The Brightside: Mask On Art exhibition goes virtual

PRINCESS ANNE, Md.  – With the coronavirus pandemic cancelling all in-person classes, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore had to get creative and draw up a new way for art students to showcase their work.

JaMarcus Coley, an art student said, “Its a little different, but I am glad that we were still able to have something to show all of our hard work over the years.”

Members of the art department created a virtual exhibition called ‘Mask On’ and posted it to the already existing Mosely Gallery website.

Susan Holt, Director of the Gallery said, “I wanted to make sure I had a lot of their work up so that if anybody wanted to purchase anything they could do so online.”

UMES typically holds an end of the year art show for its students, allowing them to be recognized for all their hard work and creativity.

Holt said, “It’s everybody’s chance to see all the hours and hours that everybody puts into their work.”

But with the coronavirus pandemic, the art department had to find a new way to ensure their students still got that recognition.

Coley said, “It meant a lot to me and I know it meant a lot to a lot of art students that the school was still fighting for us to have something to make us special.”

The University held the actual exhibit on a Thursday, allowing people to chat with the artists online about their work. Now, that art work remains on the website for anyone to see.

Coley said, “You know sometimes people only have free time on the weekend where a gallery usually wouldn’t be open, now they can see it 24/7 whenever they want to.”

For Coley, having the art exhibit go virtual allowed some very special family members of his to attend who otherwise may not have been able to make it.

Coley said, “A lot of people showed up like my grandfather and grandmother that live in Texas they were in it so it was pretty cool.”

This was a common theme with the art exhibition. Family members, friends and alumni from both near and far all attended, crafting a sense of community and togetherness during these times of isolation.

If you would like to help support UMES’ Art Department, you can do so by clicking here.

You can also purchase students artwork by clicking here. 

Categories: Brightside, Local News, Maryland