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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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ArtFest exposes Aggies to student creativity

Mary Reyes — THE BATTALION
ArtFest, hosted by the Visual Arts Committee, showcases student artistic accomplishments. 
Mary Reyes — THE BATTALION ArtFest, hosted by the Visual Arts Committee, showcases student artistic accomplishments. 

The winners of the Visual Arts Committee’s 2015 ArtFest Competition are on display in the MSC Reynolds Gallery.
The contest, which is part of the larger Artstock program put on by the MSC, was open to all students of Texas A&M and includes a variety of mediums, including charcoal, mixed medium and sculpture. More than 45 pieces were submitted from 28 different artists.
Mary Compton, MSC Program Coordinator and advisor to the Visual Arts Committee, said the MSC has put on the event for years to recognize creativity at Texas A&M.
“They had ArtFest when I was a student, and that was 10 years ago,” Compton said. “You could say it’s tradition.”
The contest does not provide a particular theme or topic for the students to follow when submitting their art piece to the ArtFest display.
“We have a lot of range as far as what people can submit, so there are some really nice examples,” Compton said. “It’s really just to give the students a chance to express themselves and create some artwork and include it in the gallery. It’s pretty special for us to get students to participate.”
Kate Lindeman, a general studies freshman, was named the first place winner of the art contest for her entry “Boats.”
The piece, which was created with acrylic paint, took three months to complete.
“So my art teacher loved to bring me things to paint,” Lindeman said. “I did this my senior year of high school. I spent so much time on it. Every free minute of every day, I was working on it.”
Lindeman said the contest exposed her to the creativity of the student body.
“I hadn’t really heard about the art at A&M,” Lindeman said. “I think the students are really talented.”
Raya Castaneda, a university studies senior who tied for second with her oil self-portrait, “Breaking Free,” explained that the work was one of her most personal.
“I’ve noticed A&M is not as well known for its art,” Castaneda said. “Seeing all this art around sort of gives me hope for this kind of thing.”
Castaneda said contests like this allow her to pursue her dreams, even at a school not know for its art program.
“I came here for veterinary medicine, but I realized I loved art more and I wanted to pursue that more, that even though there isn’t an art school here I could still find classes and I could still find people who loved art as much as I do,” Castaneda said.
Castaneda said she was pushed by her teacher to try a self portrait instead of what she had originally planned.
“I was in the Corps at the time so I had my hair in a tight bun,” Castaneda said. “So we were taking pictures for reference and somebody said, ‘Hey, why don’t you take your hair down and see if we can mess with it?’ So I did. It was kind of liberating. I just started swinging it around and got several good pictures of that. So I took it, added Photoshop to it and some crazy colors inspired by some pieces I saw on Pinterest, and I found this. I said, ‘This looks hard, but I’ll challenge myself to do it,’ and in two weeks, I got this done.”
The ArtFest display will be in the Reynolds Gallery through April 12.

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