Work of local college students on view at Dayton Art Institute

2017 Yeck College Fellows exhibiting at Dayton Art Institute (from left) Lucas Underwood Bergeron, Eva Lewis, Lauren Reis and Alexander Belmonte Paat. CONTRIBUTED

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2017 Yeck College Fellows exhibiting at Dayton Art Institute (from left) Lucas Underwood Bergeron, Eva Lewis, Lauren Reis and Alexander Belmonte Paat. CONTRIBUTED

Each year, the Dayton Art Institute offers four regional college art majors a chance at something big — to exhibit their artwork as a Yeck College Artist Fellow at the prestigious venue.

This year’s scholarship winners were Eva Lewis and Lucas Underwood Bergeron from Wright State University, Alexander Belmonte Paat from Cedarville University and Lauren Reis, a recent graduate of Miami University.

“The 2016-2017 College Artist Fellows were selected through a portfolio review and a formal interview process,” said DAI museum educator for school programs Christine Fleming. “The four fellows were carefully chosen based on their skill with a variety of media, as well as their range of subject matter.”

Lewis is presenting three works. One of them is a 30 x 40” oil on canvas, “Figure Study.” It depicts both artist and subjects posing in a studio. In her work, she focuses on shape, tone and composition.

“Creating naturalistic drawings is something I strive to do in my artwork,” stated Lewis. “My careful use of line and shape to inform the figure creates a clear sense of form and the illusion of depth.”

Bergeron is exhibiting three works, one of which is a 24 x 18” monoprint, “Nebulas.”

“During my creative process, I focus intently on my response to the dominant color I use,” stated Bergeron. “As a society, we correlate these emotions to colors based on a multitude of factors, both rhetorical and metaphysical, ranging from advertisements to learned personal experiences.”

Paat has been exploring the subject of masculinity, as it relates to strength, brotherhood and manliness. He is presenting three works in this show, one of which is a 18 x 24” graphite on paper, “Vanity.”

“I use art to communicate my personal commentary and examination of masculinity… with the definition of masculinity constantly [evolving],” stated Paat. “My investigation of this subject was heavily informed by contemporary American culture, specifically portrayals of men in the media.”

Reis is inspired by the human figure and the process of aging, and uses sculpture and wearable art to demonstrate that process.

“My process is experimental and intuitive in nature. I work with mixed media materials and affix them together by collaging, adhering and sewing in order to create opposing textures,” Reis said.

Since January, these four college artists have been busy teaching art studio sessions to 12 Yeck High School Scholarship students at The Dayton Art Institute. The students learned a variety of new techniques using clay, wire, collage materials and oil paint.

“Our goal for the College Artist Fellowship program is to gather a diverse group of College Artist Fellows, with two main objectives. To provide a broad range of art-making experiences during their studio sessions, and curate an interesting exhibition of emerging young local artists,” Fleming said.

The exhibition is made possible by The Dorothy and Bill Yeck Education Endowment.

“I was extremely honored to have such a wonderful opportunity to exhibit my art at the DAI,” Reis said. “It is surreal to have a series of artwork exhibited among the works of the esteemed artists featured in their collection,” Reis said.

Want to go?

WHAT: Yeck College Artist Fellow Exhibit

WHERE: Dayton Art Institute South Extended Gallery-Lower

WHEN: Continues through August 13

HOURS: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; noon to 5 p.m. Sunday

COST: $8, free for members, college students/17 and under

MORE INFO: 937-223-5277,

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