YHC Presents Senior Thesis Exhibition

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Media Contact: LeAnn Waldroup
(706) 379-5310, klwaldroup@yhc.edu

Young Harris College Presents Senior Thesis Exhibition 

YOUNG HARRIS, Ga. – Young Harris College will present this year’s second Senior Thesis Exhibition that represents a culmination of artwork by graduating seniors. The show will be on display Thursday, April 10, through Saturday, May 10. A special reception with the artists will be held on Thursday, April 10, at 6 p.m. in the Campus Gate Art Gallery (CGAG). The exhibit and reception are free and open to the public.

This gifted group of senior art majors comprised of Allison Burnham of Perry, Ga., Kelli Denning of Blairsville, Ga., Katie Freeman of Hartwell, Ga., and Trent Sizemore of Lilburn, Ga., will showcase a diverse body of work, including painting, drawing, sculpture, photography and many other mediums.”

Allison Burnham
Burnham’s interest in psychology and perception inspired the work for her portion of the exhibit. “I want to create art that changes and affects the way people think about something—the viewers should walk away from the artwork with something gained,” she explained. “For these works, I chose to present facts and truths about abortion to spur thinking and change in the viewer.”
Burnham is a graduate of Perry High School and the daughter of Brian and Beckie Burnham of Perry, Ga. She has honed her leadership skills at YHC as captain of the women’s soccer team and a member of the College’s new Scholars Consortium. She also serves on the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and as a police cadet on campus and is a member of the Alpha Chi and Phi Theta Kappa honor societies.
She was the receipt of the 2012 Richard Aunspaugh Award for Visual Art, and won second in the 2013 Student Juried Art Exhibition and an honorable mention in the 2012 exhibition. In 2013, she was named to the Peach Belt Conference (PBC) All-Academic First Team and the Capital One NCAA Division II Academic All-District III First Team, and made the 2012-2013 PBC Presidential Academic Honor Gold Level.
“My time at YHC has allowed me to develop my interests in psychology and creating artwork,” said Burnham, who plans to attend Georgia State College and University in the fall to pursue a master’s degree in art therapy. “The faculty guided me to explore different mediums and develop my technique and execution, and have given me knowledge about creating successful works of art.”

Kelli Denning
Denning’s body of work consists of pieces inspired by learning and fluidity, using the idea of nursery rhymes to tie the exhibition together. Many pieces incorporate woodworking, which she found she has a knack for during her studies at YHC.
“We are surrounded by fluid elements—whether it be physical elements like water, wind, fire and earth, or just simple thought processes,” explained Denning, who enjoys all things art and music. “The nursery rhyme theme deals with how we learn ideas and how we are taught to deal with those elements.”
Denning is a graduate of Fannin County High School and the daughter of Ken Denning and Peggy Denning of Blairsville, Ga. Her artwork has been selected for each of YHC’s student juried exhibitions and received an honorable mention in 2011.
“YHC has molded me by providing structure and challenging me to new levels I thought I couldn’t reach,” said Denning, who plans to pursue a career as an artist after graduation. “I have learned new skills and found my personal style. I love YHC and the personal relationships students have with their professors.”

Katie Freeman 
Freeman’s inspiration for the works included in this exhibition has stemmed from finding her personal identity through art and trying to spark the interest of others to do the same.

“I used to draw because it was fun. Now, I am more concerned with finding a deeper meaning, hopefully connecting with the audience somehow,” explained Freeman, who plans to pursue a graduate degree in Spanish and devote time to travel and mission work. 

Freeman is a graduate of Hart County High School and the daughter of Robert and Deana Roach and Roger Freeman of Hartwell, Ga. She is involved with religious life programming on campus and was awarded “Most Talented in Art” by the Class of 2014.

“The teachers and friends I have met at YHC have made my experience more than enjoyable,” said Freeman. “I have learned to open up and trust people. In doing this, I’ve been able to trust my own instincts more, not just with art—but also in life. After I graduate, I want to continue to push myself to try new mediums, materials and concepts. I have the College to thank for this newfound aspiration.”

Trent Sizemore

Sizemore’s photography exhibition was heavily influenced by the “Enchanted Valley” and his passion for the outdoors. Nearly all of the photographs were taken in Georgia and North Carolina.

“The College’s location greatly influenced my work by placing me in the ideal place to pursue outdoor photography,” said Sizemore, who plans to continue building his personal photography business after graduation.

Sizemore is a graduate of Parkview High School and the son of Tim and Dawn Sizemore of Lilburn, Ga. He is a member of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and led the design of the “Corn Creek Review” Literary Magazine for the past two years.

In 2012, Sizemore’s image titled “God’s Light” was selected as a top five finalist for Photographer’s Forum Magazine’s 33rd annual High School and College Photography Competition. In addition, his photographs have been published in national magazines including The Flyfish Journal and Coastal Angler Magazine and used for online promotions by well-known outdoors companies such as MidCurrent and Jackson Kayak.

“I have benefited from the ability to have my work viewed from the perspectives of both students and teachers,” said Sizemore. “I find it important to have your work seen by others, and compare what you are doing to what others are doing, even if similarities don’t exist. While I began with little focus or direction in my artwork, my photography course at YHC led me in the direction to pursue that almost exclusively.”

The CGAG is located at 5149 College St. on the YHC campus. Regular gallery hours are Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information, contact (706) 379-5114 or campusgate@yhc.edu.

About Young Harris College
Young Harris College is a private, baccalaureate degree-granting college located in the beautiful mountains of north Georgia. Founded in 1886 and historically affiliated with The United Methodist Church, Young Harris College educates, inspires and empowers students through the highest quality liberal arts education. The College currently has more than 1,100 students across five divisions—Education, Fine Arts, Humanities, Mathematics and Science, and Social and Behavioral Sciences. The historic campus in Young Harris, Ga., is currently undergoing major campus improvements to accommodate the College’s growth, including recent completion of a 226-bed residence hall that is expected to earn LEED certification, a 248-bed, apartment-style residential village and a 57,000-square-foot, LEED-certified recreation center. In 2011, the College was granted candidacy for NCAA Division II athletics, and in 2012, was invited to become the 14th member of the Peach Belt Conference. YHC is among fewer than 300 colleges and universities nationwide named to the 2013-2014 list of Colleges of Distinction. For more information, visit yhc.edu.

"Works by Allison Burnham"

"Works by Kelli Denning"


"Works by Katie Freeman"


"Works by Trent Sizemore"