McPhee’s exhibition gives students abstract visuals to art

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Christina McPhee discusses her art at the closing day of solo art show at the Cerritos College art gallery on Saturday, Nov. 12. McPhee’s solo art show featured two series of work, Double Blind Studio Series and Second Sight.

Briana Hicks

Art major Bradley Okundolor described Christina McPhee’s art work as having an abstract feel.

“At the same time it’s kind of grounded in reality because I can sometimes picture shapes within the art work that I know as objects in real life,” he said.

McPhee closed out the last day of her solo art show at Cerritos College on Saturday, Nov. 12.

The gallery didn’t have as big of a turn out as the debut of her art work, but a few stopped by to admire her work one last time.

Megan Luke, assistant art professor at the University of Southern California, has been following McPhee’s work for as long as she’s known her for almost four years.

“It’s very interesting being in this show because I visited her studio, just outside San Luis Obispo, […] and I saw certain works that looked like these canvases that had these moments of density and openness, so there’s a couple paintings that are like that.

“And I hadn’t yet seen these much more heavily encrusted surfaces, where you know when you really see her carving into the paint and they’re super colorful, but also the clusters seem to have taken over the whole surface,” she stated.

McPhee’s solo show featured two different series of work, Double Blind Studio Series and Second Sight.

Although the Second Sight series was the name headlined on the banner, the Double Blind Studio series helped show McPhee’s transition and growth as an artist.

According to Luke she acknowledged that the Double Blind Studio series was work that McPhee had done before Luke’s studio visit.

“I feel like there [are] three series here. I love her drawings in [the Double Blind Studio series]. I think the drawings are really suggesting to me a new direction for her work, and she was telling me about what she’s working on now.

“So I feel like […] it’s a little mini retrospective in some way,” she admitted.

Timothy Grundy, Luke’s husband, expressed that when he saw McPhee’s artwork in person that he was able to see it from different angles and surfaces.

Regarding her artwork being showcased in the campus gallery, she said that the students have been amazing.

“I really enjoyed giving the [slideshow] lecture. I really thought the students here are amazing. So I really loved being able to bring something that could be, work that could take time to unfold for [the students].

“With both the big picture images and then when zooming down into tiny details, I think that’s how we absorb images today through the Internet and everything. So this is in a way like a post Internet work because its influenced by digital media and the way that we see,” she said.

McPhee admitted that she felt validated in the fact that students were so engaged in her work.

Among the guest that dropped in was President Dr. Jose Fierro. Fierro, who was in attendance at the solo gallery show opening, gained a new insight on her art work.

“I think I see different things in the paintings. Actually, the first time around I really liked the [Prism prison] painting, and I still like it, but now that I looked at “A Single Dose of Synthetic Estrogen Can Prolong This Golden Hour” closer and I learned about the story I like this one better.

“These paintings are meant to be dissected, you’ll see other things as you look at them from [a distance],” he stated.

Although McPhee was supposed to debut her new book on the eve of her last art show, circumstances slightly pushed back her book’s release and in the upcoming month, McPhee will premiere her new book in New York City.