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Aardwolf Art at WSU Vancouver

The 26th Annual Fine Arts Student Exhibition

The 26th Annual Fine Arts Student Exhibition features work made in a wide range of art classes from the past year. In these classes, students from different majors across campus practice the building of form, the process of conceptual development, critical thinking, and the value of a commitment to craft.

The Fine Arts Department at Vancouver believes that mark-making is an essential human activity, exploring the connection between contemporary art, culture, and the built environment.

Artists: Kayla Aiman, Jamie Anoai-Shroyer, Dakota Benjamin, Maija Bennett, Cedar Brown-Geldreich, Jenn Carlsen, Marilou Cassidy, Yaremy Clara, Ilona Coscodan, Marianna Cruz, Emily Effinger, Olivia Eldredge, Jade Goggin, Avery Huver, Roxy Hong, Shayleigh Howells, Seth Jordan, Annika Larman, Megan Macomber, Eli Mitchell-Hopmeier, Mimi Nguyen, Ana Dominguez Pacheco, Bibiana Picho-Garcia, Jace Rintala, Janet Rodriguez, Dante Dian Torres, Tiffany Tucker, Nina Uchtmann, Lauren Varney, Colin Willis, Paesli Wilson, and Taylor Wiss

Vinyl Countdown

Vinyl Countdown is a series of installations by students in the Beginning Drawing class of the Fine Arts Department. Curated by Professor Avantika Bawa, these works are informed by the interior architecture of sites around campus, including the Library, the Mutimedia Classroom Building, and Firstenburg Student Commons.

Scattered throughout these sites you will find these artworks, some that are easy to locate, while some just creep up on you. Each installation takes into account the site where it is installed, either by responding directly to the surrounding architecture, or the function of that particular area. In some cases, the works are the result of an imagination gone wild, while thinking of an alternative purpose of that location.

A Time of Reflection

Ana Dominguez, Seth Jordan, Jace Rintala, and Paesli Wilson

The Library

φίδι (snake)

Jenn Carlson, Shayleigh Howells, Keeley Hunter, Megan Macomber, and Eli Mitchell-Hopmeier

Multimedia Classroom Building

Hungry for Knowledge

Dakota Benjamin, Danny Blanchard, Baylee Gregg, and Shelby Stevens

The Library

Be Brave, Coraline

Bibiana Picho-Garcia, Danika Fields, Kayla Aiman, and Marianna Cruz

Firstenburg Student Commons

Current Surroundings

Current Surroundings

David Schell

01/10/2022 – 3/11/2022
Dengerink Gallery, VDEN Building

“How we shape a context helps to determine how something is perceived. All contexts are subject to change, so it’s only natural that perceptions follow suit.

“Current Surroundings is a continuation of intimate, intimate, my 2021 show at Augen Gallery, Portland, OR. Intimate as an adjective suggests an experience that is taking place away from the rest of the world; as a verb, on the other hand, it looks outward.

“To intimate is to invite the rest of the world (or at least one other person) in on a little secret. It is social, even if it’s a bit coy. Why else would one hint or suggest unless they’re hoping for a reply from a willing participant that will take the time to look and respond? In this way an intimation is different from a lie or a half-truth. It’s not meant to be a deception; rather, the small amount of information given is meant to tantalize, to pique someone’s interest. It’s not a final word, but instead an invitation to keep a conversation going.  — David Schell

from top left moving clockwise:
Informal Warmth, A Brand New Shape, Inside Outside (2), Interior Form (Night)
Oil, pumice and cold wax on panel, 2020-21
photographs by Mario Gallucci

David Schell (he/him) is an artist working in Portland, Oregon. He received an MFA from American University and a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Schell’s recent work is rooted in the idea that how we shape a context helps determine how something is perceived. He is the co-founder of The Semifinalist, an online platform for the second best in art, because the first place is for sell-outs.

detail of Periphery (2)
Oil, pumice and cold wax on panel, 2021


Inevitibility Of:

Inevitability of:

Austin Chavers and Betsy Hanrahan

8/23/2021 – 1/20/2022
Science & Engineering Building, 1st & 2nd Floor Galleries

Gentle Cycle, Hang Dry, Betsy Hanrahan, Acrylic on canvas, thread

to tighten, Austin Chavers , Acrylic on canvas

“The passage of time, evolving and devolving, reactionary behavior, developing, waiting, observing, forming; a life in transition. In a world in flux, from “normal” to lockdown, our work embodies malleability — a response to transition and modified behavioral patterns. Stemming from safety and comfortability, our paintings, photos, prints, and sculptures explore new uncharted territory, as we move steadily into an unforeseen future. We cannot help but react to the inevitability of the world around us and its ability to shape who we are.”

