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Nine/Through the Void: 2022 Mills College MFA Exhibition

Not on view
4/30/2022 - 5/29/2022
Organizing institution: Mills College Art Museum

Nine/Through the Void is the final MFA thesis exhibition at Mills College. This annual exhibition presents the work of graduating MFA candidates from Mills College's esteemed Studio Art program. The presenting artists are Shelley Carlisle, Mittie Cuetara, Shuriya Davis, Maria-Lucilia Gorre, Markus Kager, Hannah Pozen, Ambrose Prince, Kelsey Rae Thomas, and Pat. Woolf. Presented as a group exhibition in MCAM's historic main gallery, Nine/Through the Void showcases a final body of work from each graduate. Commanding a range of strategies—painting, sculpture, installation, video, and more—these emerging artists venture into fresh conceptual and material terrain, inviting the viewer to contemplate grief and grieving, memory and identity, and their relationships with nature and the built environment.


SHELLEY CARLISLE uses photography, collage, video, and installation to explore themes and stories of the Sacred Feminine. Nature symbolism, numerology, mythology, and ancient cultures highlighted with contemporary elements are templates to evoke remembrance of our spiritual selves and honor feminine energies and archetypes. She creates meditative, reflective environments with her own music and photographs, mirror, film, and projection to inspire reflection.

MITTIE CUETARA uses drawing as a way to process the world, particularly its social dynamics. She makes works on paper and dimensional cardboard collages that are often about domestic space and the power dynamics of who and what we historically value.

Oil paints leave behind reminisces of past ideals. SHURIYA DAVIS continuously layers oil paints in a kind of “power painting,” removing information but allowing hyperlinks towards deeper conversation. The connections between form and subject matter seem premeditated and yet so much within her hand shows a willing embrace toward change.

MARIA-LUCILIA GORRE combines sound, video, drawing, installation, and photography to capture the ephemeral moments that connect us and transform the everyday into the sublime. Working with both physical materials and digital tools, she attempts to create harmony between nature and technology, living in-between impulse and intention, structure and chaos.

MARKUS KAGER lets inks react to the environment to collect the dynamics of our planetary atmosphere. An abstract image: dots, lines, planes, and colorful structures are created by earth, wind, rain, and the sun. A playful conversation between macro and micro and the artist in between.

HANNAH POZEN uses painting, ceramics, and suspension to explore magical relationships shared between narrative, loss, and personal objects. Focusing on Jewish identity, mourning ritual, and comfort, she creates object-driven explorations in isometric perspective shifts to probe into the multivalent emotional landscapes of tender things and moments we share when navigating grief.

AMBROSE PRINCE is interested in process, material, and developing different visual languages. His current work uses painting and wood sculpture to recreate memories and transform them into poignant tales about family, memory, trauma, and identity.

KELSEY RAE THOMAS works in sculpture, installation, and performance to better understand how the body is impacted and affected by outside conditions, both in terms of interpersonal family dynamics and larger social structures such as gender and class. The driving force behind her work is to unearth and understand the various factors of her past that have caused psychological trauma in order to fully claim and move beyond them.

PAT. WOOLF’s art is a public journal of sorts. His work includes a combination of paintings, drawings, and modules. He is interested in blurring the lines between the natural and built environment, and in turn, questions how these environments shape us, from the social and political spheres, all the way down to the most intimate areas of our lives.


Opening Reception
Saturday, April 30, 2022
5:00-7:00pm, Art Museum

Thought Vibrations: Live
Saturday, April 30, 2022, 6 pm
A live improvisational musical and visual performance during the opening reception chronicling the changing seasons and emotional phases of MFA grad Maria-Lucilia Gorre’s time at Mills College. The music will be composed on the spot with an analog synthesizer, and visuals created in response to the music using a lightbox, string, transparencies, and a document camera projecting the image onto a wall.

Drawing Cartoon Expressions with Mittie Cuetara
Wednesday, May 11, 2022, 6 pm
Using a piece of paper and any drawing tool you have on hand, join 2022 MFA grad Mittie Cuetara for a dynamic lesson on drawing cartoon expressions.

Easy Animation with Shelley Carlisle
Tuesday, May 24, 2022, Noon
Let 2022 MFA grad Shelley Carlisle show you how to create a fun, simple, and effective animation out of cut out material. All you need are 3-5 cutouts of a favorite scene or character to animate, your smartphone, a shoebox, and the Stop Motion Studio Pro app.

Exhibition Images (48)

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