Student Art at the Forefront

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Art has always been cool

Art has always been cool

Last fall, students were given the opportunity to submit their artwork for selection to CSArts, a new initiative from the CSA featuring the artistic talents of our peers. The exhibition goes on display today on the walls of the CSA in Lerner, hopefully brightening up your visit to your advisor to discuss why you registered for three gym classes. A reception with live music to further highlight the arts at Columbia will be held today, but the exhibit will be up all semester. Open submissions for next semester will begin later this month in case you missed the boat first time around. Go check it out and support your artsy friends, and check out the artist profiles below.

Queenie Cao, CC ‘16

Paper Bag

Oil painting, 18” x 24”

This dynamic monochromatic study, Paper Bag, is Cao’s first oil painting. She drew inspiration from the simple elegance of everyday objects to create this piece, which captures the covert beauty of a paper bag when carefully manipulated.

Minsoo Wendy Choi, CC ‘16

A Time of Plenty

Korean natural color & Indian ink on Jang-ji (Japanese paper), 30” x 35”

Capturing the moment of a full blossom, this painting portrays a bounty of everything, including love, hope, longing, pondering, and satisfaction. With the use of vibrant yet somewhat surrealistic colors, Choi aims to convey the feeling of a fantastical blend of emotions.

Minsoo Wendy Choi, CC ‘16


Korean natural color, Indian ink & glitter on Jang-ji (Japanese paper), 28” x 35”

Painted with Korean paints, ink, and pen, this painting renders the scenery of one’s dreams.

Anna Libey, SEAS ‘17


Digitally Manipulated Photography; 6” x 9”

My work Slant is a collaboration between human and machine. I manipulate a camera to expose properly the image I see in my head. I control lighting, composition, and subject. But then I give up my artistic control to the machine. I feed the image file through text and sound editors, intentionally glitching and corrupting it. I have a sense of what each effect does but no precise control over the result. It is a wrestling with the computer, the result of which is a beautiful chaos. As artists, we do all we can to make the perfect work by controlling every last detail of it. But reality is not perfect. Technology does things we cannot comprehend, and perhaps never will. I find there is freedom in embracing the randomness that is more natural to the state of our universe.

Edward Frederick Melamed, CC ’13


Oil on Canvas; 20” x 14”

As in much of Melamed’s work, the brushstrokes convey spontaneously evolving raw forms, coalescing and disappearing as transecting planes of perspective condensed into one image. To achieve these effects, Melamed relies on unconscious artistic motives—à la Carl Jung’s participation mystique. Yet, Ancient is not entirely fleeting, for particular forms appear highlighted, signaling the presence of force and organization amidst the entropic dissolution. In this sense, the work appeals to Eastern philosophical traditions by pointing toward a reality whose sole feature is change, but which is still temporarily fixed in the consciousness of the beholder.

Annaliese Mesa-Jonassen, CC ‘17


Oil on canvas diptych; 16” x 40”

The painting on the left was inspired by a photograph I took at the farm I worked on over the past two summers. It was the first watermelon of the season that we cracked open. The painting on the right was inspired by an image of skin cells I found on my Dad’s desk. My dad is a pathologist. By painting them together, I hoped to bring out similarities between patterns in nature.

Nafiz Mosharraf, CC ‘15

The Great German Composers

Graphic design; 1545 x 1200 pixels

My art is closely linked to the Core Curriculum, namely, the Music Humanities course. Mozart, Bach, and Beethoven were unquestionably some of the greatest composers of their respective eras – and certainly not without reason. Something about their music has kept these composers alive in the Western canon. With my art, I hope to make a small contribution to this long tradition of immortalizing individuals who were exceptionally talented. Perhaps, if someone ever sees it on the CSA wall, he or she will think back to the structural beauty of Mozart’s symphonies, the sheer emotion of Beethoven’s sonatas, or even the complexity of Bach’s harmonious polyphony.

Wenlan Zheng, SEAS ‘16

Lonely Road

Acrylic-based paint; 8” x 11”

A muted landscape with optimistic patches, Lonely Road captures the excitement and uncertainty of exploration. The path is devoid of company, devoid of hope, a lonely path, a promise of adventure.

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