Mixing It Up During Wintersession

Mixing It Up During Wintersession

Wintersession offers a great opportunity to mix things up and find inspiration outside a specific major or in unexplored fields of interest. First-year students interact with graduate students; fine arts majors get ideas and feedback from designers and vice versa. And grad students often propose and teach courses of particular relevance to their own research.

Sculpture grad students Makia Sharp MFA 17 SC and Ellie Tomlinson MFA 17 SC are broadening their educational experience by co-teaching Intersecting Dimensions, a Wintersession course that takes advantage of the cutting-edge tools and equipment available in RISD’s multidisciplinary Co-Works space.

“The main focus of the class,” says Tomlinson, “is to work between mediums – specifically sculpture and photography – and begin to understand how we define image and form.”

At an interim crit in mid-January students presented pieces that question what constitutes an image. First-year student Reilly Blum 20 EFS played on the gray and white checkerboard pattern Photoshop uses to denote the absence of image, projecting graphics through a grid in order to “use the checkerboard as a formalized element in the piece.”

Grad student Shawn Bush MFA 18 PH referenced childhood and masculinity in his installation, which incorporates a red balloon and a transformed image he found of a US Navy recruit. “I used the laser cutter to make three different but similar puzzle patterns,” he explains, “so the pieces don’t fit together as they should.”

Undergraduate Aaron Wheeler 17 IL (above) – a senior in Illustration – created a triptych using layered images that make odd conceptual connections. “It’s hard to determine how these images cohere,” noted classmate William Samosir 18 SC (below, right), “but I like the fact that I can’t quite figure it out.”

photos by Jo Sittenfeld MFA 08 PH


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