Missed Connections, Betsy Hanrahan, Acrylic on wood panel

Tooth Bulb, Austin Chavers , Glass

Austin Chavers is a contemporary artist living in the Pacific Northwest. He has spent most of his time in Vancouver but started his passion for art in Alaska where he is originally from. He interned at Yucca Valley Material Lab experimenting with the landscape and creating sculpture with glass. His art is largely concerned with the effects of material in sculpture, photography, and mixed media by exploring the ways in which matter can be manipulated.

Betsy Hanrahan is a multimedia artist living in the Pacific Northwest. Her works are inspired by moments of active participance and passive observance — capturing instances in the fuzzy, garbled, and blurred. Her work is inspired through the feminine: divinely woven, rugged, raw, and masterful. A mess of experiences to be executed and acted upon.

Uncertain Placement

Uncertain Placement

Heidi Schwegler

8/23/2021 – 12/20/2021
Library Gallery

Rugged Mercy, Hydrocal, paver, paint, 2021

“As an artist I travel in order to spend time in unfamiliar landscapes walking, watching and gathering. I embrace the fact that I’m completely unsure of what will come of it. I am open to my surroundings as I become a sort of urban archaeologist, picking up objects if they are small, but mostly collect images and video that have become the foundation for a visual database I call Property (2010 – ongoing).

“As a tourist I find that I am not interested in the designated ruin that is forever maintained and held in suspension of time. Instead, I am drawn to the peripheral ruin; the detritus that delineates the fringes. I compulsively take note of the stuff caught in the chain link, shoved between buildings, rolling down the street and slumped in the gutter. A crushed paper cup, a single green flip flop, a twig in a hairbrush, a flattened mayonnaise packet; scattered across the sidewalk, dirtied and damaged, they play a part in this new narrative as they now float together in a living death. We recognize them for what they once were. They no longer do what they once did, and yet, they are still here; they haven’t been hauled to the dump.

Abattis_01, Lead, glass, paint, 2021

“Ironically, as the artificial object slides towards its organic state, I often feel that this is when it truly becomes one of a kind. The fragment, bearing its cumulative damage, can appear more loaded with meaning than when it was intact and a part of the whole. In 2002, at the Metropolitan Museum, a five-hundred year old marble sculpture of Adam fell from its unstable pedestal to the floor, shattering into hundreds of fragments. The museum was faced with a choice: either leave it broken or commit to a restoration, as if the event had never occurred. In the former case, suspending the shattered parts with an elaborate scaffolding system would render the accident as its defining moment. Instead, the museum’s conservationists and forensic specialists spent the next ten years painstakingly repairing the artwork, returning it to its near-original state. Things break. They no longer do what they were designed to do. Surface damage and wear and tear are visual cues of a thing’s history, its former life of use and purpose. My work amends broken things by recasting and embellishing their materiality. I reproduce their original ordinariness and reorienting their presence in terms of aesthetic value.” -Heidi Schwegler

Property: Saratoga Springs, 2016 Found Objects, 2016

Heidi Schwegler works in the interstitial ruins of Beijing, Los Angeles, New York City and suburban America. She rescues haphazardly disused scraps from the bowels of the megalopolis: chicken bones, Big Gulps, broken signs, lost shoes, crumpled pylons, take out containers. Plastic, fiber, and bone: these materials decay but never decompose. A peerless craftsperson, she resynthesizes her sources into facsimiles with cast glass, gold, silver, wax, resulting in artwork that persists in a “living death.” Recent exhibition venues include WBG London Projects (London), Asphodel (New York), Sheldon Museum (Lincoln, NE), and the Portland Art Museum (Portland, Oregon). Schwegler is a Ford Family Fellow, a MacDowell Colony Fellow, and a Yaddo Artist-in- Resident. Reviews of Schwegler’s work have appeared in Art in America, Daily Serving, ArtNews, Modern Painters, and the Huffington Post. Schwegler is the founder of the Yucca Valley Material Lab, a platform for making and thinking.

