Found through a negotiation of space between multiple entities, balance is applicable to both internal experience and the exterior material world. In the face of extreme uncertainty, humans seek a sense of order, a centering and grounding force that allows for continuity in particular aspects of life. For artists, creating work can provide us with a feeling of normalcy and purpose– it can balance our bodies, our emotions, and our daily routines. Through the work of twelve artists, the exhibition explores different visual approaches to the idea of balance, and the meaning it has for us as individuals as well as a collective whole.

For the students whose work is represented in this exhibition, the concept of balance varies greatly. It can mean navigating a twelve-hour time difference between their home country and Claremont while taking a semester’s worth of classes or preparing for medical treatments that provide a deeper sense of equilibrium. Balance can also be found through the artistic process; for Alicia Garza (PO ’23) “the effort to create visual harmony” echoes “the effort of finding internal balance” in relation to the complex concepts her work explores. Another artist, Austin Kim (PO ‘23), pursues balance through his inherited ancestral stories which are “continuously renegotiated between the liminal space of fear, hopes, and desires eclectically sewn together into a patchwork of memories”.

While the idea of balance conjures up specific feelings and images, it is general enough to be completely open to interpretation. This exhibition unifies a varied array of approaches to the concept, which in turn complicate our understanding of it. Let it represent a moment of harmony, as we come together from wide-ranging geographical locations and diverse lived experiences.

As you navigate the gallery, we encourage you to click each image for more information on the artwork and its connection to the theme of balance.

Alex Dean (PO ’22) and Ise Henriques Sharp (PO ’21)

An interview with the curators: