A Year in the Life of Alumna Gloria Treseder ’08

Making the most of a one-year Masters in Canterbury

This past year I began and completed a Masters of Fine Art Program at University for the Creative Arts in Canterbury, Kent. I had been working as a Montessori Teacher in Northern California when I was hit by a car while on my bike, and suffered from head injuries affecting my “working memory” – particularly words and names. Rediscovering my somewhat dormant “artist self” became the most vital means for me to swim through this exhausting mental fog into a new clarity, to exist again in realities beyond words – paint, texture, form, color, and feeling – things I had largely put aside to focus on a career working with children.

Canterbury — just an hour’s train from all London has to offer – seemed to be the perfect fresh start to my artistic rediscovery.

Though my art was initially unresolved, I did know two things: 1. My work would explore the dynamic between humans and nature and 2. I wanted to expand into the wider community beyond the university. I began to explore the woodlands and natural places in the Canterbury radius and put together a few applications to various community-based art opportunities…

Fall Experiments, Leaves

Fall Experiments, Tree Weave

October – December

Internship at the Lilford Gallery 

I convinced the owner of a Lilford Gallery, a commercial gallery showing the likes of Banksy and Thrsty Bstrd, to give me an internship.

Image credit: Lilford gallery webpage

February

Cheriton Light Festival interactive light sculpture commission

Installing the balloon shaped forms

The first commission I completed was for a light festival in Cheriton – a low-key working-class community along the Channel, whose claim to fame is their biannual light festival which draws artists and visitors from all over England. I collaborated remotely with my dad, an engineer, to design the wiring for a light sculpture that would undulate at random two lights at a time at 12 different points. In addition, they would all light up brightly together when someone clapped their hands.

I visited the 5th-year class a few blocks from where it would be installed and asked children there to answer questions about their present loves and future dreams. The answers were worked into translucent balloon-shaped forms attached to a welded steel base, which in turn was attached to the top of a large tree stump. The festival landed on the coldest, windiest weekend of the year, but in spite of that, thousands of people came to enjoy the artwork, many clapping their hands to illuminate the aspirational words of children.  A bit of hope in a less than hopeful time.

Installation during the festival

March

MA Interim Show: Mixed-media Installation

My fellow masters candidates and I created work scattered around the port town of Folkestone. I made an installation in the remnants of the historic Custom’s House, based on an on-going obsession with the coppiced trees in the Blean Woods — a managed woodland near my house in Canterbury. Coppicing is a centuries-old timber harvesting practice in the UK and other European countries that preserves the root-base, cutting stems every decade, to create a permanently-altered shrub-like stance to the trees.

My concept for this show was an imagining of the original tree energy, depicted like glossy, umbilical-chord-like sap veins extending upwards to the rafters of the building. A black and white video of the bottom half of a coppiced chestnut tree played in a loop, matched up with the bottom half of the sculpture.

December – May

Traveller’s Joy! Mural on Canterbury East Rail Footbridge. 

In November 2017,  I submitted a proposal for an open call by the City Council to design and implement a mural.  The mural would enhance the four walls abutting an historic, but rather dismal, graffiti-covered footbridge leading to the East Rail Station.

My proposal centered on the Kent native flower clematis vitalbi, also known as Travellers Joy, which grows prolifically in flowering tangles along pathways and railways. Each of the four walls depicted this plant in each of the four seasons. To add an imaginative element, I sprinkled silhouettes of tiny children in various playful interactions with the plant and included four hidden Canterbury literary references: Rupert Bear, David Copperfield, The Canterbury Pilgrims, and Sherlock Holmes with Doctor Watson (hiding at the rail station from Professor Moriarty).

I was there every day, 10-14 hours each day, 2.5 weeks. Over that time, I had arranged for a total of 9 volunteers to assist with various tasks and paint filling.

In the midst of the project, just days before our deadline, the elderly woman living right by the bridge, who was our constant support and inspiration, passed away in her sleep. She loved animals and had earlier asked if I would paint a robin, so in her memory, I put a robin on the winter wall – just the spot on the wall she would have been able to see from her living room window. Those last few days were very bittersweet, as she refused to see the mural progress until it was all finished, so after living for 30 years by a graffitied bridge, she never saw the joyful transformation.

The Mayor of Canterbury, my volunteers, members of the community, and a few reporters attended the unveiling. Also, that day, families were invited to paint flowers on the wall leading to the bridge, and a number of the children in my neighborhood came and were very happy to have added something permanent to a historic place in their city. Everyone in the neighborhood who had anything to say about it (which I feel was everybody), insisted it would get graffitied over within a week. I held up faith in the morality of ‘street artists,’ and as of August, before I left England, only one silver spray-paint scribble nestled in the silvery-blue colors of the winter wall. I take that as approval from the tagging community!

June

Whitstable Biennale: Outdoor Installation of 8 haikus about water

For the Whitstable Biennale, I proposed to use haiku’s in a contemplative, and at times amusing, work of discovery along the seafront, used primarily for oyster fishing. The process of quietly busing to the town on a foggy morning, fixing the disks to the posts with wire, and documenting the way they wiggled and waved in the wind, was a calming, therapeutic process I enjoyed very much. Even better was documenting the damage and wear they had after two weeks outside. One only had the tiniest of bird droppings while another was completely torn from its wires and dashed into several shredded pieces down along the rocks. I LOVE that! Luckily, one of the poems with little damage was written by a punk musician from King Blues, Jonny “Itch” Fox, and I was able to gift it to him in person at one of the London metro stations.

July

Spirit Levels: An Exhibition Under Construction. Mixed media group exhibit.

Exhibit put on with two other studio mates and two student curators in a former brewery. We installed scaffolding around the place and used it as skeletal structures, like a playground for our very different work to interact with each other. I used this show as a chance to both show my botanical-style root and rope drawings but to also experiment with found objects – rotting dirty rope, planters, and roots found in community garden compost heaps! It’s very satisfying to bring dirt into a white-walled gallery.  The charcoal mural I did in one corner was a bit of an experiment leading to the charcoal wall rubbings I did for my thesis installation.

August

UCA MA Thesis Show: Mixed Media. 9 different MA programs showing in the entire campus.

I negotiated for my space to be in the warehouse-like gallery because it was the only space with a view of trees and a high enough ceiling. My work was a mixed-media installation of film, fabric, and natural materials sourced from the woods where I was working and filming over three months. It focused on a single sweet chestnut tree in the Blean Woods, one of the hundreds that are coppiced on decade-long cycles.

It was an imagining of its energy – escaped or stunted, and explored a personal nature-human dynamic. Also influencing its tone was the timing of the three months coincided with a traumatic incident of severing in my personal life…. which is explored in the two films. I created an environment in a three-walled section of the gallery. The walls opposite each other each had a 12-minute film loop projected on charcoal and plaster textured walls. Each was paired with a bedsheet half upon which I did various charcoal and dirt rubbings. The central wall was an expressionistic layered charcoal mural. I transcribed an hour-long interview with a man of spiritual significance about tree energy and wood burned his words onto a wooden panel at the farthest edge of the installation. Charcoal dust and stumps, woodchips, dirt, leaves, moss, etc., were included along the edges of the walls in particular ways.

September

Trekked through Scotland!

October – present

Texas

I am in Texas now, with a six-month window to work on my personal art projects, be involved in the local mural and arts scene, and apply for future opportunities – hopefully ones that can bring me back to the UK. I’m more than ever obsessed with trees, and the storage and flow of energy. Here in Texas, I’m focusing primarily on the honey mesquite, which grow like frozen drunk revelers! They can have taproots that grow 150 feet deep…!

