Cornish Senior Studios

Cornish College's art department, now well established after its move to new digs downtown, has lately produced a bumper crop of visual artists. This exhibit, housed in a labyrinthine space on Westlake Avenue, shows off work by graduating BFA seniors. As with any college show, you have to sift through some tailings to find the few gems. James Merle and Ryan Higgins both skewer conspicuous consumption with a variety of conceptual art, including Higgins' large collection of painted pennies and price-tagged rocks and Merle's lovely assemblage of scouring pads made in China. Tricia Gray's series of elegantly simple etchings and lithographs are masterful studies in rhythm, while Khara McFadden's paintings include one that the artist has allowed viewers to "improve" with graffiti (pens provided). Renee Cowan's ironic, emotionless prints of women are interesting, but much more rewarding is her video Red Yellow Blue White. The roar of traffic is everywhere in these near-abstract glimpses of people going nowhere fast; in one very clever sequence, ghostly pedestrians disappear and reappear as they tramp across three screens. The most talented artist in the bunch, it seems to me, is Jason Larsen, who creates zany but very accomplished stuff. Inflatable latex portraits complete with pumps, like The Initiation (pictured), plus cabins of matchsticks, a silhouette of a rabbit made from a rabbit's foot key chain, and some very skilled minimalist drawings—they all make Larsen an artist to watch. 306 Westlake Ave., 206-622-1951, noon-7 p.m. daily. Exhibit runs through Sun. May 15.

 
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