UM Gallery of Visual Arts to Display Thesis Work by Grad Students

March 17, 2017

Evan Hauser, “The Prescribed West,” slip cast ceramic and mixed media

MISSOULA – Master of Fine Arts graduate students Evan Hauser, Sarah Justice and Amy Petit will present their thesis exhibitions from March 30 to April 13 in the University of Montana’s Gallery of Visual Arts.

An opening reception for the exhibitions will take place from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, March 30. The event is free and open to the public and includes refreshments.

Hauser’s exhibition, “The Prescribed West,” explores how landscape impacts the human experience beyond aesthetic beauty. Moving from Indiana to Montana, he witnessed a cultural shift in perspective of land, specifically the wilderness. His ceramic and video works in the exhibition address issues of human control over the supposed wilderness, creating a prescribed experience.  

“When looking at a national park such as Yellowstone,” Hauser said, “we are confronted by land that is supposedly wild and natural. In reality, the lands within the park are somewhat of a construct that is managed.”

Justice’s exhibition, “Selene,” uses life-size ceramic figurative sculptures to depict an autobiographical journey of control, power and healing. The work employs mythology and symbolism to challenge the viewer’s perception of seductive and destructive human behaviors. Through the analogy of “the moth to the flame,” Justice encourages viewers to contemplate how one uses their own power of attraction and repulsion within relationships and within oneself.

Sarah Justice, “Selene,” ceramic

The sculptural works in Petit’s exhibition, “Median,” are an exploration of memory, loss and transition. Based on her observation of changing forms of communication in the digital age, she examines how personal interaction, expression and the value we assign to objects are affected. By using a combination of materials such as metal, glass and thread, as well as digital media, she seeks to emphasize the permanent and impermanent nature of familiar objects or actions.

The Gallery of Visual Arts is located on the first floor of the Social Science Building and is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, and Monday hours are available by appointment.

Amy Petit, “Handwriting Prosthetic,” copper and pencilFor more information call Cathryn Mallory, Gallery of Visual Arts director, at 406-243-2813, email or visit

Contact: Cathryn Mallory, director, UM Gallery of Visual Arts, 406-243-2813,