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The Very First and Infinitely Last: 2024 Undergraduate Honors Thesis Exhibition

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The Department of Art & Art History presents The Very First and Infinitely Last, the 2024 Undergraduate Honors Thesis Exhibition, on view April 16 through May 3 at the Coulter Art Gallery. Join us for the opening reception on Thursday, April 18, 4-6pm. Culminating the yearlong undergraduate honors thesis program in art practice, this group exhibition showcases works by Halima Ibrahim, Charu Jain, and Gaosheng Yang.

The suggestive title of this year's honors exhibit - 'The Very First and Infinitely Last' - comprises both a quest for origin and a resistance to completion. The three featured artists explore the tension between a complicated past and an uncertain future through a variety of discursive and material practices that convey a profound historical, cultural and emotional resonance.

Halima Ibrahim, Charu Jain and Gaosheng Yang each bring to their work an aesthetic of displacement, a commitment to reconnect with their sense of identity in a more intense and meaningful way based on the delicate, sometimes even deliberately unsettling experience of shared selfhood.

Charu evocatively combines colors and poses in her self-portraits to achieve a heightened emotional exposure and intimate dialogue with the audience. Gaosheng's paj ntaub-inspired photographic collages of the Hmong community constitute a timeless act of intergenerational remembrance. Halima's devotional engagement with images of graffiti on the walls of Cairo preserves the city's poetic legacy in the face of encroaching modernization.

The Art and Art History Department is proud to support these artists and to showcase their richly layered and expressive bodies of work, which are the result of a Senior Year of intensive research, experimentation, collaborative exchange and creative vision.

- Jonathan Calm, Curator

Halima Ibrahim is an Egyptian American Artist and Poet currently based in and out of Cairo and the Bay area. She is a double Major in Art History and Art practice, set to graduate from Stanford in June 2024. Halima is a multimedia Photographer, working with alternative photography and printing techniques. Her work interrogates systemic and social issues in the United States and in Egypt. Halima Ibrahim served as the Rhode Island Youth Poet Laureate for 2020 and 2021, and former Artist in Residence for the Markaz Resource center for the 2021-2022 academic year.

Charu Jain is a multi-disciplinary artist, primarily working with acrylic figurative painting processes. She also works in various forms of printmaking, often depicting herself in a multitude of colors, mediums, and poses. Along with majoring in Art Practice at Stanford University, she is on the pre-medical track and will be attending Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai.

Gaosheng Yang is a multidisciplinary Hmong-American artist born in Sacramento, California, later relocated to Appleton, Wisconsin, and currently based in Stanford, California. She is receiving a B.A. with Honors in Art Practice from Stanford University in June 2024. Yang’s thematic work is centered on remembering, representing, and storytelling the intergenerational narratives of Asian and Hmong cultures through the synthesis of photography, printmaking, digital and physical collaging to create constructed portraits and landscapes. Her interest in the arts can be attributed to her parents as well as her early exposure and practice to ceramics from siblings and high school.

VISITOR INFORMATIONCoulter Art Gallery is located at 355 Roth Way in the McMurtry Building on Stanford campus. Visitor parking is free all day on weekends and after 4pm on weekdays, except by the Oval. Alternatively, take the Caltrain to Palo Alto Transit Center and hop on the free Stanford Marguerite Shuttle. The gallery is open Monday through Friday, 11am to 5pm. This exhibition is open to Stanford affiliates and the general public. Admission is free. 

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