Newsletter: Department of Art & Art History 5/2010

by Bill McDowell, Chairperson

As I write this, it’s a placid sunny May morning, belying the meteorlogical roller coaster we rode earlier this spring (snowfall a few days after 75 degree weather). The volatile weather, however, doesn’t seem to bother the flock of 16 Merino sheep standing on the front lawn of Williams Hall.

The sheep (barbed wire sculptures) are the visual culmination of an honors project by Tyler Buswell, a Studio Art and Environmental Studies double major. According to Tyler, flocks of sheep outside Williams Hall were once a common site at UVM in the 19th century as the green was considered prime pastureland.

Inside Williams Hall things have been digesting, too, as is evident in the quality and diversity of student artwork and scholarly writings presented in exhibitions, prize competitions, critiques, seminars, and symposia.

In the Francis Colburn Gallery, our spring exhibitions included “While You Were on the Phone”, works in sculpture, drawing, and photography presented by Danish artist Line Bruntse. Veiled Geography: Impermanent Drawings”, recent work by Renee Van Der Stelt that she produced in 2008 and 2009 while living in Roswell, New Mexico. “We Slowly Watched Them Disappear”, a series of photographs and video stills by Binta Ayofemi and Jason Hanasik. There were several fabulous student exhibitions, including shows by the Advanced Sculpture class, the Advanced Painting class, and the Senior Seminar students. Katy Marshall and Angelina Giorgetti, Advanced Sculpture students, installed “Public Sandbox” and “Human Cocoon”, respectively. And Edward Alonzo, Patrick Galluzzo, and Sam Liebert shared the gallery. Edward’s effort was an artist-in-residence” performance piece that was written up in the Burlington Free Press, and Pat and Sam exhibited their photographs and sculptures.

Our 2010 Art History Symposium was a great success, with papers presented by Annie Murawski (“Book from the Sky: A Turning Point in the Chinese Avant-Garde”),

Rebecca Bernstein (“Referencing the Renaissance: On Rubens’ Copy of Caravaggio’s Entombment”), Umer Shaikh (“Three Minoan Vases from Agia Triada: A Look at Minoan Style”), Bronwen Gulkis (“Subversive Drinking: Wine and the Middle Class in New Kingdom Thebes”), and Sam Mansour (“I’m in the Milk and the Milk’s in Me!: A Modern Re-interpretation and Examination of Maurice Sendak’s ‘In the Night Kitchen’”). Immediately following the Art History Symposium the Studio Art Senior Exhibition opened in the Colburn Gallery. The symposium and exhibition once again showed the depth and intensity of our student research and artwork, and the overall vitality of our programs.

The Department also gave out their Honors Day awards to the top seniors. The winners were Braelyn Involdstadt in Art Education, Annina Seiler in Art History, and Edward Alonzo and Cecilia Ackerman in Studio Art.

Our Visiting Artist/Art Historian series included lectures by painter Matthew McConville, a talk by former UVM Art and Art History students Laurel Fulton and Amanda Sanfilippo (“Local Opportunities in the Arts”), the artist Allan McCollum (“our dreams of things appearing everywhere at once”), and Christopher Thompson, artist and curator of the Firehouse Gallery.

Faculty news:

Art Education:

Christine Campbell has shown great leadership in directing the Art Education program. Chris oversaw the successful ROPA reaccredidation process for the baccalaureate and post-baccalaureate levels of Art Education.

Art History:

