This exhibition is a collection of artworks showcasing Wright State University students and alumni. The gallery, in collaboration with Wright State University, would like to celebrate and to recognize the efforts of those who demonstrate a commitment to hard work and a dedication to the field of art. The purpose of this exhibition is to offer a connection to supportive channels within our community of artists and to provide a platform to help identify different pathways available for emerging artists.

The gallery would like to thank the professors at Wright State’s School of Fine and Performing Arts for their contributions in selecting the students and alumni that best fit the requirements for this exhibition. Those professors are Glen Cebulash, Stefan Chinov, Jeremy Long, Benjamin Montague and Kim Vito.  A special thank you to Tracy Longley-Cook for all her support and assistance in forming this exhibition.


Panel Discussion

July 16th, 1pm

Artists from Bridge EDU will be sharing their experiences after graduating at a panel discussion. The purpose of this panel discussion and exhibition are to offer a connection to supportive channels within our community of artists, and to provide a platform to help identify different pathways available for emerging artists. Selected artists will share how they have been able to navigate their personal paths as working artists. Our goal is to inspire and encourage other developing artists to pursue careers in the field of art.


List of Exhibiting Artists


Tess Cortes

I use objects from my home, including dishes and decorations that have been passed down by my family, along with other household items, to create still life scenes. I capture these scenes through photography and digital compositing. The resulting composites are presented in a square format and can be made into prints or further composed and animated in digital video format.

The prints and video I am proposing for this exhibition represent my latest exploration in recreating these objects in a 3D program and arranging them in digital space.

As I navigate parenthood and middle age simultaneously, I find myself searching for family histories that have been lost with the passage of time and of family members. Through the staging of these objects, my aim is to establish a connection between the past and the present.

I highlight the fragmented nature of personal histories, existing as physical and increasingly digital artifacts, by capturing, juxtaposing, manipulating, printing, cutting, scanning, and animating them against the backdrop of constructed interior spaces.


Landon Crowell

Life with three small children has made me re-evaluate my art-making process. Time is difficult to attain for the physical part of art making. I reflect upon the three little humans that occupy my thoughts, space, and time. The new work is about my reactions to their interactions. With their environment and other individuals, seeing and experiencing most of it for the first time. With less time available, the thought process has become more important. Decision-making has become instantaneous. As a result, the new work has become more playful, thoughtful, and more spontaneous when making decisions. While leaving some history of past work intact. I have let the work breathe and speak for itself. Letting mistakes become strengths.



Shannon L. Gallion

My artistic philosophy is informed by the belief that art should engage with the world and explore the complexities of the environment it is created within. To this end, I try to reflect an appreciation for the outdoors through my work in a variety of mediums. These include photography, sculpture, and printmaking. The specificities of a place over time fascinates me, and I try to revisit the same locations when conceptualizing and creating my work. Greene County in particular has inspired my most recent body of work, which focuses on Indian Mound Reserve in Cedarville, Ohio.


Erica Goulart

Altered Environments is a series in which I explore common urban places such as parks, garden centers, and construction sites. With each visit, I bring my own materials into spaces I find and specifically place them into a scene, often minimizing context. Through utilizing tape, yarn, or chalk, I aim to make visual connections between the linear qualities these materials have with the objects, perspectives, and lines I find while investigating these locations.

Through this physical act, I add my own mark on areas that have been manipulated by touch or tool. These areas fascinate me with their shifting landscape through time. By taking a photo, I document my own material in a space that will inevitably change. By doing this, I aim to define what I see by letting the space dictate which material I use. This act of altering engages myself as a photographer, pushing me to notice my communal surroundings.



Julie Harris

     I use my artmaking as a way of exploring the personal, especially that which is often hidden.  My inspirations stem from art themes of the broken, the abandoned and the forgotten. 

     The materials used—timeless, worn cotton clothes that extend back to early industrial weaving and the supply and demand of the old plantations pre-dating the plastics era. The clothing is loaded with its own symbolic meaning.  The cloth suggests a skin-like reference, and with that all the vulnerability and toughness associated with a hide.  I work with thread and cloth as I love the metaphors that they hold, such as mending, repairing and connecting.  A thread is a line with a function; a thread binds, wraps, it ties. When manipulated and twisted together it becomes an object with strength, one that can offer warmth like a blanket or catch air like a kite. Thread can be turned into an object that is soft and comforting, and it can be woven or wrapped into one offering structure and protection. Thread connects, binds, winds, warms, strengthens, ensnares and unites. 



