John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center

MFA Exhibitions

Spring 2018 MFA Thesis Exhibitions 

The Masters of Fine Arts program at WCU is pleased to announce the 2018 MFA Thesis Exhibitions. The exhibitions spotlight works by five graduating artists and represent a synthesis of each student’s experience at the WCU School of Art and Design MFA Program in Studio Art. The MFA Thesis Exhibitions features work in a variety of media and surveys a range of conceptual themes and creative approaches that characterize the global cultural landscape and contemporary art practice. 

MFA Thesis Exhibition

MFA Thesis Exhibition | WCU Fine Art Museum
Exhibition: April 10 – May 4, 2018 
Reception: April 12, 2018 from 5-7pm

MFA candidates represented in this WCU Fine Art Museum exhibition are Alison Burnette, Javier Fox, and Martha Neaves.  

MFA Thesis Exhibition| REVOLVE @RAMP South Studios* 
Exhibition: April 14 – April 28, 2018 
Reception: April 21, 2018 from 4-6pm  

MFA candidates represented in this REVOLVE @ RAMP South Studios exhibition are Brendan Best, Zachary Rogers.   

*REVOLVE @ RAMP South Studios  
821 Riverside Dr, #179 Asheville, NC 28801 
T: 240.298.9575 | E: 
Hours: Wed - Fri 4p - 8p / Sat - Sun 1p - 4p (and by appointment) 


Click on each name below to learn more about the artist 

Martha Neaves

Martha Neaves


Martha Neaves holds a B.S. in Art Education from Appalachian State University. She has worked in advertising, taught in public schools and owned and operated a private art academy and studio. Her thesis exhibition developed around a phenomenological investigation into the objective and subjective ways of knowing and the manifestation of meaning. Phenomenology is used as an apparatus to pay greater attention to the unfolding relationship between the multidimensional aspects of time, space and consciousness. As a vehicle for thinking about this complex relationship, she uses novel ideas coming out of popular sciences and also pays homage to the beauty inherent in mathematical truth.

Martha Neaves, Alchemical Apothecary Series, 2018, slip cast and sculpted porcelain, cone 10 reduction with gold luster, 7.5 x 7.5 x 7.5 inches


Ali Burnette


Ali Burnette's work explores the representation of women through flowers. Through delicate ceramic forms, she links together women, flowers, and goddesses to allow for the full experience of the feminine. According to the artist, "Flowers are the essence of the feminine and represent the goddesses in every woman. The goddesses are essential aspects of a woman's life and help guide her through her journeys. Artemis guides us through our youth by the greenest of green path. Athena, being very strong, has the personality of the hydrangea and Aphrodite the personalities of the rose and violet. The daisy is a flower made up of two flowers, similar to Persephone's two separate lives. Each woman is made of her own cluster of goddesses and flowers."

Ali Burnette, Women, 2018, ceramic

Javier Fox

Javier Fox


Javier Fox holds a B.F.A. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a B.A. in Education from the University of Nebraska at Kearney. His creative work examines and critiques contemporary attitudes towards environmental sustainability by exploring the philosophies and practices of earlier global cultures that led them to a more harmonious existence with the natural world. According to Fox, "my interest in this subject is intensely personal and based on my experience as an immigrant to the U.S. Growing up in the mountains of Colombia, I learned the importance of balance in life. We understood that our actions had a direct effect on the environment...In moving to the U.S., I observed many differences including a disconnection between people and nature, which is most evident in the vast amount of consumption and misuse of resources... My hope is to make work that contributes to a deeper appreciation and awareness of the consequence of our culture."

Javier Fox, In Ruins, 2017, unfired clay, 24 x 18 x 10 inches

WCU School of Art and Design Masters of Fine Arts  

The MFA at WCU is an inter-disciplinary studio art program and creative research environment where ideas are given form. Through close association with a diverse faculty, visiting artists, scholars, and their peers, students develop a contextual and historical awareness of their practice focusing on exploration, creative research, and art making. 

Learn more about the WCU MFA Studio Art Program.

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