Curator’s Note

yet traces linger ruminates on the myriad ways in which the graduating artists of this year’s Fine Arts MFA program have explored embodied memory. Through multimedia installations, hand-built ceramics, large and small-scale paintings, delicate drawings, and distorted metal, these artists consider the various ways memory manifests in, beyond, or even in spite of materiality. Twenty-two artists with disparate practices are connected through their cohort’s interrogation of the intangibly visceral. 


The Arnold and Sheila Aronson Gallery features a focused presentation on the insidiously persistent echoes of time seen through the lens of childhood and the domestic. Multiple artworks cute-ify the traumatic; seemingly saccharine in colors and forms, they are darkly grim upon closer inspection. Some artists confront haunting childhood memories, reconstructing their own narratives. Others question psychological safety within the domestic space. In the interstitial hallway gallery, additional paintings, works on paper, and a video installation expand upon the concepts surveyed throughout the exhibition. 


The artists in the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Gallery use paintings, sculptures, and installations in contemplating grief and memory, filtered through the refractive lens of time and perception. Numerous artists contend with the body – visceral, cultural, spatial, contextual, and archival. Some approach this through elegies to familial and cultural history, while others use spatality to examine voids, confinement, and networks of interactivity. Many artists explore residual emotions, with a few stretching the limit of the mind through meditative practice or contemplation of the boundaries between habits and compulsion. Abstraction is key throughout the show, with artists using the visual language of gestural fragmentation to work through the liminality of remembrance and the subconscious. 


Delving into trauma, loneliness, and the bodily, the MFA Fine Arts cohort considers what lurks and lingers in the shadows of recollection. In processing the palimpsest of grief and time, these artists propose new rituals, alternative realities, and novel mythologies.