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A festival of ‘endless possibilities’

BY HANNAH KRAMER | APRIL 29, 2010 7:30 AM

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In the halls of the Studio Arts Building, sculptures built out of wood chips, mannequins clad in costumes, and jewelry-welding machines sit among artists who fall into one or more of the 10 areas of art studies the University of Iowa offers.

“There is a collaborative feel to [the building],” Natasha Hovey, a senior ceramics major, said. “There are endless possibilities here.”

The studio-arts and art-history programs will host a festival at 4 p.m. Friday to celebrate students’ work at the Studio Arts Building. Admission is free.

Lynne Lanning, an undergraduate adviser and coordinator of the event, said the festival has something for everybody. All age groups are invited to join in demonstrations, learn about the history of art at the UI, observe students’ pieces, and enjoy music and food.

She hopes for a good turnout on Friday, she said, so Iowa Citians can see the high caliber of accomplishment in the program.

“It is hard to explain the depth of what we have to offer without looking at it,” Lanning said.

Visitors may take a tours through the building and explore the range of art. Many of the students have personal studios in different areas — something Hovey said she is looking forward to showing.

“[People] get to see your working space,” she said. “It is quite beautiful and amazing to get to see how people work.”

Volunteering for the event was rewarding for her as well as Dave Zarzynski, a junior graphic-design major. The festival was appealing to him as a résumé and experience builder. He was put in charge of designing its the logo and fliers. The final product has an image of a dove with black geometric lines creating boxes filled with yellow accent colors.

“For me, it was kind of stressful,” Zarzynski said. “But I think seeing everything come together and seeing the fliers go up are pretty exciting.”

Both students are working toward entrepreneurial certificates in addition to their primary majors, calling the festival a good learning experience and practice for “real life work.”

One of the new elements the students put together is teaching attendees about the history of art at the UI. An area of the building will be set up as a “Did you know?” section about students and alumni. Lanning said this is a way to tell stories about how students have an effect in and out of the art school and university.

“You can really feel the excitement and energy here,” Lanning said. “It makes you really happy to be part of a school with lots of talent and goodwill.”


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