Dread Scott and Jenny Polak To Be Spring 2019 Artists In Residence

Images courtesy of the artists.

​​In the Spring of 2019, the artists Dread Scott and Jenny Polak will be in residence in the Department of Art and will be participating in a symposium on February 26th, 2019 in their capacity as Run Run Shaw Distinguished Lecturers. Over a calendar of three months and supported by an Arts, Humanities, and Lettered Social Sciences Established Artist Grant, they will both engage in a series of events and talks on campus, will be undertaking a semester long research project that examines the relations between the history of slavery, migration, and art, and will be participating in one-on-one and small group critiques with students in the Art Department.

Dread Scott and Jenny Polak are both artists whose practices engage the intersections of politics, history, and power in the contemporary United States. Addressing a range of interrelated social issues related to race, colonialism, slavery, migration, and citizenship, their performances, events, poetic gestures, provocations, and projects challenge audiences and publics to critically engage the complex and often vexed political inheritances of American life.

Bringing Dread Scott and Jenny Polak to the Art Department as artists-in-residence will allow for their work to enrich the campus’ intellectual and artistic communities and generate necessary political debate about issues that continue to play a central role in our society. Beyond the obvious aesthetic and political merits of their work, Dread Scott and Jenny Polak’s time on campus will encourage and facilitate interdisciplinary forms of exchange between students and faculty, making significant and meaningful contributions to the form of political debate, exchange, and reflection and that are already taking place on campus.

PhD Alum Sophie Landres Accepts Position at Miami Dade College Museum of Art and Design

Modern Art History & Criticism PhD Sophie Landres has accepted the position of Curator of Education and Public Programs at the Miami Dade College Museum of Art and Design, where she will work directly under Director Rina Carvajal!

An independent curator, critic, and art historian, Landres’ interdisciplinary scholarship ranges across the fields of late modern art and visual culture, feminist history and theory, sound studies, and performance. Her 2017 dissertation, “Opera for Automatons: Carlotte Moorman’s Early Collaborations with Nam June Paik”, was completed under the direction of Andrew Uroskie, Zabet Patterson, and Megan Craig (Philosophy), with performance historian Kathy O’Dell (UMBC) as her outside reader.

Sophie was the 2015 Mellon Global Initiatives Fellow at Creative Time, where she assisted Okwui Enwezor with the Creative Time Summit for the Venice Biennale, and her essays have recently appeared in the College Art Association’s Art Journal as well as in PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art

This last year, she has curated contemporary art exhibitions for Sargent’s Daughters and Stellar Projects in New York City, while teaching at the NYU Gallatin School of Individualized Study.

Congratulations, Sophie!

Campaign for Public Sculpture Conservation


Photo Credit: AMNY/Mark Chiusano

Art History faculty member Michele Bogart is at the forefront of efforts to conserve reliefs by Harlem Renaissance artist Richmond Barthé at Kingsborough houses in Brooklyn, as a recent piece has explored while highlighting the complexity of the issue:

Bogart is a champion of public art who is trying to find a champion for Barthé. NYCHA is facing an urgent capital needs deficit of billions, but maybe money to protect the frieze can be found elsewhere. Alternative funding from the City Council? The borough president’s office? A partnership with something like the Ford Foundation, which has made a cause out of public art and expression? Maybe the money is somewhere to fix what NYCHA couldn’t protect. Bogart points to the city Parks Department which she said does a solid job maintaining and monitoring public art.

Continuing reading online to get the full story.

Apple features Professor Stephanie Dinkins in “Behind the Mac” Campaign

Apple Inc has recently recognized Professor Stephanie Dinkins’ research and community-centered efforts by featuring her as a local hero in their “Behind the Mac” ad campaign.

The New York Times recently featured Dinkins in its pages as an AI influencer: “Five AI Influencers in their Own Words” and was also featured in Wired: “The Case for Giving Robots an Identity.

Additional, Dinkins was recently a guest on Tilted, A Lean in Podcast and on the All Turtles Podcast.