Words To That Effect

Words to that Effect

Hannah Bakken

8/23/2021 – 1/5/2022
Dengerink Gallery, VDEN Building

Hannah Bakken’s original intention for this project is to be an art interruption for the usual experience of her home area in eastern Oregon. State law requires no trespassing signs to be no smaller than 8 inches in height and 11 inches in width, and to contain the words “Closed to Entry” or words to that effect. Adhering to sign standards, these prints mimic signs of land ownership and control but extend invitations in place of exclusion. They send invitations for self-regard and accumulatively draws attention to the fence as an enabler of settler colonization, attention to the illusion of land ownership and attention to the history of the American West as a constructed entity.

Bakken hails from Malheur County, Ore. Her work combines printed media with performance, sculpture and installation to explore identity, the body, landscape and place. Her works comment on land use in the United States and how the historical and contemporary narratives of the American West intersect with constructions of identity, economies, nationhood and the environment.  Bakken lives and works as a studio assistant, gallery coordinator, business owner and bike courier in Portland, Ore.

Phantom Power

Phantom Power highlights projects made in a Special Topics Sound Art course taught by Seth Nehil in the Spring of 2021. Using techniques like looping, layering, and sampling, students sculpt sound into melodic, textured, and rhythmic sonic compositions.  

From serene coos cascading out of a sylvan clearing, to the frenetic cataclysm of dubstep angst, to the slow and steady gait of a cowboy and horse fading into the boundless horizon, Phantom Power invites you to put away your powers of observation, put on your headphones, and listen.

The 25th Annual Fine Arts Student Exhibition

The 25th Annual Fine Arts Student Exhibition features work made in a wide range of art classes from the past year. In these classes, students from different majors across campus practice the building of form, the process of conceptual development, critical thinking, and the value of a commitment to craft. As the Annual is virtual for a second straight year, it is fitting that we are able to include sound art projects in this year’s exhibition.

The Fine Arts Department at Vancouver believes that mark-making is an essential human activity, exploring the connection between contemporary art, culture, and the built environment, be it physical or virtual.


Sound Art — Compositions made from recorded text, found music & sound effects.


Vestigial is an exhibition of mixed media works featuring WSUV graduating seniors Laura Ballard and Sharalee Chwaliszewski.

Drawing upon memory, intuition, and experience, the artists explore the demands of motherhood and the freedom of the studio as forces that have shaped their natural creativity. Ballard, finding inspiration in both ancient art and modern materials, expresses in representational and abstract visual imagery the way the inner self communes with, and confronts, the outer environment. Chwaliszewski’s work, largely non-objective, investigates color, texture, and form through a fluid process of discovery. 

Works in Vestigial use water-based media and collage to present a dialogue between the artists, as well as within each artist, through reclamation of creative vision, and reflection on the impact of aesthetic development. 

Measures 1-7
Sharalee Chwaliszewski
Acrylic on canvas
2020, 10″ x 10″



Washington State University Vancouver Fine Arts Department is pleased to present Rain., a group show curated by students in Contemporary Issues Seminar.

Often considered synonymous with the Pacific Northwest, rain is essential to life. It cleanses and erodes, reveals and obscures. Rain can symbolize melancholy and introspection, or renewal and rejuvenation. Works in this show engage with all of these possibilities through the use of rhythm, pattern, and the unpredictable.

Check out the online show here: Rain.

Eye Study, Lindsey Barber (left) and Elemental Music, Sharalee Chwaliszewski (right)

Project Manager — Roxy Hong

Design Team — Lindsey Barber, Alyona Bobrik, & Dillon Gohl

Editorial Team — Laura Ballard & Sharalee Chwaliszewski

Research & Promotion — Austin Chavers & Kavin Wicker

Consultation — Avantika Bawa and Noah Matteucci