Arts & Culture

Core77 Design Awards Recognize Bolivar Art Gallery, UK Faculty Artist Exhibits

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photo of shrug sign resembling the letter w by Mia Cinelli
photo of work in “Volume Inc: This Will (Not) Be Easy” exhibit at Bolivar Art Gallery

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 30, 2020) — The University of Kentucky School of Art and Visual Studies was recognized for faculty work and an exhibition through the 2020 Core77 Design Awards. The awards program annually celebrates the design profession as well as the insight and perseverance of its practitioners.

Core77 is dedicated to excellence and inclusivity, offering students and professionals the opportunity to promote their best work on a global scale across 19 design disciplines. The program serves a global audience of industrial designers and provides a gathering point for designers and enthusiasts via design competitions, lecture series and exhibits.

At this year’s ninth annual Core77 Design Awards, Mia Cinelli, an assistant professor of art studio and digital design at UK School of Art and Visual Studies, received a notable award in speculative design for her series “Speculative Characters for Visual Inflection.”

Through her exhibit, Cinelli proposes new letterforms inspired by facial expressions, physical gestures, and social symbols to better inform our visual inflection. Her work features 15 new characters composed of letterforms and punctuation marks to supplement existing typefaces, attempting to make the rich complexities of verbal (and nonverbal) conversation visible.

In addition, the Bolivar Art Gallery received a notable award in visual communication for “Volume Inc: This Will (Not) Be Easy.” The exhibition featuring the work of the San Francisco-based design studio Volume Inc. is meant to serve as the antidote to how Pinterest, Instagram, Behance and other visual-rich platforms regularly barrage users with “pristine, perfectly photographed results of creative toil,” but rarely the philosophy or process behind the image. This show reverses the hierarchy where one would usually expect to see the actual work first and foremost, while the philosophy and process is reduced to wall text.

While the Bolivar Art Gallery, located in the UK Art and Visual Studies Building, has temporarily closed its doors to visitors and converted its galleries to classroom space, it remains committed to its mission to engage students and the public in contemporary themes and issues meaningfully impacting artistic and curatorial practices. Becky Alley serves as director of the gallery.

The UK School of Art and Visual Studies, part of the College of Fine Arts, offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the fields of art studioart history and visual studiesart educationcuratorial studies and digital media design.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion three years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for four straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.