YES 2015

Page 1

This building is full of studios, rooms with whitewashed walls and grubby floorboards. They begin every Academic year empty but slowly, gradually, fill up. The rooms are soon dusted with notes, sketches, research – art. And there, amongst it all, are the students. Questioning, making and critiquing, we have poured our thoughts and our emotions and ourselves into these studios, into this whole building. Over four years of dirty hands, stained clothes and late nights we have worked and we have learned. We have moved from studio to studio during our time at Waterloo, and it all culminates here in this final exhibition. We are thankful for family, professors, and also for each other. We are now ready to leave these rooms and build our own studios; to construct our own opportunities to learn, question, and create our futures.


Achieving your degree is bitter sweet. After all of your hard work you have finally achieved your goal and now you must move onto something else – something unknown to discover. This moment is precious and your future awaits you – both your successes and failures. Anything can happen – it is for this reason that this moment is so emotionally charged; it is filled with both fear and excitement. The best part is that people excel in this world not because they follow the leader, but because of their unique vision, stubbornness, and their ability to bring something to the table that is different than the rest: skills that you have been developing over the last four years.

Where better to develop a unique vision, flexibility, tenacity, and self-confidence other than in your studios? Trust that you have acquired these skills. Apply them in the next few years. Carve out your own unique path. Know that what you are doing matters. If you hold onto your ideas, be creative, be willing to adapt, and think outside of the box – you will find your unique place in the world. In twenty years from now you will look back at this time and realize that this moment was irreplaceable. It holds within it your successes, and a future of possibilities. We wish you all well and feel confident that you have the experience and knowledge required for this next step in life.


07 Almaraz De La Garza 09 Andeel 11 Birch 13 Blackwell 15 Brown 17 Burchat 19 Chambers 21 Chowdhury 23 Cronin 25 Dash 27 Deeming

29 Di Paola 31 Duffy 33 Edwards 35 Figuereo 37 Fortune 39 Howell 41 Kean 43 Kozomora 45 Kozomora 47 Leach 49 Maresch

51 Murphy 53 O’Brien 55 Oliveira 57 Pope 59 Qin 61 Raphael 63 Sadrolhefazi 65 Salamanca 67 Samms 69 Sehl 71 Shaver

73 Shaw 75 Sidoruk 77 Snider 79 Stickel 81 Szepesvári 83 Tari 85 Vainionpaa 87 Vouk 89 Yang 91 Credits 93 Sponsors

Originally from Mexico City, Lorena moved to Canada to pursue an education in Fine Arts and Cognitive Science. Her work is inspired by extensive travel within her home country, which sparked a deep admiration for the creative works of Mexican indigenous cultures. This, in addition to her passion for the study of the mind and its processes, has motivated her work throughout her undergraduate studies. Her work has been featured in the artist-run gallery The Artery alongside fellow emerging artists.

If there is a way to reveal the backbone of a complex culture, it must be through art. My body of work is a spontaneous exploration of this premise. I dig into the intricacies of Mexican culture, the culture that marked my identity, as an observer. I use the invaluable critical distance gathered from living in a foreign country to rediscover my roots. The work is subtractive; it is the product of a careful distillatory process in which only the most idiosyncratic elements are left. A particular colour scheme of warm, vibrant colours and culturally charged materials are used in combination with beliefs my people take pride in: hard work, celebration, multiplicity, and an overwhelming sense of optimism against adversity.

LORENA ALMARAZ DE LA GARZA Tianguis Tissue paper on metal mesh 245cm x 60cm


Shannon Andeel has always been drawn to traditional mediums and practices in art. For the majority of her time as a painter in univeristy, she focused on having realistic subject matter in her paintings. However, in her 4th year of university, she lost what she once found enjoyable about it, and switched her subject matter to colorful abstraction. She is inspired by artists such as surrealist painter Joan Miró, as well as by many Impressionist painters and the Fauves. Her biggest challenge is knowing when an abstract painting is resolved, something university simply cannot teach. Her experiences with the University of Waterloo Fine Arts Department will always be remembered fondly.

My appreciation of art lies in recognizing formal qualities and responding to them. My work is a reflection of my everyday interactions with light, colour, movement, and life. It is a visual representation of my daily intake of information. I explore painting by creating abstract compositions that celebrate mark-making and unique colour schemes. Painterly expression is a key characteristic of my work, as I apply strong brush strokes to the canvas and intuitively choose colours and shapes. As well, I explore depth in my work by layering paint, thus creating a visual “push and pull” effect. My work is what it is – colours, shapes, and forms. However, I invite the viewer to have their own interpretation of my work, as I feel abstraction allows the mind to open to endless possibilities.

SHANNON ANDEEL Abstract 1 Acrylic on canvas 76cm x 124cm


Alexandria is a candidate for a BA in Joint Honours Sociology and Studio Fine Arts. Born and raised in Ottawa, she is a first-generation Canadian, which is a fact she has used to motivate much of her work. She uses her art to explore the idea of the personal ethno-cultural experience in terms of race, gender and alienation. Her recent influences include Lorna Simpson, Antony Gormley, Louise Bourgeois, and Elizabeth Catlett.

Our identity is shaped and coloured by how others perceive us. We are visually assessed, categorized, and labeled according to those results. My series deals with the distance between what we perceive about ourselves and how others perceive us. It’s an exploration of the alienation of human identity in terms of the figurative and the geographic. It acts as a contemplation of diaspora - a feeling of being without any true origin and without true emotional ties to a unifying cultural identity in a postcolonial context. In an increasingly globalized society, where concrete definitions of identity are blurred, distance and confusion surface on each individual’s path to self-discovery.

ALEXANDRIA BIRCH Untitled Newspaper, wire, plaster, tissue paper, and cardboard


Stephanie Blackwell was born in Kitchener, Ontario in 1993 and is currently a student at the University of Waterloo in her fourth year of fine arts. Her work is influenced by the realistic portraiture artist, Chuck Close, as she creates work predominantly with contĂŠ to produce realistic close-up drawings of the eye. She is looking forward to her future in teaching and creating art.

