Student artist inspired by family and science

A painting, or any piece of artwork, rarely has a beginning and an end. The process of creating a piece of artwork also often has no concrete beginning or end. Julianne Russo, a sophomore studio art major, inherited a love and appreciation of the arts from her grandfather and mother who both create their own artwork.

When Russo was younger she marveled over paintings her grandfather had done in his youth. Her mother would also paint or craft things such as scrapbooks. Growing up around people who love art has translated into a passion for Russo, who is emphasizing in painting.

“I couldn’t imagine not doing this [painting] for the rest of my life,” says Russo. “I always have to be creating something.”

Russo feels that she is not accomplishing any purpose in her own life if she is not painting and creating. After realizing her passion and increasing skill in painting, Russo talked with an advisor in high school, who encouraged her to continue her path as an artist. She decided on Chapman because it “felt like home” when she walked on the campus. Russo wanted to be more than just another art student, she wanted to be directly involved in the art program. When she visited Chapman, Russo liked the feel of the small community, the small student to faculty ratio and felt like she could fit in to the art community easily.

Russo helped found the Art Club on campus with Jennifer Seo and Andrew Macasil. The Office of Student and Campus Life is in the process of approving the group as an official club. They are only waiting on a few more people to show interest and attend the unofficial meetings. It has already helped build a community of people who share a common passion for the arts. So far they have held screenings of films and documentaries on different artists and art projects; art exchanges where each person brings a piece of work he or she has created and trades it for a piece from another person brought; and some discussion and criticism nights. They are also planning outings to museums and galleries in Los Angeles, as well as workshops on how to build an art portfolio.

Between helping organize the Art Club and taking a full course load Russo stills find time to do her own artwork. Russo was particularly inspired by science because of a class called “The Intersection of Art and Science” that she took at Chapman during Interterm of 2011. The themes of biology and cubism are reflected in many of her current pieces. Russo is excited to continue creating artwork, while being an active participant in Chapman’s art program.

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