Senior artist profile series: Marina Wells ’15

Each year in May, The Museum of Art hosts the Senior Art Show, an exhibition featuring works by senior students ranging a variety of mediums, including photography, sculpture, printmaking and painting. In the weeks leading up to the opening on May 7, the Echo will feature each artist, showcasing their work and speaking to them about their personal inspirations and processes.

This week we are featuring Marina Wells ’15, an Art and English double major hailing from the small Cape Cod town of Truro, MA. At Colby she is an intern at the museum, working in the education department and giving tours to visiting schools. Wells also serves on the museum’s Student Advisory Board, which works to create museum-related programming and events for students on campus. In the past, the board has hosted an open mic night in honor of Black History Month as well as a one-night exhibition of photography currently in museum storage.  When not in the museum, Wells sings in the college’s chamber choir, and recently performed with the group at Carnegie Hall. 

Wells cites her upbringing as a strong influence on her interest in art, stating, “I grew up surrounded by art while hanging out in Provincetown, which has a vibrant art community.” Growing up in a creative home, Wells looks to her family members as sources for inspiration.  “I’m inspired by my sister’s drawings, my brother’s paintings, my brother-in-law’s woodblock prints, and the time my dad glued a bunch of rocks to our furniture when I was a kid.”

Wells’s primary medium is photography, utilizing both professional and toy cameras in her work. For the Senior Art Show, she plans on exploring the current status of photography in the context of contemporary social media. “I’m particularly interested in how photography has changed in the digital age and how self-representation in images has evolved into something we deal with on a daily basis. I like thinking about how narcissistic things like snapchat or Facebook can be and how we choose to express our own identities in really peculiar ways.” She continued, “I will definitely have at least one selfie in the senior show.”

For her work, Wells draws from a diverse array of artistic styles and forms, both photographic and non-photographic. “I’m interested in abstract painting, spirit photography, ID portraits, old family photos, baroque royal portraiture, tattoos, handwriting, selfies, and nautical charts.” Outside of her primary work, Wells also likes to draw in paint. While abroad in Salamanca her freshman year, Wells made micron pen and watercolor postcards to send to people back home.

After graduating, Wells will be moving to Ecuador to work for a non-profit. She plans on continuing her education through graduate school, and is hoping to become a professor. However, she asserted that she will always be a photographer.

Come see Wells’s photos alongside the works of the seven other artists who will be  featured in the Senior Art Show, beginning on May 7 at the Museum of Art.

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