Verder hall residents bring the arts to life

Allison Bugg

As part of Living Arts Week, sponsored by Verder Hall, Katrina Campbell walks the runway in a dress made of trash bags.

Credit: Beth Rankin

Once a year Verder Hall residents have the opportunity to show off their work for their peers, try a different form of art or enter a contest during a weeklong series of events.

Residence Hall Director Charlie Malone said Living Arts Week is an annual tradition that’s been going on for more than 10 years.

“It’s a great way for students to unwind by showing off their work and gaining inspiration from each other,” he said.

Malone coordinated the series of events with the help of his staff, consisting of resident assistants, residents and artists.

According to the university’s Web site, Verder Hall is a theme community that houses fine and professional arts majors. The hall offers a supportive peer group and the availability of a 24-hour studio space.

“We took some ideas from past years, changed some things around and then added some new things,” Malone said.

Events throughout the week included an art show, a poetry open reading and a java and jazz night, which featured the Kent State Jazz Band.

Another event was the Junkyard Fashion Show held Thursday in the Verder Lobby.

Katrina Wilkosz, who organized the event, said students look forward to it because it’s a lot of fun.

Anyone was eligible to participate regardless of whether he or she lived in Verder Hall, she said.

The guidelines for entering were to design and create clothing and/or accessories out of recycled or “found” objects. The idea was to not buy anything and to think outside the box.

Out of 12 participants, Susan Rich, a senior visual communication design major, won by receiving the most votes from participants and spectators. She designed a very short and modern wedding dress with a train and veil out of white trash bags. Her prize was a Verder Hall Living Arts Week T-shirt.

The final event to close out the week was the Verder Soundfest held all day Saturday. Originally planned as an outdoor event, it was held in the Terrace Lounge because of the inclement weather.

Daneil Spiegel organized the all-day concert, which featured two rock bands, a piano band and a rapper. The day also featured an open mic and an emcee.

“It’s a little disappointing that the weather turned ugly, but we had a great turnout and a lot of fun,” she said.

“The best thing about Living Arts Week is the opportunity for students not only to show off their work, but to view the work of their peers,” Malone said.

Contact local music reporter Allison Bugg at [email protected].