Art student gets public display of work


Breanna Rae Weber, Website Manger & Chief Photographer

Every art major is required to participate in an art exhibition their senior year, which happens in the Bradley Gallery of Art. However, students rarely get the opportunity to display their artwork outside of Lakeland College during their undergraduate studies.

Renjie Zhou, senior art major, was given that opportunity when he was asked to feature his work in a public art exhibition at the StoreFront Gallery and Studio in Sheboygan Falls, Wis. The exhibition also features the work of Oliver William, a 6-year-old boy whose dad is an alum of Lakeland College.

One of the owners of StoreFront Gallery and Studio went to the fall art show at Lakeland College where Zhou’s work was featured. She enjoyed his portraits and asked if he wanted to display his artwork in her gallery.

“I know it’s a small gallery, but that’s my first public show,” said Zhou. “It means a lot to me.”

Zhou is from China and has liked art since he was a child. However, in China, if you want to study art in college, you have to study it in middle school, which Zhou’s parents did not agree with. Coming to the U.S. gave him the opportunity to pursue his interest in art.

“I think because Lakeland is a small school, we don’t have a lot students, so they (the art professors) can take good care of everyone. It’s made me improve much faster,” said Zhou.

The opening reception was Feb. 20, but the exhibition is set to run until March 8.

“It was a wonderful show,” said Lakeland College alumna, Sally Carson. “I don’t doubt that this is the beginning of a very long and fulfilling art career for him.”

“I used to see myself as an art student,” said Zhou. “But after that (being featured in an exhibit outside of college), I think I can see myself as a real artist.”