Yujia Wang, multimedia artist and recent OU graduate, has her own art exhibition on display at The Dairy Barn titled “In Search of Possibilities.” Wang wanted to create a show encompassing all she has learned art-wise at Ohio University, among other lessons from her time there.
“Part of the reason is the anti-Asian hate, the protest stuff,” Wang said. “As an Asian, I want to contribute to this even a little bit in a way that I can. That's why I decided to have this exhibition this month.”
The exhibition is about Wang’s studio series, including her commercial lighting techniques. Wang said she wants to bring new thoughts and feelings to Athens, specifically ones she has not seen or experienced in the area before.
“I just want to bring a different counter perspective to Athens and let people understand, as an international student, as a Chinese photographer who's studied photography in Athens, how I compose my art and how I present my work to people here,” Wang said.
Wang said although Athens is small, it has a very expansive bond between artists. There’s a plethora of artists, all doing different kinds of artwork. Wang believes this adds to the diversity of Athens.
“In Search of Possibilities” consists of 15 photos and seven videos, all captured in the eye of Wang.
A lotus flower stands on display amid the gallery of photos, drawing attention to the importance of the individualization and meaning behind the flower. Wang hopes the lotus and the photographs will bring more Chinese culture to the Athens area.
“I want to use my show as an approach to people and initiate more conversations about art and culture,” Wang said.
Seeing Wang develop through her art, Gary Kirksey, one of Wang’s professors at OU, said Wang has always been hard working and is committed to making her work sincere and truthful. Kirksey said with Wang’s perfectionism came an expanded knowledge of different mediums of art.
“(She) has worked very hard… and she has greatly expanded her knowledge of photography because she was originally more of a graphic designer,” Kirksey said. “She took on all those challenges and did very well.”
Kirksey said the exhibit is an excellent example of the variety and accomplishments students at OU can achieve.
From the sidelines, Wang has support all around. Riley Peron, a friend of Wang, said Wang is one of the most genuine and deserving people to have a solo exhibit. Peron said supporting the exhibit would be directly supporting a good person.
With Wang using her knowledge of visual arts and graphic design, Peron said Wang has been able to produce graphically striking images deserving of an audience.
“It's just nice to see her work and her creativity blended together, and I think regardless of whether you're a photographer or any sort of visual artist or really any artist at all, I think you can find inspiration in (Yujia’s) work,” Peron said.
The exhibit opened on May 17 and will be on display until June 15. Viewers can visit The Dairy Barn between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday and closed on Mondays. For those not able to attend in-person, a virtual showing of the exhibit is posted online.