Exhibit celebrates student art

Hanging mobile by Rebecca White Taggart – Anthony Davis

by Anthony Davis, Special to Ka ‘Ohana

“Confluence 6” is now open at WCC’s Gallery ‘Iolani. The biannual exhibit showcases more than 130 works by WCC art students from the disciplines of drawing, painting, Gallery Design and Management, Hawaiian carving, photography, color theory, ceramics and sculpture.

With the COVID-19 pandemic, art students and instructors adapted to lessons via Zoom. The exhibit shows what is achievable when new paths open down the road traveled.

The gaze of stony white eyes cast vigil over the gallery via five ceramic head sculpts dotted around the exhibit, one of which is by Jade Hurley.

“This was my first time working on a ceramic bust,” she said. “And my first time working on something like this over Zoom.”

Rebecca White Taggart’s work of a hanging mobile displays a quintuplet of handcrafted alabaster orbs that hang mid-air, suspended by metal lines affixed to driftwood looming above. The piece takes on a secondary life through dramatic lighting that throws ghostly silhouettes against the space that it exists.

G.K., another artist in the show, remarked, “This gives three-dimensional art a whole new meaning.”

Oil painting by Christopher Gilvarry – Anthony Davis

G.K. herself has a unique way of capturing human expression and pairing it with colors that dance as seen in several of her works.  

A ceramic figurative work by Gabriel Custodio appears in the form of a proud-looking maiden bearing wooden skin and a body arced in semi-circle. The piece could conjure visions of prominent figure heads adorning the bows of seafaring vessels from days past. An adventurous expression graces her features as she casts a bemused gaze sky bound. Custodio’s “Fleeting Release” lures and captivates like sirens of myth. 

A large oil painting by Christopher Gilvarry brings life and death into a cozy, comfortable proximity. Perched on a large leather bound book surrounded by jubilant flowers in fullest bloom rests a disembodied skull beaming what appears to be a rather warm smile.

“Holva,” a Hawaiian sled created by artist Champ, sits prominently near the gallery entrance. Made of Ipe wood and bamboo, the sled bears intricate and meticulously hand-carved segments with delicate ropework tying and binding the piece. The matching geometry, angles, lines and curves speaks wonder to the dedication of his craft.

“Disney Pink,” an acrylic painting by Erin Wesly, brings brick and mortar bathed in tones of delicate pink and purple into the form of towering castle walls. The ominous structure, encircled by sinister skies, stands defiant. When asked what their art meant to them, Wesly said, “My art is an accomplishment of being able to get out of my perceived limits.”

The exhibit continues until May 5. Gallery hours are 1-5 p.m. on weekdays, closed Saturdays and Sundays.