Stan State School of the Arts is celebrating the one-year anniversary of their very own art gallery in downtown Turlock with a "Year in Space" art show.  As part of this month's “Year in Space” celebration, Bachelors of Fine Arts (BFA) students are showcasing a variety of art pieces that they have created over the past year. In addition, a solo exhibition by BFA student and artist Saul Acevedo is on display, which featured a public reception on Thursday night.

Art Space Welcome

Stan State's "Art Space" has been open in downtown Turlock for the past year and is free to the public. (Signal Photo/Christopher Correa)

Stan State has hosted a number of art exhibits and galleries at several venues for many years, but their downtown showroom (known as the "Art Space") has now been open to the public at their current location for one year. The Art Space showcases art pieces from Stan State students, alumni, faculty, local artists, and even professional artists. 

Every month the Art Space takes on a different theme, encouraging artists to create new and unique pieces for the public to enjoy. With each respective theme, a solo exhibition and reception accompanies it.

In celebrating the one-year anniversary of the Art Space, there is no specific or outstanding themes this month. Instead, a variety of themes are on display to showcase the diversity of artists and their styles. Some of the diverse styles on display include sculptures, paintings, and prints.

This month’s accompanying solo exhibition is by BFA student Saul Acevedo. His exhibition (Accepting the Avoided) included a variety of styles, all with similar messages pertaining to his passion, and concerns for nature. He explained that nature is one of his inspirations because, to him, it serves as a universal symbol that people can identify with, because everyone encounters it. “I want to focus on the effects that nature is enduring because of humans and technology. These pieces show what our world will look like if we don’t do something. We are so disconnected and we are destroying everything.”

Saul Acevedo

Saul Acevedo speaks about his solo exhibit at the Art Space during his public reception on Thursday night. (Signal Photo/Laura Tadeo)

Acevedo hopes that those visiting and viewing his work will be inspired. “I am implying that we are here sharing this world, and I am trying to bring people together so we can move forward. It is our job to make sure that this place (the Earth) is still available for future generations to enjoy in the same way that we all do.”

The Art Space is also used as an opportunity for students to have their art critiqued by art professors and experts. Acevedo is very grateful for this, as he finds criticism of all kinds to be very beneficial. “I ask everyone what they see or what they’re feeling because it allows me to see different things. So for me, it was important to get critiqued.”

Acevedo Art

"Evolution Without Humans" by this month's solo exhibitionist Saul Acevedo. He says the message is that even though nature is still alive, it is dying. But that the sunflower is a sign of hope. (Signal Photo/Laura Tadeo)



BFA student Cristi Denney (senior, Art) has several pieces of her artwork on display this month as well.  She spoke to Art Space visitors more about the ideas behind some of her work. “I kind of just paint whatever comes to my mind at the moment.” Denney’s explanation was a common statement among the other BFA students when talking about their work.

BFA students help run and maintain the space, and many of their own works are also on display. Elizabeth Ruvalcaba (senior, Art) is one of the many who help run and maintain the space. Additionally, she has several pieces of her own art on display at the Art Space this month. She says that the Art Space is a great place for her and her peers to express their thoughts and feelings and encourages people to come visit and check out the artwork. “We have a lot of cool pieces on display here, and it’s a really good opportunity for people to get an up-close look at some very unique art,” said Ruvalcaba.

For those who are unable to attend a reception, there is still an opportunity for the public to meet and speak with some of the artists. “Sometimes the artists are even here working on other projects and are available to talk, which is cool if you’re looking to find out more about their work,” Ruvalcaba said.

She also recommended that those who are looking for something interesting and fun to do, make their way downtown and visit the Art Space. “This space is open to anybody and it’s free to come in and browse all the art. It’s something that I think people should really take advantage of.”

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