As an artist, I work to create drawings that speak to me as well as others. I am inspired by realism: it is my favourite type of art to study and create. There is something very powerful and comforting in capturing the smallest details of an object in a drawing. My work is an intimate self-portrait. It stemmed from a sketch of an eye that I routinely create, which I took a step further in my decision to draw the eye in the most detail I could manage using black and white contĂŠ and white gel-pen on Stonehenge paper. I want to explore the mundane: my everyday eye in my everyday life. The results are intriguing in terms of the changes in lighting, reflection, and emotion.

STEPHANIE BLACKWELL I Conte on stonehedge paper 56cm x 58cm


Interactions are a topic of interest for Rachel Brown. Through exploring art and different cultures, generations, and practices, she finds it interesting that people remain the same: ruled by the unspoken norms and regulations of their culture, regardless of where they come from. Brought up in a practical, minimal town in Northern Alberta, and relocated to Cambridge - a larger city with a faster pace and more opportunities - Rachel has an active interest in people and their delicate processes of reproduced ideologies.

Human interactions are guided by a series of written and unwritten codes and laws. We learn to live within confines that we have observed and adopted without consideration. We interact with objects and clothing everyday - understanding their different functions subconsciously. It is a representation of humans and a way in which we communicate and act out codes. The physicality of these everyday objects holds significance. It is something to interact with; without barriers that separate us from its meaning. Through reproduction of these objects using printmaking and soft sculpture I present and question these codes as ideas that have room for further consideration.

RACHEL BROWN Circular Logic Ink on paper 38cm x 56cm


Holly Burchat had the privilege of working in a greenhouse consecutively over the summer. As a result, her appreciation for organic matter developed strongly. Raised in Whitby, Ontario, into a family of six, Holly had the satisfaction of having her art hung on every wall of the family home. Her parents’ support has been endless and part of her success. Aside from her family, Marni Bachuk, one of her previous instructors, has acted as a mentor in many ways over the years. Her optimism and words of encouragement have influenced and reinforced Holly’s commitment to the art world.

Expanding on the cycle of growth and the aging process, I am interested in the relationship between the perennial and the annual. I strategically utilize different mediums such as ink, watercolour and acrylic in order to blur the boundaries between the abstract and representational. This, combined with a variety of geometric shapes, works against the organic forms as a way of questioning our control. The silhouette of each plant is manipulated to fit a basic pattern that can be repeated if necessary. These patterns are simplified to stress the decorative aspect of a plant and the intimate connection that can be experienced with further study. Ambiguity should arise from the subject matter of plant and their arrangement because they don’t appear naturally together.

HOLLY BURCHAT Untitled Acrylic on canvas 91cm x 91cm


Caralynn Chambers is an emerging Canadian artist from Ottawa, Ontario. Her work focuses on the role that technology plays in the world today. Her mediums of choice are generally photography, video, and light-related work. Her current work is centered on the issues of privacy online and self – documentation through social media. She is currently completing her Joint Honors Degree in Fine Arts and Psychology at the University of Waterloo. She has shown work in the university’s curated and student-run galleries.

It is both amazing and unfortunate that technology today has become extremely central to human interaction. Whether it’s through social media, cell phones, or video chat, this generation is becoming more deeply rooted in technology with every passing moment. Although our degree of availability and contact has increased, the amount of connection has dropped, as we prioritize screens over face-to-face interaction. Information, thoughts and intimate moments are constantly documented and made available to the online world without a second thought. Nothing is precious online. Its value becomes measured by the amount of “likes” and “shares” it can generate and it is forgotten soon after. This work criticizes and sheds a light on the new generation; commenting on the loss of true connection, the deterioration of precious moments, and the free reign we give others on our privacy.

CARALYNN CHAMBERS Disconnect Digital print 25cm x 38cm


Bengali born artist Nashid Chowdhury moved to Canada when he was only a few months old. Since his family never settled in one place for very long, Nashid didn’t have much of an opportunity to make friends which led him to invest in art from a young age. His yearning to create art has persisted as he graduates from the University of Waterloo’s Fine Arts program. His predominantly sculptural work incorporates architecture, nature, and textiles and he draws these influences from artists like Robert Morris, The Group of Seven, and Yinka Shonibare.

Iterations is about identity change. As people we face struggles and challenges that require us to adapt to overcome them. In this adaptation process, there are stages that each of us go through to successfully overcome these life obstacles: identification of the problem; brainstorming potential solutions; executing one thoughtful solution; and finally reflecting on the effectiveness of that solution. Regardless of how successful the solution actually was, by partaking in these stages each of us renegotiate our identities and we hope to become better after the trial – like immigration, for example. In my art, I literally deconstruct forms and stitch them back together to create a better, visually stimulating, experience. I implement organic fluid and rigid architectonic forms to create a narrative about the movement and obstacles that each of us encounter in our lives.


Transformative Fusion Wood, steel, and fabric 152cm x 152 cm x 152cm approx.


Amber Cronin is from Campbellville, Ontario, and is in her final year at the University of Waterloo studying Fine Arts and English Rhetoric and Professional writing. She is an emerging artist who primarily works in sculpture. Steel is the dominant material in her work, and it has played a role in her family growing up; its use in an art context has always been a fascination of hers. Growing up in the country has also fostered a deep interest and admiration for the forms of nature. Her influences range from Alex Coleville and Richard Serra to Antony Gormley and Cal Lane.

My work is about the tension between manufactured perfection and a human element, and the tension between industry and nature. I explore geometric forms with a basis in the natural world, as well as build work using the 5 platonic solids. So much of the nature we know is a construction. I deal with this concept in my work by incorporating natural elements into rigid steel sculptures. Nature is based on perfectly functioning rules and principles, but is never truly perfect in the physical world. A bee’s honeycomb adheres to exact patterns and ratios, but in nature no hive is perfect. This mirrors my process of creating shapes that exists flawlessly in the theoretical realm, which are then made imperfect because I create them, not a machine.

AMBER CRONIN Untitled Steel rod, birch branch, and spray paint 105cm x 50cm x 40cm approx.


