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The Art Gallery at UWF moves from foundations to faculty exhibitions

February 7, 2018 | By: Mary Stucko |

Two students viewing artworks in TAG at UWF CFPA

“Points of Departure” featured 168-piece array of work

On Jan. 1, The Art Gallery (TAG) at the University of West Florida, held its closing reception for the “Points of Departure, a Foundation-level Student Art Exhibition.” The exhibition ran from January 8 – January 25 and featured over 168 pieces of student artwork ranging from drawing, ceramics, painting, photography, digital art and graphic design.

Student artwork was put together from the previous semester over the winter break to showcase their work during the Spring semester. Through this exhibition, students presented their art and got to know their peers and faculty better.

“In the way the exhibition (was) designed, the students were grouped by the projects they did or by the classes they were in. So, it (was) kind of like one big team learning from each other as much as they (were) learning from the faculty.” Nicholas Croghan, Director of The Art Gallery at UWF (TAG), stated in reference to the composition of the exhibition.

Held annually in January, the “Points of Departure” exhibition emphasizes that in order to have a successful studio art practice students need to understand the foundation of whatever medium they want to excel in. The exhibition itself is designed to showcase work done in the foundation level classes.

In reference to what the overarching message of the exhibition was, Croghan responded, “The arts are important for our community… it’s a great experience for them (the students) to get their art out there and get feedback from those outside of the art world. It’s a really important developmental process for them.”

“Michael J. Deas & Gregory B. Saunders” Exhibition and Gallery Talk, Feb. 8 - Mar. 10

On Feb. 8 TAG reopens a new exhibit with the artwork of New Orleans based artist Michael J. Deas and UWF faculty member Gregory B. Saunders.

Deas is an artist who bridges the gap between commercial and fine art. He illustrated six TIME magazine covers, 21 stamps for the U.S. Postal Service and also created the 1991 reissued Columbia Pictures Entertainment, Inc. logo which will be on display.

His work is also featured in the Ogden’s museum of Southern Art in New Orleans. The exhibition will feature two of these pieces. Deas is also an expert on Edgar Allan Poe and has thus been featured on “Antiques Roadshow.”Gregory B. Saunders, a Pensacola artist and UWF Department of Art faculty member, creates large-scale powdered graphite drawings. Saunders’ work consists of incorporating a variety of subject matter through narratives and poetry. His work has been featured regionally, nationally, and internationally to include The Meridian International Center in Washington, D. C.; the Sherry French Gallery, New York, New York; and the Hagiwara Cultural Center, Hagiwara, Japan.

Both artists have been long-time friends and have mutually influenced each other in multiple ways. According to Croghan, “The gallery talk will be casual and consist of the two artists having a conversation on what it is like to make art in today’s world, what their studio practices are like, how they have influenced each other and hopefully tell some stories and have a good time.”

The exhibition will be open from Feb. 8 through Mar. 10 with a gallery talk and opening reception on Thursday, Feb., opening day, from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at TAG in the Center for Fine and Performing Arts, Building 82, on the Pensacola campus.

TAG is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from Noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday. All events are free and open to the public.

For more information, visit The Art Gallery (TAG) or contact Nick Croghan, Gallery Director, at or 850.474.2696. Or, visit the UWF Department of Art online.