Full of Life
Located in the President’s Suite on the third floor of the Farmer School of Business, Full of Life by Sabre Esler is one that is most likely overlooked often but should not be. Donated by the artist herself as part of the dedication of the building itself, the work depicts an open lobby filled with people, presumably students. The space these people are in is very similar to that of various spaces and here on Miami University’s campus. You can almost imagine yourself as one of these people walking from class to class during the daily hustle and bustle of the school day. Each viewer of Esler’s piece has the potential to imagine themselves sitting on a couch and relaxing between classes, socializing with a friend or classmate, or even rushing into the lecture hall because they snoozed their alarm one too many times.
While this piece was made by the artist in 1987 and Farmer School of Business did not begin to become constructed until late 2004, there must have been some reason as to why Esler decided to donate this piece not just to Miami University, but specifically to this building at Miami University. I believe it to be because the space that the artist created has an eerie resemblance to that of large lounges we have here on campus like that at the entrance of Farmer or vaguely to the lounge area labeled as the Shade Family Room in the Armstrong Student Center. While either of these spaces are definitely not the space depicted in the painting, there is a similar atmosphere in the image that resembles them.
This work is made from oil paint, similar to many other works by Esler. Although subject matter differs from piece to piece, Esler is fond of the notion of motion and capturing a single moment in motion. To achieve this feeling within her works of art, she uses quick motion and general arrangement of colors (rather than focusing on meticulous detail). In Full of Life the loose stroke of the knife is easily apparent from looking at the blurred outline of each figure.
While there is other art located throughout Famer, I do wish that this piece was more viewable to the passerby. I think this is a piece that would be a lot more relatable that some of the others located not just in Famer but around campus. Because of the subject matter of students in motion, I believe students here on campus may have a stronger connection to the piece than an abstract sculpture or painting of something that only relates to the artist’s life.