Searching for Home with Artist Humaira Abid

Humaira Abid working in her studio, 2016

Local sculptor, Humaira Abid participated in a week-long residency in our department in October 2018.  Abid grew up and was educated in Pakistan, where she earned her BFA with honors at the National College of Arts in Lahore, Pakistan.  Abid lives in the greater Seattle metropolitan area and serves as an instructor at the Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle.  During her residency, Abid visited eight classes which included Studio Art, Art History, and Gender and Queer Studies courses; engaged in an interview featured in The Trail [see image below], gave a public lecture on her most recent body of work, conducted more than a dozen individual critiques with students, and more.

Abid’s work engages with themes of immigration as well as important women’s issues (such as miscarriage, violence against women and girls, motherhood, and taboos around the female body).  She is greatly committed to asking questions and drawing attention to subjects that are rarely discussed.  The Department of Art and Art History timed her visit to campus in order to continue engagement with a vital thread of the Race and Pedagogy National Conference held on our campus in September 2018, namely the topic of immigration.

Fragments of Home Left Behind, plaster-treated wall and framed miniature portraits, installation shot from Searching for Home, Bellevue Art Museum, 2017-2018

Students found Abid’s visit intellectually stimulating and transformational, as they explain below.

Elayna Caron, studio art major explains that an individual critique with Abid impacted her work significantly: “I found it incredibly stimulating to have a fresh set of eyes on my work and Humaira was able to connect with me after just a few moments of seeing my work. Meeting with her has helped me solidify my ideas for my senior thesis. She gave critical feedback and has helped me immensely to move forward with my art. I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to get feedback from her and our conversation has totally changed the direction of my art.” Another studio art major, Ronda Peck observes that her “… experience with Humaira was very insightful and very inspiring.” Peck explains that: “When I talked with her one on one, she gave me nurturing and comforting advice on my work.  She gave me ideas to make my work stronger and more meaningful.  She said, ‘start a conversation about something.’  I asked her about her studio space and if she had any particular ritualistic behaviors or unique methods on how she approaches her work.  She commented that her studio is a ‘comfortable space’” where she can both work and relax.

Engaging in individual critiques with senior studio art majors

Engaging in individual critiques with senior studio art majors

Art history major Sarah Johnson noted that: “I feel very lucky to have had the chance to learn about her art and life experiences first-hand in her class presentation,” while another art history major, Mary Thompson, praised her participation in an art history course, “…the pieces she shared with the class pertained to other common themes in Abid’s work such as menstruation, puberty, and miscarriages, and exhibited her attention to detail in storytelling through her art, research as well as reflection, and extreme skill and passion for her work. I found it crucial to hear these stories of womanhood that are universal yet often taboo to discuss be told by a non-Western female artist. Abid’s presentation and artworks remind and emphasize that, though experienced on various levels of intensity, women’s issues are of concern everywhere and those stories must be shared.”

Ayse Hunt explained that Abid’s work resonated with her as a double major in art history and computer science particularly because computer science is such a male dominated field: “… it was clear that Abid is very interested in examining the societal pressures women face in different contexts, but particularly those related to the physicality of women’s experiences in the world. It was inspiring to hear Abid speak about how she recognized areas that were restricted to her because she was a woman, such as woodworking, and how she purposely set out to excel in those same areas.”

Public Lecture, University of Puget Sound

Clearly, Humaira Abid and her work have resonated strongly with students in our department. Yet, her residency enriched not only students but also members of the faculty and the Puget Sound community with deep exposure to the work of an acclaimed contemporary artist; her intensive residency offered ample opportunities to learn from an internationally renowned female artist who bridges the cultural divide between East and West.

Mary Farrell visits University of Puget Sound

Mary Farrell, Professor of Art at Gonzaga University visited the University of Puget Sound in September to 2018, where she lectured, worked with students and developed lithographs.

Photo credit: David Smith

A. Mary Farrell’s Direct Plate Intaglio Workshop

Elayna Caron:
Arts 281 was lucky enough to have professor and artist Mary Farrell come and do a workshop with our class. Mary started the workshop by showing us some of her prints and discussing her process. It was helpful to see sketches and primary ideas on how her work came to be. After showing some work we came together as a class and Mary showed us drypoint techniques. Drypoint is when one works directly onto a copper plate with tools, with no ground. The technique is very direct and intense. There were a few tools that I was drawn to initially. The first tool was the mezzotint rocker. The rocker creates plate tone in specific areas; it is very exhausting because you have to rock back and forth in all directions on the plate two times, yet you get a beautiful dark area in the area that was rocked. Another tool that Mary demonstrated that I was very drawn is the roulette. The roulette has a head that spins and creates a charcoal-like mark on the plate. As a person who works primarily in paint and charcoal, this technique was very liberating. As a class, we created a test plate where we all got to make a mark on the plate and Mary showed us how to print it. Overall it was a very exciting experience to learn from Mary and to be able to examine her work and her process.

B. Mary Farrell’s Art/Sci Lecture

In Farrell’s public lecture, she discussed SOIL MADE VISIBLE, a collaborative project undertaken with her sister Pat Farrell, Associate Professor of Geography at the University of Minnesota Duluth.

Mary Farrell’s description of Soil Made Visible

Soil, though silent, is vigorous, vivacious and alive as it nurtures seeds to germination, incubates microbes, changes its parent, and swims and swarms with life. The goal of this art-science collaboration is to make soil visible. We are a pair of blood sisters, a soil geographer and an artist. As we talked about the living, breathing, corporeal nature of soil, we became intrigued with the idea of burying a canvas to, quite simply, let soil make art. To us, soil seemed the perfect metaphor for exploring the underside of our sibling relationships. Drawn to the intimate association between soil and roots, and the important role root structures have played in Mary’s artwork, we chose to plant a root image below the surface.

We began our inquiry by carving and printing an image of a root on seven panels of wood, then burying the blocks of wood in the backyard soils of our seven siblings, who are spread across the United States. We imagined the root as the familial umbilical cord, connecting the siblings to the Kentucky earth from which we seven originated. We liked the idea of the continuous root system becoming disjointed as separate pieces from the same family lineage spread across the continent, earthed in various grounds. We left the wood panels in the ground for two years, then exhumed the panels and printed them again.

Students responses to Farrell’s lecture and related activities:

Lauren Zinkan:
Throughout Mary’s lecture, the audience is exposed to the different effects soil from around the nation has on a piece of pine. We see that the various locations the pine is buried has a different effect on the plank buried. Mary draws a parallel between this and the lives of her siblings. While they may all be similar in root, where they choose to live alters the course of their lives. This resonates with me because although we all start in one place, the universe affects us all differently and by the time we are “pulled out of the earth” we are completely different people who sometimes don’t even resemble who we once were. Furthermore, the process of creating this piece is a game of waiting. Other than the act of carving the initial root, burying, and printing, Mary did not play a role in the outcome of this project, she left that for the soil to do. Similarly, besides reacting to what is around us, we don’t play a huge role in the outcome of ourselves, but simply wait and see what we become. Although this piece is centered around family, I think we can look at it with a broader perspective and acknowledge that we are all just a plank seeing what effect the world will have on us.

Emery Bradlina:
One of the most salient relationships that Mary Farrell’s work captures so well is that between earth and human. During the time that we spent with her in class as well as hearing her present on her collaborative project, it was made clear that this relationship provides her a tremendous amount of inspiration. In her work that she showed us in the classroom, she explored this relationship by combining a topographic pattern and skin patterns that emulated one another. I saw her lecture as the most striking exploration of this relationship as the multidisciplinary approach allowed for the direct contact of man-made and natural. She stated that through the process, she found that what started as a study of soil became a study of the relationship between the “domestic and the natural.”