Jessica Dash’s introduction to the world of art happened when she just started high school. A few days before her twelfth birthday she met a girl who showed her that drawing anime characters was possible and easy. She taught herself to draw, and loved it. They spent hours drawing or talking about anime. Her artistic exploration grew from that point on. Her academic studies have been a main source of inspiration for her art. Currently, her studies in Biology are her leading muse.


My work explores the idea of combining human and animal biology and art, specifically landscape. Biology and landscapes are more alike than we realize. Landscapes are usually thought of as “pure” nature, untouched or slightly modified to reveal even more of its beauty, but many are not as traditional. The human body is also part of nature. Bodies can be seen under a microscope, with specific parts becoming the main focus. The similarities between a natural landscape and the human body are striking, revealing themselves in patterns of all sorts. To compare biology and nature, microscopic images of biological tissue slides were placed into a landscape environment, and were manipulated in order to contrast the scale and substance differences while comparing patterns natural occurrences.

JESSICA DASH Human-Made Acrylic on canvas 61cm x 61cm


Sara Deeming is a Southern Ontariobased artist working primarily in illustration, print, and mixed media. Her work incorporates installation and found object to explore themes of culture and identity. Working predominantly in screen print, Deeming’s work plays with kitsch iconography. She has been an active participant in studentrun exhibitions at the University of Waterloo, including working as a student co-curator for the Artery Gallery.

My current practice revolves around the image of the tomato. I use the tomato as a means of exploring genealogy and the family tree, using found object, print, and collage. The tomato plays with my personal Italian heritage, referencing ideas of diversity, growth, and cultural specificity. My work incorporates themes of repetition versus individuality: by duplicating the tomato through screen printing, each print is both a copy and a unique piece. Using found objects enables me to create layers of meaning: as I reassemble the prints on various surfaces I imbue the tomato with new connotations.

SARA DEEMING Heirlooms Screen print, kraft paper on glass plates 43cm x 43cm


Christina Di Paola was raised in Aurora, Ontario with a twin sister who is also a painter and two supportive parents. At 23 she is a Christian, a Feminist, and a Marxist. She has an interest in contemporary art, bright colours, music, subcultures, and the Internet. Christina is primarily a mixed media artist but favours acrylic painting. Her work focuses on appropriation with playfulness and heavy texture. While she enjoys making art, Christina’s goal is not for a studio but to work in a more administrative part of the art world, perhaps in a gallery.

Why do our minds enjoy finding faces within objects like cars? How far can an image be pushed before it’s no longer a portrait, and to what extent do we desire to form connections with or recognize the faces we see? This portrait series incorporates a bright colour pallet, varied textures and ranges from the whimsical to the uncanny and unsettling. Sigmund Freud described the uncanny as “a hidden, familiar thing that has undergone repression and then emerged from it.” Similarly, the works are distortions with the familiar human portrait emerging beneath. Inspired by artist Chad Wys, the use of appropriated images creates tension between the realistic image and the absurd abstractions.

CHRISTINA DI PAOLA I’m better with faces than names Acrylic on print 122cm x 81cm


Lauren Duffy is a visual artist with a penchant for printmaking, marketing, and design. Through her practice, Lauren explores ideas involving faddish consumption, lifestyle fetishes, and compulsive trends. Fascinated with expansive and immersive works utilizing pattern, repeat motifs, and colour, she chooses to work primarily in screenprinting. She is currently focused on wall-based print assemblages, which draw the viewer in with aesthetically lush, rich imagery, and play with the illusions of plenty created by consumer culture. Born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Lauren presently resides in Waterloo, Ontario.

LAUREN DUFFY Untitled Screen print 140cm x 140cm

My art practice embraces an integrative approach, combining media from print, installation, and photography, to film. I explore our relationship with consumption and compulsion: be it our constant need to embrace the latest trend, our habitual purchase of ‘health-improving’ products, or (at its most extreme) an unstoppable impulse to cleanse. The most recent phase of my work specifically addresses the condition of faddish consumption habits seen in raw foodism and juicing. One of my central questions is how does an object, practice, or habit develop into a defining feature that shapes a subculture? Do we pick up habits because they interest us, or because they’re on trend? And, in doing so, are we able to understand their history, historical impact, importance or lack of importance?


Sherilyn Edwards (Canada, 1993) is a multidisciplinary painter, pencil artist, and sculptor, whose work explores themes of discomfort, media, and the everyday. She is currently completing her Bachelor of Arts in Honours Studio Practice and Psychology at the University of Waterloo. She has exhibited her work regionally in the Artery at the University of Waterloo, as well as Artistic Dimensions and Quest Art Gallery in Midland, Ontario. She currently lives in Waterloo, Ontario with roots in the Southern Georgian Bay area.

Combining my interest in portraiture and criminal psychology, this series explores the media sensationalization of serial killers and how society reacts to violent crime. It is a collection of portraits of Canadian serial killers that idealizes and contextualizes them into daily life. By creating intimate, small portraits and alluding to the identity of the individual, the viewer is encouraged to interact with the work on a personal level while resolving their discomfort. This body of work stems from my experiences with my parents as psychiatric nurses and also growing up in Penetanguishene, which is home to the former Penetanguishene Mental Health Centre (now Waypoint Mental Health Centre) and the Central North Correctional Centre.

SHERILYN EDWARDS Untitled (Prototypes) Digital print 22cm x 28cm


Shannon Figuereo is an emerging multidisciplinary artist who creates psychologically-charged works exploring the depths of the human condition and human emotion. She brings to light the complexities of the human psyche through visceral allusions to the body, as well as references to spiritual and transcendent experience. Though she continues to exhibit locally and in the Toronto area, Shannon was born and raised in Paris, France. As she finishes her studies in Fine Art and Psychology she continues this exploration through her mentorship with Jon Tobin, while expanding her scope of exhibitions far beyond the local front.

How does one measure the worth of a life, of an experience? We seek to define ourselves, often by declaring who and what we are not. As one goes through life embracing and rejecting parts of themselves, we extend this process to others. This allows for a mental elevation of ourselves above what makes us deeply uncomfortable, allowing us to stay safe in the illusion that we are infallible. It betrays, however, the fundamental truth that suffering, at some point, is an experience common to all. Blending my studies in art and psychology, I feel it important to create an understanding of the true nature and causes of internally destructive ways of coping with one’s own circumstances through the unflinching exploration of the depths human emotion and psychology.

