Four Bachelor of Fine Arts candidates on display for their final exhibition, "Anthro Quartum"

Graphic of four profiles in black and white between the words Anthro Quartum

Four Bachelor of Fine Arts candidates on display for their final exhibition, "Anthro Quartum"


Four art students from the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma are now on display in their final exhibition before graduation. “Anthro Quartum” will remain in the Nesbitt Gallery in Davis Hall until Dec. 7.

The fall 2018 candidates for a Bachelor of Fine Arts include Benjamin Blackstar of Anadarko, Lainey Conant of Edmond, Ethan Gorrell of Yukon and Grace Hawkins of Oklahoma City.

Blackstar was born and raised in Anadarko and is an enrolled member of the Kiowa Tribe of Oklahoma. His artwork “reflects the culture of the First Nations People.” Predominately working in oils, Blackstar uses traditional painting methods such as hand-stretched canvases, handmade oil paints and other methods that were used by pre-twentieth century European painters. Blackstar combines the artistic techniques of the great masters of European with Native American themes and ideals.

Conant works primarily in photography, but is also interested in other media including fashion design, painting and drawing. Using soft light, pastel colors and a variety of sparkly and fluffy textures, she creates art that focuses on feminine beauty and further her concepts about what femininity is. Of her “Daydream,” a series of fashion photographs for which she also made the clothing, Conant says it “is almost like women playing dress up” and “embracing what it feels like to be unapologetically feminine.”

A 2015 graduate of Mustang High School, Gorrell came to USAO to study sculpture. His work takes “a decidedly humorous approach to ritualistic behaviors, emphasizing the purpose of human beings as tools.” Using metallic, plastic, concrete and other synthetic construction materials, Gorrell’s sculptures “represent our often awkward relationship with our biological nature.” After receiving his degree, he plans to pursue a career focused on interior design, particularly furniture design and production.

Hawkins’ grandmother taught her to paint at five years old. She received an immersive arts education at Harding Fine Arts Academy before coming to USAO. Her primary focus is portraiture and the human form. “There are billions of people in the world who all have a unique story and an even more interesting face to match,” said Hawkins. After graduation, Hawkins plans to earn her estheticians license in Oklahoma City and hopes to find employment with a cosmetics company.

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