Her lecture opened with a thought-provoking anecdote about the number of microbes in a handful of dirt exceeding the number of humans on the planet. From the beginning, she emphasized the power that the soil held in the eventual outcomes of the project. Although there was control to begin with in the crafting of the blocks, in the end, what came of the prints was unplanned and dictated by the earth it was immersed in. I thought there was an interesting conceptual parallel to this loss of control and printmaking in general. When printing, even though you can partially anticipate how the final works will come out by looking at the matrix, the printing process will yield slightly unplanned variations each time. Farrell’s work in this project embraces the power of the unplanned in order to produce a beautiful, rudimentary representation of time and decay.

Emma Lundquist:
Seeing Mary Farrell’s fourteen-foot long print was much more influential than I was anticipating. After watching her work and observing her other smaller prints, I thought I had a fairly good grasp on the overall themes and techniques she uses in her art. I was not prepared for the enormous project, both in length and time, to be quite so effective. Her use of nature and change to reconcile her own emotions regarding her family was so beautiful and astonishing to me. Farrell spoke about her daughter leaving for college and coming to terms with that departure with the series of birds’ nests in her prints; the thematic presence of these in her current work to me means continuously understanding and healing as birds must remake their homes. Family is obviously a core concept in her art and I was grateful to hear about her relationships with her siblings, especially her sister and collaborator Pat. It reminded me of my mother and her seven siblings all spread out from Indiana to Idaho.

Coming from a close family of artists, I constantly struggle with wanting to emulate them in my art and to have my own growth separate from them. To hear Farrell include them in her prints in their particular roles made me want to collaborate with them as I hadn’t before. I tend to be a bit territorial about my art, and it was really encouraging to see how I could still do my own thing but share it with my family. Sitting there listening to her talk about her siblings with fond exasperation made me miss my family so much my chest hurt; it made me want to span the gaps between all of us in the same tangible way. Farrell’s significance of carving the soft wood and burying it for two years is matched by the labor of reclaiming and reprinting the pieces to find they all still connect.

C. Mary Farrell’s production of lithographs

Photo credit: David Smith

Photo credit: David Smith

Professor of Printmaking, Janet Marcavage:

In collaboration with Professor of Printmaking, Janet Marcavage, and Intermediate Printmaking students, Mary Farrell produced two stone lithographs. Mary primarily works with etching and relief processes, yet was interested in the opportunity to create lithographs at Puget Sound. Stone lithography is a process that is over 200 years old, whereby a drawing is made on limestone with a greasy material. It is then etched with gum arabic and acid, which makes certain areas of the stone attractive to grease and other areas attractive to water, allowing for an image to be printed with many tones and autographic qualities.

Nests and root structures are a common subject in Mary Farrell’s work. During her visit, Mary explained that she began to work with nests as symbolic of her relationship with her daughter and the sense of home. During her visit here at Puget Sound, Mary borrowed three nests from the Slater Museum of Natural History. After sketching from these nests, Mary ultimately decided to focus on one small nest that held great elements of line and gesture, qualities that Mary seeks and responds to beautifully in her work.

Photo credit: David Smith

Photo credit: David Smith

Lab assistants Izzy Lidsky and Harper Shapiro prepared two litho stones in advance, graining them down to a smooth, even, grease-free surface. After sketching on paper, Mary drew on the stones, then they were etched and printed during the latter part of Mary’s stay. Stone lithography is a rigorous process with many steps. Students Izzy Lidsky, David Smith, Hunter Loftus, and Harper Shapiro collaborated with Mary Farrell and Janet Marcavage in etching and printing the stones. The lovely form, marks, and gesture that Mary drew on the stone came forth in the final prints. It was a satisfying collaboration.

Photo credit: David Smith

Photo credit: David Smith

Study Abroad in Roma!

Last spring, eight intrepid, imaginative students engaged in a Connections class, Rome:  Sketchbooks and Space Studies that combined scholarly research and studio practices, culminating in a three-week trip to Rome from May 14-June 4, 2018.  Below are brief yet vivid reflections on a transformative trip full of memories and friendships that will last a lifetime.

Each student also provided a photo that represented a meaningful moment in Rome.   Also included are photos of each student in their studio at the University of Washington’s Rome Center.

CONN 370 Students

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Justine Jones

Justine Jones

The picture below is one of the happiest memories I have of Rome because it was a morning when Max, Rebecca and I woke up early to get breakfast, sit on a stoop, and paint the buildings around us. This image just captures how inspiring Rome was and also how the three of us bonded from living together.

I got the wonderful opportunity to meet and build relationships with people I may not have otherwise done without the trip to Rome. Studying abroad allowed me to separate myself from a comfortable environment where I knew everyone and really let me experience Rome and create new, genuine, friendships. Having studio time while in Rome was incredible. I was able to be surrounded by historic art every moment and I felt like that really charged my creative nature to create something of my own.

 

Max Forgan

Max Forgan

One of the most memorable moments of the Rome trip took place at the Villa d’Este. The mystical environment helped my imagination run free in a way I had only been able to experience as a child; ultimately serving as a testament to how powerful art can be. The group’s dynamic of looking out for each other is only explicable by a sense of inclusion, acceptance, and open-mindedness brought-on by such unique personalities. This translated through activities like communal dinners and especially when it came time to practice in the studio. By being around dedicated artists, I was able to garner honest feedback which helped me leap out of my comfort zone and apply techniques with which I was not yet comfortable. The end product was a reflection of many hours and risks made possible by learning through experience.

Elayna Caron

Elayna Caron

My experience in Rome was three of the best weeks of my life.  I tried to allow whatever experience that was destined to happen, happen. There is no better way to get to know a group of people than being thrown out of your comfort zone, into a country halfway across the world, in a new culture, and new space. Rome was a sensation overload, with smells of jasmine following you everywhere we went, the lingering taste of gelato, the sounds of drunk voices, and the golden light casting its shadows on each evening. We had the privilege of creating art while we were in Italy, I used this change of scene to break out of my medium and try new kinds of art making including the use of acrylic paint. I was inspired by the textures of the city and the raw vulnerability of contemporary art being created in Rome. I will never forget this experience.

 

 

Ian Chandler

Ian Chandler

Rome allowed me to experience a contrast between thinking as a professional and student artist. It was as if I were in an art residency, in a truly amazing place I’d never been before. The experience strengthened my personal goals as an artist and my connection to the UPS and larger art community.  My studio practice allowed me to experiment with texture and space in a new light. After seeing so much antiquity and classical art, my entire scope shifted and I was able to reflect on myself and my intentions as an artist on a new plane.

 

Walker Hewitt

Walker Hewitt

Going abroad is difficult, you are thrown out of your comfort zone.  However, doing this in a group fostered trust and a dynamic that is unique to just us. It was a privilege to be so close to everyone on the trip, they were so respectful and helpful and goofy and light-hearted and positive even when things were tough. I’m so grateful for all the time we spent together especially in group outings and communal dinners and games and art-making.

The studio time was an excellent culmination to the experience, it gave us time and space to be in our own heads and reflect on the trip as a whole, and encouraged us to savor the last moments of it all. I worked on a painting that included some of the most memorable, interesting and visually captivating subjects I had come across in Rome. It was a collage of images that I had collected throughout the trip and acted as a meditation on everything I had seen or done.

 

 

Rebecca Heald

Rebecca Heald

The image below is one taken of Walker and others whom I do not know from within the exhibit, “Take Me, I’m Yours” at the Villa Medici. Quite literally in this exhibit, but also in many museums and places we went and experienced throughout the three weeks, we were allowed, if not encouraged, to take, touch, and interact with art and space in a way that is quite different, if not inexistent in the United States.

