The Student News Site of North Carolina A&T State University

The A&T Register

The Student News Site of North Carolina A&T State University

The A&T Register

The Student News Site of North Carolina A&T State University

The A&T Register

N.C. A&T alum displays MFA Thesis Exhibition, downtown Greensboro


Last month, University of North Carolina at Greensboro Master of Fine Arts recipient, Karrington Gardner displayed his MFA thesis exhibition at the Greensboro Project Space.

Viewers were able to witness the art pieces that Gardner spent hours preparing.

“The practice culminates in all of the elements I’ve discovered in my practice, such as painting, collage, bright colors, and weird disorienting spaces that are representative of how I have often felt throughout this program and in life,” said Gardner.

As people walked through the exhibit. They were able to walk through four connected rooms with walls filled with his art.

“It was really eye-opening,” said Raney Poole, a senior music education student who attended the exhibition. “Seeing his different perspectives on reality was very interesting to me.”

Gardner went through the exhibit answering questions as viewers took a deep dive into understanding his thought process behind each piece. Because most of the pieces came out of just having fun with his gift, there wasn’t a definitive explanation for the meanings behind the pieces.

“A lot of things in my paintings, I didn’t even notice until I put them on the wall of the exhibition,” Gardner shared. “It is different seeing the artwork piled up in my studio versus being hung in a gallery.”

As classes began to end this past fall semester, Gardner said this was when he started his strategic planning. The work he put together was born from a natural curiosity to put together everything he’s experienced.

“I thought it was going to be really formal. It was kind of organized chaos.” Poole described.

In Gardner’s exhibition titled “Give Me Space,” there was a specific area for interaction. Viewers had an opportunity to create and tap into their artistic abilities.

There were blocks with different shapes, colors, and sizes that participants could stack, build, or connect in any way they saw fit. They were then encouraged to snap a picture and submit it to Gardner’s art page.

Gardner shared that there is a possibility for someone’s photograph of stacked blocks to be painted and featured on the art page. 

“I could tell he wanted people to have fun while viewing,” said Poole.

Although the exhibition was a highlight for Gardner, he also expressed how he dealt with the lows of the process.

“I honestly had to keep reminding myself that I got selected for a reason and that there was no reason to doubt my skills because if I wasn’t going to pass, I would have found out way ahead of time,” said Gardner.

Like anyone else, many people have moments where they second-guess their talents.

“I feel like I’ve been asking myself questions just about life throughout this whole process, just trying to understand my place and the nuances,” Gardner shared.

Art is the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form. Gardner is one of many who has allowed their creative talents to connect with other individuals.

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