One of a Kind: Undergraduate Senior Seminar Art Exhibit

Xinyu Wu, What should be tied, 2018, 23 x 30 x 23 cm

A new student show “One of a Kind” will be on display at the Central Reading Room in the Melville Library between November 6 and December 10, 2018.

Nobuho Nagasawa, the Art Studio Faculty Member who curated the show, described what’s on display in this way:

“In the new technological age, the role of the library has changed with the rise of the Internet, E-books, Kindles, and other means of reading.  Nevertheless, books have never failed to transport new ideas, relay messages, provoke thoughts, and challenge viewpoints. In this exhibition, “One of a Kind,” I asked each student in the senior seminar class to expand their individual art practice and to create a site-responsive work that is related to the function of the library as a beacon of knowledge, and a place for exploration.”

MFA Student Maggie Avolio Featured in New American Paintings

In a recent issue of New American Paintings, current MFA Maggie Avolio was featured and profiled and had her artist statement published online. She describes her practice as being engaged in producing:

“…minimalistic artwork that exists simultaneously as painting, sculpture, and installation. Raw canvas is unwoven, torn, folded, or reconstructed to create three-dimensional form. I create marks using unconventional methods like stitching. Paint is absent from the canvas yet sometimes appears in the surrounding area, creating a new spatial identity.”

Interview With Faculty Member Katy Siegel in Gagosian Quarterly

Art History Faculty Katy Siegel was recently interviewed about her show at the Rose Art Museum. Among other reflections, she notes that:

“That earlier generation of women artists was
 not given the option of being feminists—and, even later in life, many were not interested in embracing that identity when it was on offer. Nonetheless, they faced the same issues as later generations, and enacted some of the same adaptations and solutions: playing both at femininity and masculinity as artificial roles, speaking to each other in private in a different manner than in public speech, and letting their work be filled with their own, unnamed sensibility. Female artists today are more likely to be able to say things out loud, but perhaps still run similar risks in the media and popular conceptions—being pinned down by categorical thinking about gender and identity.”

Click here to read the full interview!

New Work Exhibited from MFA Alum Athena LaTocha

Athena recently had the opportunity to make a new work for the Crystal Bridges Museum’s traveling exhibition “Art for a New Understanding: Native Voices, 1950s to Now, ” on display between October 05, 2018 – January 07, 2019.

For Art for a New Understanding: Native Voices, 1950s to Now, artist Athena LaTocha visited Northwest Arkansas and Pea Ridge National Military Park. The result of this visit is a work specific to the region, both the lush topography of the Ozarks as well as what the land has seen over time.

The entire cultural history of the land impacts LaTocha’s work– in this case, the Trail of Tears and the Civil War. During her visit, certain elements of the Arkansas landscape lingered: burnt trees, the smell of wet earth, sun on the rocks, and the erosion and striation of rock features. LaTocha connected the burnt wood and bluff overhangs with the experience of war and trauma in the land’s past.

Faculty Member Nobuho Nagasawa’s Sculpture Featured in CODAmagazine

Art Studio Faculty Member Nobuho Nagasawa’s sculpture “Nest” that is installed in the LA Metro has been chosen to be included in CODAmagazine’s new issue “Suspended in Space IV.” The editors describe the sculpture in this way:

This artwork on the station mezzanine alludes to migration and travel, a significant theme, which acknowledges the history of the immigrant community in this part of the city. An old map with images of flying birds, and a suspended spiral nest with an “egg” symbolizes “home.” The egg glows and pulsates to the rhythm of the artists’ heartbeat.

Reflecting on the histories of migration in East Los Angeles, Nagasawa’s work was completed in 2009.

Associate Professor Stephanie Dinkins to Appear on HBO’s Random Acts of Flyness

Random Acts of Flyness is a late-night series from artist Terence Nance (An Oversimplification of Her Beauty). The six-episode season explores evergreen cultural idioms such as patriarchy, white supremacy and sensuality from a new, thought-provoking perspective. Associate Professor Stephanie Dinkins will appear on the Season Finales (episode 6) where she describes her encounters with a simulated black woman, drawing upon her previous work in relation to Artificial Intelligence and Race.