When experiencing another culture, especially for the first time, having people beside you with similar intent is powerful because everything our group did together was amplified simply by being in the presence of one another. Living in close quarters with the same initial, directional confusion allowed us to find comfort in knowing that we were all clueless, yet curious to discover and excited to share what we discovered.

My studio practice was a jumble of sorts at the beginning for everything that I absorbed up to that point seemed worthy of translating into some form of tangible reflection. As I pressed on, however, studio time allowed me to reflect as I experienced – a practice that helped shape and formulate thoughts, places, and days.

 

 

Kiri Bolles

Kiri Bolles

The photo below is from a long walk back to our apartment some of us took along the Tiber. We saw locals fishing for eels and enjoyed the evening light on the water.

Being abroad with this group worked really well. There weren’t too many of us and since we were all in the same apartment building we were able to have community dinners almost every night.

I loved doing little watercolor landscapes throughout the trip when we visited different locations. Even though I did something unrelated for my studio work, the highlight for me was the opportunities to do some plein air painting.

 

 

Anj Cunningham

Anj Cunningham

The photo below may seem like a strange photograph to have chosen, however, for me, it represents motion, transformation, and general intensity, all words I would use to describe my understanding of Rome. This is a photograph of the biggest fountain at the Villa d’Este in Tivoli. We learned that this fountain had been transformed into an extravagant centerpiece during the 1930s after Bernini’s original fountain was dilapidated beyond repair. This, to me, was both an amazing vision of how water acts, and a profound example of the reinvention and dramatization of something from the past.

During the time that we were in Rome, we were all able to see various examples of how the past had and has been invented, reinvented, destroyed, enhanced and generally the way things have changed. Being in this group allowed everyone to comprehend these observations all in very different and profound ways. We were able to share ideas, thoughts, and realizations as we traveled through the rich timeline that is Rome.

This community allowed for the studio time to be productive for some and overwhelming for others. It was quite a task to begin to work through and reflect on the fast-paced experience we had all taken part in. The studio served as a reminder that although time moves with the same rhythm and terrifying pace of water (like the fountain in the photograph) we always have the ability to create a kind of sanctuary for contemplation, understanding and, if appropriate, work.

 

Celebration and Commencement

Celebration and Commencement

If art is to nourish the roots of our culture, society must set the artist free to follow his [her/their] vision wherever it takes him [her/them].  We must never forget that art is not a form of propaganda; it is a form of truth.                                                                             -John F. Kennedy

These wise words were part of JFK’s commencement speech at Amherst College in 1963.  They were uttered in this season of transition, of closing one chapter and commencing the next. Members of the Department of Art and Art History would like to commend our senior art and art history graduates who are setting off to nourish the roots of our culture and society.

Above photos, Senior Show opening reception, receiving cords and awards. Photo Credit:  Jessica Leech

This year Department of Art and Art History graduates will sport 3-D prints of the Athena of Velletri bust pictured below.  Athena, goddess of war, wisdom, and handicrafts serves as an icon of the vision, bravery, and imagination that our graduates bring to the wider world.  It’s also pretty cool to be able to take advantage of the new Makerspace in creating these additions to our graduates’ regalia!

Congratulations graduates!

The Lansdowne Bust of Athena of Velletri, 2nd-century copy after a Greek original of circa 430–420 B.C. by Kresilas, Photo credit:  Wikimedia Commons

Transition is perpetual!  Please enjoy the impressive slate of recent student and alumni accomplishments that exemplify the unique visions that guide the members of our department’s community. 

 

2018 Student and Alumni News!

Carolyn Corl ’15 completed a competitive internship at the Filoli Gardens in San Francisco and is entering the University of Oregon’s Landscape Architecture MFA Program in the fall.

Ayse Hunt ’19 (double major in Art History and Computer Science) has received the prestigious Lora Bryning Scholarship for 2018-2019.

Mary Thompson ’19 (Art History) was awarded the Religious Leadership Award and the Cyrus Ames Wright Scholarship for the academic year 2018-2019.

Kelsey Eldridge ’12 has passed her General Exams and is now at the stage of ABD (all but dissertation) in the Ph.D. program of the Department of the History of Art and Architecture at Harvard University.

Haley Andres ’14 is working as a Graduate and Fellowship Associate at the Posse Foundation.

Erin Weary ’13 (Sculpture) received her MFA in Sculpture from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

Alison Grimm ’12 (Sculpture) received her MFA in Sculpture from Wayne State University in Detroit.

Katharine Threat ’20 (Art History major) has been awarded a Summer Internship at the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum of Modern Art in Washington, D.C. as Gallery Guide for Summer 2018.

Eight Art and Art History majors were awarded AHSS Summer Research Grants:
Ian Chandler (Sculpture)
Elayna Caron (Painting)
Ally Hembree (Printmaking)
Walker Hewitt (Painting)
Ayse Hunt (Art History)
Sophia Munic (Sculpture)
Ronda Peck (Ceramics)
Mary Thompson (Art History)

Dina Mustakim ’16 will be earning an MFA in Production Design at Chapman University in Southern California.

Maia Raedar ’16 will enter Western Washington University’s Secondary Education Master’s Program in the fall.

Bryn Thomas ’14 will be attending Tulane University in New Orleans, to begin her MSW (Master of Social Work).

Aaron Badham ’11 accepted a tenure-line position in the Department of Art at Hastings College in Nebraska where he will be the Sculpture Area Coordinator.

Olivia Sherman ’17 will attend Tyler School of Art’s MFA program in the fall. She was awarded a full ride fellowship and a monthly stipend.

Louisa Raitt ’15 is completing her M.A. degree at NYU’s Institute of Fine Arts this spring.  She has been accepted by the same institution to continue her graduate studies as a Ph.D. candidate studying Spanish Art History from the 13-15th centuries with full tuition coverage and stipend for five years.

Jonathan Steele ’14 returned as a visiting ceramics faculty member during Chad Gunderson’s junior sabbatical

Lianna Hamby ’17 was accepted into the University of Washington’s Museology Graduate Program.  She will begin her master’s degree in the fall.

Art History Alumni

Andrew Griebeler ’09 (Art History and Biology double major), Ph.D. candidate in Art History at UC Berkeley

  • Andrew is a recipient of a three-year (2016-2019) David E. Finley Fellowship of the CASVA (Center for Advanced Studies in the Visual Arts) intended for research and travel in Europe related to his dissertation on Byzantine manuscripts of herbal medicine.
  • Andrew was awarded a two-year fellowship (2014-2016) from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation to pursue his dissertation research at the Kunsthistorisches Institute in Florence.
  • Andrew won first prize in the 2012 student essay competition of the International Center of Medieval Art (New York, NY) for his paper: “Picturing Time and Eternity in Sixth-Century Ravenna.”

I got my first taste of art history and of the artistic heritage of the medieval Mediterranean at the University of Puget Sound. As a direct result, I am currently completing a Ph.D. in the History of Art and Medieval Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. Studying art history at Puget Sound provided me with the tools required to succeed in my current graduate program and in my research: a critical eye and an attention to detail, skills in written and oral communication, and an ability to evaluate and combine different kinds of evidence.

I am now completing my dissertation on the history of botanical illustration in Byzantium from antiquity to the early modern era. My research has taken me to libraries and museums throughout Europe. After earning my Ph.D., I hope to settle into a career in a museum, university, or library.

