We asked all the finalists a few questions and this is what Denison University senior, Hunter Hughes had to say:
How have you grown as an artist since coming to college?
● Being a part of a collegiate art program has allowed me the opportunity to explore as an artist through meaningful instruction and support. Strengthening relationships in the department, I have been challenged to think of art, and of the process of art creation in a different light. Since the beginning, I have developed a different relationship to the work I create and to the processes for doing so. Reflecting back, I find this process to be extremely rewarding and encouraging to see the linkages through my development.
What type of art do you look to for inspiration?
● Inspiration is a strange thing. Being a sculptor I, of course, find other sculptors to be of great influence and inspiration. In addition to this, I find the physical relationship of paintings to viewers, the incredible line variations in drawings, and the art of architecture to be just as important. Stepping away from traditional “art” I find inspiration in anything from buildings, engineering and boat building, to woodworking, and even philosophy.
How has participating in this competition helped you develop as a professional artist?
● I have found that through this competition I have been allowed the opportunity to step back from my work and view it through new eyes. Often an artist is so concentrated on the work they are doing and viewing it from the perspective of being the artist, that they forget to analyze how others might perceive the works. Furthermore, it has been a privilege to network with students from other schools, uniting together in appreciation of art. Community is an integral component to life, especially to art, and I am pleased with the opportunity afforded to me through this competition.
What are your plans after graduation with the arts?
● Art is something that is rooted deep within a person and is ever-present. Whether or not I continue creating art immediately after graduation isn’t as important as is constantly immersing myself with contemporary and classical art.