Monday, April 21, 2014

Um WOW "watch" this

Amazing craft and blend of contemporary technology and traditional craft. I think one of my favorite bits is at 2:13 with the little set of the minute hand…just wonderful.

Ive always had a familiarity and affinity with and for time pieces. I grew up with a number of my days being spent in the clock shop of my grandfather. My office looks a bit like his shop I'll try and dig up some photos. There is just so much to look at and ask questions about. He is a true fix it man. If you ever see the grandmother clock, or coo coo clock in my office they belonged to him. Something about moving parts and how things work has always followed me. I also have always enjoyed precision, something about making something as best you can is fulfilling and somehow essential.

I think back to my first years in art school where there was constant phrase "if you can't make it good make it big, if you can't make it big make it red". It was thrown out as criticism and a joke as well as sometimes advice. I always love when people make things small. That takes courage. All of its flaws and craft are available, it cannot often hide behind scale or anything else for that matter. Anyhow enjoy the video, hopefully it makes you think of how you make things.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Undergrad Research

As noted earlier, Lynsey and Rebecca were invited to present two papers at Asbury as part of the National Council on Undergraduate Research's "Undergrad Research Week." The GC students made their presentations and took questions from the audience of about 25 students and profs. Some of the questions were challenging—but they helped our students to broaden their discussion and to think about their topics in another way.

Thank you to our hosts, Professor Patrick Adams (whose work you can check out here) and Dr. Linda Stratford, for inviting us to join them. Lynsey and Rebecca presented their work on contemporary art and the "end" of art, as noted in an earlier post here.

Jeanette, Lynsey, Rebecca, Earl Grey, and Linda
After the presentations, we were able to enjoy a cup of coffee and conversation in the Student Center at Asbury and to take a tour of some of the campus. We stopped into the Andrew Miller Comm Arts Center, which is a fabulous experiential learning space for students interested in film and media studies.

A prop from "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" film
(with the Olympic rings in the back)
A streetscape used in filming

The morning was a wonderful way to spend time thinking about art history and getting to know colleagues and students from another, nearby institution. We look forward to connecting again!

And, special congrats to our students for a job well done! We're proud of you!

Dear World

Photographer Robert X. Fogarty starting a community photography project titled Dear World  in 2009 in the aftermath of the devastation in New Orleans. He invited survivors to be photographed with their 'love letter' to the city.

Robert claims "We aren't changing the world, we are taking pictures of people who are." Through the years Dear World has become a 'social experiment, an art project, and a business.'

The team has photographed cancer survivors, citizens from Joplin, MO who are picking up the pieces after tornado wreckage, New York after hurricane Sandy, celebrities with positive world messages, and other high powered humanitarians. But what I want to highlight is Dear World: Boston Marathon Survivors + First Responders.
A little over a year ago I was in my office with a live stream of the marathon minimized on my computer screen and all cued up to receive text message updates. Why? My brother-in-law, a former professional marathon runner, was coaching a friend of his in preparation for the race. At the last minute Ben decided to run with Adam as a pacer. Ben was convinced that Adam would come away with his best PR and qualify (again) for the Olympic marathon trials. My sister and niece and Adam's pregnant wife were all in attendance in the grandstand.

Our department had an end of the year meeting and just out of habit I brought my phone with me. Though on silent, I could see out of the corner of my eye my phone crazy lighting up. All I could think was WOW these guys are really kicking it. You receive these text updates at check points along the course. They must have been flying. The next time I glanced down I had a text from my cousin. We aren't super close so it was a strange message to get. She said something to the affect of ... 'I just saw what happened, I know Jen and Ben are there... are they OK?


I tried calling my sister, Jen. Then my mom, my dad. Then my other sister. Then instead of live updates from a happy healthy event I was getting live updates from tragedy and terror.

Thankfully, Adam DID run his best PR that day and qualified and Ben wasn't too far behind him. They were safe. So was my sister, niece, and friend.

Seeing these survivor images from Dear World really hit home for me. Those people could be my family and friends. They could be my brother and sister. These powerful images of strength, resilience, and love overcome the fear and terror that was forced upon this peaceful event.

As a society we see violence on TV, in movies, on the news even. We get jaded and numbed to humanity. When you see images. LOOK. Stop just seeing: Look. Who are these people. What is their story, struggles, pain, happiness, love, peace....

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Three Art Events: Stations of the Cross, Gallery Hop, LAL Spring CSA

As the semester winds down, art events and happening continue to be in full swing. If you're looking for a few opportunities to be involved, here are three coming up in the near future.

Stations of the Cross Pilgrimage (tonight!)
There will be a walk this evening beginning at First Presbyterian Church in downtown Lexington at 6:30 tonight that will travel across town to Good Shepherd Episcopal Church. I and group of other local artists have installed artworks to accompany the 14 Stations of the Cross as part of Holy Week. The project has been spearheaded by Mark Davis of First Pres and Brian Cole of Good Shepherd, along with Becky Alley of the Lexington Art League. For my part, I was responsible for Station IV, Jesus is denied by Peter (pictured below, located at the corner of Spruce and 2nd streets).