Andrew at Chenonceau 


Hannah Lehman ’17 (Art History and Politics & Government double major)

Majoring in art history at Puget Sound allowed me to grow as a thinker, writer, and communicator. Through my courses and assignments, I learned to not only argue my point effectively but to think about the many facets of a work of art or situation. I was asked to think critically about my own viewpoint, while also considering others. I currently work at the San Jose Museum of Art teaching kids in the galleries and also leading hands-on art projects.  My studies at UPS have meant that I am able to thoughtfully design tours and facilitate conversations in a manner that enhances students’ understanding of art and creates connections between the works they see at the museum and their experiences in the world outside. The many presentations and class discussions I was asked to lead prepared me well for leading student groups, while the breadth of coursework prepared me to discuss works that span media, subject, and art historical influences. Additionally, my professors offered me the support I needed to explore my own interests in art history and forge my way through the complexities of figuring out what one should do in life.  In the next 5 to 10 years, I hope to attend graduate school and continue museum work. 
Hannah in Prague in summer 2016


San Jose Museum of Art


Tosia Klincewicz ’14 (Art History and English double major)

I can’t deny that having graduated from the University of Puget Sound in 2014 with a degree in English & Art History, I felt equally full of purpose and totally directionless. Nevertheless, I forged ahead with my diverse and carefully cultivated toolkit of skills in writing, research, argumentation, critical thought, storytelling, and appreciation for beauty, and found my way into a Communications role with the Seattle Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. This role places me squarely at the intersection of written and visual aesthetics, and my day-to-day work centers around advocating for good design in the built environment. I couldn’t be happier with where I’ve taken root, and I hope to continue to build a career that allows me to work with creative professionals and to contribute, in some small way, to making the world a safer, healthier, more beautiful place.

Tosia Klincewicz


The current exhibit at the Center for Architecture & Design (from which AIA Seattle operates): Futurama Redux: Urban Mobility After Cars and Oil (photo credit: Trevor Dykstra)


Michelle Reynolds ‘12 (Art History and History double major)

Michelle earned an M.A. from Syracuse University in 2016.

Prior to my time at Puget Sound, I had never thought about art history or museum work as options for future employment. Thanks to various research projects, work-study positions, and faculty support, I realized my academic and professional passion for examining the ways in which audiences interpret and interact with works of art. I cannot imagine pursuing the work I do today without drawing on critical thinking and effective communication skills which have their roots in my four years at Puget Sound.

Three years in graduate school and a variety of gallery and studio manager positions later, I have spent the last year working at the Wellin Museum of Art at Hamilton College as their Curatorial and Programming Coordinator. In this role, I assist with curatorial projects and facilitate educational experiences for the College community while managing the museum’s social media presence and coordinating marketing and publicity efforts. I’m looking forward to working with our constituents to expand visitation and meaningful engagement with our collection and exhibitions in-person and online.


Michelle Reynolds


Wellin Museum

Alumni Updates

Alumni Profiles

A year ago, the Department of Art and Art History recognized some of the incredible social and cultural contributions of our alumni.  The Kittredge Gallery hosted an art alumni exhibit and an affiliated panel on art careers that demonstrated the rich range of our studio art graduates’ practices and professions and the department celebrated the scholarship and diverse careers of our art history alumni during the Art History Alumni Colloquium.  This blog post continues where last year’s exhibit and colloquium left off, showcasing several art alumni’s varied paths.

We will continue to profile alumni throughout the semester and hope this engagement with our graduates will inspire and enhance connections amongst members our ever-growing Department of Art and Art History community.

Please share your stories by emailing photos and messages to art@pugetsound.edu.

 

Haley Andres ’14

Haley Andres

Majoring in art honed my skills in communication.  As an art student, I developed an ability to tell a story, make an argument, or raise a point in creative and compelling ways. My professors, studio practice, and assignments constantly encouraged me to evaluate my own opinions and interests, and how best to compellingly present those to an audience. After graduating from the University of Puget Sound, I traveled the world as a Thomas J. Watson Fellow, investigating the intersections between experiences of trauma and creative practice. I know my education in art enhanced my ability to effectively communicate and connect across disparate cultures and people, often without sharing a language.

Other skills I learned as an art student, like utilizing multi-faceted approaches to problems, multi-tasking, time management, and a willingness to fail (and to lean into those failures for means of learning/discovery), have translated to strengths in my professional life after college working in arts administration.

Haley Andres art work

Screenprint on glass

I currently work as a Development Assistant at UrbanGlass in Brooklyn, NY.

In five to ten years I hope to attend graduate school to further pursue my interests in socially engaged art practices, ideally earning a Ph.D. I would love to teach or work in a role directly with communities and creative thinkers. I plan to always be asking questions, learning, and creating.

 

Priscilla Dobler ’09

Priscilla Dobler

Every opportunity, from working for international artists in NYC to fully funded residencies in Mexico and USA, has resulted from studying art at Puget Sound. Art has taught me how to value my relationships with people, how to be determined, focused, and passionate; giving everything I have in order to complete a project while conceptually pushing the boundaries of dialogue in craft and fine art.

It is important to stay in touch with mentors over time and Puget Sound’s small community fosters sustained relationships with faculty and peers.

Priscilla Dobler art work

La Cocina, 2016

I am currently preparing for an Art Residency at Mass MoCA, and building a multi-media woven living room installation for an art opening in Tacoma and Seattle at the end of this year. With my hard work and constant persistence, I will be showing internationally with gallery representation in the next 5-10 years.

 

Eden Ferry ’10

Eden Ferry

Studying art at the University of Puget Sound taught me the skills needed to thrive in various creative industries. Through the diversity in methods and mediums taught, I have been able to draw on my education to work in printmaking, graphic design, and landscape architecture. While at UPS I was able to integrate my minor in environmental policy into my artwork, these explorations eventually lead me to a graduate degree in Landscape Architecture. In my graduate program, I was able to draw on tools I had learning at UPS to thrive, specifically time management, studio culture and critiques, and the ability to translate a concept into a visual representation. Now working within the profession of landscape architecture, I am able to manage projects from concept to construction administration with the tools and creative thinking I learned at UPS.

LA River Models

I am currently working at Studio-MLA in Los Angeles where I work on a range of projects from the Los Angeles River Revitalization to civic and commercial landscapes throughout the city. In the next year, I will begin my licensure exams.

 

Emily Menk ’14

Emily Menk

Studying art at Puget Sound really gave me so much more than what is shown in a course description or a catalog. Creative problem-solving, effective communication (written, verbal, and non-verbal), and sharp critical thinking skills are just a few of the skills that have been integral to my success after graduation. Even outside of the skills I developed in the program, I also built the foundation for life-long learning and creative exploration, developed a passion for experiential learning, and learned to recognize the intersections of culture in every place I go and in every encounter.

Art is a surprisingly interdisciplinary field; it’s not simply about images and design. History, psychology, communication, technology, sociology, math, chemistry, philosophy, and more are all found among the coursework and the learning outcomes within the program, preparing students to work in a variety of fields. I’m a testament to this—while I have worked in a photo studio, I also spent two years working for a (large) tech company before transitioning into higher education. These days, I’m wrapping up an M.S. in Counseling and Student Personnel (College Student Affairs), advising the MSU, Mankato campus programming board, and working with New Student and Family Programs. I’m still using the design skills on a regular basis, but I’m also able to build on my love of experiential education and help college students discover their passions. I’m planning on continuing my career in Student Affairs, and perhaps in a few years, I’ll begin working on a doctorate degree!

