APRIL 2, 2012

Frame shows BXA student work
Interdisciplinary art exhibited at annual Kaleidoscope show

By Samantha Ward, The Tartan, April 2, 2012

Janet Lorenz, Photo Credit: Jennifer Coloma The Frame was once again transformed into a new space last Friday night — this time decked out in rainbow streamers, Skittles, and new student work. The BXA Kaleidoscope Show, an annual showcase of the work done by students in the BXA interdisciplinary program, featured a diverse range of work that exemplified the spirit of the program. According to the BXA program’s website, the mission of the program is to “foster the creativity of students who explore innovative approaches to the academic environments of two colleges.”

The work featured in the show included technical architecture projects, video, photography, sculpture, and drawing, as well as a musical performance. Each piece was unique, but the range of artwork from the 17 submissions was confusing at times. The only factor tying the pieces together was that the creators were all BXA students, so each piece was the result of the creators combining their two distinct passions into a single work.

The back room of the gallery was transformed into a “laser maze” made out of streamers where participants had to avoid the “lasers” in order to retrieve a Hershey’s Kiss from a bowl in the corner. Henry Armero, a first-year studying computer science and art, said, “It’s wonderful, it makes me really happy!” When asked about the show in general, Armero said that he was a fan of the wild décor and the streamers running throughout the gallery.

“Trashy Fashion” — a piece by Janet Lorenz, sophomore Bachelor of Humanities and Arts student in environmental studies and art — was a full-scale victorian-inspired dress made of plastic bags, bubble wrap, and a paper bag. Junior Bachelor of Science and Arts student Shephaly Soni showed two paintings. The first depicted a body with a harsh, diseased-looking red spot consuming its right side, while the second was a more abstract piece, painted in fleshy tones of what appeared to be flowers and vein-like lines running through it. The description of the piece read, “I’m a painter who wants to be a surgeon. While art is a part of who I am, I hope to pursue medicine, global health, and specific surgery.”

Julie Mallis, a senior Bachelor of Humanities and Arts student in art and anthropology, and Madeleine Barnes, a senior Bachelor Humanities and Arts student in art and creative writing, curated the show. When asked about the large number of Skittles and rainbow paraphernalia, Mallis responded, “We thought that was sort of like an emblem for us, like ‘taste the possibilities of combining your majors.’ ”

Mallis also shared that after reading an article in The New York Times explaining that Skittles have recently become an symbol of support for Trayvon Martin, they decided to include the candy as a gesture of support. “Its kind of nice to say we also stand in solidarity with Trayvon Martin,” Mallis said. “And I think that’s in the spirit of interdisciplinary as well — bringing people together and embracing differences.”

At 8 p.m. a band called The Faculty, which includes senior Bachelor of Humanities and Arts student in architecture and economics Samuel Lavery, played in the corner of the gallery. The group teamed up with Pittsburgh rapper FRZY to create a hybrid jazz and rap sound. The first song they played began with a funky rendition of “My Funny Valentine,” which transitioned into a smooth rap and then a few minutes of improvisation by the various instruments in the seven-piece band. This included saxophone, drums, guitar, standing bass, keyboard, a female vocalist, and FRZY. The music drew in a variety of visitors as the music flowed through the space, giving the event a more welcoming vibe.