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Graphic design and animation featured in Marion Gallery exhibition
Thursday, April 02, 2015

More than a dozen graduating arts and new media majors will have works on display in an exhibition in April at the Cathy and Jesse Marion Art Gallery.

The exhibition, titled “Unconventional,” runs from Friday, April 17 through Wednesday, April 22. The opening reception is scheduled for April 17 from 7 to 9 p.m. in the gallery, located on the first floor of Rockefeller Arts Center.

Participating artists work in the mediums of graphic design or animation.

The graphic design artists are Shawn Grimm, Kathryn Johnson, Chelsie Kelley, Richard McMasters, Caitlin Neeland, Cassandra Perry, Kelli Porter, Sara Putnam, Sarah Rocco, Alexander Rohr and Christopher Steckline.

  • Ms. Johnson’s work makes use of music and media because she thinks they are “diverse platforms of communication that reach almost everyone.” Her goal is to use design to start conversations about social issues through a relateable and recognizable context.
  • Ms. Kelley’s project is an exploration of branding identity systems. She chose to create an alternative and more effective brand identity system for the London Symphony Orchestra, which is a multifaceted and internationally renowned musical organization based in London, England.
  • Mr. McMasters’ work combines his passions for graphic design and photography into a single format – a photo book. With this book, he explores the abstract concept of space and the relationship between objects, both on the page through design and in the physical world through photography.
  • Ms. Neeland writes of her work, “I have an extensive knowledge of the Darien Lake Theme Park throughout my life experiences and working there. My senior show project entails a rebranding plan to help the park grow to its true potential.”
  • Ms. Perry’s “Guts Get Graphic” is an independent research and awareness project about the digestive diseases Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis. It breaks the barriers of uncomfortable conversations with “poop humor” and provides support and guidance for newly diagnosed sufferers.
  • Ms. Porter invites viewers to question modern culture through the use of confrontational imagery, language and research visualized into a poster series. She expresses the idea of truth within society, focusing her work on the corruption of power, media manipulation and the food industry.
  • Ms. Putnam’s project is a reinvestigation and redesign of Broadway playbills. It explores different elements of shows themselves and incorporates them into more creative and refined programs that would ideally be handed out upon entrance to a musical or play.
  • Ms. Rocco describes her work, “So, This Is My Life,” as “a memoir of my life through books. Ever since I was little girl, books have been my home: there is a comfort among their pages that tethers me to this earth; they are my safety net.”
  • Mr. Rohr’s project features movie posters. “The movie poster has transcended its identity as a simple advertisement and become an important part of the history of cinema,” he said. “This project serves as both a celebration and an exploration of the iconic format.”
  • Mr. Steckline’s ambiguous statement about his graphic design work, “I made a thing. Here it is,” reflects the artist’s unease at approaching the culmination of his undergraduate education.
Artists working in animation are Ian Dodd, Zoey Rich and Zachary Zika.
  • Mr. Dodd’s series reexamines the depiction and interpretation of traditional tarot card decks and further explores a personal interest in the supernatural and occult. Delving from the traditional sense of symbolism and iconography found in these cards, this set of Major Arcana (a suit of 22 cards in a Tarot deck) illustrates the dominating aspects that have become the most thematic and apparent in his own experience with divination and tarot cards.
  • Mr. Zika’s series is an apocalyptic scenario for the “end of humanity as we know it,” with a comical but terrifying outbreak of botanical beasts. He is interested in the disparity of harmless produce evolving into human-consuming creatures.

The reception and the exhibition are both free and open to the public. Gallery hours are noon to 4 p.m. from Tuesday through Thursday, noon to 6 p.m. Friday through Saturday, and noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday. For more information or a group tour of the exhibition contact Gallery Director Barbara Räcker at or (716) 673-4897.

A second senior show, featuring the works of fine arts students, will be held from May 1 to 7.

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