Through many mediums, both the inner workings of this path and the re-humanization of those on it are expressed so that we may reach a better understanding of it, and thus be better equipped to help others and ourselves.

SHANNON FIGUEREO Untitled Acrylic on wood panel 40cm x 40cm


Xenia Fortune is an emerging artist from Brampton, Ontario whose primary artistic practice is in digital media. She uses a variety of techniques to create artworks that reflect her personal interests in family identity. Explorations of her familial interests in culture and personality help her to discover the differences in relationships between her and her large 7-member family. Xenia has worked and interned with local organizations and art institutions, helping with various digital media projects. After the completion of her degree at the University of Waterloo, Xenia plans to continue creating art while pursuing her career interests in the graphic design industry.

My family is my inspiration and motivation in most of my work. My four years at the University of Waterloo have proven to test me both physically and emotionally, and family is the strongest foundation I have to help me persevere. Thus, I have chosen to explore how I identify myself with them in both cultural and personal relationships, defined through the use of colour, texture and the juxtaposition of facial features. My most current work features portraits of my family, whose facial representation and skin are altered with different textures. The textures chosen reflect the personalities, characteristics, or feelings that are directed towards each specific family member. The compositions of these portraits were also configured to help to portray their individual characteristics, but simultaneously create unity as a family.

XENIA FORTUNE Untitled Digital image 36cm x 43cm


Born and raised in Hertfordshire England, Eleanor Rees Howell is an artist and writer whose artwork focuses primarily on portraiture and the figure. Eleanor works with paint and mixed media in a continual, evolving study of the human form. She has been the recipient of numerous scholarships and awards at the University of Waterloo for her art, including the Helen L. Cross Memorial Scholarship and the Jocelyn Cowan Prize in Painting. Rees Howell has exhibited in Canada and is part of an upcoming National Exhibition in the UK this year.

The portrait is constructed from a myriad of human connections. It requires that a human life is placed on a wall and suspended indefinitely; through it we can engage with what it means to be human and the embodiment of the specific moments when it was painted. There is a spirituality involved in the idea of the portrait: it is an intimate encounter between humans, one that involves sitter, painter, and viewer. The portrait is a study of personhood.

ELEANOR HOWELL She Acrylic and charcoal on masonite 60cm x 90cm

In this current body of work, I explore the non finito painting. My portraits involve composition, colour, and shape: each piece’s formal qualities and subject matter work together to create an experience. The nature of the portrait as an ephemeral engagement with humanity is a central component to my artistic practice, and the subjects I select reflect my day-to-day experiences and environments.


Alexander Kean is an emerging Canadian artist who creates conceptual artwork involving personal reflection and the concept of time. He was born in a small fishing town on the Northeast coast of Newfoundland and frequently addresses his cultural identity through meditative processes. His formats include sculptural installation, drawing, and woodworking. Alexander concentrates primarily on the inevitable relationship between time and life, drawing inspiration from the everyday where their co-existence is sometimes neglected. He is currently completing his Bachelors Degree at the University of Waterloo and is undecided in his future path.

My work attempts to replicate emotion through the most simplistic forms of creation. All three pieces in Impermanence embody the ideal that the essence of life is in a constant state of unrest, where time passes nevertheless. Through abstracting the fundamental actions of reduction, organic forms, and repetition, each piece acts as a time for personal reflection. My work progresses involuntarily, only dictated by the intention of producing a biological configuration. The reductive nature of my work intends to explore the concept of time in relation to the self.

ALEXANDER KEAN Impermanence Foam, spray paint, and acrylic 61cm x 122cm

Some of my stylistic inspirations are taken from the work of Carl Krull, who uses line to create stunning three-dimensional drawings of manufactured and organic shapes. His process gives each corresponding line its own distinct set of characteristics, and is the core influence of my work.


Milan Kozomora is a Bosnian born multimedia artist, his work is a blend of new-media and politics. Milan Kozomora je bosanski rođen multimedijalni umjetnik, njegov rad je spoj novih medija i politike. Milan Kozomora est un artiste multimédia né en Bosnie, son travail est un mélange de nouveaux médias et de la politique.

Милан является боснийский родился мультимедийный художник, его работы представляет собой смесь новых медиа и политики. ミラ ンKOZOMORA は、彼の作品は、新しいメデ ィアと政治のブレンドである、 ボスニア生まれ のマルチメディア·アーティストである。

My work began as an experiment in technology: I developed a visual method that could hack the viewing centers of the brain, and corrupt a camera’s lens. The ambiguous imagery in my work is a combination of woven pictures from my homes - from wartime Sarajevo to Kitchener City Hall. My subjects are politically related. Although their relationships become discomposed and lost when sewn together with technology, they generate a portrait of collective human action in an increasingly technologically advancing world.

MILAN KOZOMORA Hyperion II Digital print 124cm x 71cm


Žana Kozomora was born in Sarajevo, Bosnia and grew up in Kitchener, Ontario. She completed her Honours Studio BA at the University of Waterloo with a Professional Specialization. Her professional experience spans various local art institutions, including UWAG, which inform her curatorial projects at The Artery gallery, and she has successfully conceived and received a grant from the Arts Endowment Fund for a student run expedition. Her work is comprised of an experimental archive of inherited and displaced materials; objects, photos, and various institutional documentations which explore issues of contemporary diaspora in relation to identity, memory, and space.

ŽANA KOZOMORA The Visitor Projection on kinetic sculpture Installation

Utilizing elements of printmaking, sculpture, video and installation, I seek to simultaneously hide and expose the material processes of each medium to emphasize tensions within collective trauma and amnesia. My recent body of work sources traditional embellished domestic and institutional framing devices, removing and appropriating their cultural and political contexts, further translating them as flexible, permeable, or ephemeral pieces. By replicating these symbols through digital film, print, and sculpture, a distorted gesture is formed to survey how displaced objects harbour and reinforce complex structures of identity and nationality. The projects are installation based and thus form compositions, sites, and spaces for negotiating the layered boundaries between the private and the public self, invoking an emotional response in the viewer.