 

Peter Stanley ’09

Peter Stanley

Peter Stanley

I love big picture, strategic thinking and I love physical, on-the-ground work. Every point in my career has been a mix of those two passions, and I think that my studies in art were too. As an art major, I spent hours planning, studying, researching, and designing projects. However, the real work was done in the studio and was hands-on and relentless. Both types of labor have been important to my work in museums, design, and business.

peter stanley 2

Kittredge Gallery

I am Manager of Kittredge Gallery here at Puget Sound, and I’m enjoying the mix of scholarly, physical, and managerial work I get to do here. I look forward to continuing to bring in meaningful shows, working with the whole campus, and highlighting the work of people in the department.

Study Abroad // Summer Research // Printmaking Workshop

Experiential learning is integral to the opportunities for learning and growth that our department supports.  Students, staff, and faculty engage in high impact, experiential learning practices.  Puget Sound defines experiential as follows:

Experiential learning utilizes direct experiences to integrate academic theories and skills by encouraging intellectual risk, uncertainty, or indeterminacy. Direct experiences encompass a variety of activities including internships, service learning, undergraduate research, study abroad, field work, simulations, public presentations or exhibits, publications, and other creative and professional work experiences.

Enjoy the following profiles of how members of our department’s community engage in experiential learning.

Walker in Vienna!

Junior Walker Hewitt is studying this fall at the IES Vienna European Society and Culture program this fall.  Many of our majors have selected this program because of its focus on the arts.

As a visitor who doesn’t speak German in Austria, just navigating the city on a daily basis is an adventure. It pushes me to do my best to learn new language and respectfully interact with a new culture. This position has given me a new self-awareness about how I go about everyday life and exist as a part of a community. 

The most impactful way the Austrian culture has affected me during my study abroad experience is the saturation of art in the city of Vienna. This sentiment applies to a majority of major European countries, but I feel like I’m being steeped in an arts focused environment. Being in Europe has made seeing so many highly regarded art works, movements, and ideas so accessible. Especially with my program we have museum passes and take weekly trips to art museums, collections, and significant architectural accomplishments. I’m so privileged to receive this opportunity and it’s deeply enriching

Walker Berlin_smWalker visiting the Reichstag in Berlin

Exposure to art past_smExposure to art past and present are a strength of this and multiple other study abroad programs!

Walking taking_smWalking taking in the spectacular scenery near Vienna


Kiri in Dijon!

Senior Kiri Bolles studied in Dijon, France last spring semester.  The Dijon Semester in France program was started by Professor Emeritus Michel Rocchi in 1985 and is run by Puget Sound’s Department of French Studies.

My study abroad program provided one experience above all that I will never forget – we were put with host families. My family was new to the program, which can create a lot of difficulties, but I found in my host mother a second mom, a teacher, a confidant, and a friend. Neither of my host parents spoke any English, which challenged me to really improve my French in order to connect with them. My host mom (her name is Elisabeth) works for the mayor of Dijon as a city planner – a job that challenges her and pushes her limits as a creative thinker. Even with all the work she has to do through her job, Elisabeth still somehow finds time to create. She works with watercolor, sculpts clay, and even paints on porcelain. It was fascinating for me to observe and work with such a talented and complex woman, who more than anything strove to create images with as few strokes of the brush or pencil as she could. Coming from an artist much older and wiser, this fascinated me as someone who obsesses over detail. I think she influenced the way I think about art in a huge way, not to mention life in general.

We all learn about the famous, French impressionists in art history. When you’ve made it through countless years of art schooling you grow to know Monet’s and Van Gogh’s paintings as well as your own work. You know the waterlilies and orchards they’ve portrayed. Visiting France is like stepping through the paintings into the artists’ world. Setting foot on the places they stood with your own easel and paints, seeing what they saw through your own eyes and brush.

Kiri in Beaune France_smKiri in Beaune, France

Kiri at a castle filled with wonderful art_smKiri at a castle filled with wonderful art!

Painting en plein air_smPainting en plein air


2017 AHSS Summer Research recipient Andriana Cunningham and Elayna Caron spent the summer engaging in research that informs their art while making new work.  Their projects embody the liberal arts ethos and speak to the importance of independent research in promoting serious artistic growth.

Andriana Cunningham

nectobibulus de aminicus
foam, paint, wood

This sculpture was inspired by a number of different natural forms where the connection between these forms was the influence of water.  Of the images included here, the two photographs of red rock nodules were taken in Little Wild Horse Canyon in Utah. The multi-colored, drippy drawing was also done in the canyon. Little Wild Horse Canyon is a slot canyon formed by water billowing through these narrow passages during flash floods.  The canyons are dangerous to be in even when the sky above is blue because a rainstorm miles away can induce a flash flood in the canyon, where water rushing through and can become a dangerous wall of fast moving water that is no match for a hiker.  The other photograph and drawing are from a Middle Piney Lake in one of Wyoming’s State Parks. When I was there in June the lake was still halfway frozen over and the vacillating pattern of the melting ice reminded me of the smooth rocks in the canyon.  When I was in the studio after my road trip, these abstracted, holey images were present in many of my sketches and it only made sense to attempt to translate them into sculptures.  I imagine this sculpture to be an undulating, alive creature that lives in streams and rivers.  I see the holes being a dynamic- opening and closing- capturing bacteria and small fish for the creature to eat. 

Anj 2 Anj 1


Elayna Caron, A Study of a Practice

In the summer of 2017 I created a research project called ‘The Study of a Practice’. In this research project, I interviewed yoga teachers and artists about what it means to have a spiritual or artistic practice. In my interviewing, I found the most important part of a practice is to show up for oneself fully committed to taking time to find a flow between breath, mind, and body. If that is on a yoga mat, in the studio or in nature, showing up is both the hardest and most important part of creating a practice. After interviewing each person, I created a practice for myself in reflection to each person I interviewed. I attempted to take on the rituals of each practice by doing research on what kind of work they created. I was able to create a room for myself in which I embodied each person I interviewed, through color, scent, sound and touch I meditated on the lesson from each person I talked to. The idea of having a room of one’s own was both liberating and necessary to make the deeply emotional work I was trying to express. Each time I entered the space I made a conscious effort to leave any negative feelings at the door. I practiced meditation when I first entered, then planned a yoga practice around the painting I was working on at the time. I kept a journal of my meditations and used those writings as ways to enter into my painting practice.  I brought the studies of yoga philosophy into my practices by reading about modern ideas about philosophy and journaling about the Yamas and Niyamas (rules and restraints) of yogic philosophy and adapting them into my daily life. I cultivated a consistent practice of yoga, painting, and mindfulness over my summer and I could not have done this without a room of my own. I learned that sometimes, stepping away from a painting or a practice can be the most powerful thing an artist can do. I allowed myself to let my work breathe, and with that, I was allowed to breathe.

Elayna at the 2017 AHSS Research SymposiumElayna at the 2017 AHSS Research Symposium

Heart Center, oil on canvas
Heart Center, oil on canvas

Mulahbanda, oil on canvas
Mulahbanda, oil on canvas


Printmaking Workshop in San Francisco

Professor Janet Marcavage attended an intensive advanced etching workshop at Crown Point Press in San Francisco. Faculty perpetually engage in the risk taking, collaboration, and direct learning practices that are hallmarks of experiential learning!

This past July, I was thrilled to attend a week-long advanced etching workshop at Crown Point Press in San Francisco as part of my pre-sabbatical activities. Crown Point Press is a long-established print publisher specializing in limited edition etchings; they hold workshops for only a few weeks in July. The workshop allowed a group of us from all over the US and from other countries to learn from Crown Point’s knowledgeable and talented Master Printers. Crown Point has a very large workspace with several presses, tables, and specialized equipment for making etchings with various approaches. I was able to refine my plate-making approaches with a particular focus on aquatint, a process that allows for soft values.  I really enjoyed working with spit bite aquatints, where the mordant is painted directly onto a rosined plate. From the experience at Crown Point, my hand-wiping technique also improved, allowing for greater nuance in my prints. It was fun to make new prints, meet other artists, collaborate, and see a wide range of prints being developed.

