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Recent PCC Graduate Becomes First to Have Solo Exhibit on Display in Student Center

With his paintings on display in the background, recent PCC graduate Jacob Gingras says family members inspired him to develop his love for art as a youngster. Today, he says he finds art to be "relaxing" and a break from life's routine.

WINTERVILLE—All this month, visitors to Pitt Community College’s Craig F. Goess Student Center will have a chance to see firsthand the artwork of recent graduate Jacob Gingras.

A Greenville resident originally from Massachusetts, Gingras took an early interest in art and has been painting since he was a youngster. He says art has become a “therapeutic” experience for him and that his moods and emotions often determine the textures and colors he selects for his work.

“I’m kind of always thinking about what I want to do next or just different ideas and seeing if I can get that on a canvas,” he said. “… I might put sand in my paint to add texture or something like that.”

Gingras said he feels many of his projects are “never-ending.” He explained that a number of his works are “probably about five paintings thick,” because he continually pores over them and discovers new opportunities to add texture and make them more interesting.

Though he majored in Human Services Technology at Pitt, Gingras took an art appreciation course with PCC Associate of Fine Arts instructor Matt Amante that led to new ideas and inspiration.

Amante, who helped make the Gingras exhibit a reality, said the art Gingras currently has on display in the Goess Student Center is a mixture of abstract and non-objective painting with occasional found objects.

“The overall group has a heavy focus on texture and color but displays a wide range of styles,” he said. “The work also has a large range in scale, but, overall, it has a cohesive feel.”

Amante said the display of Gingras’ work represents the first solo art exhibition the Associate of Fine Arts program has sponsored in the Goess Student Center. He says he hopes it’s the first of many.

“Due to what we have seen and heard with the Gingras exhibit, we hope to do a summer solo exhibit for a PCC student annually,” he said. “The challenge will be finding students who have a body of work as extensive as Jacob’s.”

Gingras, who says he never imagined seeing his art on display at the college, said the exhibit has been a great experience and that his art has been “very well received.” And even though he is pursuing a bachelor’s degree and career in criminal justice, he says the “need to create” never goes away and art will always be a part of his life.

For those interested in viewing Gingras’ artwork at PCC, it will be on public display in the Goess Student Center’s main hallway throughout August.