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KSC Art Students Receive Awards

KEENE, N.H., 4/07/08 - Two Keene State College art students majoring in graphic design were chosen to receive the excellence in art awards from the Friends of the Thorne. Lindy Caslin from Bennington, Vt., and Elisabeth Lull from Washington, N.H., both sophomores, will be presented the awards, each of which carries a $500 stipend, during the opening reception for “Emerging Art,” the annual KSC art students’ exhibition on Friday, April 18, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Thorne-Sagendorph Art Gallery.

Caslin and Lull entered KSC in the fall 2006 as first-year students knowing they wanted to become graphic designers. They are both enrolled in the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree program with a graphic design option.

“They were both in my Art 250 Graphic Design I class that semester, and it was clear to me that they were very excited about their choice of majors,” said Marsha Hewitt, professor of graphic design at KSC. “The Friends of the Thorne have made an excellent choice in these two very dedicated and deserving students.”

Caslin is a very bright, creative student, who also has dyslexia, said Hewitt. Caslin has served on the KSC Disability Panel since 2006. In the Computers and Design class, her DVD packaging design for the KSC Writing Center was chosen from work by 25 other students to be mass produced and sent to more than 500 institutions around the country last spring. Caslin also was a high school student appointee to the Vermont State Board of Education for two years. She voted and took a stand on many important issues that faced education in Vermont. She currently works at the information desk in the L. P. Young Student Center to help finance her education while maintaining a 3.25 grade point average (GPA).

Lull is also a very creative and responsible student, said Hewitt. Lull maintains a 3.5 GPA and consistently makes the Dean’s List while working at Shaw’s Supermarket in both Hillsborough and Keene to help finance her education. Lull won the in-class competition to design a logo for the Cheshire TV program, Reflections. This program chronicles oral history of events in the Monadnock region. The project is a collaboration between KSC, Franklin Pierce University, the Historical Society of Cheshire County, Keene Public Library, and Cheshire TV. During the summer, she works with children as a camp counselor organizing art and crafts activities, nature walks, journalism projects, and games for children 6 to 13 years old. She also designs and takes photographs for the weekly newspaper for campers and their families.

The Friends of the Thorne decided to create the Excellence in Art awards to become more involved with the KSC Department of Art and its students, said Barbara Coburn, chair of the Friends of the Thorne. Awards recipients were determined based on the students’ merit and accomplishment and the students’ promise for an artistic future at Keene State. Three representatives from the Art Department and the Friends of the Thorne interviewed six candidates to determine which two art students would receive the award.

In addition to the Excellence in Art award, the Friends of the Thorne also fund the People’s Choice award during the “Emerging Art” exhibit and the Juror’s Choice award for the biennial regional Jurors’ Choice Exhibition. Last year, the Friends presented a memorial award at the juried show to honor longtime Friends member Mary Truslow, who died a year and a half ago. This year, the Friends will give a memorial award in honor of another longtime member, Helene Moodie, who passed away last fall.

The Friends also donate money to help bring exhibits to the Thorne for their fall education program for K to 12 students and elderly members of the community.

“I am a big supporter of giving awards to KSC students and donating money toward exhibits as it shows the Friends are very supportive of the Thorne Gallery through community involvement. We bring the greater Keene community to the Thorne and KSC,” said Coburn.

The Friends also do a lot of work behind the scenes, hosting art receptions, making food for the receptions, hosting art lectures such as the monthly Meet the Monadnock Artists series, providing docents, crafts projects, and coordination with schools, nursing homes, and home school parents for the fall educational exhibit. Sometimes the Friends pay for a bus to bring students to the Thorne for the educational program. The Friends launched a major fund- raising effort to build the Thorne Art Gallery, which opened in the fall of 1993.

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