This Friday, May 19, SCAD painting majors Hannah Ramage and Zander Stefani will open their senior gallery, “Greetings from Wonderland” in the Non-Fiction Gallery on Bull St.. Their work is bright, colorful and emotional, certainly a trip “down the rabbit hole.”
“We were both trying to envision the gallery space as Wonderland and thinking about Wonderland as a place you can never really get to but always want to go to,” Stefani said.
The gallery includes paintings from both of the students, as well as sculpture and an interactive installation. Ramage, who goes by H. E. Ramage professionally, said “Our paintings are all our own things that we made, totally separate, but we made the sculpture pieces with this very specific installation in mind . . . we wanted to tie together our very divergent details through a mutual endeavor.”
Ramage and Stefani will begin the installation, a network of vibrant blue thread, themselves. But visitors to the gallery will also be able to contribute to this network. “It will become a community and symbolize coming together and helping people through things and finding peace through inner connectivity,” Ramage said.
These themes are also present in her paintings, which are an expressive response to her mother’s diagnosis with ALS. She described her pieces as “all about the anxieties that we face as people, all of the things that are difficult to talk about. For me, the paintings came out of a need to talk about it but not knowing how . . I really needed an outlet and a way to communicate with people and in that find relief for those feelings.”
Stefani’s work encompasses similar emotional material that he described as “intense, existential emotions that I feel in dealing with reality and the world we live in.”
Ramage and Stefani have been friends for years and have worked together on other occasions, thanks to having studios next door to each other in Alexander Hall. “I think having both of our works next to each other definitely makes you think about them in a different way. I feel like they empower each other and enhance the intensity within each other,” Stefani said.
The “Greetings from Wonderland” opening reception will take place May 19 from 6 to 9 p.m., and the gallery will be open the following Saturday and Sunday from 1 – 5 p.m. each day. 10% of proceeds from sales will go to the ALS Foundation.