Spending my Friday night at an art gallery is something I find myself increasingly committing to these days, and especially so when a fellow intern is involved. This past Friday our graphic design intern Emily Zajac attended the opening night of her senior design exhibit, titled “Ubi Sunt,” along with several others at the Buffalo Arts Studio.
After work on Friday I took a drive down Main Street to the giant warehouse of a building that is the Tri-Main Center. After struggling for a few minutes to find the entrance, I made my way to the fifth floor and followed the signs through a winding corridor of art and art studios until I reached my destination. The place was packed. A central buffet of hors d’oeuvres and craft beer was surrounded by the capstone projects of nine seniors from Villa Marie college. After several minutes of drinking, chatting and exploring the work of these students, I settled my gaze on the piece I had come here for. Emily was nice enough to give me a tour of her exhibit and a bit of insight into her work.
The Artist: Emily Zajac
Emily Zajac is a senior graphic design student at Villa Marie College. [From Artist Bio]: She enjoys the challenge of making something from nothing, organizing elements on a page, and helping others reach their goals. Emily hopes to use her design chops to help small businesses and non-profits stay focused on their mission and achieve greater with strong branding, effective visual communication, and targeted marketing materials. In her downtime she likes to make handcrafted greeting cards, eat yummy food, and hang out with her cats.
So what is “Ubi Sunt”?
“Ubi Sunt is latin for “Where are they” or “Where are those who are before us.” The phrase was used in a lot of medieval poetry and has since turned into this literary motif that’s used in poetry and music, and so I wanted to translate it visually with a photography series. After that I took the series, branded it and created marketing materials for it: posters, postcards, tickets, a package design for a camera, etc. So ultimately I took this kind of weird concept and translated it into marketing materials.”
Where were these pictures taken?
“It’s kind of an autobiographical series, so a lot of them are of my best friend, my boyfriend at a train station (we’re long distance so we travel a lot to see each other), and then around my house. It’s very nostalgic places – like where I grew up, the buildings out on my property, that kind of thing. There are a lot of images in my mind that remind me of childhood, and so I tried to capture them in these photos.”
Using black and white 35mm film photographs, Zajac captures well a not-so-subtle feeling of nostalgia in her photos that, according to her, “taps into the same near-yet-far memories that every person encounters in their life.”
For more of her work, check out Emily Zajac’s website here. “Ubi Sunt,” along with the other design installations from Villa Marie college, will be up at the Buffalo Arts Studio until April 29th, so check them out while you still can!
© SunSpin Media 2015