Erin focuses on digital art and is interested in creating works that question social perception of identity and image. Born in Barrie, Ontario, she was self-taught from a young age with a strong inclination towards graphic design, web design, and development. Working towards becoming a graphic artist and designer, she has had several volunteer and cooperative positions with graphic and web design, as well as user interface development, where she has mentored others with interest in the graphics programs.

My work explores the visual and idealistic aesthetic of Disney’s characters and questions their realism. Taking my own experiences growing up with these films, I question the effect they have, especially on their younger audience. The women are shown as dainty and fragile, while the men are fearless and muscular, often coming to the rescue of the “damsel in distress”. These stereotypical characters can have a lasting impression on malleable minds: shaping the way they perceive beauty, how they should be leading their lives, and everyday social interactions. I have challenged these aesthetics, placing recognizable Disney characters into situations that are uncharacteristic. In this way, I leave the viewer to make their own commentary about the scenes they are viewing in comparison to the films they know.

ERIN LEACH My Prince... Digital image 182cm x 121cm


Krystyna Maresch is an emerging conceptualbased artist who works primarily with print, collage, media, and installation. She was born in Kitchener, Ontario and is currently completing an honours degree in Fine Arts (Studio Practice) with a Teaching Preparation Specialization at the University of Waterloo. Her focus is on the female perspective and how female identities are shaped by society. She plans to further her education in attaining a B.Ed as well as continuing her practice.

Defined as a woman, the space I occupy in this world is predetermined. We are a spectacle, a constant status as objects of vision for the male gaze. The female body can never enter the public realm without being observed. Our identities are constructed and defined by others, by the spectator. We often become vulnerable to this outside approval. As our bodies are regarded as a sight, I explore the homonymic dichotomy of sight and site. Within the site, I invade the space with the male figure. Through collage and gestural drawing of the figures, their identities become stripped away and their gaze becomes concealed. With my art, I aim to eliminate the power of the gaze: to be seen without vision.

KRYSTYNA MARESCH Site & Sight Ink and collage 37cm x 28cm


Mary Murphy is an emerging artist from Kitchener, Ontario. Working as a painter she focuses on the idea of how time, memory, and awareness effect experience. Breaking the mold on the ideas attached to things has been an underlying drive for the artist, as well as the study of how light can affect perception. Before studying at the University of Waterloo, Murphy was head of the arts council within Our Lady of Lourdes School situated in Guelph, Ontario.

I endeavor with each painting to explore the idea of light and the concept of perception. Each of my works begins by documenting objects and light in a way that makes them seem obscure and difficult to recognize. The sources are often photographs or scans, and are treated as information which is processed through painting. Painting then becomes a matter of dealing with fragments and pieces of information which both keep and lose parts of their original sources. The process of painting itself both manipulates light and tries to create tension between the original information and the paint. The objective of these ideas is to explore the concept of reality, perception, and retention.

MARY MURPHY Permutation Oil on mylar and masonite 60cm x 91cm


Caitlin O’Brien is a painter who no longer paints. She fell out of love with painting two years ago and has never turned back. Her preferred mode of creation is sculpture, which she uses to translate her opinions of the everyday Western world in which she resides. In a constant state of flux, it’s difficult to write a bio on a person that has not fully formed. Please check back at a later date for more details.

I use the subject matter of the everyday to bring attention to our unconscious mode of being. I am interested in how objects’ meanings change once their appearance and context has been altered. My work is intended to be a winky face at Western culture. It is a joke we can all laugh at because we are (un)fortunate enough to live in society of excess. I want to question what art is and why it matters. Is this art or is this (f)art?

CAITLIN O’BRIEN The Things You Own End up Owning You Mixed Media 35cm x 15cm x 18cm approx.


Born and raised in a small town in southwestern Ontario, Kayla Oliveira’s upbringing and large family dynamics are the core inspirations of her artwork. Having no artistic influences while growing up, Kayla produced art as a hobby. Now, art is seen as a creative outlet and a method of self-expression through a minimalist and conceptual art practice. Solely focusing on labour-intensive processes, she views art as being very therapeutic and does not focus on the final product.

Time is a constituent that is out of our control, passing by perpetually and measured in a multitude of ways. One is always born and experiences an end: death is just an example of the passing of time. It is a continual occurrence that has shown its presence with members of my family and close friends. The decision to depict their existence solely on the time they lived creates a comparison that can be measured between all who pass before and after them. By examining the months, days or even minutes of a life, time is put into perspective of how little there actually is.

KAYLA OLIVEIRA Untitled Mylar 46cm x 320cm


Amara Pope is receiving her Bachelors of Arts in Fine Arts and English with a Global Experience Certificate and a Digital Media Specialization. With international and local experience teaching Literature and Fine Arts in elementary, high school, and university, she combines her passions of English and Art to create multimedia pieces. Her work experience in marketing for prestigious institutions and businesses has highly influenced her concern in the mode of a message and interactive experiences with the audience. Her recent exposure and interest in storytelling from the Caribbean is evolving throughout her artwork.

Memory is malleable. Over time it changes the way we remember, celebrate, or shame events in our past. My work explores the deterioration of cultural memory: how one identifies and positions themselves in their culture, in accordance to their hereditary roots. Being raised in Canada with immigrant parents, I raise questions about how cultural events and activities are renegotiated over time,as the significance of symbols and values change according to different cultural contexts. A sense of identity and belonging to one culture shifts, as new associations are made and older ones are broken. As someone who strongly believes in equality and the power of an image and language, my most recent work brings together slam poetry and paintings to create pieces about racism, diaspora, and identity.

AMARA POPE Corruption Acrylic and ink Video projection


An avid doodler since birth, Lorna Qin knew she wanted to do something visually creative as a career path. As someone who heavily focuses on digital art and design, she likes to refer back to traditional art as a source of her inspiration. Throughout childhood, Lorna had always been engrossed in the land of fantasy and video games; much of her art inspiration came from childhood hobbies and interests. What captivated her interest was the beautiful and intricate, yet rich, creative details put into fictional characters and stories. Her favourite artists include Marumiyan and Tom Thayer.

