Written by Caleb Chunn // Photo by Macy Cox
In addition to all the Spring Sing festivities being held this weekend, both of the galleries in the Stevens Memorial Art Building will be full of art and design with two separate shows.
For Braydon Letsinger, the next few weeks will serve as the time period for his senior show to be on display for all visitors in Gallery 2 of the art building.
Letsinger’s show, titled “Staring At Strangers: Becoming acquainted with the self through portraits of others,” has been on display since March 27 and will continue to be shown through April 8.
“In a time and culture of increasing division and intolerance, I ultimately want to break down some of these barriers that people have through the way I paint these ‘strangers’ that the viewer looks upon,” Letsinger said. “We are all incredibly complicated, colorful and interesting, but we share many complex experiences and conflicts unique to our human nature. Given that every subject painted is someone I know, in a sense, it’s also the viewers who are the strangers being stared at, which highlights the duality of our perspective and interaction with other people that I find so fascinating.”
Letsinger said he spent around 700 hours on his show, between painting, putting the show together and writing his artist statements.
Just around the corner from Letsinger’s show, the student branding project show is located in Gallery 1. This show is a group project by students representing three majors: interior architecture and design (IAD), integrated marketing and communication (IMC) and graphic design.
Students from the three majors work in teams toward a common theme that is unique to each year. This year’s theme is “Rebranding Searcy.” The teams gave a presentation to a group of locals including Searcy Mayor Mat Faulkner, Parks and Recreation Director Mike Parsons and Amy Burton from Main Street Searcy on Wednesday, April 5, and an open reception will be held Saturday, April 9, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Junior IAD major Jacey Pfiffner said each team began their projects by meeting with influential people within the Searcy community to establish the real-life needs of the city.
“Meeting Mayor Faulkner was a great experience, and it was just so nice to see that they are ready to push forward and they are ready to get Searcy where it needs to be,” Pfiffner said. “Just being able to meet with them and actually being able to sit with real people and discuss what the city truly needs and not just being handed a piece of paper is amazing.”
Senior IMC major Charli Turner said that she worked on developing brand and social media strategies for her group’s project.
“I really grew to appreciate the local focus of the project because most of my time spent in Searcy revolves around school, but this project allowed me to know the town more deeply and appreciate all that it has to offer,” Turner said.
Both galleries will be open to the public during Spring Sing weekend.