Link to the map of the walk:

Gallery Hop (Friday)
Come out this Friday to enjoy and celebrate the work of regional artists during the semester's last Gallery Hop in downtown Lexington. It runs from about 5–8 PM and includes a variety of venues. I always enjoy visiting Mary Rezny, Ann Tower, and the Bread Box. Mary will be featuring The Art of Structure (image below).

Lexington Art League Spring CSA (next Friday, April 25)
LAL will be holding its 3rd CSA Harvest Party. This is a Community Supported Art project that allows anyone to purchase a share of artwork from 9 featured regional artists. (Daniel and I were featured in the first and second harvests last summer and fall.) The event will be from 6–9 at the Loudon House and will included food, music, and a ART!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Art History @ Georgetown College

The visual art major allows students to develop an emphasis in studio art or art history. The students, as part of their capstone experience, participate together in an exhibition/research presentation each fall and spring (during each student's last term of enrolling in art courses).

This spring, two senior art history majors participated in the senior thesis course: Rebecca and Lynsey (shown below on the very balmy opening of the thesis reception). As part of their theses requirements, each of them presented their research findings at the opening of the senior exhibition and took questions from a packed audience in room 104—minds curious about contemporary art. A second portion was the construction and reasoned analysis of primary data (in the form of surveys and data analysis by Rebecca and data compilation and analysis of auction records by Lynsey). The third portion is the writing of a thesis (meeting a 30 page minimum, with the use of 30 sources). [Current junior art history major, Catherine: you have your work cut out for you!]

Rebecca, Earl Grey, and Lynsey after their presentations on Friday, March 28.
Yay! Art History!

This week, these students will bring their research to a broader audience by traveling to Asbury College and reading abbreviated versions of their papers at the Art History Symposium organized by Prof. Linda Stratford, an associate professor at Asbury. Two of her students will be presenting as well, though their research is based upon Renaissance and Baroque artists, Michelangelo and Caravaggio.

Everyone is welcome to join us for our visit to Asbury and to hear Rebecca and Lynsey. We will depart from the Art Building at 8:00 am on Thursday morning. See you then! 

Thursday, April 10, 2014


These past few days in the gallery we welcomed Zinnia Willits, Director of Collections Administration at the Gibbes Museum in Charleston, SC and her shadow, Lauren Silberman, Program Officer for the Museum Assessment Program through the American Alliance of Museums.

About nine months ago, Dr. Juilee Decker and I wrote a Museum Assessment Program (MAP) grant that is sponsored by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM) to specifically assess our collections stewardship. The grant was long and laborious and I learned a lot of institutional knowledge (thanks to Dr. Decker) that I had not know. When writing such a grant you learn a lot about your institution as well as the distinctive writing style and skill it takes to apply for a grant.

The Georgetown College Fine Arts Galleries was awarded the grant though our writing did not stop there. Once we received word that our application was selected, we then needed to complete the necessary workbook. This series of questions reflected our day to day operations, our polices and procedures, and our hope for the future of the Galleries. We had three goals in mind: to strengthen our operation, to plan for the future of Georgetown College's collection, and to continue to strive to meet national museum standards.

The past two days Zinnia met with students, faculty, administrative staff, the CFO, and facilities. It was a wonderful experience for me to have a mini conference centered right around our collection and Galleries. Ideas were shared as well as concerns. But overall, the reception of these meetings was positive and I GREATLY appreciate all who were willing to participate.

Over the next month or so Zinnia will complete her report. This report will reflect how the Galleries are function now, if we are on the right track in turns of national standards, and how to improve. We have a lot to think about for the next few days as we combine all of our own thoughts on the subjects that were discussed.

I am so glad and honored with the opportunity that the Galleries were awarded. This will be a wonderful examination in how the Galleries continue to function and how to better serve the Georgetown College and its community.

(I wish I had a picture to show you!)

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Collections Stewardship

logo by Cailley

Thanks to a grant from the American Alliance of Museums, Lauren from the American Alliance of Museums (based in DC) and Zinnia from the Gibbes Museum (Charleston, SC) are on site Tuesday and Wednesday as part of the Museum Assessment Program’s “Collections Stewardship” peer review. Zinnia is visiting and conducting the review of our collections; Lauren is shadowing Zinnia in order to see the process as it unfolds at a smaller organization/institution such as ours.

This site visit is part of a two-year review that we have undertaken in our Art Department to assess our collections and our care of them. This is akin to an academic department undertaking self-study and a site visit from a peer reviewer. 

This process was self-initiated by Juilee Decker and Jeanette Tesmer (as well as our previous gallery director, Laura Stewart) and began with a CAP grant (to look at the condition of our collections and storage) in 2012-13.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Field Trip: GSCM

Photo by Museum Director David Rice
Thank you to Mr. David Rice, Director of the Georgetown & Scott County Museum (GSCM), for welcoming us to their space last week. Students in the FDN 112 "Engaging Objects" course had the opportunity to learn about the museum and to explore the collections on their own. Some photographs of our time there and our "favorites" are below, including Pete the Crow!

Director of the Georgetown & Scott County Museum,
Mr. David Rice, welcomed our group.