Many universities hold annual MFA exhibitions showing what students have accomplished during their studies. The model is more expansive at the University of California, Davis, showcasing the breadth of work from students in departments across the College of Letters and Science.

Master of Fine Arts, Master of Arts, and doctoral students in art, design, English, history, and performance studies are taking part in this year’s Arts and Humanities Graduate Exhibition, on view through June 25 at the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art, with art history students presenting their research on June 9.

“This exhibition showcases the exciting projects and scholarship UC Davis graduate students produce and how they choose to present it,” said Rachel Teagle, the museum’s founding director.

Their projects take a range of forms, including photography, video, sculpture, painting, installations, clothing design, and thesis presentations. They tackle issues including racism, the implications of artificial intelligence, and humans’ environmental impact, offering both practical and idealistic ways of thinking about and solving problems.

“The graduate student exhibition is a wonderful example of what the College of Letters and Science is all about,” said Dean Estella Atekwana. “It shows how the college is a creative, supportive environment where students can find innovative avenues to explore without boundaries.”

Award recipients were announced at the June 8 public opening:

  • LeShelle & Gary May Art Purchase Prize: Will Maxen
  • Keister & Allen Art Purchase Prize: Jordan Benton
  • The Savageau Award for Design: Alejandra Ruiz Suárez

The art prizes continue the tradition of purchasing graduate student work for the university’s Fine Arts Collection and building an endowment. The collection includes art by renowned graduates Bruce Nauman ’66, Stephen Kaltenbach ’67, Deborah Butterfield ’73, and Kathy Butterly ’90.

Arts & Humanities 2023 Graduate Exhibition is on view through June 25 at the Manetti Shrem Museum at the University of California, Davis.

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