Dec 142012
 

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Foxboro, Mass.

Published: Thursday, December 13, 2012 11:43 AM EST

‘Yellow is,’ a photograph by Katie Murray.

Murray captures a moment in life

By Caroline Smith

What does ‘still life’ mean in today’s fast-paced world?

Foxboro High School grad Katie Murray was asked that thought-provoking question and answered it with a photograph. As a result, the senior at East Carolina University earned a spot on display at the North Carolina Museum of Art with her work entitled “Yellow Is.”

The museum asked college students to submit works based on that question for their new exhibition, “A Life, Still.” The exhibit was created to correspond with “Still-Life Masterpieces: A Visual Feast” from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Educators and both ECU faculty and students collaborated for more than 10 months to plan, create and promote the exhibition for entries. Following the promotion, there were 182 submissions. The works included both 2-dimensional and video art from students of 21 universities, 13 states and two continents.

Murray’s entry was chosen to be among just 29 selected pieces.

Her still life photo, “Yellow Is,” shows a plate of fried eggs and a glass of orange juice sitting on top of the morning paper. This scene is caught by the light of the morning sun shining through the window onto a wooden table.

In Murray’s artist statement, she explains, “Life is continuously moving and changing but I’ve found that no matter how much time goes by and how much is going on in our lives, there are certain moments that remain still…They are a part of you because they are still, even when everything else around you is not.”

The judges agreed. “The clean, organized composition sets this moment apart from the other hours in life,” they wrote. It is clear that this piece has clearly given new insight on the meaning of still life.

Murray’s passion for art, of course, had to begin somewhere. “As a kid I enjoyed art and being creative. I took art classes, which were always my favorite, throughout high school with Ms. Cahan.”

Mary Anne Cahan, an art teacher at FHS, had influenced her love for art greatly. “I looked forward to her class everyday.” Murray also gives credit to English teacher Walter Mitchell at FHS for impacting her interest in art. “I had told him that I wanted to make a positive impact on at least one person and he was just really encouraging.”

Murray is dual-majoring in graphic design and photography at ECU.

“It’s a lot of work balancing both but I love what I get to study, create, and work on every day because I’m dealing with concepts and meaningful ideas” Murray says.

Although initially majoring in business and marketing at ECU, Murray soon realized how much she had missed being involved in art and switched majors her freshman year. “My intuition inspired me to continue art in college.”

“She’s great at everything she does” says Sharon Murray, Katie’s mom.

Katie had worked as a design intern at Snap Fusion in Andover over the summer.

“I absolutely loved every minute of it,” she says. “I kept pinching myself being like I can’t believe I found a passion that I really enjoy and at the same time allows me to continue learning, questioning, discovering, and creating.”

Murray’s work, along with the other pieces of “A Life, Still,” will be on display at the North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh, N.C. through Jan. 13.

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