By Shasta Webb
On Saturday Oct. 10, the annual Mac Market featured student and faculty art creations ranging from earrings made of gummy bears to handmade soap to delicately carved wooden beads. A small but diverse sampling of art was made available for purchase in the upper level of the Campus Center including art from Keith Couture ’11, Amanda Duhon ’11 and Allison Wegren ’09. Couture, a studio art major, began printmaking in earnest his sophomore year, although he dabbled in printing in high school. Couture’s prints primarily featured bikes, which he described as symbols for freedom which “[embody] that kid-like creative energy.”A self-proclaimed artist since “the first time [he] picked up a crayon,” Couture sometimes “falls in” to his pieces. “I sort of become the characters in my artwork. I’m creating a glimpse, a few seconds maybe, or a minute or even an hour into another world. And if I do it just right, I fall into that other world and become part of it,” he explained.Couture’s prints are intentionally crowded; he likes to “stuff” figures onto a page to create a narrative for his audience. Several complex printmaking methods, including relief cuts, intaglio and lithography, add to his design aesthetic. Couture chose printmaking over other types of art because prints are reproducible and can be sold at a much lower price than one-of-a-kind paintings or sculptures. Additionally, Couture has a deep relationship with creating art. “For me, it means forgetting about everything that we are told is ‘real’ and replacing it with a reality that can only take place inside me. It sounds rather selfish, almost like a drug, I know. That’s why I make art, to feel that other world, so real, around me,” he said.In another realm of art, Duhon has found a passion for knitting hats a year and a half ago. She learned to knit in her freshman year through MacYarn, the on-campus knitting and crocheting organization founded by her friends. She has always loved doing crafts with her hands so knitting “seemed like a logical pursuit.” Duhon loves making hats of all shapes, colors and styles because they “are quick and easy and allow for lots of experimentation. Plus you can never have too many hats.” In the past, rather than strictly sticking to patterns, Duhon has generally created her own designs, but more recently she loosely followed pre-designed patterns. Recently she has developed a liking for ear-flap hats, which she predicts will be useful in this early onset of winter. Though she began knitting with little or no intention of selling her works, she recently started thinking about it. At one point she had over 50 hats in a box waiting to be sold. “I would be happy to get rid of more if anyone is interested in buying them or I could even do custom hats.They don’t take long to make and judging but the snow outside, winter has arrived and hats are needed,” she said.In another artistic field, Wegren displayed her funky beaded and dyed artwork at the Mac Market.” Growing up in a family of artists, Wegren has enjoyed art since she was a “teeny kid” and has been experimenting with beading almost all her life. Recently, she has taken up dying fabrics. Using several techniques, including stitch resist and screen printing, Wegren’s “trial and error” multiple dying process with her fabrics to produce a wide range of pieces. Even though every piece doesn’t come out as planned, she has “learned.to be flexible with the outcomes and push the boundaries.” As far as her beading goes, Wegren “agonizes” over the color schemes. Since she was “old enough to hold a pony bead” Wegren has been creating necklaces, bracelets and earrings. She doesn’t only stick to beads, however, but also uses odd materials in many of her pieces. For example, she lacquered a pair of “creepy” paper doll cats heads and turned them into earrings.The Mac Market showed many more artists that have been creating art at Macalester for years. To find out what other artists are doing, contact the art department.