The College of New Jersey has an art department that  thinks highly of its students. From the experience I have had in these last few months as a freshman at the college, I have seen an excellent support group for the students that want to succeed in their art careers. Within this, there is also great opportunity for the art students to get exposed to different areas of art and what they can do with it.

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One of the best things they have for the senior students  is access to the student galleries. These galleries are meant to give seniors a place to  showcase their work that they have been building since their freshman year. It supplies a place to share all of their artworks publicly and give the people the opportunity to interpret the works in their own perception. Given the opportunity to attend the galleries, everyone should attend. It gives non-art students a feel of the things that occur in the other schools and exposes them to other works of fine art. The art students should attend to inspire them into doing their own works and open them to things that they have the opportunities to do.

Each gallery houses the works to two students, allowing for four students to be showcased at one time. The works of  Deanna Arzola, Molly Revie, Tandia McLaren and Brigid Barber.


Deanna Arzola showcased her works, “Self Entitled” to explore the ideas of finding your own person and individuality. Her works are a display of weavings and intricate threadings that are stitched into words. She had her weavings set up so that they hung on the walls and were suspended from the ceiling. The words that she shared all followed the theme of individuality and the process of trying to find one’s self. There is a symbolic power of the thread that was used which was primarily white and gold. The colors were a resemblance of a divine power, which gives the implication that a person’s identity and who they are is also a great power. The piece being self-entitled also shares this power of the person.

Molly Revie shares an installation titled “Concrete.” These pieces are interesting because of the interaction she created between concrete and nature. This  can symbolize the concept of how nature always takes over, and will always win. Her piece shows a living moss breaking through the solid concrete, and if this was found in nature, we would see it eventually take over entirely to where we could not recognize the concrete that was originally there. Her piece explores the process of nature’s way to gain back the land that man stole.

Tandia McLaren shares images comprised of oil paint and displayed people in different environments, called “Ebbing Recollection.” The artist’s color schemes were interesting to the eye, being that they used dulled out colors that were less saturated. The one image of the older man is very realistic, and the perspective that they used makes it feel like that the person looking at it is in the back seat of the vehicle, about to go for the ride. There is distortion in the face of the little boy who was playing the piano. The meaning of the distortion is left to interpretation and is not made obvious, possibly sharing how those people with talents are often only defined by those talents and not by their own being.

Brigid Barber explores the concept of nutrition and exercise in her installation, called “Fitness.” She shares a montage of different foods that can be both desired and shunned by the appetites of the public eye. In the corner of the gallery Barber has a miniature fridge with a projection of a woman exercising on the door of it. With these, barber allows the public to contemplate the acts of juggling diet and exercise and how to balance them.

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The galleries are placed on either side of the main gallery in the Art and Interactive Multimedia Building and are open Tuesday through Thursday from 12-7PM and Sunday from 1-3PM. The student galleries will be on display from October 4th to October 22nd.


Samantha Leigh

Studying at TCNJ as an art student of the class of 2021.

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