Arts & Culture

Bolivar Art Gallery Takes BFA Shows Virtual

photo of "Chandelier" by Maggie Simic
photo of "Fast Fashion" by Meredith Coffey
painting "Orange Ave" by Marisa Braccia

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 16, 2020) — Although things continue to look a little different this fall due to COVID-19, the Bolivar Art Gallery continues to mount exhibitions including three shows featuring the artwork of recent students in the University of Kentucky School of Art and Visual Studies. The gallery is currently hosting virtual exhibits from 2020 Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) graduates Maggie Simic, Meredith Coffey and Marissa Braccia. The free public exhibitions are available for viewing via Bolivar Art Gallery's virtual gallery through Dec. 4.

Work by Maggie Simic, an art studio graduate from Louisviile, Kentucky, is showcased in the BFA solo exhibit “7 Necessities,” which represents her belief that the only thing every child is entitled to while developing is one consistent person in their life that is providing them their basic survival needs.

“I used different materials that I found at my house or reminded me of the way I was raised growing up,” Simic said. “My mother was the consistent person in my life, and this series highlights each of her endeavors of raising four children from my perspective. Each hanging piece represents a different need. As a way to personally feel nostalgia when looking at each piece, each piece was given the lyrics to a different song. Each song that I chose has provoked certain themes that correlated with each of the basic needs.”

To view Simic’s “7 Necessities” click here.

Art studio and art history graduate Meredith Coffey’s work on exhibit addresses the politically charged topic of the environment with a primary concern for consumer and production waste that negatively impacts the Earth. An educator from Lexington, Coffey used discarded and secondhand materials to create the sculptures featured in her exhibit.

“The Anthropocene era's sole focus is on how human activity continues to be the dominant negative influence on climate change and the degradation of the environment,” Coffey explained. “My studio practice, based in materiality, gravitates toward everyday materials and objects that are familiar and often used in our daily lives. Disseminating information about the harmful consumption of single-use products and fast fashion is the focus of my research and studio practice.”

To view Coffey’s show click here.

Art studio graduate Marisa Braccia's work is featured in “Evidence of Things Not Seen.” Through her landscapes, she is uncovering the world that is familiar to us, yet vastly different from us. The goal of her art is to look at how elements of a landscape begin to find new meaning and form a visual language.

“Just as words can be arranged in a manner to form poetry, I am seeking to investigate how landscapes can be manipulated through the medium of paint to communicate ideas or emotions that cannot be seen or easily articulated. Working in tandem with the subject of landscapes is the act of painting itself,” said Braccia, from Old Bridge, New Jersey.

To view Braccia’s “Evidence of Things Not Seen” click here.

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 studio, art history and visual studiesart educationcuratorial studies and digital media design.

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.