Florence has many places in the community to find art, but students at UNA do not have to walk any further than the Guillott University Center.
Student paintings of campus are on display in the GUC loft. Art professor Parkerson Seward said each semester he assigns his class a project to create landscape painting on-site around UNA.
“Since the subject matter was something that faculty, staff, and students could all relate to, I thought it would be nice if they could be exhibited for everyone to see,” Seward said.
Seward said he talked to faculty in University Events about displaying the art, and the group decided the GUC loft would be a great place.
Kevin Jacques, director of the University Center and Event Operations, said University Events partnered with the College of Arts and Sciences to fund turning the loft into a gallery.
Paintings represent various locations on campus, such as Coby Hall and Harrison Fountain. Jacques said this is a great place for student art to be displayed because of various high profile events on-campus, such as board of trustees luncheons.
Seward said paintings rotate each semester to showcase new paintings. Paintings are typically for sale, and all money goes to the student artist.
He said President Kenneth Kitts and his wife even selected six student paintings to be featured on UNA greeting cards.
“My hopes are that this will provide exposure for our talented student artists and designers, as well as generate interest in what the art program has to offer,” Seward said. “They can not only see what their peers are creating but also get an idea of what they would be able to accomplish in one of our courses, ranging from painting to graphic design to interior design and fashion, and everything in between.”
Jacques said Seward added an area for student graffiti in the art department in the spring. After much success, Jacques said it was decided to incorporate graffiti on the ground floor of the GUC.
He said the plan is to have students graffiti the old Listerhill area because of the wall curvatures.
Junior Brittany Cagle said it makes sense to continue having students graffiti various areas of campus because the art department graffiti gallery received such high reviews.
She said as a student who participated the graffiti gallery, she saw many students use it as a form of expression.
“A lot of people kind of took what they were feeling inside and put that on the wall,” Cagle said.
Seward said design options are being finalized but he hopes to have the mural completed soon.