BY KAILENE NYE
Keystone College students will have the chance to show what kind of artists they’ve become in an upcoming exhibit.
The “Becoming…” senior art exhibit features work by nine senior women from the college’s visual arts program and will be on display at AFA Gallery, 101 Penn Ave., Scranton, from Friday, April 2, through Saturday, May 1. It kicks off with an opening reception on Friday from 6 to 9 p.m. as part of April’s First Friday Art Walk. The show will feature an array of mediums, such as glass, ceramics and photography.
Having an all-women exhibit was a pure coincidence, said Winifred Helton-Harmon, adjunct instructor for professional practices at Keystone. All the students who registered for the course just happened to be female; however, she believes it is a great opportunity to bring more women artists into a traditionally male-dominated industry.
“They’re putting their work out there, and they are doing an incredible job,” she said. “They should be recognized for the fact that firstly, they’re really good artists and then the fact that they are women artists who have had to struggle against a lot of inequities during their times.” Helton-Harmon said she also is excited for students to have a chance to show their pieces, since the coronavirus pandemic prohibited them from having an exhibit last year.
“They’re finally getting a chance to show their work and the culmination of their hard work and the trials they’ve been through,” she said.
For Kathleen McHugh, one of the seniors whose work will be featured in the exhibit, this is the first time she’ll get to see her art put on display in a professional gallery. She hopes people will be able to see her and her fellow artists’ passion for their craft.
“I just want them to look at each piece and say, ‘Wow, this means something to them. They spent time doing this for a reason, or think there’s a meaning behind all these pieces,” she said. “ (I hope they) just think about the hard work that we all put into everything.”
After its opening night, guests can see the exhibit on display in the gallery Thursdays through Saturdays from from noon to 6 p.m. A maximum of 15 people will be allowed in the gallery at a time, with masks required and social distancing guidelines in effect. For more information, visit keystone.edu/seniorartexhibit.
Helton-Harmon added that the exhibit also will exemplify that the arts are an important part of education, especially during times when many small colleges and universities have been struggling financially.
“Keystone has tried to do their best as far as supporting the arts, but it hasn’t been easy,” she said. “For people to be able to support the arts in any way they can is greatly appreciated by the artists. It shows the school and the communities at hand that art is an important thing.”
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If you go
- What: “Becoming…”: Keystone College senior art exhibit
- When: Friday, April 2, through Saturday, May 1; opening reception Friday, April 2, 6 to 9 p.m.
- Where: AFA Gallery, 101 Penn Ave., Scranton
- Details: Gallery hours are Thursdays through Saturdays from noon to 6 p.m. A maximum of 15 people allowed in the gallery at a time. Masks are required and social distancing guidelines will be in effect.
First Friday events
The First Friday Art Walk takes place April 2 from 6 to 9 p.m. in downtown Scranton. Check with individual venues for updates before you go, and visit firstfridayscranton.com for more information.
Here’s what’s on the schedule for April:
- “The Return of Duppy,” works by Fannieka Dawkins, with music by KANOBI, Analog Culture, 349 N. Washington Ave.
- “One Year Later…,” works by Valerie Tassey, with live music, Bartari, 101 Adams Ave.
- Lavish Body & Home grand opening, with Jesse Clemente, 200 Adams Ave.
- Art by Jessica Maietta and teal consent rock painting with Women’s Resource Center staff, Northern Light Espresso Bar and Cafe, 536 Spruce St.