Students and alumni showcase work

Morgan Reddekopp, News Reporter

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The Art Muse and Alumni Show took place March 12-23, the art exhibition featured paintings, drawings, sculptures, photography, videography and many more types of art. Over 25 alumni exhibited their at the event at the new Laird Norton gallery spaces.

The Laird Norton Center for Art and Design aims to unify the city of Winona through showcasing art created by students as well as Winona State alumni. The new building also has features that can be used by community members, such as the Fab Lab and Makerspace.

The Laird Norton Center for Art and Design offers many new technologies that can benefit students. It will help the I-Design students design, create and showcase their work, though non-I-Design majors are able to use the building as well.

Winona State University has stated that an estimated $8.5 million is needed for renovations to be completed by summer 2019. $2.6 million, or 30 percent of the goal, has already been raised.

Peter Meine, the dean of liberal arts, thought that the Exhibition was a great event and loved seeing the community come together to enjoy the art.

“I thought the Art Muse Alumni Exhibition was an outstanding event,” Meine said. “It was great to see the mix of current and former students, along with community members and university employees all enjoying some terrific art.”

Katie Mehr, a first-year psychology major, with a minor in studio art, was so moved by the Art Muse event and the new building that she is considering double majoring in the two.

“Art Muse was the coolest thing that has ever happened in my life with my art,” Mehr said. “I think that the new building sounds truly amazing and the whole environment it will be in will positively impact everyone in the art department.”

Mehr’s piece “Drama” ended up winning third place at the event. Mehr shared that the planning of the submission of her piece was difficult.

“I actually was very rushed in planning all of this. I had to have my pieces sent down from the cities because they were at home and I found out three days before they were due,” Mehr said. “In high school I was in AP drawing and the pieces that I picked all kind of went together as a series. I knew these ones were my best work because I have spent so much time on them.”

Mehr was very impacted by the Art Muse and Alumni Show, as it gave her an opportunity to showcase her work to community members.

“Before the awards when no one knew which piece was mine, just being in the gallery and seeing people see my work, and my friends’ work seeing people who don’t know me and who don’t know my story behind my work getting what it meant,” Mehr said. “Seeing on people’s faces that my art, something I created, was leaving an impact. It was awesome.”