The Art Galleries at Syracuse University are designed to facilitate education. In other words, it’s a teaching museum. Professors require students to go to there – to critique the art/learn how to judge a work of art. Students journal about experiences for classes, attend the receptions and lectures, and even work there (which has to be the greatest work-study gig).
Last year, former Director Domenic Iocono mentioned it was the reason artists like Jasper Johns, James Rosenquist and Kiki Smith wanted to collaborate by sharing their work with our community, enhancing the walls of the spaces with their respective visions.
In this season’s first exhibition, Not a Metric Matters, the university galleries led by new Director and Chief Curator Vanja Malloy, Ph.D. hosts its own – the School of Visual & Performing Arts faculty. It is an opportunity to showcase their talent, yes, and also turn the tables on the critiquing process allowing the professors to show students how it’s really done.
Margie Hughto has been affiliated with the university for many, many years. When I spoke to her last month, she said teaching is still fun and so, she will continue to share her expertise with students for many years to come.
Her ceramic and found object work is exquisite. It is perfection in editing – selecting just the right found object pieces to coordinate with the ceramic pieces. The work alludes to the recent discarded and forgotten in terms of technology.
The thought provoking concepts aside, Hughto’s artwork screams of her strength of character. She finds beauty in every angle, in each piece fused as one. They are signatures of her style while continuing to surprise and delight us, continuing a growth trajectory as an artist and that in itself is the lesson.
Holly Greenberg has isolated grief in this productive series of drawings. These pieces resonated with me – as you know my father recently passed away and his belongings are still in the closets, his car in the driveway at Mom’s house. Using these ordinary objects as memento gives them a lovingly somber power and isolating them in their compositions drives the message home.
It is curious how objects can retain the emotion of the spirit and Greenberg’s proficiency in rendering provides the elevation of their status.
Ann Clarke‘s fiber artwork is marvelously original. Texture is my thing and seeing monumental work on the walls creates a bold statement about time. The fabrics are traditional, but the techniques are fresh and alive. The hooked rug eye is really incredible in-person. I love the idea of taking a method we all used in the past and formulating this new pattern, which seems to denote to me that someone is watching over me, loving me.
Clarke’s statement does imply that she is the watchful eye for her ailing mother and that is a beautiful thing. That the old becomes new again, and time is cyclical.
Other teaching artists in this show –
Yasser Aggour, Cooper Battersby, Emily Vey Duke, Don Carr, Deborah Dohne, Heath Hanlin, Seyeon Lee, Sarah McCoubrey, Su Hyun Nam, Vasilios Papajoannu, James Ransome, Tom Sherman and Chris Wildrick
Their work takes dimension as paintings, drawings, photo-collage, video and installation – and all have something important to say within the context of their visualizations.
There are more exhibits in the space, all curated by different people. DJ Hellerman is the curator of this show. He is the Art and Program Curator at the Everson Museum of Art and collaborates with SU’s Department of Transmedia. I met him while stumbling into a critique of university students’ final exhibitions at Apostrophe’s.
David Prince curated the display of former VPA faculty members. As you know, I am an SU grad (B.F.A. ’85, M.S. ’93). These professors are my people. I absolutely loved Rodger Mack. He was so devoted to building the sculpture department and his bronze sculptures are THE BEST!
Seeing his hands portrayed by Jerome Witkin brought a tear to my eye. There is so much love here, people. Going to Syracuse University was a dream come true for me – I feel incredibly blessed to have been the first person in my family to ever go to a university – and to see the professors being honored is such a gift. They deserve every accolade.
They were and are true working artists, not just people showing up to collect a paycheck.
There’s lots more to see of these exhibits and the vast permanent collections. It will all be on display until November 24, 2019. There will be an art reception on Thursday, September 12, 2019 from 5 – 7 pm. And Holly Greenberg will be giving a presentation in the adjacent Shemin Auditorium on Thursday, November 7, 2019 at 6:30 pm.
Syracuse University Art Galleries is located in the Shaffer Art Building on Syracuse University campus. Free parking is available on Sundays and on Thursday evenings in the Q lot – or at least it was when I was there yesterday. Call (315) 443-4097 for more information including hours of operation. <3
Tonight was the opening reception for the summer art exhibition at The Syracuse Tech Garden gallery (235 Harrison Street, Syracuse, New York 13202). It is titled Cool August Moon. I saw my high school friend and fellow art teacher Audrey Levinson there!
Artist Steve Nyland (another Jamesville-DeWitt alum) is the curator and a participant in the show. He told me that he signed a new contract to continue with these exhibitions for at least another year. They take place in the lobby of this building, which is across the street from the Syracuse Marriott (Hotel Syracuse).
