “Visual and Performing Arts Collaborations In Higher Education: Transdisciplinary Practices.” The book “examines the role of the visual and performing arts in higher education and argues for the importance of socially engaged transdisciplinary practices.” Break into 2

Keri Watson has also received a $150,000 grant from the Mellon Foundation, whose mission aims to “support communities through the power of the arts and humanities,” to fund the publication of Panorama: Journal of Historians of American Art.

UCF MFA student Njeri Kinuthia’s work will be featured in Snap! Orlando’s mural exhibition,The Art of Unity.” Kinuthia presented her solo show, ‘Leso: wovenwomen,” alongside the mural exhibition in Gallery 3 of Snap! Downtown Gallery. “My work confronts the institutionalized cultural norms that control women’s identity and sexuality. Utilizing self-portraiture, my work serves as a mirror, reflecting on my own identity and experiences growing up in Kenya. I employ the culturally significant fabrics, lesos, to venture beyond the aesthetic and into symbolic dialogue – initiating an interrogation of the role of culture in shaping us,” says Kinuthia. “This series, leso: wovenwomen addresses the suppression and restrictions faced by women.” The exhibition was on view September 14 to November 13.

Flyer depicting the details for Njeri Kinuthia's solo exhibit.Art on canvas depicting a woman's face wrapped in scarves.

Two male professors standing in front of a TV screen.Limbitless Solutions, a non-profit organization “known for developing expressive, 3D-printed arms and accessibility-focused video game training,” has received an Epic MegaGrant from Epic Games. UCF Associate Professors Peter Smith and Matt Dombrowski led the project to develop the multiplayer prosthetics-training game, Super Bionic Bash. “Their training games aim to teach users of prosthetics how to refine their muscle flexes, reducing effort and enabling them to perform multiple gestures with their bionic limbs.” The Epic Megagrant will allow them to further their research and develop new gamified methods to “accelerate their use of the bionic limb in a low-stress and exciting virtual environment.”

UCF Associate Professor K-J Mathieson’s film “Power” will be screening at WOFFF23 Film Festival, “an inclusive festival in which celebrates women in all their diversity” and “showcases the work of women on both sides of the camera.” The screening will take place in London, United Kingdom from September 9 to October 9. Learn more about K-J’s film, “Power,” and WOFFF23 here.

The Rollins Museum of Art and the UCF Art Gallery invite submissions for Pathways 2024: The Carlos Malamud Prize, a biennial, juried art competition and exhibition for emerging professional artists living in Florida with a grand prize of $10,000. Submissions are open to all emerging artists who are residents of Florida and not an undergraduate students. The deadline for artists to apply for Pathways 2024 is October 29 at 11:59pm EST through Submittable. Find out more about Pathways 2024: The Carlos Malamud Prize and how to apply here.

The UCF Art Gallery’s most recent exhibition, Covering Carbon, was featured in an Orlando Weekly article written by Richard Reep. “Thum has plumbed the depths of fossil fuel production for some time, and this mature work combines her black-and-white drawings with large, colorful papercuts, using titles like “Petroscape,” “Blowdown Stack” and “Offshore 2” to make clear what these are about,” writes Reep. “They’re about coal and oil — specifically, how we suck them from the planet for our pleasure, like so much bubble tea from a plastic cup.” Covering Carbon is on view through September 29. 

Excerpts from Director of UCF CREATE Stella Sung’s composition, Starbursts, will be performed for the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra’s Young Person’s Concerts throughout September and October, reaching nearly 65,000 students! Learn more about the event and buy tickets to catch one of the 32 shows, featuring choreography from Orlando Ballet choreographer Gonzalo Espinoza, here

SVAD Associate Professor K-J Mathieson has been invited to jury the Edinburgh Short Film Festival (ESFF) in Edinburgh, Scotland, UK. The ESFF hosts filmmakers from around the world and showcases a wide variety of filmography. Awards and prizes are determined by a selected jury. The film festival runs Oct 26th-Nov 5th. 

Two senior films from SVAD’s 2023 Character Animation class, Frostbyte and Superstitious, have started reporting their festival screenings and wins. Frostbyte has 8 category wins, 1 Finalist, 1 Semi Finalist, and 3 Honorable Mentions with 10 additional Official Selection Screenings. Superstitious has 1 Honorable Mention and 9 additional Official Selection Screenings.

SVAD Lecturer Lorna Ruth Galloway’s series “Twenty Six Gasoline Stations in Grand Theft Auto V” was featured in “ZfM – Zeitschrift für Medienwissenschaft,” a German journal with a focus on Media Studies. 

The UCF Fall 2023 Faculty Exhibition was featured in an article from NSM Today, written by Laura Daniela Pineda Vásquez. The article includes quotes from several SVAD faculty members participating in the exhibition, as well as from UCF Art Gallery director Shannon Lindsey. Check out the story here.

The photographic work from 12 B.S. in Photography Alumni will be on display in the John C. Hitt Library Gallery for the month of November. The featured alumni include: Caroline Arcangeli, ‘19, Clarissa Bonet, ‘08, Luis Bueno, ‘08, Jessica Castro, ‘12, Marie DeJesus, ‘08, Andrew Gilbert, ‘18, Corryn Goldschmidt, ‘14, Erika Grace, ‘15, Bryan Kasm, ‘08, Taralynn Lawton, ‘11, Nick Suarez, ‘12 and Jason Weingart, ’12. Half of the featured alumnus’ works are currently on view in Gallery 202 at Daytona State College, and the other half will be on view in Spring ‘24.

UCF is proud to be the home of so many exceptional creatives who are unleashing their potential, both educationally and professionally. Check back soon for our next edition of Art Bytes from the School of Visual Arts and Design. Go Knights! Charge On!