The MFA Thesis Exhibit Opening- University of Memphis Fogelman Galleries is an investigation of conceptual and physical elements are “fleshed out” as they emerge in the graduate work of Kelly Cook, Ellen Dempsey, Bienvenido Howard, Lacy Mitcham, and Jennalyn Krulish. The MFA thesis exhibition is an amalgamation of notions about what it means to be human and art’s incarnational qualities. Similar to a human body, enveloped in living skin, the exhibit reveals layers of artistic, social, personal, and philosophical connections.
Sculptures and installation by Lacy Mitcham center on the repulsive and attractive qualities of the human body, reflecting her studies of psychological and physical maladies. The intangible nature of human connection is conveyed through the metaphor of social interaction in the watercolor pieces of Kelly Cook. Ellen Dempsey’s furniture sculptures, infused with humor, utilize quotidian objects to emphasize discarded or overlooked properties. Jennalyn Krulish’s paintings of ecological relationships share specific knowledge about human involvement in the biosphere. Painter, Bievenido Howard deals with the liminal space between the viewer and portraiture. His work echoes the undergirding theme of “Flesh Out” which expresses how artistic works exemplify a process of continual growth.