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Sella-Granata Gallery Showcases New Grad Students

The Sella-Granata Art Gallery is showcasing work by new graduate students in studio art Ryan Akers, Molly Greene, William Henry, Parker Hunt, Stephanie Kirkland and Kole Nichols. The exhibition will run from September 21 through October 9 in the SGAG in Woods Hall and online. View the exhibition on Flickr.com and on Facebook.com.

Ryan Akers

Ryan Akers (painting) received a BA from The University of Alabama in 2020 with a degree from New College interdisciplinary studies (literature, art, and society). Akers organized and curated the online exhibition What You Unlearn.

“I use the process of automatic drawing to create my own iconography; a type of self-mythologizing that is equal parts release and atonement. By reflecting the malaise of cultural and sexual violence enacted upon me while coming of age in a religious community in small-town Alabama, as well as my own transgressions, my hope is that my work vilifies all violence and in turn coerces the viewer into creating future imaginaries that subvert all systemic forms of discrimination.”

Molly Greene

Molly Greene (sculpture) received the BA in studio art from Samford University and studied a semester at the Burren College of Art in Ireland. Greene held an internship at the Birmingham Museum of Art in Education and Community Engagement and worked as a curator for the Great Explorations Children’s Museum in Saint Petersburg, Fla.

“My work is prompted by shadows, movement and time. I am exploring memory through two and three-dimensional work. Each material lends itself to the changing nature of memories: the strokes of a pallet knife, folds of linen, curves of leaves. Through creating textile reliefs, I am able to draw upon memory. Swaths of color lift off the wall, and their presence appears to drift like time. Adorning them are small relics, little ornaments of the past: dried flowers, sewn patches, dangling shells pointing to a past life. My interest in this subject confronts the human experience in time and place. What is it to be both made by the past but continually created? There is a codependence that exists between memory and self; one necessitates the other. We create memories that in turn create us. The past and present converge.”

William Henry, “Ebony,” 2017, digital photography on aluminum, 20 x 24 inches.

William Henry (printmaking) received the BFA from the University of Montevallo in 2017.  Henry works in photography, printmaking and graphic design. His freelance clients include University of Montevallo Spectrum Gender/Sexuality Alliance, University of Montevallo Phi Gamma Delta, and the University of Montevallo Communications Department. He worked as a photographer and wardrobe assistant for Ann Trondson and his work was part of the Radiant Beings exhibition at Lowe Mill in Huntsville.

“The world.
Loves black folks to make art about being black.
Really dislikes black folks to talk about being black.
Black music, films, shows at an all time high.
It’s profitable to be black and share your black stories to entertain, but not profitable to talk about your black experience.
They want us to “let the work speak for itself” but not the work speaks for itself.
Or let the worth speak for itself.”  — Solange remembering Nina Simone

Parker Hunt (ceramics) received the BFA from the University of Montevallo in ceramics and sculpture in 2013. Hunt has had a two-person show with John Oles at the Walnut Gallery in Gadsden and exhibited his work regionally at juried exhibitions, including the 25th Annual Strictly Functional Pottery National; and Cup: The Intimate Object XIII, Charlie Cummings Gallery, Carrboro, NC. He has been visiting artist at Carlow University, artist assistant at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, and has been artist in residence at the Walnut Gallery and at the Mary G. Hardin Center for Cultural Arts in Gadsden, Ala.

“Throughout history, the vessel has been used in cultural rituals, a means to store food and water and a major source for trade. My interest is within the ceramic vessel; while still being formed the soft clay is able to capture marks made by tools, ribs and the potter’s hands. Once the vessels are fired, these marks are archived in the material and preserved long after the potter has been deceased. This gives me a sense of exploration of the vessel and eventually leads to self-reflection of not only myself but of my own work, which I want to charge emotionally through the use of my hands and tools.”

Stephanie Kirkland

Stephanie Kirkland (painting) earned a bachelor’s degree in studio art and English from UA in 2012. After graduating, she spent a year teaching in rural Alabama before working in the communications field. Kirkland spends much of her free time hiking, which greatly influences her work.

“My work aims to capture the feeling of being outdoors. Recognizing the power of green spaces to relieve stress and improve mental health, my paintings aim to bring the outside in, and to increase appreciation and protection of our natural environment.”

Kole Nichols (printmaking) holds a BFA from the University of Alabama in  Birmingham. Nichols is a multi-disciplinary artist from Florence, Alabama. His practice has primarily consisted of the exploration of the liminal space between feelings of strength and fragility and often reflect themes of encapsulating adoption, self-identity, memory and fear. By employing the use of transparent mediums like tar gel, rice paper, emulsions and resins, his work bridges traditional forms of printmaking, drawing and collage. He combines the use of ephemera, paper, thread and fragments of made and found images that are re-contextualized and combined to create metaphoric narratives. These materials are utilized in an effort to pair both graphic and abstract situations mapped from observations of repetition within his life.

Kole Nichols

The Sella-Granata Art Gallery is an essential part of the education and development of UA students and our community. Hours are Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Admission to the gallery is free. The gallery is open to the public with reduced capacity, limited to ten (10) visitors at a time. Visitors must wear face coverings inside the gallery and maintain a minimum distance of six feet from others. 

Information about visitor parking is available on the UA parking services website. Parking is free on campus in a legal space after business hours. For more information, contact the gallery at (205) 348-1893. Have questions or need assistance? Call (205) 348-1893. 

For more information about The University of Alabama’s programs in studio art and art history, visit our Degree Programs page.