Animal Extinction Inspires Exhibition

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By Karis Fuller

Arts & Entertainment Editor

The first exhibition of the spring semester opened in the S.A.L. Gallery in the library on Feb. 6. Second year MFA student Jessica Hart displayed her collection, “Disparu,” inspired by the reality of species extinction. Three large, colored abstract pieces were mounted on the far wall, that represented different natural disasters such as hurricanes.

Jessica Hart and her piece “Hurricanes”

“I’ve always been really interested in animals; since starting my time at Post most of my subject has been animals,” Hart said. “I draw them large-scale whether they be the size of two doors, or three doors, they are pretty large.”
The exhibition carries a collective message, following Hart’s last exhibition at the end of 2018, where she explored activism alongside five artists, with her focus on abused animals. “What led to this exhibition specifically is animals that are currently dying or extinct,” Hart said.

By following PETA and ASPCA, Hart remains up to date on the stories surrounding the animals’ deaths. “There have been roughly three animals that have gone extinct since November [2018],” Hart said. “One is the eastern puma; he went extinct only two weeks ago.” The others are the white rhinoceros and the blue macaw.

Hart’s favorite works are the collection’s white pieces. “Each canvas is its own animal,” she said. The intricacy of the collection and attention to detail helps depict the five different extinct animals. Hart replicates the texture of the animal’s skin or fur and created each individual piece using different styles of applying gesso [white paint mixture] onto the canvas.

“The reason I chose white-on-white is due to the fact of the animal leaving us,” Hart said. “The loss of color means there’s nothing there left, and that why it’s called ‘Disparu,’ it’s French for gone or faded away.”

Hart will graduate spring 2020, and intends to further explore the white-on-white styling. “This is recent, like the last month and I love them, I love being able to work with not color,” she said.

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