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Yager Wins People's Choice Art Award at KSC Student Exhibition

KEENE, N.H., 5/3/10 - Keene State College senior art major Jessica Yager of Bellows Falls, Vt., was voted the winner of the People’s Choice Award for Gibbous Fountain, a cast bronze statue standing in a shower of water in front of a wall of faces, displayed in “Emerging Art” at the Thorne-Sagendorph Art Gallery.

During the first weeks of the annual KSC art students’ exhibition, visitors were invited to vote for their favorite work of art. Yager won the majority of the 479 votes cast. She will receive a $100 cash award from the Friends of the Thorne along with a People’s Choice Commendation.

“I had come up with the idea for the fountain during a sleepless night after my mother was first diagnosed with cancer,” said Yager. “She had been listening to a guided meditation and it was almost like my fountain idea.”

This was the first time Yager had worked in bronze or done a life casting. She completed the work in a one-on-one workshop with artist Mark Prentt in his studio in St. Albans, Vt.

“The fountain began with the image of a woman, post mastectomy, standing bathed in water and light, with a host of faces of those who have walked this path before and those who walk beside in support emerging behind her. She stands with her eyes closed, face turned toward the light and water coming from above; her arms extended in a pose that sits between worship, acceptance, strength, and peace. She stands in a basin shaped like a gibbous moon, filled with stones that have been tumbled by the ocean,” Yager explains in her artist’s statement.

Last summer, her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, and her current body of work chronicles their journey from her diagnosis through treatment. Yager’s project was supported by funding from a Keene State College Undergraduate Research and Creative Project Grant.

“Emerging Art” will be on display through Saturday, May 8, when gallery hours will be extended from noon to 5 p.m. for Commencement. Normal gallery hours are from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday through Wednesday, and from noon to 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday.

The gallery will be closed for several weeks and will reopen Friday, June 4, with “Passionate Pursuits: Keene State College Alumni, Faculty, Staff, and Our Community Partner the Friends of the Thorne Share Their Creations and Collectibles.” The exhibit will run through July 25 and will reopen September 3-30.

During June and July, the gallery is open from noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, from 3 to 8 p.m. on Friday, and from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The gallery will be closed every Monday and Tuesday and on Sunday, July 4, for Independence Day.

Both exhibits are free and open to the public. Located on Wyman Way on the Keene State campus, the Thorne Gallery is accessible to people with disabilities. To request accommodations for a disability, please call the Thorne Gallery at least two weeks before your visit. For more information, call 603-358-2720 or visit

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