Janet 1_sm A work in progress

Janet 2_smFun with ink!

Janet 3_smHot off the press!

 

 

 

 

Bay Area Field Trip + Chalk To Me

Bay Area Field Trip

Seven senior art majors, Assistant Professor Chad Gunderson, Professor Janet Marcavage, and Professor Elise Richman spent Fall Break in the Bay Area visiting artists’ studios, galleries, and museums. Additionally, participants in this multi-day adventure were able to connect with a couple of art alumni, enjoy one another’s company over meals and on BART rides, and even fit in some thrift store shopping! Learn more about this incredible bonding and learning experience in the posts below, which capture the first-hand perspectives of six of the participating seniors.

DAY I
Mairan Smith:
On the first day in the Bay Area we began exploring Oakland by visiting Magnolia Editions, a printmaking studio that collaborates with artists to develop new techniques and innovative solutions. This was a really amazing experience and probably my favorite place we visited on the trip. This is the printmaking studio Chuck Close works with, so there were complete and test prints of his art all around.


Magnolia PressMagnolia Press

While we were there we learned about the different types of projects they work on and see some of the current projects in process. In addition to various printmaking techniques we learned about tapestry making and papermaking. We were able to really see how this studio experiments and tinkers with process to try and create new effects. They especially try and incorporate new digital technology into more traditional processes. For example, they were working on a piece for a San Francisco subway station in Chinatown and were experimenting with printing on tiles.

While we were there the director also showed us how to make paper with real money! He also was super enthusiastic in sharing about his project to try and recreate 16th century paper. He explained how he worked with sheep geneticists to source the most authentic felt and is currently trying to figure out the best way to break down the fibers of modern linen. His current plan is to use mushrooms. It was amazing. Everyone was so warm and friendly and open to sharing what they were working on. It was a really wonderful look into a different, more experimental approach to art making. I think it made everyone think about new ways we could experiment with our own art making.


Magnolia Press 2Magnolia Press

Walker Edison:
During the second half of our day in Oakland we walked around visiting several different galleries. We saw a wide variety of art and we also got the chance to speak with some of the artists as well as see some of their studio spaces.


Mairan Smith, Oakland GalleriesMairan Smith, Oakland Galleries


Group Shot! Oakland GalleriesGroup Shot!  Oakland Galleries


Sequoia Leech-Kritchman and Megan Breiter, Oakland GalleriesSequoia Leech-Kritchman and Megan Breiter, Oakland Galleries

One of the galleries that I found most interesting was an artist run gallery called Mercury20. The gallery had several rooms and each room was rented out by a different artist who could plan shows however they wished in their space. One artist actually converted half of his space to use as his studio and used the rest of his gallery space show work from a number of other ceramic artists. So, he was essentially running a gallery within a gallery. I thought Mercury20 was really cool because it was great to see all these artists working together to create a positive creative community centered around the artists. The same artist who had split his space into half gallery and half studio suggested that we should check out the space next door to Mercury20 which was a large studio space shared by 8 or 9 artists. I thought it was great to see another example of a shared creative space. It was really interesting not only to get to see so many different places and different kinds of work but also to get to talk to the people who worked in these places and made art. It was very cool to get to hear about what paths different people have taken on their way to becoming professional artists and to hear all the enthusiasm that people have for their work.

After visiting all the galleries, we got to have dinner with a couple of Puget Sound Art alums. It was nice getting to talk to people who had recently been where we are now and to hear about what they have done since leaving Puget Sound. We got to hear about their experiences with grad school as well as what kind of career paths they are on and thinking about the all the different possibilities of what to do with an art degree.


Dinner with alumna Gaby YoqueDinner with alumna Gaby Yoque

DAY II
Ally Hembree, Emily Katz, and Sequoia Leech-Kritchman:
It’s a sunny morning in San Francisco, as we ride into the city, excited for the day. The smoke of the recent fires has begun to clear and we are excited to start a new day of our adventure. Soon we arrive in San Francisco and we can already tell that the art we see today will be different.

We are greeted by Victor Cartagena outside of a building complex neither of us could be aware of what is held inside. As we go through the gates and down the hallways it is clearly evident that there is a community of arts living inside. As we come upon Victor’s studio one might miss the door altogether as it is camouflaged by an array of pictures, flyers, and other extraneous pieces that are glittered haphazardly in an array of collage.

There is nothing quite like seeing an artist’s studio. How an artist works, where they work, what they decide to surround themselves with all contributes to the art they are creating. There is art in every corner, on every spot of the walls, on the floor and between the chairs of Victor’s studio. We sit there and listen to his stories, we ask him questions and take it all in. Within such a space time is easily lost in the art. When we finally gather our things to leave it feels like a different day as Victor’s words still play back in my mind as we walk down the streets of San Francisco to our next destination for the day.

Victor Cartagena Victor Cartagena’s StudioVictor Cartagena

Next, we are off to the SFMOMA.

By the time we arrive, the excitement of being in Victor’s studio has started to wear off. We realize just how hungry we are and take a moment to replenish our bodies before immersing ourselves in more art. As soon as we begin to wander through this enormous space, we immediately start to recognize pieces that we have only ever seen in our art history classes. We stand in awe as we take in Louise Bourgeois’ immense spider sculptures and feel astounded as we walk through Richard Serra’s Sequence, perplexed by how such a piece was created.


Louise BourgeoisLouise Bourgeois

Over the next couple of hours, we each find pieces that move us and others that we don’t quite understand. We are pushed to think differently about our own work and inspired to try things we hadn’t considered before. Far too soon, the museum reaches closing, and we reluctantly file back out into bustling city streets of San Francisco.

Soon enough, we find ourselves asleep in a city park, exhausted from an exciting day. Feeling rejuvenated, we wander through the city, trying to take in all that it has to offer. Finally, with some Ethiopian food and egg tarts in our bellies, we board BART back to our cozy Airbnb, smiling from the day’s adventures and excited for what tomorrow might bring.


Nap in the Yerba Buena GardensNap in the Yerba Buena Gardens

Day III
Megan Breiter:
For Sunday of our Fall Break trip we all spent the day exploring the Berkeley area. Compared to Friday and Saturday, we had much more free time to wander around and see different stores and places, taking a bit more of the pedestrian side along with the art scene.

One of the main places we visited was the UC Berkeley Museum of Art and Film Archive at the Berkeley campus. While there were only a few exhibits open at the time, some of the art collections they had on display there were highly impressive. The pieces that stood out the most to me were the works by Martin Wong, an artist from the Bay Area who was prominent from the 70s onward until his death in the 90s. His works were incredibly varied and spanned a large gamut of subjects, from constellations to sign language to architecture and portraits of prisons. He meticulously painted buildings brick by brick, finding colors that you would never expect and creating figures and objects from those building blocks. Some of my favorite pieces of his were his works depicting his memories and feelings of San Francisco’s Chinatown and his own heritage, showing larger-than-life dragons in parades or honoring icons like Bruce Lee in mythical forms. I greatly admired his use of line and color in his acrylic paintings and found them to be some of the most compelling pieces of the entire trip.


Martin WongMartin Wong

After the Berkeley museum, we had free time to wander the area, checking out different stores and food stops around the campus, mainly on Telegraph Avenue. From there we travelled back to Oakland to meet Robb Putnam at his home and studio where he creates giant animal sculptures from fabric and found materials. His works were impressive in their scale, and they were reminiscent of taxidermy and uncanny childhood toys all at once. Robb was also kind enough to talk to us about his artistic path and the choices he made in continuing his education and exploring different options in his life which was valuable to hear.

