Featured image for post: Senior Exhibition for Visual, Performing, and Communication Arts Opens on Saturday, April 27

Senior Exhibition for Visual, Performing, and Communication Arts Opens on Saturday, April 27

WILSON, N.C. — March 28, 2019 — Barton College is pleased to announce the opening of the 2019 Senior Exhibition, on view beginning Saturday, April 27. An Opening Reception will be held on Saturday evening, April 27, from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Barton Art Galleries in Case Art Building on campus. In collaboration with this festive evening, there also will be the music performance “The Radio Room,” featuring Drew Armstrong, in the Kennedy Family Theatre at 8 p.m. These events are open to the public at no charge, and the community is invited to attend.

Seniors within the School of Visual, Performing and Communications Arts will showcase their works or representations of their work in the Barton Art Galleries through May 12.

There are several additional events scheduled as part of the 2019 Senior Exhibition. Among them will be a performance featuring Daniel Toler and Megan Hickey in “A Night on Broadway: What Could Go Wrong,” on Wednesday, April 17, at 5:30 p.m. in the Kennedy Family Theatre.

Also, on Thursday, April 25, Chris Cook, Hollande Joyner, Lawrence McLean, Frankcesca Garcia, Camerin McPherson, and Christian Reyes will present their senior presentations at 8 a.m. in the Band Room of the Roma Hackney Music Building. On Monday, April 29, Drew Armstrong, Dana Avram, Vanessa Sanoja Alvarez, and Elizabeth Sloop will share their senior presentations at 5 p.m., in the Band Room of the Roma Hackney Music Building. And, on Tuesday, April 30, Crystal Bowers, Stephen Foy, Aimee Nguyen, Daniel Toler, Angel Webb, and Andrew Turner will deliver their senior presentations at 8 a.m. in the Barton Art Galleries in Case Art Building.

These 16 seniors representing the Theatre, Mass Communications, and Visual Arts programs at Barton include:

Brian Andrew Armstrong of Edenton plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Audio Recording Technology.

Armstrong’s senior presentation will include an inside look into his personal website, which contains clips of recordings he has made here at Barton, and a demonstration of a guitar amplifier that he built from scratch. Armstrong is also in a band called the Radio Room with fellow student Andrew Turner, and will perform in a show at the Kennedy Family Theatre following the senior exhibition opening reception.

Referencing Armstrong’s professional work, Jerry Bodrie, a recording client of Armstrong, notes, “Recording with Drew was very successful, and we have been pleased with the results.”

After graduation, Armstrong plans to live in Raleigh and work part time at a studio and an audio technology company, with the goal of establishing his own studio in the near future.

Daria Theodora Avram of Buzau, Romania, plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre with a concentration in Performance, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology.

Her extensive experience in multiple theatre productions across the stages of Spain, England, Romania, and America have given Avram a diverse understanding of cultural differences, which lies at the core of her final project. “This short play is just the beginning of a successful long-term campaign of placing Romania on the map of desired travel destinations,” explains Avram. “At the same time, there have been many obstacles created because I have been a foreign everywhere I lived, and through this production, I hope to let the world know that the stage is for anyone who can transform common elements into an enjoyable journey, no matter the language barrier, accent, or mentality.”

Referencing Avram’s work in class, assistant professor of communications Blaise Noto, shares, “Daria goes beyond what is expected, providing additional depth and insights that bring her academic and experiential work to another level.”

Avram’s creative and versatile persona attracted her to the world of public relations, which she chose as a minor, and, which will be her focus after graduation. She plans to move to Canada or return to Europe, where she already has some marketing and business development opportunities that could move her closer to her goal of working for and/or within a close proximity of her home country of Romania.

Crystal Lee Bowers is a native of Lawrence Harbor, N.J., who plans to graduate in December with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with concentrations in Graphic Design and Painting.

Bowers is working on a powerful and emotionally driven project that reflects how she feels about deaths in the LGBTQ+ community. Various techniques such as acrylic painting and graphic imaging were used to create her finished piece “Voices in the Darkness.”

“It is so important that the LGBTQ+ community has a voice for those lost,” shares Bowers. “Giving each of these portraits some form of life helps to bring awareness to a community that is so often overlooked.”

