November 30, 2018 2018 Kimberly D. Iles Art Awards Announced

Note:  This story first appeared on the School of Art’s website.


Ten undergraduate students in art history, graphic design, and studio art received the 2018 Kimberly D. Iles Art Scholarship in recognition of their excellent work. Selected by faculty nomination, these students represent each area of study in the School of Art.

Learn more about the Iles Art Scholarship.

The 2018 Iles Awards took place on Sept. 18 in the McCarty Auditorium. Each recipient gave a presentation of their work. James J. Hack, husband of the late Kimberly D. Iles, presented the awards, and Theresa Lee, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, delivered remarks.

2018 Iles Awardees

Art major, Mary Badillo poses in welding attire
Mary Badillo is a senior studio art major from Tampa, Florida, earning a BFA in 3D art, primarily sculpture.

Badillo uses found objects to spark conversations about the relationship of artifacts to the industrial and natural world, as well as to comment on traditional behaviors within American culture.

“While exploring in dumpsters, thrift stores, and parking lots, I tend to choose industrial and domestic everyday items,” she says. “I create through trial and error, placement, mixed material choice, and repetition.”

Badillo says the Iles Scholarship allows her to have free range for her explorations. She plans to pursue an MFA in sculpture.



Art major, Ashley Bergner poses with canvas
Ashley Bergner is a senior studio art major from Knoxville earning a BFA in 2D art, primarily painting.

Bergner describes her work as intuitive and playful. “Through trial and error I am discovering what excites me most and growing as an artist,” she says.

“To be recognized with the Iles Scholarship validates my efforts and work,” Bergner says. She plans to pursue an MFA degree after graduation.






Art major, Jodi Canfield draws
Jodi Canfield is a senior studio art major from Maryville, Tennessee, earning a BFA in 2D art, primarily drawing.

Canfield is interested in using art to explore and create connections between herself and the world around her. She enjoys incorporating abstraction, texture, and words into her work.

“I think that art can navigate barriers of human existence and occasionally break them,” Canfield says. After graduation, she plans to see more places and keep making work, eventually attending graduate school.

“Receiving the Iles Scholarship gives me new confidence and motivates me to work harder to live up to the honor,” Canfield says.


Art major, Emily Fastenau headshot
Emily Fastenau is a senior from Nashville earning a BA in art history. She describes her scholarship as exploratory and curiosity-driven.

“I’m far from specializing or finding my niche,” she says, “but I’m enjoying researching the origins of art.”

For Fastenau, receiving the Iles Scholarship makes her feel like she’s doing something right. “I belong in this field that I love,” she says. “It’s proof that my passion is showing and taking me places.”

After graduation, Fastenau plans to take a year for volunteering or working in art conservation or museums. She hopes that her experiences will show her what direction she needs to take for graduate studies. “I’ll be doing more of what I’m currently doing,” she says, “which is exploring the many career options art history has to offer.”



Graphic Design major, Carrie Garrison pins up a design
Carrie Garrison is a junior from Knoxville earning her BFA in graphic design. She describes her work as highly influenced by social psychology, human connection, and complex relationships.

The Iles Scholarship will help her focus on “personal as well as educational work” during the upcoming school year, Garrison says.

Garrison is still exploring her post-graduation options, and experimenting with new media in hopes of finding a fit for her future.






Graphic Design major, Parker Jenkins headshot
Parker Jenkins, a two-time winner of the Iles Scholarship, is a senior graphic design student from Knoxville. Jenkins describes how he’s developed as an artist and designer since receiving the scholarship last year:

“More than anything, I have learned to recognize my visual voice and execute it more succinctly.”

Following the 2017 Iles Awards, “taking chances became easier and I learned the importance of going with your gut, as well as sticking to your convictions as a creator,” Jenkins says.

In the past year, Jenkins has had his book cover design selected by University of Tennessee Press, put on a solo exhibition at Gallery 1010, and acquired an increasing amount of freelance work, which he says has done “tremendous good” for his ability as a designer attempting to make a name and a living for himself.

As for post-graduation plans, Jenkins says he’s hoping for success but that he’s “trying not to be too specific,” about what form those hopes will take. “I’ve learned that keeping your mind open to an opportunity can lead you into something magical and unexpected,” he says.

Jenkins calls receiving the Iles Scholarship not once but twice “profoundly reassuring.”
“It tells me that the heart and soul I put into what I create is coming through,” he says.



Art major, Olivia Lichterman headshot
Olivia Lichterman is a senior studio art major from Memphis earning a BFA in 4D art with a minor in art history.

Lichterman’s artwork syncs sound with visuals to create immersive environments. She describes sound work as a meditative process, and believes that sound, rarely used by visual artists, completes an environment.

“Receiving the Iles Scholarship means that people are noticing the work I’m doing,” Lichterman says. “Creating installation works can get a bit expensive and I’ve put a lot of ideas on hold because of that. This scholarship encourages me to keep making work.”




Art major, Kelly Moore with a ceramic item
Kelly Moore is a senior studio art major from Sevierville, Tennessee, earning a BFA in 3D art, primarily ceramics.

Moore describes her work as “meticulous and comical” with a foundation in Chinese art history and her own personal history.

“My works often morph into forms that border the strange as they comment on race and highlight different dichotomies,” Moore says.

Moore feels honored to receive the Iles Scholarship, especially after looking at Kimberly Iles’ work and artist statement. She appreciates how Iles searched for “compassion, self-awareness, and truth,” through her art, and wants to incorporate those ideas into her own work.

After graduation, Moore will continue to make art. She’s open to various forms and media, and is still deciding whether to pursue graduate school or artist residencies.

“I just know that as long as I continue to express myself through art, I will be content with however my life ends up,” she says.



Art major, Caroline Rowcliffe with a camera
Caroline Rowcliffe is a senior studio art major from Knoxville earning her BFA in 2D art, primarily photography.

Rowcliffe tackles societal issues through portraiture, and describes her perspective as “optimistic and soft-tonal.”

“Whether capturing history in the making, empowering people, or creating memories, my work is solely for bringing happiness to people,” she says.

Rowcliffe says the Iles Scholarship will allow her a great deal of creative freedom. She plans to pursue a master’s degree in photography after a break from school.





Art major Tatiana Tikhonova at printmaking table
Tatiana Tikhonova, a BFA student in 2D studio art, primarily printmaking, was born and raised in Kalachinsk, Russia, a small town in Siberia. She moved to the U.S. eight years ago and earned an associate’s degree in studio arts from Walters State Community College.

Tikhonova says her work is about her life. “I love sharing my stories through art,” she says. “In my prints and books I talk about Russia and my experience as an immigrant.” She also explores themes such as dreams and emotions.

Tikhonova says the Iles Scholarship encourages her to work even harder and prove that she is “the right recipient for it.”

After graduation, she plans to pursue an MFA in printmaking. “I would love to have a teaching job and share my knowledge and love for printmaking,” she says.


All photos by Laura Pierpont