Kelley Helmstutler Di Dio completed her book, Leone Leoni and the Status of the Artist at the End of the Renaissance, which will be published by Ashgate in 2010. She also published “Federico Borromeo and the Collections of Leone and Pompeo Leoni: A New Document” in The Journal of the History of Collections and “Signs of Success: Leone Leoni’s Signposting in Sixteenth-Century Milan” in Jonathan Nelson and Richard Zeckhauser, eds. The Patron’s Payoff: Economic Frameworks for Conspicuous Commissions in Renaissance Italy. Princeton University Press, Princeton. (October, 2008), 149-165. Anthony Grudin had an article, “‘A Sign of Good Taste’: Andy Warhol and the Rise of Brand Image Advertising,” accepted by the Oxford Art Journal 33:2 (2010). His proposal to co-chair (with Binta Ayofemi) the panel, “Pop, Race, Class: Consumption & Contradictions,” was accepted by the College Art Association, to be presented at CAA’s Annual Conference in New York in February 2011. Bill Mierse’s manuscript, Temples and Sanctuaries from the Early Iron Age Levant. Recovery after Collapse was accepted for publication by Eisenbrauns. The publication date is 2012. John Seyller wrote essays on four Mughal artists (Basawan, Balchand, Manohar, Muhammad ‘Ali) for the catalogue of an exhibition entitled Masters of Indian Painting, to be held at the Museum Rietberg, Zurich, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, in 2011.Pepper Stetler presented a paper entitled, “The Object and the Archive: Foto Marburg and the Origins of Neue Sachlichkeit Photography,” at the conference at the Kunsthistorisches Institut: “Photo Archives and the Photographic Memory of Art History,” Florence, Italy.

Studio Art:

Mildred Beltré exhibited 10 drawings in a three-person show at Five Myles Gallery, in Brooklyn. She was included (6 prints) in the Dartmouth Invitational Print Exhibition at Dartmouth College, and she had a print in the exhibition, Partners in Art and Life, curated by Lynn Saville, at the Central Library, in Brooklyn. Tom Brennan is continuing his work on a series of photograms of biological specimens that he then scans and re-works in Photoshop. Eight of these photographs were exhibited as a framed piece in the “New England Photography Biennial” at the Danforth Museum, in Framingham, MA. Steve Budington had a solo exhibition of paintings, New Weathers, at the Ganser Gallery, Millersville University, PA. This included 4 large paintings, 1 diptych, and 12 small paintings, all based on sources ranging from early anatomical studies, neuroscience, environmental issues, and current developments in medical technologies. Steve gave a visiting artist lecture to the MFA Program at the University of Massachusetts, and one at Millersville University. Nancy Dwyer’s work was included in the significant exhibition, “The Pictures Generation”, curated by Douglas Eklund, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The exhibition was accompanied by the publication, “The Pictures Generation 1974-1984”, Douglas Eklund, Metropolitan Museum of Art and Yale University Press. Nancy also exhibited new sculptures in the exhibition, “Human= Nature” at The Firehouse Gallery in Burlington. Jane Kent is making significant progress on Skating, her artist book collaboration with the author, Richard Ford. Jane participated in the group exhibition, “In Their Own Right: Contemporary Women Printmakers—Vija Celmins, April Gornick, Dorothy Hood, Yvonne Jacquette, Jane Kent, Agnes Martin and Louise Nevelson” at the Marion Koogler McNay Art Museum in San Antonio, Texas in summer, 2009. Ted Lyman continued work on his film, “Flat Earth”, including the completion of time-lapse work, location filming in Maine, rotoscoping, and editing. Kathy Marmor received the Dean’s Faculty Support Award. She had work in the exhibition Unintended Uses at the Nexus Gallery in Philadelphia. She also presented the paper, “Bird Watching: Telescopes, Satellites and Metaphors of Transparency” at the International Society of Electronic Artists Conference at the University of Ulster, Belfast, Ireland.

Bill McDowell’s artist book, Ashes in the Night Sky, was published by Booksmart Studio, in Rochester, NY. Lynda McIntyre was the illustrator and cover artist for the book, Walking through the Seasons (Wind Ridge), and her painting was on the cover of the Safe Haven CD (Passerelle Music). Frank Owen exhibited in a group show at the Nancy Hoffman Gallery in NYC. Frank was also inducted into the Gold Key Honor Society. Kathleen Schneider had a solo exhibition at A.I.R. Gallery, in NYC. She also participated in two group exhibitions, Paper Works at Artstrand, in Provincetown MA, and Cut Folded Sewn at 315 Gallery, in Burlington, VT.