Get to know the student exhibitionists 



Emma Owen
Blazer News Editor



Each year, hopeful students put in hours of hard work aiming to earn a coveted spot in UAB’s Juried Exhibition. While many submit their pieces, only a few have works that are accepted and put on display. Three students that have been chosen as juried exhibitionists include Marlon Jones, Levi Sanford and Makayla Hammock.


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Marlon Jones, senior in art studio, said his piece that was chosen for the exhibition, “Early Morning”, was a spur of the moment creation.


“It just started out as a simple drawing I was doing,” Jones said. “Literally I woke up around four in the morning and just felt like going with it. A lot of what I would call my mural art or street art is just what I can feel out in the moment, no real thought behind it.”



Jones said that he didn’t think “Early Morning” was the type of art the judges were looking for, but his professors encouraged him to submit his piece.


“I was originally computer science major, computer science and art are two of my passions,” Jones said. “When I switched over to art, I saw that UAB had a better environment for the (arts). UAB wants you to be creative and push the normal realm of what art (is).”



Jones said he has been seriously pursuing art since his junior year of high school. He said his family has been a strong support system for him throughout his pursuit.


“When we had the opening, we had a lot of family come up here,” Jones said. “It was more than expected. It was basically my entire family on both sides.”


Jones said the support from his family means a lot because he has seen some artists not receive the same family support.


“A lot of times there’s a stigma for (artists) where people say you won’t make a lot of money,” Jones said. “My family has always been supportive, no matter what. That’s something you don’t see a lot of in families in art.”


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Levi Sanford, junior in art studio, said he was not expecting to be chosen for the exhibition and feels honored to be selected as a first-year transfer student from a smaller school.


“There’s so many opportunities here,” Sanford said. “Obviously the student exhibit is not something I had where I went before, so when I came here to concentrate on (art), I thought it was nice that they have these opportunities here.”


Sanford said his exhibition project was a class project that was inspired by the work of Maggie Taylor.



“It was something that had to be creepy and surrealistic,” Taylor said. “It was a long process, but it was quite satisfying to actually get featured in something like this for my first year. It was very uplifting.”



Sanford said he worked on this project for three weeks and while finding time to balance his busy schedule was difficult, the result was rewarding for him.


“It’s helped inspire and uplift me seeing all these great artists in the show and to think of all the people that participated in it or submitted work and to actually get selected, it’s very inspiring and makes me feel really good about my artwork,” Sanford said “It gives me a little more confidence as well.”



Mikayla Hammock, freshman in computer science, said being featured in the juried exhibition is an honor for her.


“I am very excited to be featured in the exhibition, especially among those who are more experienced,” Hammock said. “To be considered for the exhibition, I submitted five pieces to a jury. They chose one and I brought the framed original drawing for display.”


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Hammock said this experience has been a positive one because it has served as a learning opportunity for her to grow as an artist.


“The most rewarding part was being able to view the art of my fellow students and make note of what made their pieces so successful, so I could improve my own art,” Hammock said.


Hammock’s featured work of art in the exhibition was an image of a wolf with Little Red Riding Hood.


“The piece I have displayed is a drawing of a wolf made out of an illustration of the little red Riding Hood story,” Hammock said. “I used the scene of the wolf following little red Riding Hood to her Granny's house.”

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