Lauren Britton, Sinking Ship, 2012, acrylic and oil on canvas, 3×4 ft., courtesy of the artist
The works of art selected for showcase in this year’s Best of SUNY Student Art Exhibition were announced last week and a painting by Purchase College rising senior Lauren Britton, a double major in Painting & Drawing and Art History, was among them.
Britton received an Honorable Mention award for her painting Sinking Ship from 2012. The boat in the three-by-four foot painting is an allegory for self, an ongoing theme in her work at the time. “Sometimes the boat was floating along, sometimes it was sinking and sometimes it had capsized all together. The struggle in these paintings was often to keep the boat afloat…” she explains via email.
As Sinking Ship progressed, she turned a capsized boat into one merely sinking by making a radical move. “I physically flipped the canvas to reflect that change in thought,” she says. Although the boat is taking on water, she painted a ladder as an escape route for both herself and the viewer. “I trust my hand and my intuition to make decisions while making my work, and I often try to listen to my unconscious mind,” reads her artist statement.
“The Best of SUNY art exhibition showcases works created by our top student artists from colleges and universities across New York over the past year,” said Chancellor Zimpher. “This annual exhibit at the Museum has become a must-see attraction in our state’s capital city. Congratulations to each of this year’s winners and to all of the students with art on display in this exhibit.” The exhibition is on view through September 15 at the New York State Museum in Albany.
Currently studying at the Siena Arts Institute in Siena, Italy, Britton is the using four-week intensive program to build her portfolio and push herself as an artist. “Working in new ways is something I am always being pushed to do while I have been in Siena. The diverse international community that has formed around this program continually offers a new way of looking at work that has been both exciting and refreshing,” she explains.
The Fairport, NY native also thrives in the close-knit community here at Purchase College, which drove not only her prolific year in the studio, but her level of work. “In this super-close community at Purchase College, it becomes all about trying to find the best way to make your work. This kind of community spirit is what makes Purchase amazing to me,” she adds.
Britton is a research assistant at two galleries in Manhattan, and looks forward to taking a year off to do residencies after graduation before heading to graduate school.
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