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The Art of Kristin Sprague

By Ana Davis Special to The Chronicle

From February 3 to February 9, Hofstra senior, Kristin Sprague, held her senior show in the Form Gallery located in Calkins Hall.  The show featured work from Sprague’s semester abroad in Aix en Provence, France as well as her time here at Hofstra.  The Form Gallery, home to student shows year round, is run by Hofstra art students and displays work from students from all majors.  The small room is positioned in a central hallway in Calkins, which allows the Form to draw in students as well as faculty from all corners of the department.

Upon entering the room, the viewers’ eyes were drawn first to the ceiling, which was made to appear as though color was seeping down onto the walls.  This hand-painted spectrum surrounded the space and gave the room a sense of Spraque’s personality.  The walls were outfitted with a unique blend of illustrations, paintings, and calligraphy that Sprague describes as a reflection of her time in college.

It was surprising that what was on display was all hand-made instead of computer-generated.  Surely, a graphic design major would choose to display her design work for her senior show.  Kristin thought differently.  “While I am a graphic design major I draw inspiration from every medium I get the chance to practice. I like to think of myself as a well-rounded fine arts major. I like to balance the amount of time I spend behind a computer and the time I spend working with my hands. Usually the most rewarding pieces leave me covered in glue, paint or some other art product.”  

While surprising, the presence of physical mediums in her show was also refreshing.  Kristin’s work gave the gallery a vibrant sense of energy.  Her pieces, filled with engaging lines, colors and forms, captured the viewers as if the images on the walls were animated.  Some of the drawings, reminiscent of classroom doodles, were key in expressing Sprague’s spirit. The intricate patterns, the lush scenery and the study of the human form forced the audience to spend time with the work.  Each composition gave the feeling of motion and carried the viewers through the gallery accordingly.

When exiting, a quote by L.P. Jacks, a World War I era English educator and philosopher, handwritten in calligraphic letters onto the far left wall, captured the essence of the show.

“The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his education and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he is always doing both.”

Sprague, a 22-year-old hailing from Scituate, Rhode Island, is very active not just within the art community at Hofstra, but is also a Resident Assistant, the co-president of Hofstra Association of Graphic Arts (HAGA), and a member of M45, the Hofstra Women’s Ultimate Frisbee Club Team.  On top of all this, Kristin is currently a creative intern at the non-profit organization She’s the First.  Sprague seems to live up to L.P. Jacks’ mantra by keeping herself heavily involved in what she enjoys from day to day.  As an artist, she stays true to one rule, “Most of all I try not to be stagnant with art while being conscious of the fact that if I’m not having fun with what I’m working on, then I probably shouldn’t be doing it!”

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