University of New Haven Artists Exhibit Work at New Haven Gallery
"Beauty & Contempt," the senior exhibition for art majors Emily Powers ’19 and Katie Heinlein ’19, opens on Sunday, May 5, at the Ely Center of Contemporary Art, enabling the students to share their art with the local community.
May 3, 2019
By Renee Chmiel, Office of Marketing and Communications
When Emily Powers ’19 first began working on her senior studio thesis, she was having trouble envisioning what she wanted her project to look like. When her thesis adviser pointed out that she painted a lot of "pretty" subjects and challenged her to paint something "ugly," she began experimenting with using bugs as a subject.
"My series ‘Beetle Mania’ strives to showcase the natural beauty that beetles possess, which is often lost, since they are frequently thought of as pests," said Powers, whose iridescent paintings and plexiglass pieces portray the bugs in an attractive way.
Fellow art major Katie Heinlein ’19, who completed an internship at the Ely Center of Contemporary Art, uses art to express her commitment to social change. Drawing from her experience sewing and quilting, she creates many of her multimedia pieces using fabric. Two quilts in her exhibit directly reference the National Domestic Violence Hotline and the phone number for the Trevor Project, which serves LGBTQ+ youth.
"I was inspired to create art that reflects issues I am passionate about, and that directly affect me," said Heinlein, who also works in Seton Gallery in Dodds Hall. "As a female, queer artist, I have seen inequality firsthand, and I want to create work that fights against that."
The two artists came together to create "Beauty & Contempt" for their senior exhibition that will open on Sunday, May 5, at 2 p.m. at the Ely Center of Contemporary Art.
"This is an amazing opportunity because it helps connect the arts community at the University with the arts community in New Haven."Emily Powers ’19
"To have our work shown at the Ely Center is incredible," said Heinlein. "It enables us to network with artists and to exhibit our work to more people."
Two other exhibitions, which use water to explore people’s relationship with the environment, will open concurrently. "Water Access" includes work by Joseph Smolinski, chair of the University’s Department of Art and Design.
"This is an amazing opportunity because it helps connect the arts community at the University with the arts community in New Haven," said Powers. "It is a wonderful opportunity for the public to see the different styles that people have when it comes to art."