“Crystal showcases a design style where “everything old is new again,” explains Susan Fecho, professor of art and dean of Barton College’s School of Visual, Performing, and Communication Arts. “She borrows from the retro fonts of mid-century, and brings a newness by including hand-drawn illustrations and vivid pops of color.”

Bowers plans to attend graduate school for printmaking and pursue a career as a mixed media artist.

Chris Jalen Cook, from Knoxville, Tenn., plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communications Studies.

Cook has the ability to make a tremendous impact on an audience with his strong communications skillset. He has taken advantage of this strength in his communication studies, while also excelling in collegiate athletics.

“Through my collegiate basketball experience, I have learned patience, gratitude, team work, commitment, dedication, leadership, and further developed my listening skills,” shares Cook. “That experience has also taught me how to master time management. With traveling, practices, homework, and physical training, time management has played a huge role in my life. Being a student athlete has also taught me to believe in myself and to work hard every day, while believing in my goals. I am grateful for the experience that I have had at Barton College. In the last two years, I have learned about myself as a man and about the person I want to become.”

“Since coming to Barton, Chris Cook has shown his passion and talent for the game — both on and off the court,” explains Noto. “He smoothed out the rough edges, refined and enhanced his playing and academic skills, and became not only a dedicated and diligent student and athlete, but also a gentleman … and a force to be reckoned with.”

After Cook graduates, his goal is become a professional athlete and a motivational speaker.

Stephen Ezekiel Foy hails from Richlands, and he plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre with a concentration in Musical Theatre, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Broadcast Video Production.

Foy has written, filmed, and edited his own short film to showcase as his senior project. The film began as a stage production, but Foy adapted it for the screen, hoping to combine his video skills with his knowledge of directing.

“I have known Stephen Foy as a man of many roles,” notes Dr. Jane Kolunie, professor of biology. “As a gifted and talented actor with whom I have sung and danced joyfully many times. As a serious and motivated student, eager to fulfill his dreams. As a peer leader and mentor to other students sharing his love and sense of pride for Barton College, his fraternity, and his peers. But most importantly, as a kind and caring friend who always makes me smile.”

Foy plans to move to Walt Disney World, where he will participate in the Disney College Program following graduation. His plan includes staying in Orlando to work more intensively with the Disney Company with the hope of securing a job with ESPN.

Diane Frankcesca Garcia is a native of Queens, N.Y., but she now recognizes her hometown as Grifton. She plans to graduate in May with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Journalism.

Garcia transferred to Barton College from Pitt Community College with an Associate in Applied Science degree in Graphic Design and Advertising. With her skills of graphic design and journalism, she has produced a magazine to present her work. Her goal is for readers to understand that both journalism and graphic design can be combined to establish a strong ethnic background.

“I always wanted to have two specialties that would make me a strong candidate for the workforce,” shares Garcia. “I believe journalism and graphic design are both art in their own media, and, when combined, it is something that everyone needs. And, that is satisfying for me to know I can do both.”

“Over the past two years, I have watched Diane Garcia grow both intellectually and creatively, and develop the critical thinking and professional skills needed in a dynamic, fast-paced career in journalism and mass communications,” explains Noto. “And together, with her engaging personality and eagerness to learn, she is certain to succeed in whatever professional endeavors she chooses to pursue.”

After she graduates, Garcia plans to continue her work as a copy editor at a newspaper company, while also freelancing as a graphic designer. She looks forward to further developing her skills in design and writing while pursuing these roles.

Hollande Marquis Joyner, a native of Snow Hill, plans to graduate in December with a Bachelor in Science degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Audio Recording Technology.

Throughout childhood, Joyner says he always embraced the sound of music. Whether it was hip-hop, pop, R&B, electronic, or alternative rock. He was there with an open mind, listening. Joyner created instrumentals in the audio program studio when he was 14, and he soon gained an interest in advertising and graphic design. While he earned an Associate in Applied Science degree in Graphic Design in 2016, he later decided he wanted to return to work in the music industry. This decision led him to Barton, where he began to focus on music recording technology.

When recording an artist, Joyner says his inspiration comes from music artist Kanye West and film composer Ludwig Göransson. When mixing audio, he wants to make sure the quality is pure and clean. “I like to make the artist feel comfortable and feed off of his/her creative energy,” Joyner explains.

