EL PASO – Art History Major Alejandra Valdez recently spent an hour at the DoArt Faculty exhibit on the UTEP campus where she had the chance of seeing for the first time the work of her instructors. She said the experience was “inspiring.”
“I felt inspired,” said the 21-year-old Valdez.
“I found that some of my professors participated in the exhibit. My art appreciation professor Alexandra McGovern displayed some pieces, my art history professor supervised a description of an art piece that a student wrote and even my advisor Terri Bauer was involved,” she added.
The opening reception of the DoART biennial faculty exhibition at the Stanlee and Gerald Rubin Center at UTEP took place in early February where professors and lecturers of the art department had the opportunity to present their work to students and members of the art community of El Paso and Ciudad Juarez. The exhibit continues until April 6.
By five in the afternoon, the gallery was filled with art enthusiasts, students and family and friends of artists who were eager to see the presentation that had been prepared for them. From children of a young age to adults, the exhibition was made to please people of all ages and interests.
Students are a very important factor of this exhibition, Melissa Hernandez, 22, a business major with plans of working in the music and art industry, also attended the exhibit and talked about the importance of showing professors’ work.
“I think it’s amazing that professors get to show their works and show their talent to others,” Hernandez said. “It proves that they are qualified and can show students that they can learn a lot from them.”
Different forms of art were displayed in the gallery located on the third floor of the building and in the exhibition, illustrations were made with a variety of techniques including graphic design, ceramic, painting, photography, sculpture, drawing and printmaking.
Professors such as Kim Bauer, Vincent Burke, Nabil Gonzalez, Anna Jaquez, Clive Cochran, and David Griffin were some of the professors who contributed to the exposition.
The exhibit has been held every two years since the facility opened in 2004 and every time it features the work of 25 art department professors. The purpose is to stimulate appreciation for the art and talent of UTEP’s faculty, and also to inspire students to continue with their passion for art.
Melissa Barba, assistant director of the Rubin Center, said she is enthusiastic about the opportunities that the center offers to faculty artists.
“It’s super exciting because we have so many of the students really are the primary audience so we create a lot of programming so that the students have an opportunity to hear artists’ talks, they get to hear from their faculty too but I think it’s really wonderful for them to really see their teachers and their professors in practice so they can critique (their) artworks…”
An art installation of Professor Davinia Miraval captured the difficulties of living with mental illness and how there are alternative ways than medicine to treat the disease.
Her work was represented with two different boxes, one filled with medicine and one with herbs destined for tea and the idea of how one can heal your mind and serve as a medium of tranquilization while the other one has the ability to heal your soul and set you free. Miraval has participated in the exhibit for four times in the last eight years.
The event also featured music by UTEP professors of Jazz and Commercial Music Erik Unsworth and Shaun Mahoney. They contributed various jazz tunes played with an electric guitar and a cello.