By Shelby Otto
KU senior studio art major, Linda Aragon, who has a concentration in painting, strives to set herself apart in today’s contemporary art scene.
Between October and November, Aragon exhibited work in four different solo and group exhibitions, all of various mediums. Aragon, with graduation still a year away, puts herself at the forefront of KU’s Art & Art History Department through her outgoing and engaging nature.
Though her work was not installed in the studio art program’s most recent Senior Show last spring, she nonetheless shared her artwork with Art Harrington, Director of the Emerging Artist Program at Red Raven Art Gallery in Lancaster, Pa. The emerging artist is typically chosen from among the senior show exhibitors. However, Aragon’s work was chosen for the month of November regardless.
“She introduced herself and came to me,” said Harrington. This was a display of her determination to have her work seen. According to Harrington, Aragon made her series of still life paintings at Red Raven specifically for that show, “a very, very smart move” for a young artist.
“She is very art savvy and she really knows how to put together a show,” Harrington stated.
Despite her concentration in painting, Aragon works across mediums both at KU and in the surrounding area. Because KU is known for their successful arts community, it can often be hard to stand out as a creative individual.
In order to individualize one’s self as an artist, Aragon stated, “It is not talent [that sets you apart]; it’s hard work. People set themselves apart by the amount of work that they do. Talent is a pursued interest.”
Aragon has more recently begun work in printmaking with professor Evan Summer. “Linda took intro to printmaking last spring and she began doing really outstanding work for the intro class,” Summer stated.
Since then, Aragon has contributed two prints to Summer’s latest show at Goggleworks in Reading, entitled, “Kutztown Impressions.” These works include a mezzotint entitled “Flamenco Dancer” and an etching titled “The Bellagio.”
Additionally, Aragon exhibited her own show this past month, “Laid Bare,” at the McFarland Student Union Building’s Brass Rail Gallery.
This particular show was a collection of charcoal figure drawings that were, for the most part, completed outside of class. Some of those works simply depict a figure’s hair. “Conceptually, I think that that’s a very strong idea that she should push,” claimed painting professor, Mark Mahosky.
“It comes almost natural when it comes to charcoal drawing,” Aragon stated. “I am confident in my ability to render a person, and not just render a person, but render their likeness.” She later related that drawing often serves as the foundation for almost any artistic medium, which perhaps has enabled her to succeed both locally and abroad.
Finally, Aragon exhibited her work “Summer’s Dance” in the MSU Bear Den’s latest show too. An oil on panel work depicting the interaction of flowers and other botanical items, this particular painting fit perfectly in the show “Treason Flowers,” curated by Mahosky.
Though the guidelines for the show were simple (include any work depicting a tree or flower), Aragon’s painting takes on a heavy, solemn presence with a black background that forces the flowers and vines to the foreground. “Linda wants to do everything, and I admire that energy,” Mahosky said.
These four shows have recently ended, but you can still find Aragon’s work at lindaaragonart.com.