Mary Kate O’Keefe ’11

Tonight was the gallery tour/artist talk and opening reception for MAJOR, the final show for the senior art majors in the concentration seminar. I would post photos of my own work in the show, but there is some indelicate subject matter (read: nudity) that wouldn’t be appropriate for the college blogosphere! If you’d like to check out my current work, you’ll just have to visit the Cantor Gallery!

Congratulations to Brian B., Cait W., Cory M., Haley A., Johanna G., Kathryn C., Kieran P., Lily M., Miriam W., Tina S., and Wilza J. And thank you to Roger, Paula and Tim in the Cantor Gallery for assembling such a beautiful show!

Senior studio art majors

Lily and me in front of one of her paintings (she kissed the canvas about a bazillion times!)

At our opening reception

Celebrating our achievements afterward...we've been through a lot (as is probably evident!)

Snapshot from last night's senior minor exhibition.

Tonight, the Student Art Society hosted the annual Senior Studio Art Minor exhibit opening in the Hogan Gallery. Food, live music and talented artists drew a crowd of spectators that marveled over the seniors’ final work for nearly two hours. Congratulations to the six artists whose work was celebrated last night- amazing job :)

'Get Well' flowers from my Aunt Rosie...gorgeous!

My younger sister Megan just returned from a trip to France and what did she bring back for her adoring sister? Fragonard parfum! :)

I am nearly twenty-two years-old and I still wake up to an Easter basket. This year, magazines and classic movies were in the mix (An Affair to Remember!)

Yummy chocolate in my Easter basket. I am not ashamed. If I could still trick-or-treat, I probably would.

HAPPY EASTER, everyone!

Coming soon: Senior Minor Art Show (put on by the Student Art Society)- Wednesday

Senior Concentration Seminar Show Opening Reception for “MAJOR” -Thursday

Battle of the Bands…go Bill and the High Lifes!

I was told yesterday that I have 49 days until graduation. That means that today there are only 48. Not only is that a pretty sad/frightening notion, but it also means that I only have 48 days to do approximately a million things (most of them academic) before May 27 rolls around. Many people around me continue to remind me of how important it is to not take everything too too seriously. A sense of humor goes a long way to relieve the stress and appreciate the moment!

Being silly

NYC trip with the senior art majors today!

This weekend has been art-filled. I feel like the Millard Art Studio is my permanent residence. That’s all I have to say.

Sawing lumber for my canvas stretcher

Reinforcing the frame with wood triangles

Built!

Staple-gunning canvas to the stretcher

Priming the canvas with Gesso, a white acrylic paint that prevents oil from soaking through the fibers

Tonight I had the pleasure of hearing Marc Elliot, a distinguished public speaker, talk about human tolerance in the Hogan Ballroom. Now before you shut your laptop or switch over to a new tab to go on Facebook or check email, this was no ordinary (read: boring) soapbox speech. Marc Elliot is one of the most inspiring and unique individuals I have ever come across. He was born with an incredibly rare disease that nearly took his life, leaving him with virtually no intestines. As if that wasn’t enough of a life challenge to handle, Elliot developed Tourette’s Syndrome as a child and continues to have what he describes as constant “itches” that need to be scratched through “ticking,” which could involve anything from yelling out “I love you!” to a trash can, to chomping his teeth loudly, to barking in public, and even screaming obscene and offensive words that he doesn’t mean to say. Marc Elliot stressed the importance of a phrase many may have heard before: “live and let live.” By sharing several experiences he’s had since his teenage years about encounters where complete strangers haven’t allowed him to be himself and have his tics (aka “letting live”), the speaker demonstrated how damaging and hurtful it can be if we are not at minimum tolerant of one another and our differences (though the ultimate goal would be to strive toward acceptance.)

His final message is really going to stick with me. Here is how I’m interpreting it: Every day, we are surrounded by people. Some we may know a little or a lot but most are total strangers. In our interactions with all of these many people we make assumptions about how they must be, based on their appearance or actions, when really we know next to nothing about who these people are or what they’re currently struggling with. Even the people closest to us may be concealing parts of themselves they are not as eager to share. As Marc Elliot said, we must first be accepting of ourselves and the way we are. After that, we can begin to tolerate and ultimately accept others around us because of an understanding that there is so much more to a person than what meets the eye.

I have a lot of inspiration, hope, and things to reflect on thanks to CAB Cross and Scroll bringing Marc Elliot to campus.

Visiting German artist Angela Glajcar has designed an sculpture specifically for our St. Joseph Chapel (this is an unbelievably special occurrence at Holy Cross.) Entitled ‘Curaliam,’ her sculpture is approximately thirty feet in length and has been constructed of shorn fiberglass sheets that resemble sheer hanging fabric. The sculpture has been installed just above human-height-level down the center aisle of the chapel and is illuminated by both artificial and natural light at different times during the day and night (thus totally transforming the structure and its environment every time you encounter the piece.) Her work is inspiringly beautiful, ethereal, and thought-provoking and really invites the audience to enter into conversations about the intersection of art and faith. I will be depressed when it has to be taken down.

Me standing beneath Glajcar's sculpture (it appears column-like in the photo but actually extends for yards behind me down the aisle. You are currently looking "through" the piece.)

The Student Art Society (of which I am co-chair) has opened up its gallery space on Hogan 1 to a non-student exhibit. George Query, a former employee of the College of the Holy Cross and an avid amateur photographer, has been following his passion behind the camera for four decades. This past week, the director of the Cantor Gallery installed a lineup of selections from Query’s body of work in our SAS gallery. I highly encourage any people on campus to run up there as soon as possible, because the show will only be up for a few days before more student work is displayed!

It's finally up! The logo I designed is now a very pretty sign!