The Stage at Island Park in Fargo, ND is hosting works from two Concordia students. Michaela Chorn, a senior this year, and Andrea Wagner, a Concordia alumna, both received the SGA Undergraduate Research Fellowship award. Both, Chorn and Wagner studied under Professor David Boggs. The students’ works are on display now through Dec. 17.
Wagner first went to school for graphic design, but grew to appreciate the fine arts at Concordia. After receiving the SGA Undergraduate Research Fellowship award, Wagner spent 3-4 weeks in Minneapolis studying Monet’s famous pieces. The goal of her scholarship was to develop a greater understanding of master pieces. She wanted to learn about great artists that started it all like Vincent Van Gogh, Leonardo da Vinci, and most of all, Claude Monet.
“Knowing what happened before you is important to knowing what you are going to do,” said Wagner.
Wagner spent a lot of her time creating a still life inspired by Monet. She enjoys using color schemes and seeing how using those color schemes change the perspective. She also did not use black in her pieces, because that is a “signature Monet attribute.” In addition, the exquisite use of layered colors is prevalent in all of Wagner’s pieces. For instance, cool and warm colors were alternated depending on the piece. Within her experimentation of perspective of inanimate objects, Wagner showed a croissant sitting both far away and up close. Wagner used the same object to create two entirely different pieces based on perspective and the use of color.
Although Chorn was surprised when she received the SGA Undergraduate Research Fellowship, she was also very deserving of the award.
Over the course of the past summer, Chorn spent her time creating four 4×4 canvasses. Two of the canvasses expressed anger and the other two showed sadness. Her goal upon receiving the award was to explore the world of facial expressions. To do this, Chorn used images of her friends in her paintings.
Each painting also had a color scheme that tied in with each expression. Warmer, “angry” looking colors were used to fully execute the expression, while cooler, “sad” colors tied aimed to express the deep emotion of anguish. Not only do her paintings have a detailed depiction of sorrow and unsettling anger, but they also provide background information to the viewers. In her previous works, Chorn enjoyed experimenting with the gaze of her subjects and in turn, how the viewer looked at the piece.
“I am really thankful to have had the summer to create these pieces,” Chorn said.
“While attending Concordia, you know that there is art in the Fargo-Moorhead area, but there is actually more than I thought,” Wagner said. She also explained that building her portfolio was a higher priority to her than exhibiting her work, but this is nonetheless a great opportunity.
Wagner and Chorn hope that Cobbers can view the gallery to broaden their own art culture. It is easy to go to events and concerts here on campus, but venturing beyond the Concordia bubble a different experience. To show art in the community opens many doors for both of these exceptional artists, though.
“Having this kind of (art exhibition) opportunity, you never know who may walk in that door,” Wagner said.