“Hollande created an environment of comfort to be able to freely record all my vocals,” shares Willie Fisher, a local recording artist from Grifton. “If there was something of concern to him, he made it known to me so that we could correct it for better quality.”

After graduation, Joyner plans to apply for an internship to further strengthen his skills in audio recording.

Lawrence Griffen McLean of Rocky Mount plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Broadcast Video Production.

McLean sees journalism as a way to tell a story, a way to convey a message in written and broadcast forms. He notes that journalism is something he holds close, especially when it comes to gaming journalism.

Referencing McLean’s skills, Webster Struthers, associate professor of communications, notes, “Lawrence’s videography skills have progressed exponentially since he has worked for WEDT, and I am confident he will soon be a professional videographer.”

Inspired by “IGN” or “Game Informer” reviews and articles, McLean plans to pursue a career as a gaming journalist following graduation.

Camerin Avery McPherson of Hillsborough plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Arts and Media.

McPherson is a cartoonist and literary storyteller who has developed a set of comic books, stickers, posters, and pins adapted from his original creative writings for the senior exhibition. His stories and characters are often labeled as wholesomely adorable, yet gruesomely morbid.

McPherson shares that during his freshman year, someone told him to draw more realistically, as the style of his cutesy characters undermined the serious and mature themes in which they starred. However, McPherson notes that the contrast between his comic’s appearances and its subject matter actually bolstered their appeal. “Realism can often be too hard on the eyes,” shares McPherson. “Whenever the ugly truth rears its head, it’s only natural to want to turn away. With cartoons, we have the ability to observe and confront the problems we face every day, without having to fully submerge ourselves into the grimness of cruel realities.”

“Cam has been working on this series throughout his tenure at Barton,” shares Fecho. “I am enthusiastic about seeing the finalized product.”

After graduation, McPherson plans to create an original web comic while also dabbling in a variety of creative fields that range from graphic artistry to radio hosting, voice acting, and theatrical acting.

Aimee Blair Nguyen is a native of Wilson. She plans to graduate in December with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with a concentration in Graphic Design.

Nguyen’s portfolio is based on problems with which she was presented during her experience as a graphic design intern. For the senior exhibition, she has incorporated elements such as logo, package, and poster design. She also has included some of her portrait paintings that also define her work as an artist.

“Aimee is a minimalist within her design style,” shares Fecho. “Her designs use the most essential of elements, limited color palette, and a touch of whimsy — to create something simple, yet memorable.”

After graduation, Nguyen plans to work at a design firm and continue painting.

Christian Lord Reyes of Norwalk, Calif., plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Broadcast Video Production.

He was first introduced to video editing through his hobby of playing video games and putting together montages of video game highlights. Throughout his early gaming video endeavors and out-of-class projects in college, Reyes taught himself modern editing techniques and effects, in addition to the Adobe video editing programs “After Effects” and “Premier Pro.” In class, Reyes learned traditional techniques for video production, as well as developing his skillset with audio/video equipment.

“I have always been a visual and musical person,” shares Reyes. “I’m most engaged when something grabs my attention visually and audibly; my primary focus is to create videos that will engage others in the same way.”

“Christian is at his most creative when he’s engaged with media that he’s most passionate about — making movies and videos,” explains Noto. “It’s here where he grows the most: academically, intellectually, and professionally by researching, assimilating knowledge, and teaching himself skills and techniques that others find challenging. I look forward to continuing mentoring with Christian in his next ‘Marvel-ous’ adventures into the entertainment universe.”

“I appreciate Christian’s creativity and professionalism,” notes Dr. Douglas N. Searcy, president of Barton College and Reyes’ intern supervisor this semester. “He thinks deeply about the goals of each project and develops innovative and creative ways to address the subject matter. You can always count on him to give his best effort, work hard, and bring the skills he’s learned in the classroom to bear on the project.”

Vanessa Sanoja Alvarez is a native of Puerto Ordaz, Venezuela. Sanoja plans to graduate in May with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications with concentrations in Journalism and Public Relations.

Sanoja’s portfolio showcases her strong, versatile skillset in the mass communications field. Her senior presentation will focus on current events concerning inclusion, diversity, and equality.