Robb Putnam’s Studio Robb Putnam’s Studio 2Robb Putnam’s Studio

When evening rolled around we stopped by another massive thrift stop called Urban Ore, a large warehouse filled with anything you could possibly imagine, from old prints and family photos to wooden doors to rusted industrial machines. It was such a massive place that we barely scratched the surface of what it had to offer, but it was recommended to us as a prime place to find raw materials for use in artistic projects. If nothing else, it was somewhere you could spend literal hours in and still uncover strange new things.

Finally, to finish the day we walked to an Indian cafeteria which was immensely popular and served authentic made-to-order food that was quite delicious! After travelling and three full days of walking and absorbing art, we were all exhausted but inspired. From my impressions, we were all buzzing with different ideas taken from the vast amounts of art we saw and artists we met, which I believe proved just how valuable our experience was.

 


Sophia Munic’s campus project

Junior art major Sophia Munic independently proposed an interactive chalk mural in the Wheelock Student Center.  Her proposal was successful and has opened up a space in the campus’ main social hub for students to have a voice.  Check out images of different stages in the mural’s development and Sophia’s statement, which eloquently expresses the mural’s purpose.

Chalk to Me
The Wheelock Student Center is a space for students to express their ideas and opinions. I want the walls of this building to reflect that this is student space, and that starts with incorporating more student art. I made this chalkboard to act as a vessel for students to write and doodle their thoughts in a space that is theirs. By posting different questions and prompts regularly on this mural as well as inviting students to create temporary murals on the chalkboard, I invite you to share your ideas with our Puget Sound community in a respectful and inclusive* manner by using the chalk provided to write, draw, and contribute to this mural.

*This mural does not tolerate words of discrimination or hate, and the words on this mural should be written in context of the ASUPS principles of Equity, Accessibility, Inclusion, Justice, and Community. If this space is abused with words of intolerance or hate, your words will be erased.

 

chalkboard 1 chalkboard 2 chalkboard 3 chalkboard 4

Welcome to the Department of Art and Art History blog!

The Art and Art History Department blog celebrates the endeavors that enrich and individuals who form our compelling and diverse community.

Catch up with 2016 Senior Graduate Summer Residents Carly Brock, Grace Best-Devereux, Rachel Kalman, and Gaby Yoque!

group_residents_blog

It’s hard to believe it was just over a year ago when four recent are majors participated in a ten-week summer residency in Kittredge Hall.  Each resident first traveled to see significant art collections, public art, and/or exhibits that informed her artistic development.

The 2016 Senior Graduate Summer Residency was funded by an anonymous donor to support each participant’s artistic growth.  All four of the summer residents are continuing to pursue enriching and impressive opportunities in the field of art.

 

Grace Best-Devereux

Grace_blog

Thank you to the UPS Department of Art and Art History and the anonymous donor for giving me the opportunity of the postgraduate residency. I learned so much about myself during the residency and it set me on the path I’m currently pursuing.

After the residency, I finished my business degree which gave me the opportunity to work with the Northwest Sinfonietta and learn more about the marketing process for non-profits in the arts. After graduating I was offered a job at the Seattle Art Museum in their Education and Marketing department which gave me first-hand experience in the field.

While working at the SAM I applied to graduate school and I was accepted to both Seattle University’s and Sotheby’s Institute of Art graduate programs. I have now moved to London to pursue Sotheby’s course where I’m studying Art Business and specializing in East Asian Art. I’m looking forward to this year where I’ll attend the major art fairs in Europe. It’s exciting to be based in the art center of the world and I’m already enjoying the many collections I have access to.

I’m not currently working on a body of work in terms of creating art, but I have been continuing my research which I started during my residency. I’m still fascinated by the symbolic nature of hair and the deeply rooted emotions surrounding it. While I ponder these themes, I’ve been working towards building my career in the art world so my influence can make a difference.

 

Carly Brock

Carly_blog

After participating in the Summer Residency for Studio Art Graduates, I moved to Hermosa Beach in Los Angeles to work as an art instructor. For the last year, I’ve been teaching drawing and painting lessons to kids between the ages of 6-17 at an after-school art studio. Over the summer, I led several week-long outdoor art workshops that introduced these students to the fundamentals of creating art en plein air. Teaching has been a serendipitous event in my artistic pursuits that has allowed me to continue making and learning about art on a daily basis. 

Since moving to LA, my artwork has shifted to match my current surroundings, from green farmland in Washington to cityscapes and beachscapes in Los Angeles. My work was recently displayed at a coffee shop in Hermosa Beach and I completed a small series of landscapes for the set of a TV series. While I was a student at UPS, I had ambitious plans to participate in artist residencies abroad and eventually pursue a career in art therapy, and while those are still a part of my long-term goals, I am embracing new opportunities that I might not have planned for back in college. I am finding happiness in integrating myself into a new community, encouraging young creative minds, and being fortunate enough to create art every day.

 

Rachel Kalman

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I finished up the school year in July teaching fine art at the Renaissance International School in Oakland, CA and have moved to St. Louis, MO in order to earn my MFA from The Sam Fox School at Washington University.  I continue to work with oils in my own studio, attend art history classes, many many critiques, and work as a TA for a drawing course. It is fascinating to present and examine material with a group of 18-year-old students after having designed lesson work all of last year for 7-10-year-olds!  

In my own studio, I am currently designing and painting still lives that work to illustrate Aesop’s Fables – particularly ones I feel are most relevant to current policy and cultural/environmental movements. I am interested in the sharp morality of the parables and the way in which human characters are substituted for animal creatures. The fable is a deeply unique type of narrative (if even that) and I am interested in exploring what happens when that moralizing yet oddly childlike “story” is captured visually. 

 

Gaby Yoque

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I recently moved to the Bay Area to begin my graduate program at California College of the Arts in San Francisco. I am working towards a Master of Fine Arts in Fine Art; a redundant title, but the program allows for an interdisciplinary practice. It was a fast adjustment period as classes began at full speed, with a course load consisting of contemporary art history and theory, a critique class, a social practice elective, and a personalized graduate studio course.  I am in the early stages of developing a print series on migration and will be working with an advisor to learn letterpress. As a secondary project, I am stepping away from printmaking and working on a fourteen-panel painting installation on sexual assault.

As the graduate recipient of the Yozo Hamaguchi Endowed Scholarship, I was a part of the Yozo Hamaguchi Printmaking Scholarship Awards Exhibition. I was able to showcase a few of my prints from my “Our Voices” series.

It has been an interesting few weeks as I have met with different faculty to talk about my work and the direction I am heading towards. And while it has been a flood of opinions, it’s been an incredible experience being exposed to so many perspectives and takes on my work.

 


 

Welcome, Todd Jannausch! 

The department is pleased to add a new staff position.  Artist Todd Jannausch is our new Studio Technician.  Todd works on a wide range of projects throughout the entire art complex that will greatly assist with maintaining and enhancing the facilities and equipment essential to our studio and scholarly pursuits.

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I am honored to be the new Studio Tech for the Dept. of Art and Art History. I look forward to working with faculty and students alike to support the daily operations of the art studios. While away from the University, I am also a practicing sculptor and installation artist. In 2015, I received a Fellowship from Artist Trust which I used to co-found Feast Arts Center with my partner and fellow artist Chandler Woodfin. We continue to run Feast in the Hilltop Neighborhood of Tacoma where we provide an art gallery, art classes, and studio space for working artists.

Toddjannausch.com

Feastarts.com