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Georgian Court Art Invitational Invites Student Artists to “Branch” Out

Colorful paint

Art enthusiasts can view exceptional work by student artists from Georgian Court University, Brookdale Community College, and Ocean County College through November 22. The exhibit, hosted in the M. Christina Geis Art Gallery on GCU’s campus, includes sculpture, ceramics, and oil paints, as well as other media.

The exhibit opened with a community reception on November 3 and for some of the participating student artists, it marks the first time they are seeing their work displayed in a gallery.

“The goal after majoring in fine arts is to eventually show your work and hopefully have people interested in buying it, so this gives them that first experience,” said Leo Morrissey, GCU associate professor of art and chair of the university’s Department of Art.

Mr. Morrissey added that students from all three institutions are not only benefiting from this experience as a future career skill, but are learning more about other artists.

The event allows “students to meet each other and see what other students are doing, which is important,” he said.

Branching Out Toward Four-Year Degrees

The collaboration between the three participating colleges represents a coming together toward the pursuit of higher degrees, according to Amy Faris, a faculty member at both GCU and Brookdale Community College.

“It really felt like branches to me,” she said. Ms. Faris said the program at Brookdale lends itself very well toward a continued education at GCU.

“Brookdale, being a two-year school, gives student artists a lot of their foundation courses,” she added. “Then they come here, and they can get really nice individual attention that develops their own personal body of work.”

An Exciting Opportunity for Student Artists to Show, Share

“For some, it was their first time to show their work in a gallery setting,” said Lisa Cecere, a faculty member of Ocean County College. “Most are very excited to have the opportunity to have their work shown and seen.”

That means a lot, she said.

“It’s always important that students see their work in a different, neutral environment,” she said. “For them to step away personally from it and see it on display helps them to navigate their future direction.”

Showing their artwork at GCU “may give them the gumption to get out there and push their artwork on the public,” said Ms. Cecere. The effort also “connects the university with the local community of students, which could only have a positive outcome for us all.”

The M. Christina Geis Art Gallery at GCU is open Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. For more information, call Kathleen Settles at 732-987-2388 or e-mail xfrggyrf@trbetvna.rqh.

View photos from the artists’ reception on November 3.

Aerial view of GCU.

About Georgian Court University

Founded in 1908 and sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, Georgian Court University is Central and South Jersey’s only Catholic university. GCU is a comprehensive, coeducational university with a strong liberal arts core and a historic special concern for women. As a forward-thinking university that supports diversity and academic excellence, GCU is known for expanding possibility for more than 2,100 students of all faiths and backgrounds in 35+ undergraduate majors and 10+ graduate programs. The GCU Lions compete in 15 NCAA Division II sports in the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC). In 2020, GCU was named a Best Value College by and a Best Bang for the Buck (Northeast) by Washington Monthly. High student retention and graduation rates also make GCU a Top Performer on Social Mobility on U.S. News & World Reports rankings. The main campus is located in Lakewood, New Jersey, on the picturesque former George Jay Gould estate, a National Historic Landmark. Georgian Court, which is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, also serves students at other locations, such as GCU at BrookdaleGCU at Rowan College of South Jersey–Cumberland Campus, and through multiple online certificate and degree programs.

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