Other local artists contributing to this show –
Laura Audrey Terry Lynn Cameron Richell Castellon Fletcher Crangle Kathy Donovan Ryan Foster Larry Hoyt Lisa Ketcham James P. McCampbell Sally Stormon Rabekah Tanner Mitzie Testani Ray Trudell Kayla Cady Vaughn Ryan Wood
Massachusetts transplant Lisa Ketcham creates these kitschy assemblages and frames. They are sort of a cross between steampunk and macabre via the use of gears, timey-wimey-ies and skeletons.
Terry-Lynn Cameron brought her originals to share. I met her on Sunday at City Market where she was selling prints of these lovely acrylic paintings.
Richell Castellon Ferreira is the real deal – a painter and woodworker by trade. He comes to us from Cuba. His paintings of the Syracuse landscape would make perfect additions to any local collector’s art stash! He paints from photographs and from memory. These originals are only $175.
Ray Trudell focuses on the invisible in his black and white photographs taken of the surrounding area. He “slows time” by defining a glimpse of a moment using sharp contrast in his compositions.
The exhibit will be on display until September 20, 2019. For more information contact Steve Nyland at email@example.com. To purchase artwork, contact the artists directly. They have left business cards and also have contact information on their respective art tags.
The Madison-Bouckville Antique Festival is well underway. It is not a weekend event, oh noooooooo – it’s a full week of “junk” hunting! Located on both sides of Route 20 in Bouckville, New York 13310, there are thousands of vendors under tents. Everything you could possibly want to find, collect or what have you, including several kitchen sinks.
On the way there today, I set an intention for what I wanted to see/find (mainly stuff to use in my mixed-media artwork) and yes, I stumbled into ALL of it. Some were at price points I was fine with and others not so much. It was an exercise in the zen of serendipity.
There is a nostalgic element to the flow – pictured above is the Campus Queen lunch box I carried in elementary school.
I walked around for four hours and, basically, I just scratched the surface. I think I saw about a fifth of what was there. It was such a gorgeous day – I would have continued until dusk, but the majority of vendors closed up shop at 5 pm. I may return tomorrow. I really cannot get enough of the thrill of the hunt.
Madison-Bouckville Antique Week continues through August 18, 2019. They are open 8 am – 5 pm. There are plenty of food vendors and restaurants, as well as lots of shopping. So fun! <3
When I met Jason Alexander, I did that goofy Cinderella’s step-sister thing and asked him how he liked our Syracuse, New York weather.
He replied, “It sucks!” This was after a performance of the play he’d directed at Syracuse Stage. My friend and I looked at each other in an are-you-kidding-me glance because we both love it here, both love to hike whether in rain, snow, sleet or hail. And our weather had been particularly great in June.
So funny – and that is why I don’t have a selfie with the Seinfeld alum.
Today’s weather is sheer perfection – a magnificent sunny and breezy day to explore the offerings at City Market. Sponsored by the Everson Museum of Art (401 Harrison Street, Syracuse, NY 13202), the market is housed on the museum grounds around the fountains.
It takes place on the second Sunday of the month from 10 am – 4 pm. There are two dates left before the season ends – Sunday, September 8, 2019 and Sunday, October 13, 2019.
There is a lot to peruse – jewelry, trinkets, clothing, food, furniture and flea market-y miscellaneousness. And art, of course.
Tyler Cagwin created Nostalgia Chocolate. He manufactures the product here in Syracuse with international cocoa beans. The flavors are rich and satisfying! Gourmet chocolate with health benefits! (That’s a win-win).
I loved these ceramic pins and magnets created by Beckie Bortel of Beckie’s Pottery. They have a substantial feel to them and they look like ginger snap cookies. Great patina!
Terry Lynn Cameron is selling originals and prints of her colorful paintings. The prints are done on canvas, which is very cool. I am really impressed with how she markets her product! Some of the art has been adhered to sketchbooks and daily planners. Love!
Lori Lizzio‘s work can be found as originals, prints and notecards. They are ink and wash pieces of animals and figures.
Syracuse does have beautiful weather, Jason Alexander, and beautiful people – and art. It is satisfying and fun. Really fun. It doesn’t suck. <3
Eugene and Clare Thaw began collecting Native American art in 1987 when they lived in Santa Fe, New Mexico. They donated the collection to the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, New York where it currently resides in the downstairs gallery across from the Herb Ritts exhibition.