As an origami enthusiast since a young age, this piece expands on the potential of paper and branches off from traditional origami. Its sophisticated details and form differentiate it from the common paper crane, as it evolves into something more complex. I used the advantages of paper and moulded it into a sculpture that breaks out of its geometric shape. Having been influenced by a western society, I was drawn by its folklore, mythology and media. By combining these two elements together from my childhood, I turn them into an object of appreciation. It is no longer just a simple folded piece of paper, but something mythical and engaging with its viewers.

LORNA QIN Take Flight Stonehenge, wire, and glue 76cm x 64cm


Stephanie is a first generation Canadian who was raised in a non-traditional household. She’s had the love and support of her mother and grandmother every step of the way, which has greatly influenced her work as a sculptor. Her work is interested in exploring the human condition, and it is her experiences that have helped her to empathize and understand collective emotions. She has been an active volunteer for the Society of Fine Artists, which included taking on the role as a co-curator for the student run gallery at the University of Waterloo. She lives by the idea that there is no such thing as too much information.

My work is about the increasingly ambiguous relationship between self-identity and the idea of private vs. public spaces, thoughts, and interactions. These ideas are explored and developed through personal artifacts, journals, and objects as I explore their most intimate ruminations and fears – the mundane and the seemingly uncommon. By using these memories, I manufacture objects and voice pieces, which act as a collective expression. Handmade illustrative structures are stripped away of the names and owners, embodying a universal trope of the western lifestyle as a first generation Canadian. By humanizing this collective identity, the work expresses the intimate stream of consciousness gathered from personal belongings, emotions, and experiences.

STEPHANIE RAPHAEL Warm Isolation Balsawood, masonite, fabric, polymer 40cm x 30cm approx.


Sara Sadrolhefazi was born in Tehran, Iran. She moved to Canada with her family when she was fourteen years old. She pursued her love of art throughout her years of high school in Oakville, Ontario and decided to attend the University of Waterloo for a degree in Fine Arts. The majority of her work is painting and drawing, and focuses on the themes of culture and identity. Her work has been shown in various group exhibitions as well as in solo shows in both Iran and Canada.

I am fascinated with the differences that exist between Eastern and Western cultures. Being an Iranian-Canadian, I explore the distinctions between these two cultures and the fragments that shape my own identity. Through the juxtaposition of cultural symbols, I show how the different traditions can coexist together. I do this by drawing Persian designs, patterns, and poems directly onto objects that are exclusively Western. The objects are representations of how a person with two nationalities feels: they are symbols of mixed identities in a multicultural society. My current work focuses on the creation of illustrations of Persian carpets as the notion of the ‘East’ on various floorings and surfaces that represent the ‘West’.

SARA SADROLHEFAZI “Saat Bargard” (Culture Shock Series) Ink on hardwood floor 70cm x 110cm


G. Harley Salamanca is a Colombianborn and raised visual artist who moved from Bogotá to London, Ontario in 2005. Harley has had multiple exhibitions in Canada, and his work focuses on a variety of themes pertaining to memory, heritage, light, transcendence, balance, and the encounter of realities. Harley has interned with many well-known galleries and professional artists, among them the Galería El Museo in Colombia, which is considered one of the top art venues in Latin America. Currently, Harley is finishing his degree in Honours Fine Arts at the University of Waterloo.

This new body of work has been highly influenced by still life painters such as Juan Sánchez Cotán, Georges Braque, and Jonas Wood. My work aims to incorporate composition qualities that reflect how these artists have influenced my art practice, while trying to take on a different approach to still life painting. I also aim to maintain a sense of mystery and immortality in my work that echoes the works of these previous still life painters. My main goal is to illustrate a transition from the traditional style of still life paintings to a more modern look, which not only aims to make reference to art history but also comment on the new digitalized world that we live in through the use of solid colors and geometric shapes.

G. HARLEY SALAMANCA Still life after J.S.C. Acrylic on canvas 61cm x 91cm


Madeline’s joint degree in Fine Arts and Theatre allows her to create and discover new ways to combine her interests. Her work explores different mediums by breaking boundaries of their conventional use. She works on a large scale and creates paintings, installation, and sculpture; she allows the material to inform her decisions, which in turn shapes her art. She will continue to combine her passions in her role as Set Designer for the University of Waterloo’s Department of Drama’s production of Unity 1918, scheduled to premiere in fall 2015.

In traditional art materiality is secondary. The meaning of high art is derived from the accuracy of the rendering, rather than the quality of the material. My work explores the medium, drawing attention to industrialization and mass production. Art that is not precious is relatable because it has flaws similar to the audience that views it.

MADELINE SAMMS Drip on Corrugated Plastic Spray paint on corrugated plastic 115cm x 63cm

The material I use is often bent, ripped, and sliced on angles, breaking a traditional rectangular display. The artist’s mark is evident with spray paint treatment on compressed plastic. Compressed plastic is a material usually used in factories that package large mechanical equipment. I have taken this perfect, unnatural material and made it imperfect, exposing a layer of corrugation. The manmade becomes man handled.


Alexandra was born in Kitchener, Ontario and attended Resurrection Secondary School, where she was inspired to pursue a degree in Fine Art. When she started at the University of Waterloo she felt immediately connected with the program and community. In the past four years she has had the opportunity to explore and create her identity as an artist - all culminating in this final show. She would like to thank all of the inspiring people in her life, including her family, friends, and professors.

My artwork brings together my inspiration of sublime paintings from the 18th and 19th centuries, as well as my own experiences with nature. My work is interested in recreating the immersive feeling of the natural world. I create this experience by using the simple materials of mylar and ink in order to simulate the feel of a vast and sprawling forest. Inspired by artist like David Spriggs and Martin Golland, I layer paintings on mylar over and over to create a realistic sense of depth within the piece. Viewers are invited into the piece to explore and discover the forest for themselves.

