Students Share Art at the Cactus Café
Oct 20, 2023

Students Share Art at the Cactus Café

Reporting Texas TV

AUSTIN, Texas – The UT Creative Arts and Theater Committee hosted its student art “Gala-ry” on Oct. 11 at the university’s Cactus Café.

Students displayed their work and talked about art with visitors. The gallery featured more than thirty multimedia pieces from students of a variety majors. Some guests dressed in 1920s attire.

Faculty, students and friends gathered in the small café and looked at paintings, digital art, drawings and even clothing. Gallery coordinator Bee Barlow said this event opens the space for artists to express and discuss their creative interests.

“I have had a lot of students from other majors say I’m not a fine arts major so I can’t do anything to display my art on campus,” Barlow said. “But I wanted to provide a space so students can feel like what they create is beautiful.”

Bee Barlow displayed a painting called “Your Skin. Your Bones. Your Virtue.” at UT’s Art Gala-ry event in Austin, Texas, on Oct. 11, 2023. The inspiration for its color came from the movie The Green Knight. (Leeza Meyer/Reporting Texas TV)

The event ran from 6-9 p.m. with mocktails and cookies served to attendees while jazz music played. Barlow said coordinators strategically placed the art around the café so viewers could look at the pieces from all angles

As the artists viewed each other’s work, they talked about what inspired them while creating their art. Pre-med major and gallery assistant coordinator Camarin Wengler said the inspiration for the piece she submitted came from her previous ballet experience and Vincent van Gogh’s work.

“I really fell in love with this one quote about performance and the love of passion in art, so I put that into my old pointe shoes to portray that,” Wengler said.

Camarin Wengler painted her old pointe shoes for the UT Art Gala-ry event at the University of Texas at Austin on Oct. 11, 2023. She titled the painting “The Love of All Things” to capture her love of both art and dance. (Leeza Meyer/Reporting Texas TV)

Wengler said she always enjoys the environment of this event and the people she gets to have conversations about art with. 

“I just love being in the atmosphere it creates,” Wengler said. “To be all in the same space is very calming and all the self expression is really fun to see.”

More than 160 people attended the event. Barlow said they hope for an even bigger turnout for committee’s next event in the spring.

“It is a way to just connect with people,” Barlow said. “It fosters these connections between students and I just love that.”