Photo Courtesy of Elisabeth Dare

Photographic artwork created in Europe by Elisabeth Dare will be on view at the art department's annual Merit Scholar Exhibition Show in May.


February 9, 2016

Art student travels to Europe to create work for end-of-year art show

While many students spent their winter break eating too many holiday cookies and sleeping in late, senior photography and anthropology major Elisabeth Dare was trekking France, Portugal and Iceland creating work for an upcoming end-of-year art show.

Every year Cleveland State University’s art department awards six students with merit scholarships based on a submitted collection of work.

The art department staff judges each submission to determine which students will be selected.
At the end of the semester, the chosen merit scholars present the body of work they have been working on for the year.

“I knew as soon as I learned I had won the scholarship that I wanted to travel to make the work for the show,” Dare said. “As an anthropology and art student, the greatest inspiration for me comes from backpacking through faraway places.”

Dare had many ideas in mind of where to go for this project, including Central America and Southeast Asia, but eventually decided on Europe because she had a previous connection to the continent.

“I have lived in Europe on and off for several years, and I felt I could comfortably take more intimate photographs there,” Dare said. “It is a cultural setting I was familiar with, but still outside of my normalcy bubble.”

She often focuses her work on the people in the countries she visits and how they live their everyday lives.
She also uses unique photographic processes that make her work stand out from others.

“I am very happy with the work I have made, and more importantly where the work has taken me -— the strange and beautiful people I have been able to capture,” Dare said.

“I am soaking all of the film I shot in various teas before I develop them so that they have an otherworldly, dreamy effect to them,” she said. “It reflects the surprises, colors and imperfections you experience while backpacking through the world.”

Dare has collected hundreds of photos during her last few months of travel abroad and plans to display a wide range at the merit show at the end of the semester.

“I am very excited to show the work, and to see how people experience it,” she said. “Viewers can expect a collection of film photographs from me, portraits of humanity from Iceland, France, Portugal, Quebec and Ohio.”

The Merit Scholar Show opening on May 5 will host an awards presentation and reception from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., and will be on display through June 11.


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