Visual Arts Center’s spring 2018 season showcases rare and expressive art

Caitlin Davis

UT’s Visual Arts Center opened the spring season last Friday with five new exhibitions showcasing work from a diverse background of artists. 

The new exhibitions are available to be viewed until Feb. 23, with the exception of the student works exhibition entitled “Gold Tape”  that will be available until October. The exhibitions are free for students and the public.

The spring 2018 season displays pieces from artists of various nations, cultural backgrounds and medium specialties.

Viewers are able to read about the artists, the processes of creating the pieces and the intended messages the artists hope to convey.

“My personal favorite piece would have to be ‘Boggy Creek’ of the ‘I Think We Meet Here’ exhibition,” gallery assistant Natasha Dangol said. “The piece gives a feeling of being sliced out of reality as a result of its design and shape.”

Dangol said “The Codex Borgia,” a collection of never-before-exhibited folios depicting ancient Aztec history, is a visitor favorite.

Government senior Josh Lucas said “The Codex Borgia” was fascinating to him because of the artwork’s history and the story behind its creation.

“What I found really interesting about the hand painted reproduction is that one of the artists, Richard Lee Gutherie, was so intent on reproducing the past that he spent 20 years on the manuscript,” Lucas said. “Gutherie essentially slowly killed himself over 20 years by chain smoking and compulsively drinking coffee while trying to finish. It was a borderline obsession. He was his art.”

Kay Planting, an Austin resident, said she thought the video art exhibit was interesting and was surprised to find “The Codex Borgia” upstairs in the center. 

“I also had no idea ‘The Codex Borgia’ had been reproduced until today,” Planting said.

Abigail Minchey, human dimensions of organizations freshman, explored the “Just Press Print” exhibition, which combines 21st century technology with printmaking, and became fond of Gordon Cheung’s piece “Tulipomania.”

Minchey believes it is important UT students are exposed to art.

“Art helps us expand how we think about everyday things,” Minchey said. “Gordon’s ‘Tulipomania’ does this when he slowly reduces the tulip bud to its simplest form.”

Speaking about the “Almost Doesn’t Count” exhibit that explores identifying oneself, Minchey said the artwork was an interesting way to gain perspective from others’ point of view and understand their experiences.

“Art brings us together to celebrate unity despite different backgrounds,” Minchey said.