Graduating Master of Fine Art students of Cal State San Bernardino will discuss their body of work and culminating thesis exhibitions at RAFFMA’s MFA Art Talk on Thursday, April 25, at 4 p.m. Frederick Brashear, Timothy Haerens, Aeleen Jacinto and Halima Ladbon will be the sixth class of MFA students to present their thesis exhibitions. The CSUSB Department of Art is currently in its eighth year of offering a three-year Master of Fine Art in studio art. The work of this year’s graduates ranges from the more traditional mediums of paintings, photography, knitting, organic material and phenomenology. Thematically, the work is equally wide-ranging: the human experience of connectedness, indigenous influences and phenomenology. “Other Nature” by Brashear is a long-term documentary project that explores the relationship between humans and the natural environment. Predicted on the reduction of the Joshua Tree woodlands that surround his home in Hesperia, California, “Other Nature” explores the idea that when humans alter the natural environment, something other is created, something that resides the confines of nature. This other is the building of urban spaces; houses, gas stations and various areas of human development that disrupt the natural process of landscape by reducing areas where endemic desert life can survive. The works in his exhibition, in addition to photography, include objects made with organic materials that have been removed and discarded for refuse in areas destined for development. The artworks created in this process serve as a memorial for the natural beauty of a desert landscape that has been permanently altered. “Other Nature” will be on display from April 25-May 9, with an opening reception following the MFA Art Talk. Brashear is a Southern California photo-based artist who explores and documents the environmental impacts of humans in the Mojave Desert. Currently living in the rapidly expanding city of Hesperia, he photographs the landscape in flux and incorporates organic materials reclaimed from his desert surroundings that are destined for refuse. Brashear is completing his third year of graduate school at CSUSB and plans on completing his Master of Fine Arts degree this spring. In “Defining Moments / A Life Portrait,” on display from February 28-March 14, Haerens explores and celebrates our connectedness to one another as members of the human race. Through abstract paintings on canvas and plexiglass, as well as through prints and collagraphs, Haerens reflects on many facets of life – the sweet and sour moments we experience as part of the human condition. His art elicits an internal dialogue in an attempt to better understand himself and the world around him. Haerens’ paintings express his passion for a vibrant color palette and employ a hard-edge painting style defined with clean lines, shapes, textures, geometric silhouettes and harlequin patterns, which he frequently pairs with contrasting organic shapes. His artwork often reflects his humor and whimsical nature. He earned his bachelor’s in studio art and art history from CSUSB. Haerens has been involved with the Community-based Art/Prison Arts Collective program at CSUSB, which provides access to art as rehabilitation to those who are incarcerated. In “Mes·ti·zo,” on display from April 4-April 18, Jacinto will be using her identity as a Mes·ti·zo (meˈstēzō), meaning people of mixed race, having Spanish and indigenous descent. As a child she witnessed the struggles of the Maya indigenous people and uses this influence to portray the struggles through painting, sculpture and photography. She admires the indigenous resistance to colonialization and how this struggle shaped the modern nations of Latin America. Jacinto implements knitting techniques to communicate her heritage as a product of colonialism in the Americas. She is well aware of the indigenous people losing their traditions and culture as an outcome of the industrialization of the capitalist society. To create awareness of the existence of her people, she communicates repetitive knitting techniques, which is different from crochet, weaving and other techniques. Jacinto was born and raised in Guatemala City and now resides and works in Southern California. She received her bachelor’s in studio art from CSUSB and will be earning her MFA this spring. As a painter and sculptor, her artwork is focused in bringing social consciousness to human society through her influences, and utilizes her inspiration from the Maya people by incorporating knitting techniques to communicate the importance of her heritage through pattern and color. Ladbon investigates her own relationships with a few selected people and explores how to express these powerful connections in “Summer Skin.” Coming from such an intimate platform, she feels that it is very important for her to instill a degree of separation from herself, the artist, and the artwork in an attempt to be more relatable to the viewer through light installations by way of phenomenology – the act and/or study of consciousness and direct experience. “Summer Skin” will be on display at RAFFMA from May 16-30. About RAFFMAThe Robert and Frances Fullerton Museum of Art is a nationally recognized museum accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. The only accredited art museum in San Bernardino, RAFFMA has accumulated a permanent collection of nearly 1,200 objects focusing on Egyptian antiquities, ceramics and contemporary art. Located at Cal State San Bernardino, RAFFMA houses the largest permanent and public display of Egyptian art in Southern California. General admission to the museum is free. Suggested donation is $3. Parking at Cal State San Bernardino is $6 per vehicle and $3 on weekends. The museum is open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday from noon to 8 p.m.; and is closed Friday and Sunday. For more information, call (909) 537-7373 or visit the RAFFMA website at

MFA Art Talk, featuring four students, coming to CSUSB art museum