Tatiana Davis, '13

Art (with K-12 Education Endorsement) | April 26, 2013

Accomplishment: Claudia Van Biber Award for 2-D, Sundell Award for Sculpture, Les Wright Award for Painting
Major: Art (with K-12 Education Endorsement)
House: Shalom

Tatiana (Tati) Davis learned long ago that life is no fairy tale, but that hasn’t stopped her from seeing the world through enchanted eyes.

The works in Tatiana’s senior art exhibition, “Once Upon a Time,” are a riot of colors and textures. With an extraordinary eye for detail, Tati snipped pictures from magazines to create her collaged illustrated fairy tales. She also created pieces for her show using a technique called wood burning. “I love the dark line and the smell of it when it’s fully burned into the wood,” Tati said.

In addition to working with her hands, Tati loves art history. So when she had the opportunity to travel to Rome over spring break with Graceland’s Art Department, she jumped at the chance. The trip was led by Julia Franklin, Professor of Art, and was made affordable by a number of Graceland alumni who contributed funds to offset students’ travel expenses.

“The trip to Rome was phenomenal,” said Franklin. “We toured major museums and saw works that are in our art history textbooks, and it really made those works come alive.”

"At Graceland, you can really explore who you are as an artist. The faculty teach you how to create, but they let you have your own form of expression."

Tati has had plenty of opportunities at Graceland to take on leadership roles and get involved. She has been Tess Morgan Assistant to the Hall Director, Art Student Society President and served on House Council. She’s also been active in Outreach International. Her favorite thing about Graceland is the social environment, specifically the House System. “Everyone is so outgoing and friendly,” said Tati.

Tatiana came to Graceland after attending a college fair in Des Moines and encountering several enthusiastic recruiters for Graceland. “I was afraid to walk up to the other colleges’ tables, and even when I did, most of the reps didn’t seem that interested in me,” said Tati. “The people from Graceland actually called me over to their booth and really wanted to talk.”

After she graduates, Tatiana will be student teaching in her hometown of Langdon, ND. She wants to teach elementary art, but is considering pursuing an M.A. in Art History from University of Wisconsin-Superior. Keeping with her affinity for color, she fantasizes about working for OPI, a fashion-forward nail polish company known for its clever lacquer names. “I think naming the nail polish colors would be so much fun,” she said.

Though life is no Disney movie, Tati Davis knows that it can still be beautiful. Upon leaving Graceland, she will undoubtedly spread her Technicolor vision of life wherever she goes.

Division of Visual & Performing Arts; Art Department