The Student Art Exhibit at Creative Arts Workshop is just what you expect it to be, and kind of what you need it to be.
Some works are downright derivative. Some demonstrate the development of the artist rather than existing as full-blown ideas unto themselves. Some are genuinely sharp ideas, with execution that nearly matches the inspiration. And some—a high percentage, really—are just plain outstanding, original and provocative and achieving just what the artist seemed to set out to do.
“Greens Can Be Deadly,” by the appropriately surnamed Elizabeth Root, emanated from Judy Atlas’ CAW watercolor class. Its title adds an element of danger to gentle depictions of plants such as you might see in a cookbook.
Wini Colleran’s “Atlas,” which uses machine parts and the concept of meters and springs to update the image of the Greek god who held up the universe, was constructed for Ann Lehman’s Advanced Metal Sculpture class.
The three-photo triptych “I’m in Charge” by Sherry Fogel takes a chance street encounter and imbues it with psychology and menace. One man, who wears a holy-cross necklace, is ordering another man about. The expressions on their faces, and on those of the people around them, aren’t extreme or overly exaggerated, just sincere. Fogel’s found an incident that’s fascinating in its realness and commonplace confrontation. The photos were arranged for Harold Shapiro’s “Developing a Portfolio” class.
There are numerous other examples of strong, secure, confident work in this student exhibition.
The exhibit’s run technically ended June 7, but it was still up June 8 for the Arts on the Edge festival. The next Creative Arts Workshop exhibit is “How Simple Can You Get?,” an exercise in finding the “most essential and visually arresting expression” in otherwise complex objects. The group show, up from June 28 to July 26, will be curated by Robert Storr, Dean of the Yale School of Art.
In August, Creative Arts Workshop takes a break from classes, and its gallery space is given over to an installation which can be appreciated through the outdoor windows of the closed building.
CAW is at 80 Audubon Street, New Haven. (203) 562-4927, http://www.creativeartsworkshop.org