Annual BAX exhibition winners announced


Student artwork is on display at Faulconer Gallery for BAX through May 20. Photo by Sarina Lincoln.

The Bachelor of Arts Exhibition, known as BAX, opened to the public on Thursday, April 18. To mark the official unveiling, prizes were awarded by guest juror Veronica Casado Hernandez, a renowned visual artist and cultural historian, who is currently a Hatch Resident at the Chicago Artist Coalition.

“I’m always impressed by BAX, partially because it isn’t really driven at all by the department, it’s entirely driven by the students. The SEPC in their own capacity, truly by their own drive, finds a juror, puts the exhibition together, hangs the work, all of these things,” said studio art professor Lee Emma Running.

Bailey Bagneris ’19, a history major, was awarded the Henely Best in Show Prize for their photography collection, “Clipped Series.”

“I was incredibly surprised because most of the people in the show from what I understood were studio art majors. … I had thought about submitting to BAX before, I had never attend- ed but had seen all the flyers every year so then I was pretty happy with the work that I had done.”

Bagneris had created “Clipped Series” as a final project for a photography.

“[The title refers to] clippers because the first part of the series follows me and my friends who went to Des Moines for one of my friends to get a haircut. It was kinda like showing the difficulties of the black experience in Iowa, the fact that we had to drive an hour back and forth just to do that.”

The prize winners selected by the Office of Student Affairs and SGA will have their work installed in the JRC for years to come. Elvira Nurmukhamedova ’19 received one of the SGA Purchase Prizes of $250 for her oil painting “Parts.”

“It feels amazing … partially because I wasn’t expecting it,” said Nurmukhamedova.

Students showcased a wide variety of artistic mediums and found motivation for art-making from a number of different places. Bagneris took a photography class to aid their other academic endeavors.

“My original motivation for taking the [photography] class was that I’m really into screenwriting. So, it was really more of a way to think through visual process with regard to like cinematography … but I really enjoyed being in the class and how it has informed how I think about visual narrative. It will definitely impact how I continue to write and how I pair dialogue with visual narratives.”

Nurmukhamedova created “Parts” while researching current affairs in the Middle East.

“At the time I was doing the piece I was really researching what was going on in the Syrian War. … It’s basically like a painted collage of different images that I saw.”

Although many of the pieces showcased were produced for studio art classes by participating in BAX, students are able to grow and refine their work.

“It’s so important. I think having professional installation is irreplaceable for students. The documentation from these works serve our students for a long time outside of the show. The students also publish a catalog, and that catalog really functions beautifully in external applications that the students make elsewhere. The students this year, I just couldn’t be more proud of them,” Running said.

The exhibition remains on display through May 20 during the Faulconer Gallery’s regular hours of 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Student artwork is on display at Faulconer Gallery for BAX through May 20. Photo by Sarina Lincoln.