"Hoplorra" celebrates the work of EMU's Art seniors

Artists Molly Doak (right) and Diann Bouri (left) contributed to the exhibit.

From Nov. 23-Dec. 1, the Ford Gallery in Ford Hall was decorated with a range of artwork by the BFA candidates of Eastern Michigan University’s Art Department. Their show, “Hoplorra” was designed as their capstone thesis where it was to highlight their respective bodies of work.

According to the show description, “Hoplorra,” was to bring together emerging artists that put emphasis on honesty, playfulness, organic thinking and raw artistic practice. The show name “Hoplorra” was a word made-up by the BFA candidates.

Coming up with a name for the show, the candidates created “Hoplorra” to describe the show visually. They decided that the show was honest, playful, organic and raw and had combined those words to create “Hoplorra.” To remain true to visual craft and organic processes the gallery was to be a platform for the artists to push against the rapid technological advances.

Molly Doak, a Furniture Design and Fiber Arts Major and artist in the show, said she had fun in making the word with her fellow peers.

Doak, along with 14 other candidates, organized, installed and curated the capstone show for their capstone class. They decided the design by the way of color. One part of the gallery consisted of cooler tones like blues, but when transition to the other part of the gallery the artwork starts to reflect warmer tones like pinks and reds.

“The way we went about it was we all printed out images of our work, laid them out, put them on a board and pieced them together visually. We then carried it to the space and made it all happen,” said Doak.

The show consisted of a variety of mediums such as metals, paintings, media, photography and fibers.

Baylen Orange, sophomore stimulation, animation and gaming major and Ezgi Gokcek, freshman physics major, were both impressed with the show. After viewing the gallery they described the show as “interesting” and “badass.”

Carole Pawloski, Visual Resources Librarian and Professor of Art History at EMU, thought it was fabulous.

“There’s such a range of things. I mean, to me, they’re ready for grad school,” Pawloski said.

For the capstone class, although an instructor directed Doak, she was responsible for making up an assignment for herself. Her assignment was to find a space, respond to that space and create fabric that was specific to that location.

Her work included found chairs refurnished where she made upholstery for them. A photograph stands behind it taken by Diann Bouri and is titled “Belle Isle Reclaimed Spanish Oak Chairs” where the two chairs sit.

“I chose Belle Isle because I came from Detroit. I grew up there and it was a huge part of me and my memories,” said Doak. “There are all these wonderful archways the chairs just fit and the chairs are in the style of the chairs that were originally there at the casino. I made the fabric so that when you turn clockwise there’s just archway after archway. That’s what gave me my inspiration.”

When talking about her peers and the process of making the exhibit, Doak said her experience was really wonderful.

“All these things were so new to me and I never done anything like them before and to go through this process of art school is you not only learn it but learn your niche, and find your voice and style. It was extremely rewarding,” said Doak.

For the future Doak plans on tending to her business LOMO, which she is working on with other BFA artist Lauren Mleczko, where they will make home apparel, textile design, furniture design and accessories.

“I really believe in the Art Department at EMU. I think it’s fabulous, personally. I really love this show because it just makes me proud of my peers. We are here together to see each other’s best work and what we been working towards together and yet independently,” said Doak.

“It was cool to have this show and to have this moment of celebration for everybody.”

Molly Doak along with fellow BFA candidates Diann Bouri, Taylor Stewart and Lauren Mleczko will be participating in a pop up show titled, “Working Women” at the Baltimore Gallery in Detroit this Friday. The Working Women show will be serving as a platform for emerging artists that challenges ideals of womanhood through process, design thinking and themes of identity. The hours are 1-9 p.m. The reception will be from 6-9 p.m.


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