/Exploring diversity, emotion and expression in BFA exhibition 
Courtesy of University of Montevallo Department of Art.

Exploring diversity, emotion and expression in BFA exhibition 

By Scarlett Perkins 

Jalynn Brooks, Savannah Garcia and Alexis Young were the three senior participants in the second installment of the BFA Art Gallery. The exhibition was open from April 3 through April 6. The three students showcased their work as a group, with each displaying their work on one of the gallery walls. 

Brooks is a graphic designer. For the exhibit, she created an apron, logo and menu for a bakery by the name of Sweetie Bird. She also redesigned three movie posters for three horror movies: “Saw,” “Wrong Turn,” and “Halloween.” 

According to Brooks, it took her the entire semester to produce her collection. She wanted her art to make viewers feel as if they were at the movies. Brooks also wanted her viewers to feel the homeliness of the bakery. Through her art, she conveys the message that art could have a multitude of subjects. Her artist statement focuses on niche subjects that she thinks certain audiences would appreciate, like horror movies.  

Brooks chose the side wall because she wanted people to see her works first when they stepped in. According to her, “As a graphic designer, you’ll need to show that you’re not just a one trick pony, that you have range.” 

Brooks explained that she wants to create diversity as a Black woman and break free of the stereotypes that come from being in a male dominated field, using her art to show that her BFA degree isn’t just for show. Brooks aspires to be a character designer with her BFA degree.  

Garcia’s work is an appreciation for the power of visual storytelling. She says that she aims to create picture books that are not only enjoyable to all audiences, but convey emotions, relationships and meaning. 

Garcia created two visual stories, one called “Old Cat, New Cat” and the other “Knight Tales.” In her artist statement, she said that “Old Cat, New Cat” was intended for children that are adjusting to new, frustrating experiences with having to share private spaces, toys and routines, while “Knight Tales” emphasizes being open to others and resolving conflicts with peaceful methods.  

Garcia used visual storytelling to promote effective methods of developing creativity and empathy in people’s minds. In her artist statement, she talks about how she used animal protagonists to communicate human experiences, as it was easier to effectively communicate complicated emotions and relationships. Garcia explains, “Ultimately, my hope is that my illustrations will inspire a love for reading and storytelling in young readers, and that they will continue to explore books and art for years to come.” 

Young’s work is a reflection about her life. Her work as a whole focus on culture, love and living life unapologetically.  

She was heavily inspired by designer Karl Kani, artists like OutKast and Destiny’s Child, and music from the 90s and early 2000s.  

One of Young’s biggest influences next to music was her aunts and grandmothers, using her own vintage pieces to pay homage to them.  

Young wanted to inspire others to find themselves in her pieces. She said she hopes that people learn about themselves from her collection.  

Young used streetwear style to portray that people can live under their own rules and make their own choices. She says that, without her inspiration for fashion, her family and art, her love for art wouldn’t have evolved into what it is now. Young also said that having a broad interest in fashion and the arts allowed her to broaden her horizons when it came to her artistry.  

In her artist statement, Young says that she developed a style that promotes longevity, sustainability and conformability, leaving room for vintage pieces.  

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Scarlett Perkins is a reporter for The Alabamian. She’s double-majoring in biology and chemistry. She enjoys reading, drawing and writing.