Students’ art showcased in 100 Proof exhibit

By Heather Fabritze
Elm Staff Writer

The Washington College Kohl Gallery opened 100 Proof, their annual juried student exhibition, with a ceremony on March 25. 

The ceremony was held from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the Kohl Gallery in the Daniel Z. Gibson Center for the Arts. The exhibition, which features 17 student artists, was coordinated by Arts Management Intern senior Lillian Schimp.

100 Proof will be open until April 8.

Every year, Kohl Gallery requests art submissions from students. A professional guest juror then selects the pieces that are to be included — this year, the juror was artist Hae Won Sohn. 

There was an accompanying talk with Sohn on March 24 at 4 p.m. in the Larrabee Arts Center. The talk was supported in part by Phi Beta Kappa.

A full list of the student artists included were freshmen Morgan Carlson, David Londres, and Cassidy Predale; sophomores Francesca Jacobs, Holly Myers, and Meghan Cooper; juniors Aryanna Horan, Peter Walls, Michelle Henry, Kaitlyn Tourin, and Rose Hull; and seniors Nate Braddock, Hannah Flayhart, Chloe Mello, Caroline Jackson, Elizabeth Tilley, and James Anthony Williams. 

According to Schimp, the longest part of the process was marketing it via social media. Once the work physically came into the gallery, the interns and Director and Curator for Kohl Gallery, and Lecturer in Studio Art Tara Gladden, installed the exhibit. Preparations for installation began in late January.

“My favorite part was being able to see so much student work and see what Hae Won Sohn picked for the show,” Schimp said. “I think the most exciting day of my internship was when we got the email revealing the work that would be in the show.”

One such work was Williams’ piece titled “Untitled 01.” Their piece was a thrifted jacket with the phrases “pain” and “life ends art lasts forever” painted onto the fabric. 

Williams created the piece immediately after the death of fashion designer Virgil Abloh, who was a role model for him.

“It was so sudden, no one knowing of the illness that he faced, and just like that he was gone,” Williams said. “I was feeling a lot of emotions at the time and wanted to create something that was not only a commemoration of him, but the legacy he left behind, as well as the doors opened for Black creatives with unorthodox design in the Off-White style.”

This exhibit is the first that Williams had the opportunity to be part of and he found it to be “powerful.”

100 Proof was also the first gallery in which Carlson was included. Her piece, “Zentangled Life,” was a a mushroom-themed zentangle filled with different lines and shapes that reflected her emotions regarding mushrooms and their biology.

Carlson created the piece for her environmental art class, so she could not have predicted that she would be accepted into the exhibit.

“I really wasn’t expecting my art to be on exhibit here, so it is pretty exciting,” Carlson said. “I love art and feel very passionately about it, but it isn’t my planned career path. Being involved in things like 100 Proof inspire me to continue making art or even take more art classes after I finish my art requirement.”

Tilley created their piece in similar circumstances — it was born from the experimental process of her art SCE project. According to Tilley, their work, “In The Works,” played with ideas of vulnerability and personal emotions.

Lifting voices and the emotional connections art builds is one of Tilley’s largest motivations.

“What inspires me is the idea of connecting with others through my artwork,” Tilley said. “Even if it’s not connecting 100 percent, I love to be able to make people feel heard or seen in one way or another.”

Photo by Kayla Thornton

Featured Photo Caption: “Untitled 01” by senior Anthony Williams, hanging on display inside the Kohl Gallery.

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