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Academy of Art University Fine Art Students and Alumni Collaborate for “brick to blue” Exhibition

At Academy of Art University, students form working relationships as well as friendships that endure beyond graduation.  Four Academy of Art University MFA Fine Art alumni and one student have collaborated on an exhibition entitled brick to blue, showing from October 1-10 at the Space Gallery in San Francisco. Daniel Ochoa, David Young, Michael Azgour, Shilo Randall and Jennifer Wildermuth will be unveiling works based around the concept of blue – the color and the emotions associated with it.
 
“We wanted to show and work with something that could be applied to various styles of paintings, abstract, figurative and all levels in between,” said Jennifer Wildermuth, who came up with the concept of the show and is serving as the curator.
 
The artists each have unique styles, offering a diverse interpretation of blue. Michael Azgour, who graduated from the Academy in 2005, will be showing brand new collage works on wood in addition to two older collage works on paper. They are completely abstract, or nonobjective, using mixed media such as different kinds of papers, ink charcoal, watercolor and more.


"The Scarlett Tide" by Michael Azgour
 
David Young, who graduated in 2006, is showing mixed-media work that’s based on punk attitude and aesthetic. The symbols and text in these “aggressive” portraits are inspired by bands that David has admired for years, such as Crass and Conflict. The portraits involve a variety of Mohawk hairstyles. All of the pieces are done in black, white and toned canvas color with the exception of the Mohawks, which are done in blue.
 
“I created symbols that have no ‘literal’ meaning, but are rather a representation of the style and feeling of that particular genre of punk,” he said.
 
Jennifer Wildermuth is exhibiting a series of paintings based on the concept of a modern-day Ophelia. Rather than depicting her in a river, she is in a bright blue swimming pool. The work is a combination of abstract and figurative work in that the parts of the body above the water are fairly realistic, while the parts of the body below are abstracted and warped.
 
“I used myself as a model for these pieces and I wanted to show strength as well as confusion,” she said.
 

"Forward Swim" by Jennifer Wildermuth

Daniel Ochoa, who is currently a Fine Art MFA student, created a series of low-key paintings influenced by the imagery of David Lynch’s most recent film Inland Empire.  The work is strongly influenced by taking figurative painting courses with Zin Lim and Zhaoming Wu at the Academy.
 
“Blue is an inherently dark color, which works well for low-key paintings,” Ochoa said.
 
Shiloh Randall is showing a series of abstracted landscapes. She says that blue has “an intriguing emotional quality associated with it.”
 
The five became friends while studying at Academy of Art University and have created a network to assist each other as they make their way into the professional art world.


"Once in Time" by Shilo Randall
“It’s hard to make the transition from student to professional artist and the incline can be gradual,” said Michael. “During the periods when times are tough, it’s good to be around other people who are going through the same stuff.”

“Since we were all going in relatively similar directions, we decided that it would be wise to help out one another along the way. This show is an example of that.”
 
The artists will be holding a reception on October 5 at the Space Gallery at 1141 Polk St. from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m.

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