ALEXANDRA SEHL Trees Ink on mylar 10cm x 8cm


Colleen Shaver is a Kitchener-Waterloo based artist who recently returned from International Exchange in Melbourne, Australia and travel in Japan. Her recent work is influenced by the flux of life which comes with travel. She is a mixed media artist mostly focused in traditional painting of the figure in abstract environments. Much of her artwork is influenced by digital painting, conceptual art, manga/anime, and illustration. Colleen’s work has previously been displayed in Downtown Waterloo.

Coming back home to Canada after being away for a year evokes a strange nostalgia. Old things become new when you haven’t seen them in a long time. I found whilst being away I thought back more than I thought forward. In this final year, we are meant to prepare for a future—uncertain as it may be. My paintings reference through memory: my favourite TV, video games, and comics. How fiction has become such an important part of our perceived (and equally abstract) reality. I find the characters in fiction to be more engaging subjects of portraiture, as their personalities are both real to their audience and relative to the fictional place they occupy. As such, my portrayal may be accurate to myself and entirely unreadable to others.

COLLEEN SHAVER Mind Games Acrylic on canvas 86cm x 46cm


As an artist, writer, producer, and martial artist, Alison Shaw is constantly drawn to creative endeavors. She is currently finishing her Honours BA in Fine Arts and English Rhetoric and Professional Writing at the University of Waterloo. Her work involves intricate details, linework, and digital editing to create decorative, aesthetic, and illustrative pieces. Born in the Niagara Region, Alison now resides in Waterloo, Ontario.

Concerned with issues of femininity, I seek to explore the intrinsic value of decorative and domestic imagery. My work centers around household items - baking pans, tiles, metal spoons, and a kitchen sink - as representative of the domestic expectations of women within a patriarchal society. These items are reclaimed, however, when they are crushed, folded, bent, and then adorned with intricate floral motifs. In doing so these items become both feminine and decorative, patterned with flowers reminiscent of fine china tea sets. The items figuratively crush patriarchal expectations of domesticity and render them obsolete as they exist as aesthetic objects, valuable because of their decorative and beautifully destructed properties.

ALISON SHAW Silver Trio Digital print 33cm x 23cm


Laura Sidoruk is currently completing her final year in Fine Arts at the University of Waterloo and is planning to continue her education in British Columbia where she has applied to Bachelor of Education programs. Laura’s passion for arts and culture has led her to travel Europe and South-East Asia, with more plans to travel and teach abroad in the future. Laura specializes in stop motion animation, focusing on the struggles and hardships of mental illness. Laura hopes to broaden her artistic horizons by immersing herself in different cultures and experiencing what the world has to offer.

LAURA SIDORUK Confessing the Psyche Stop motion animation Collaboration with Alan Sardana

The struggles of mental illness often go unnoticed. It can be very private; some individuals are not willing to share their inner selves with the outside world. I have been exploring the conflicts of mental illness and how it affects each individual differently. I reveal the deep vulnerability of each of my models by exposing their bodies to the camera and unveiling their struggles to the viewer. I create an entity that moves and manifests throughout the body, where I display an internal conflict as an external struggle by using the model’s body as a canvas. I pair these psychological portraits with collaborative audio designed to further enhance the charged psychological feeling of the piece. My aim is to illicit an emotional response within the viewer, as they are confronted with large-scale projected films that trek deep into the models psyche, revealing the darkest parts of their personality.


Katrina Snider is an emerging postminimalist, multi-media artist based in Waterloo, Ontario. During her fourth year at the University of Waterloo Katrina explored many different mediums. Her interests started with painting natural landscapes, printmaking, experimental drawing, and sculptural installations. With the help from the school’s faculty, Katrina was able to create works that occupy a space somewhere between painting, sculpture, poetry, assemblage, and drawing. She is driven by the patterns she sees in the natural world- colours, shapes, and textures, and draws beauty out of humble natural materials. Her lyrical works reflect on the transient nature of the world.

My work is a search for clues and signatures: I explore the relationships between the tree branch and the thread, between the coconut and the copper wire. My work is an exploration of patterns, paradigms, and logarithmic spirals. These patterns exist innately in the natural world as a form of mysticism inhabiting the line between the phenomenal world and the invisible. I search for the unknowable force that drives the patterns that I see, I seek the creative source and the teleological end. With abstract shapes, my investigations of line, volume, texture, shape and form are imbued with a sense of spirituality and inform a deep intellectual curiosity.

KATRINA SNIDER Extension Series II Coconut branch, copper wire, thread, paper 8cm x 8cm x 8cm


Jessica Stickel is a fine artist and illustrator with a passion for painting and drawing. Her work revolves around figure and animal-based subject matter, with a strong interest in the exploration of colour and pattern. She has recently begun to investigate and expand on traditional mediums and incorporate mixed media elements into her work.

This series investigates movement and how our choices and abilities can be fostered and encouraged or stunted and repressed by the influences around us. Focusing on hands, dance, and puppetry, I paint figures that are in relation to outside forces - figures that have their own autonomy, but also are constrained. I seek to show the many sides of power relations and influence, and invoke the understanding that pulling the strings is not always one-sided. These figures explore and defy boundaries, or act within them, and the work delves into themes of liberation, hope, strength, and power within the context of control. The series is made using acrylic paint on a variety of mounts.

JESSICA STICKEL Pull Acrylic on canvas 25cm x 51cm


Réka Szepesvári is a multidisciplinary artist born in Hungary who works primarily in installation, new media, and painting. Her work explores the concept of acquiring and losing language, culture, identity, and self as a result of cultural displacement. Réka is currently a BFA candidate at the University of Waterloo and has received numerous awards including the Lynne Holmes Memorial Award, the Maia Reinking Art Award, and the President’s Scholarship from the University of Waterloo.

RÉKA SZEPESVÁRI That’s how I deal with the cold Yarn and graphite on paper 210cm x 120cm

The principle of linguistic relativity suggests that thought is shaped by language - from which follows the idea of shifting linguistic exposure: How does one’s understanding of their world change as they immerse themselves in a new language, perhaps at the expense of their native tongue? It is a truly complex phenomenon, fascinating and singularly relevant in Canada, where multilingualism is a central tenet of our national identity. My work explores the ensuing synergy as the struggle to hold on to what was clashes with the thrill of becoming something else. I measure processing speed in different languages, using a computer program to clock reaction times to certain images, to investigate how perception is altered during language conflict. The work is a representation of this data, exploring the intricacies of the working mind through diverse mediums. Language becomes portraiture, reflecting upon its unique and vital role in our lives.


