The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Student art on display 

Foster Gallery hosts the annual juried student art show 
Photo by Ella Freeman
67th annual juried art show

The 67th annual juried student art show awards presentation and reception took place on Nov. 9, in the Foster Gallery. 

This show featured over 50 art pieces from UW-Eau Claire students. 

Jill Olm, a painting and drawing professor and chair of the Foster Gallery committee, helps to select the exhibitions and organize the events the gallery puts on. 

All of the art displayed and awards given are selected by an artist from outside UW-Eau Claire and this year it was Gal Cohen. 

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“Every year we choose an outside artist, so it gives them a really objective look at the art. They don’t know the students,” Olm said. “This year we had Gal Cohen, an Israeli-born painter who currently lives and works out of New York.” 

According to Olm, the selection of the outside artist can look a little different from year to year. Olm said they ask all members of the art & design department to recommend names and then as a group they work through the selection process. 

Olm said the department wanted to find a balance of artists from different backgrounds and medium specialties to provide a variety of perspectives for this event. 

“We traveled to New York City as a department and we actually met Gal at an exhibition with her work in it,” Olm said. “We had this serendipitous connection with her.” 

Olm mentioned that Cohen’s work deals with a lot of history and personal sense of space and metaphor. 

“Cohen has the perspective of a professional artist living and working in New York and trying to find her place, along with being a mother, wife and teacher,” Olm said. “It’s great for the students to hear from someone who is working on the balance of making a living as an artist while still maintaining other parts of your life.” 

Olm said any current student can submit to this show, whether you are an art major or not, and they get a ton of submissions from non-art students on this campus. 

Amanda Bulger, the director of the Foster Gallery, oversees anywhere from 10-15 gallery workers per semester. 

Bulger said the juror selection for this event is a voting process that involves a conversation about what the juror will add to the programming of the art & design department. 

“It’s not about us like this person and not this person, it’s about what specialties our previous jurors have had so we are bringing in a diverse crowd of people to work with the students,” Bulger said.   

According to Bulger, the unbiased opinion of an outside juror is crucial for this event. 

“It allows the student to have a voice that they’re not currently hearing,” Bulger said. “They are hearing their professors and getting feedback all the time. Here is one additional person who can come in and give them feedback they may have never heard before.”  

Anna Zook, arts librarian at UW-Eau Claire, wanted to come check out the student artwork on campus. 

“This event is special because it’s the 67th annual, like 67 years of a juried art event, wow,” Zook said. “I was also super interested in Gal Cohen as the juror and I got to see her artist talk which was very moving. I felt a deep connection to what she had to say.” 

The exhibition will be on display for free through Nov. 15. 

Freeman can be reached at [email protected] 

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