Matthew Helton

Matthew Helton is an artist who photographs subjects both within and without the constraints of traditional representation. The images are used to assemble subjects in a way that is both timeless and ephemeral. His work explores self identity, time, and our perception of physical space. Matthew conveys emotion through the use of light, color, composition and time. Many of his works are a meditation of time itself using long exposure to capture the fleeting moments that make up our lives. He strives to create images in dierent capacities that not only exhibit the external world but also reflect on his own internal cognition with an ultimate purpose to create a dialogue between the viewer and the subject.


Joseph Iuvara

My work explores color and the manipulation of unnatural light in found areas to add emotive qualities to the spaces I work in. My photographs are made in entirely dark spaces in order to add and control color and light within the scene. Adding light and particular colors to the images evokes a narrative quality to the work. All the images display a single moment in time, each moment only showing a glimpse of the whole story. Some of my photographs use only white lighting, which illuminates the details and complexity of the scene. Adding white light to a completely dark scene lets me control the direction and intensity of the light. This process can give the photographs a surreal or uneasy feeling. I use color in some of my photographs, mainly using warm and cold colors in the scenes, in order to add a sense of conflict to the setting. This is also shown through the subjects in the photographs, where the body position, gestures, and expressions, along with the surreal intense light create the story in each image.


Landon Jones

My paintings and sculptural objects explore ideas of language, nature, and evidence through a range of formats and approaches.

My practice aims to create artworks that demonstrate, illuminate, or emulate what I observe as a natural logic that not only comprises our reality, but is experienced through the physical and non-physical structures that are a byproduct of this logic.

When working, I implement varying rule-systems, patterns, and conditions as formulas for artistic generation. These formulas give the works an innate sense of structure that may not be entirely understood by the viewer, but are nonetheless experienced through the repetition, arrangement, and coding of the elements within each artwork. The awareness of structure is further foregrounded by juxtaposing the rigidity of these systems with the spontaneity of the material by making everything by hand or with simple tools, leaving behind the evidence of chance through touch and human error. The materiality manifests the intangible frameworks of my practice into physical form, presenting themselves to the viewer without illusion, but as they are.


Evie Lewis

I create paintings which use figure, color, and light to explore stories of young, Midwestern women. I am inspired by a world of female identifying people that are portrayed with no societal expectations. The female figures are found posing for the audience, exuding a confidence through eye contact or stance.  Some of the works reference selfies the girls take themselves or from a photo taken by me at a party, out to eat or hanging out at our apartments. I aim to allow their interests help to identify them and have them pose with cats, food, cigarettes, stuffed animals, how they dress, etc. These objects give a look into the personalities and lives of these people.

I illustrate these situations on acrylic red toned canvas. Not only does red capture the viewer, but it forces an exploration with paint. By adding the oil on top, I am working around how the acrylic can act as light and finding ways to create a conversation of color through reductive and additive processes. The vibrant acrylic also introduces light as a character, actively working to form the painting into a world of interest


Edmund Merricle 

My anxious sensibilities inform my process in painting; moving paint from one spot to another, scraping, layering, and previous decisions hold my interest to continue painting. The recent paintings are a series of bleak, dark, but also humorous, making light of serious and mundane situations. Images and marks that have more than one meaning continue to interest me, the figure(feet, hands, etc.) in the paintings are connected to me, but I don’t consider any of these
paintings to be self portraits. In the end, what drives my work is my desire to understand more about the language of painting and drawing, to fully realize the forces within painting.


Rachel Niekamp

This series of still life photography seeks to present a visual conclusion to an intellectual exploration of objects. The process allows me the opportunity to journey through my perspectives, values, and opinions. I seek to create an aesthetic solution to new association, proximity, and arrangement of objects. The items were selected from my house and garage to push me to find a new perspective and discover a new interest in possessions that I might otherwise discard. This new dynamic between objects balances a tension of incompatibility through shapes and colors while exploring values associated with items. It combines natural and created objects in an unnatural way to depict a struggle that can occur. Ultimately, I want this work to invite viewers to see things differently because new perspectives can provide the solutions to the challenges we face.


