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Emerging Visions: Durham College Thesis Exhibition 2020


Left: Vivian Shen, Contentment, oil and acrylic on canvas, 2020. Right: Erin Christenson, Bursting Out of Myself, acrylic on canvas, 2020.

Emerging Visions


We are pleased to introduce 19 creatively engaged individuals whose work represents a wide range of subjects and interests. Some of this work is carefully resolved and some can be considered work in progress, as is sometimes the nature of a thesis exhibition. Like all visionary explorers, the students in Durham College’s Fine Arts Advanced program are involved in a continual process of identifying and studying meaningful subjects that pertain to their own evolving bodies of work. Employing an experimental freedom relevant to their concepts and proposals, our emerging artists first researched then developed strategies unique to their practice, all the while learning to define and focus their personal interests.

When the threat of COVID-19 loomed, our college studios were inevitably closed and our gang was forced to derail, pack up, and continue their work at home in kitchens and garages, and in bedrooms and basements. How then do you finish work on a seven by seven-foot plaster rhinoceros or a ten-foot high painting of a giraffe without the space to do so? With great hearted ingenuity, perseverance, and optimism, that’s how! Our hats and mortar boards are truly off to the remarkable graduating students of the class of 2020. You did it! 

I extend a sincere thank you to all faculty and staff (you know who you are!) who helped everyone along the way and of course to The Robert McLaughlin Gallery, our partner in creativity, for organizing and hosting our first “virtual” student exhibition.

Cheers to everyone!

Sean McQuay

Professor of Fine Arts at Durham College