WICKFORD, RI — During the spring semester of his freshman year at the University of Rhode Island, Logan Healy accidentally walked into a darkroom class thinking it was a digital photography class.
Although Healy experimented with photography in high school, he had never worked in a darkroom – an almost dark room where artists process photos and create prints – before taking the course.
“I took the darkroom course and it really forced me to slow down and really learn the process, and look like, learn to look for what I want my images to be,” he said. . “Just being in the darkroom has really opened my eyes, and making darkroom prints is probably the most fun thing I’ve had doing in college so far.”
Today, three pieces Healy created in URI’s darkroom are currently on display at the Wickford Art Association, as part of its “Emerging Artists” exhibition.
This exhibit, which features pieces by undergraduate and graduate students, is one of two exhibits that will be on view at the association through May 29. The other, titled “Spring Salon”, is hung in a manner reminiscent of 19th century France. .
“We decided to fill the space with seasoned artists in one area of the gallery and emerging artists in another part of the space,” said gallery director Maria Masse.
In the “Spring Salon”, which is a “salon-style” exhibition, large groups of art are displayed in a manner that extends from top to bottom, rather than a traditional single row of room-height pieces. eyes (called a “museum style” pendant light). ).
General WAA artist members and artist jury members were invited to present artwork at the spring show, Masse said.
And one of the artists who submitted work is Gwendolyn Prescutti-Quesaire, who became a member of the WAA very recently (although she lives in East Hartford, Connecticut, Prescutti-Quesaire said she wanted to join the WAA because she offers a cold wax class that she wants to take).
The piece she submitted is a multimedia work titled “Grandma’s Hands” which she created in January. Her grandmother was a healer, she says, who made remedies from locally grown roots and herbs.
To honor her grandmother, Prescutti-Quesaire created a vibrant and colorful collage that depicts five hands placed above various shapes and designs. She started the piece by doing what she calls a “blind line drawing” – closing her eyes and letting the pen go where it can – then filled in the rest using pen and markers. .
“Hands are on top, and everything under the hands means love, comfort and hope for those who receive care from my grandmother’s hands,” she said.
The Prescutti-Quesaire piece — and all the others on display at Spring Salon — were chosen by juror Shawn Kenney, a Rhode Island School of Design graduate who currently works as an art director, designer, and illustrator.
And visitors to the show can vote for a ‘people’s choice award’, which will be announced on social media when the show closes.
As for the emerging artists exhibit, Healy said he submitted three pieces, all of which were shot on film and edited in the darkroom. The images range from a basketball hoop to a Brooklyn building to a friend taking a spin on a skateboard.
He said WAA staff members encouraged him to take part in the exhibition after he first submitted his work to a WAA photography exhibition in February – which became his first juried gallery exhibition.
“I’m super grateful for the opportunity they presented, and they came to me at the end and asked me to submit my work in this show,” Healy said. “I wasn’t even aware of it until that night, so I was really happy about it.”
Healy, who graduated from URI this month and plans to continue making films after college, said he was thrilled with what awaited him at the Wickford Art Emerging Arts Fair. Association.
“I have encouraged many of my friends from the arts program to apply, and just seeing the incredible work they have done, I can only imagine how great the work we are going to see at the show is going to be. .be,” Healy said.