Stephanie Tyson Osorio

With paper, image, and material, my work interprets perceptions of space and distance as they relate to vast environments and objective information; both actively experienced or recalled from memory. I explore aspects of deserts, cosmic space, language, and the inherent properties of the materials I use to give form to conscious thought, curious analysis, and the feeling of reach.

I think of attention as a limb that detects environment both internally in the mind and externally in the surroundings. Using formal elements of framing, pattern, and composition, I explore the movement of my attention as it flickers back and forth into thought and out for further stimulation. These speculative deserts represent a tangible sandbox where the senses can feel, drawing my attention outward from the mind, and into the world through intricate textures and simple objects. Conversely, abstraction of cosmic space and language represent the formless ruminations of thought that respond to environment, reeling attention back into the mind.

I consider what it means to be somewhere, in a body that stands still while the mind wanders in and out of thought. Meditating on this experience allows me to reflect on the spatial relationship between things, places, and memory.


Mar Quintero 

Mar Jose Quintero is a queer, multidisciplinary artist with a strong background in environmental shifting and subconscious retrieval. Their art is rooted in the concept of transition whether that be in relationships, circumstance, or the body. Experiencing as a non-binary and transgender individual, transition is seen as a sacred practice permeating through the entirety of one’s life. Mar holds a BFA from Wright State University with a concentration in sculpture and performance art. They are 25 and currently live and work in Dayton, OH.


Jacob Tate

This work explores the urban landscape and the symbols and forms collected therein. By juxtaposing abstracted graffiti gestures with utility markings, their meanings begin to inform one another alluding to a transience evident in every city.


Maytee Valladares

I work with oil paints and drawing techniques, focusing on capturing scenes from life. My approach is is to faithfully depict a scene to the best of my ability. I find myself grappling with uncertainty and questioning every decision I make. However, I push through these doubts, determined to conjure the scene in front of me onto canvas or paper.

It's a constant struggle to find the right balance between accurately capturing what I see and simplifying using my artistic interpretation. While I draw and paint from life, I convey my perspective and emotional response. My artwork reflects the complexities and imperfections of the human experience, mirroring my own doubts and struggles in the creative process.

Through my art, I invite viewers to witness the vulnerability and tenacity that underlie my creative process. I hope to inspire others to embrace their own self-expression, even in the face of self-doubt. My process is not about achieving perfection, but about embracing the growth and self-discovery that come with the artistic process.


Micah Zavacky

The woods is a seductive, solitary, and mysterious realm full of freedom and imagination. My attraction to the quietness of trees led me to the woods where I began working en plein air, and I have not stopped. These early years established important parts of my identity, studio practice, and overall way of living. I aim to connect with the soil beneath my feet to receive and listen. Through observation, I aim to bridge my perception of the natural world to human experience. My work wrestles with the parallels between internal and external space. Specifically, I seek answers or solutions to questions and challenges I face in my everyday life, by making a drawing, print, or painting.

As a gay man, natural spaces have always been a safe and comforting place for me where I can be vulnerable and confidently occupy space. Rather than taking what I want from the natural world, I strive to create work in conversation with the living forms and spaces I encounter; the work has to be a dialogue or it becomes dangerously esoteric. For the earth, with the earth, and of the earth I strive to create work which manifests from acts of searching and adventure, and always fueled by curiosity and humility. I am looking for an “earth power” in my work—newfound strength, guidance, compassion, and clarity realized from a dialogue that equally honors my voice and the landscape’s voice.

I adamantly nurture the connection I have with the earth, and want my work to have as much vigor and life as the woods. Additionally, I hope the woods helps create a space where we can accept more challenging moments around the wheel. The work you see in this exhibition was created between 2019 and 2020. Due to the global pandemic, this work was not seen by more than a handful of individuals. I struggled with the decision to exhibit these pieces or what I have been working on currently. With time and reflection, I realized these woodscapes offered me protection from the storm we did not know was coming. This protection gave me the energy and motivation to keep making art during a traumatic and seemingly hopeless time. I reintroduce these pieces to the public in hopes of honoring the work that helped me keep moving.