Becky Orcutt has seemingly mastered the art of the portrait. Her works have landed her spots in the 2012 No Big Heads National Self-Portrait Exhibition — where her work won Best in Show — as well as at the Compassion Exhibit at Harvard University. She has received numerous accolades from juries and critics around the country, and now she brings her work to the Student Union Gallery.
Orcutt is a student from North Bend, Wash., and she is currently studying painting at the Gordon College in Massachusetts.
“Art has always been my greatest passion and a constant presence in my life,” Orcutt says in the exhibition’s artist statement. “I am particularly interested in the figure and learning techniques to portray it, but capture something beyond just the accurate form.”
These goals are evident in her work. Some of the paintings are almost photo realistic in nature, and they accurately capture the emotion found in her subjects and poses.
This exhibit focuses on the mundane, the everyday occurrences that most people take for granted.
“These paintings explore the question of what significance the ordinary tasks and familiar objects of daily life might have,” Orcutt says. “The result was the figure (seen in my works) in an interior space, and the tension existing between the person and the objects.”
Many of the paintings focus on a person interacting with simple objects, such as alarm clocks and electric plugs. Orcutt believes that these interactions help make us human, and she expresses this belief in her art.
“I found the most compelling expressions to be those made when forming a thought, or mid sentence, as these seemed most honest, and served as subtle reminders of the similarities in humanity,” she says.
Orcutt’s exhibition “Circuit” is on display through July 31 in the Student Union Gallery.