“I want to use my career to raise awareness of social causes that can help society at large,” Sanoja explains. “Whether it is in journalism or public relations, ultimately, I want to be an advocate and a voice for others.”

“Vanessa has grown tremendously in her time at Barton,” explained Rick Stewart, assistant professor of communications. “I find her enthusiasm for what she does extremely refreshing. She knows how to get the job done, with no excuses.”

After graduation, Sanoja plans to move to Boston and pursue a career in a public relations or marketing firm. Eventually, she plans to enroll in graduate school in Massachusetts.

Mary Elizabeth Sloop of Satellite Beach, Fla., plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Broadcast Video Production.

Sloop has branched out into the realm of social media and graphic design to broaden her skills in the broadcast medium. In the senior exhibition, she showcases client-based work that has helped her to further develop her skillset for creating an overall brand for a client or company.

Elizabeth’s knowledge of communications and expertise in social media was a huge advantage to our entire company,” shares Julie Braun, director of Nambroc Sequence Publishing. “She put this skillset to work to update our media sites. Along with her undeniable talent, Elizabeth has always been an absolute joy to work with. She is a true team player and is always dependable.”

After graduation, Sloop plans to work for the Walt Disney Company in Orlando, Fla. She hopes to eventually move into the broadcast division of the Walt Disney World Company, where she would like to work in the company’s entertainment sector.

Daniel Gilbert Toler of Princeton plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theater with a concentration in Musical Theater.

As a young aspiring actor, Toler’s goal is to broaden his horizons and develop skills that go far beyond just performing on stage. For his senior project, he decided to direct, choreograph, and star in a vaudeville inspired showcase that highlights some of the more common issues actors face while working on a production.

“I want to showcase what we, as performers, have to overcome on a daily basis, while still making it entertaining for the audience,” explains Toler.

Undertaking such a complex project has not only allowed Toler to gain more experience as a performer, but also to tap into other concentrations that he wants to strengthen, such as costume design, lighting, and directing.

Adam Twiss, director of Theatre at Barton shares, “Daniel is simply one of the most committed transfer students we have ever had here. He approaches his work in the classroom and stage with both enthusiasm and a collaborative spirit. Daniel’s senior capstone project displays both skills as a musical performer and an intimate sense of irony that makes him a delight to work with.”

After graduation, Toler plans to apply for internships with North Carolina Theatre or Paramount Theatre to gain work experience and to continue to develop his skillset. He wants to learn as much as possible about the industry before moving on to bigger endeavors, such as Traveling Troupes or Broadway.

Andrew Michael Turner of Nashville plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Art and Design with a concentration in Graphic Design.

A strong, unique portfolio design is the foundation of Turner’s senior exhibition. His choice of client mock-ups, abstract type posters and bold illustrations express his vision as a designer and illustrator.

“Being a well-versed graphic designer has always been a goal of mine, ever since I wanted to go into art professionally,” shares Turner. “I can proudly say that my senior show encompasses my artistic taste, style, and skillset in an original way.”

“Andrew has an innate curiosity to his design approach and custom illustrations,” shares Fecho. “His work references mid-century modernism – embracing stripped down clean design with san serif typography that demands attention.”

After graduation, Turner plans to work in all fields of creativity, from client-based work to fine art and brand identity. He will pursue job opportunities nationwide from Atlanta to Fort Lauderdale.

Angel Marie Webb of Wilson plans to graduate with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Art and Design with a concentration in Graphic Design.

Her senior exhibition will highlight her skills as a graphic designer with a wide color palette, while incorporating drawing as well as printmaking.

“Currently, I am focused on expanding my horizons as a designer, so that I am not only doing design work but also illustrations,” shares Webb. “I have found that by bringing in other forms of art, such as drawings and prints, it allows for a more intriguing piece.”

“Angel’s designs are crafted – with imaginative open spaces, subtle jewel toned colors, and hand drawn illustrations,” Fecho notes.

After graduation, Webb hopes to secure a job in the design industry. She also plans to continue to hone her skills in illustration as well as printmaking.

For additional information about the upcoming 2019 Senior Exhibition, please contact the Barton Art Galleries at 252-399-6477 or email artgalleries@barton.edu.