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Palatable palette

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Indiana native and Herron School of Art and Design senior Emily Schnellbacher hosted an opening reception for her BFA in Painting thesis exhibition, "Anthropomorphism," on Friday, April 9, in Hank and Dolly's Gallery at the Harrison Center for the Arts (1505 N. Delaware Street). A winding walk down an orange-paint-and-art-covered hallway led me to a crowded room where several of her oil paintings were exhibited.

I was immediately struck by the soft colors that Schnellbacher uses, from lush greens that made up the foliage in many of the works, to bolder reds in the poppies that spring up around foals’ hooves in the particularly lovely “Child’s Play.”

Childs Play
  • Emily Schnellbacher
  • "Child's Play"

As Schnellbacher explains in her exhibit statement, her paintings have a “childlike sensibility, but are a mature reflection rather than naïve.” Indeed, a viewer might think of observations on contentment with the saying, “As happy as a pig in mud" when viewing “Of Humanity,” a showcase of four pigs smiling from a muddy bath in the middle of a field, or, more seriously, of Orwell’s law-changing swine who declared, “Some animals are more equal than others.” The pigs’ sly smiles can be viewed as playful or hinting at a deeper mischievousness.

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