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Wednesday, April 17, 2024
The independent student publication of The University at Buffalo, since 1950

Review: Phyllis Thompson takes over Buffalo Arts Studio

The artist shares stories about her ‘Evolving Memories’ on closing day of exhibit

<p>By using the photographs in her exhibit, Thompson says she feels that she has “given them an extended life.”</p>

By using the photographs in her exhibit, Thompson says she feels that she has “given them an extended life.”

The room is quiet, the lighting is bright and crisp. Phyllis Thompson sits front and center, ready to chat with guests about how she created her latest exhibition, “Evolving Memories.”

The exhibition, which ran from Jan. 26 to March 2 at the Buffalo Arts Studio, showcases the whimsical and creative interpretations of Thompson’s life and family, both past and present.

Her display recalls moments from her childhood and tells the story of her life and those of her ancestors.

The photographs, which she found under her mother’s bed, feature some people Thompson recognizes and some she doesn’t. By using them in this exhibit, Thompson says she feels that she has “given them an extended life.”

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The photographs, which Thompson found under her mother’s bed, feature some people she recognizes and some she doesn’t. 

As a part of her artist talk, Thompson fielded questions from the audience, whose members represented a wide range of generations and ethnicities. The questions were inspiring and made Thompson look at her work in a different light, or so it seemed.

One of the highlights of the exhibit was Thompson’s lovely cursive handwriting, which briefly described sections of the exhibit and made the experience intimate and warm. Walking through the exhibit felt like Thompson was speaking directly to the viewer about every tiny detail. This intimacy resonated with the audience, many of whom raised their hands just for the opportunity to tell Thompson thank you — thank you for sharing your most inward thoughts with such a large group of people.

One woman in particular was extremely moved by it, even asking Thompson if these would be for sale at some point in time. Thompson smiled and looked at the crowd with an expression that said, “You guys would really buy my handwriting?”

Thompson’s artwork will continue to be displayed in her studio, featuring pieces from this exhibition.

Josh Pawlik is an arts editor and can be reached at josh.pawlik@ubspectrum.com


JOSH PAWLIK
josh-pawlik.jpg

Josh Pawlik is an assistant arts editor for The Spectrum. His hobbies include playing guitar, working out and reading. He can be found on Instagram @joshpawlik 

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