Chris Tari’s is interested in communicating ideas through art. Born second-generation Canadian with an Italian heritage and raised in Vaughan, Ontario he studied at the Country Day School followed by the University of Waterloo. His work is focused on subverting popular art and culture, taking inspiration from pop culture, movies, television and books. He works in various media, and has created comic books, unique graphic designs, and images for group shirts, as well as for school newspapers. Chris is working towards a career as a graphic designer, artist, or animator.

My work is an alternative self-portrait that appropriates comic book rhetoric and tropes. I engage in vernacular dialog that eliminates the pretences of classical heroism by stripping away the symbols and attitudes of traditional super heroes. I create a reality where the ordinary is venerated, the banal becomes extraordinary, and heroism is created through irony and comedy. The main character of my stories is a gullible person, a figure that represents naivetĂŠ and infinite potential. My work is in a state of existence between our real lives and the staged, hyperbolic, reality of comic books; it is my negotiation of imagining life in one world while existing in another.

CHRISTOPHER TARI The Misadventures of the Fishman / Sinister Peanut, Fishman Bobble Head, God Burger Digital print / Polymer clay, acrylic paint, metal wire, and cardboard 8cm, 9cm, 15cm approx.


Vickie Vainionpaa is an emerging artist from Waterloo, Ontario. She creates paintings, drawings, and sculptures that deal with theosophy, spirituality, and scientific insight. Her recent exhibitions include a solo show at Jane Bond (Waterloo, ON), and group exhibitions at the Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery (Waterloo, ON) and the University of Waterloo Artery. She has won many creative awards such as the UW Excellence Award for Sculpture and she was a finalist in the “You Innovate” and the “New Era: Introducing” competitions.

My artistic practice includes painting, sculpture, and drawing. I am inspired by contrasting relationships that exist in both our inner and outer worlds. Specifically, the connections between scientific truth and spiritual insight, individual nature and collective universal being, and the natural and man-made worlds. My work questions the ways in which these dualities are fundamentally connected. Does modern science hinder or encourage our capacity for spiritual enlightenment? Where does the natural world end and the material world begin? What are the basic individual truths that connect every culture, philosophy, and religion of the world? My artwork does not strive to reveal an ultimate truth; rather, it questions whether an ultimate truth can really exist.

VICKIE VAINIONPAA The Third Insight Oil and acrylic, digital print on canvas 51cm x 61cm


Kelcie Vouk is in her final year of the Fine Arts program at the University of Waterloo, and is hoping to complete her Bachelors of Education in 2016. She specializes in large-scale installation pieces, with an emphasis on the human body. Kelcie plans on teaching abroad after she completes her degree, and intends to spend as much of her time learning about international artistic practices as possible during that time. She hopes to incorporate diverse techniques and styles into her own practice, as well as her teaching.

KELCIE VOUK Cold Shoulder Paper Installation

Being physically excluded from a group of people is one of those universal human experiences, immediately understandable and uncomfortable. To stand with a circle of people while they exclude you is a feeling that every person experiences in their lives, and also one that everyone participates in. It was that feeling of physical separation from a group that sparked the idea for Exclusion. The figures are made of paper and casts taken from plaster molds, and are suspended from fishing wire. Each plaster cast was done of the back of a person, from neck to ankles, and then used as raw material to create the larger sculptural shape. The choice to use the backside of the models as opposed to the front goes hand in hand with the sensation of being given the cold shoulder, or being excluded by a person or persons.


Christine Yang was born in Buffalo, NY, and has since relocated to Toronto, ON. After five years in the Arts and Business program, she will graduate with a major in Fine Arts and a specialization in Digital Arts Communications. She is currently a local designer working with small and medium sized companies on brand development, print media, and web development. Christine works mainly with mixed media and sculpture, exploring ideas of self and process through experimentation. Her art is focused on the appreciation of the body – its form, function, and characteristics.

Upon peeling back the many layers of different individuals, there seems to be common ground in a sea of diversity. Regardless of this diversity, we are all human and hold the same human traits. We have evolved to survive hardships and persevere. Fundamentally, we have the same ability to adapt and be fluid with the obstacles that are thrown at us. Our unique personalities make us complex, and at the same time make us extremely fragile. My work attempts to expose this fragility through the form of sculpture. By straying away from any recognizable form, the sculpture gives the audience freedom of perception. The wide range of possible interpretations gives a unique experience for each individual.

CHRISTINE YANG Core Wood and paper 100cm x 180cm x 200cm approx.



The students of the University of Waterloo Year End Show 2015 would like to acknowledge instructors, staff, volunteers, and all of the generous sponsors that helped make this event a possibility. This event would not have been possible without your valued contributions. Your time, donations and continued support have truly enhanced the experience for both participants and guests alike. We are truly grateful for all the help we received while organizing and planning this event. The essence of beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude. Friedrich NietzscheÂ



DESIGN Lorena Almaraz De La G. Shannon Andeel Rachel Brown Kayla Oliveira


Holly Burchat Sherilyn Edwards Krystyna Maresch Amara Pope Stephanie Raphael Sara Sadrolhefazi Katrina Sinder Christopher Tari

EDITORS Eleanor Howell Milan Kozomora Alison Shaw FOREWORD Doug Kirton Jane Tingley INTRODUCTION Eleanor Howell PHOTOGRAPHY Stephanie Blackwell Laura Sidoruk Kelcie Vouk

Shannon Figuereo Milan Kozomora Žana Kozomora INSTALLATION Nashid Chowdhury Xenia Fortune Alexander Kean Milan Kozomora G. Harley Salamanca DIDACTICS Jessica Dash Sara Deeming Alex Sehl CATERING Mary Murphy Jessica Stickel Vickie Vainionpaa

MARKETING Cara Chambers Lauren Duffy Erin Leach Réka Szepesvári