The life of Eugene V. Thaw is eloquently reviewed in an obituary written by Holland Carter for the New York Times, which I have included in this post. It documents a man’s life-long passion for the arts. His dedication to collecting, amassing more like, and also preserving and selling art is a gift to the world.
In this case, American Indian clothing, jewelry, pottery, and both decorative and functional objects depict the powerfully dignified beauty of a culture/civilization. Although the collection began in the Southwest, the Thaws expanded it to include every region of the US. The pieces are exquisitely displayed via region.
I am especially drawn to the costume, the leather hides, the intricate beadwork and the colors. Just fabulous!
Thank you, Mr. & Mrs. Thaw, for your life’s work and vision – preserving American history through the beauty of its art. <3
He was born on Oct. 27, 1927, in Washington Heights in Manhattan. His father was a heating contractor, his mother a schoolteacher. They named him for the socialist leader Eugene Victor Debs, who had died the previous year.
As a young teenager, Mr. Thaw took drawing classes at the Art Students League on West 57th Street in Manhattan. But he did not pursue the hands-on practice of art.
“I can’t create the objects I crave to look at,” he later said, “so I collect them.”
After graduating from DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx at 15, he entered St. John’s College in Annapolis, Md., and began making day trips to art museums in nearby Washington.
Returning to New York in 1947, he took graduate classes in art history at Columbia University with Millard Meiss and Meyer Schapiro. He also followed the city’s contemporary-art scene, getting an early immersion in Pollock’s work at the Betty Parsons Gallery.
His closest institutional tie was to what is now the Morgan Libraryand Museum, which in the 1950s was one of the few New York museums to have a curator of drawings. In 1975, after the museum had expanded its acquisition parameters to include 19th-century work, the Thaws decided that the Morgan would be the recipient, in incremental allotments, of their ever-growing holdings. The Morgan exhibition “Drawn to Greatness: Master Drawings From the Thaw Collection,” which opened in September and closes on Sunday, marked the completion of the gift, encompassing more than 400 sheets.
Among them were works by modern and contemporary artists in whom Mr. Thaw took particular interest. In the 1950s, on summer vacations in East Hampton, N.Y., Clare Thaw had struck up a friendship with the painter Lee Krasner, Jackson Pollock’s widow. With Ms. Krasner’s cooperation, Mr. Thaw began preparing the multivolume Pollock catalogue raisonné, an annotated listing of all the artist’s known works, in the 1970s, hiring the art historian Francis V. O’Connor as co-author.
Discover the most outstanding items from the Thaw Collection American Indian Art. Objects of transcendent beauty that span the continent—from the Arctic to the Southwest, and from the Eastern Woodlands to the Pacific West–encompassing close to 2,000 years of artistic tradition and innovation in North America.
The five pieces that make up this whimsical installation by Abraham Ferraro of Albany, New York, are the reason children grow up to be artists. (What kid didn’t have a sticker collection in the ’80s – am I right, people?) Arrows wrapped in brightly colored postal tape direct viewers towards this behemoth labyrinth of recycled cardboard and stickers. You can’t take a bad picture – every angle is perfection. It is just so incredibly fun! There is this feeling of discovery, the idea of packages – think Willie Wonka meets Amazon Prime via the U.S. postal service.
Apparently, Ferraro mailed the boxes and arrow-shaped sculptures to the Schweinfurth then added more tape and arranged them to create the eye-popping playground-like display.
Tonight was the gallery’s First Friday event. In addition to viewing the artwork, browsing the gift shop and enjoying delicious snacks, there was a free re-purposed art project (creating a self-watering planter from a wine bottle) set up in the basement – led by my friend Davana Robedee, Program Coordinator.
The next First Friday will be August 2, 2019. Edgy Folk will perform.
I am delighted to announce I have just completed a new series of encaustic & collage paintings! Yesssssss! They are fans – sensu in Japanese. I was inspired by a call-for-Japanese-inspired-art for a group show, which will be curated by Jamie Santos at Kasai Ramen scheduled for next month.
I love Japanese art! I’ve introduced my students to it with many different lessons through the years, the most recent of which happened to be utilizing the fan as motif. This was both inspiration and motivation for me to finally purchase some gesso boards, pull out the beeswax and immerse myself in the full sensation of creation.
I love how each one of these new pieces is unique – I added elements of origami, kintsugi, and shibari, as well as nods to the specific landscape, sport, and artists (Yayoi Kusama, the Japanese artist who is known for her dot paintings) of the country.
The very best part of creating art is relaxing into the process – allowing the inspiration to come rather than forcing decision making. It transports to an other-worldly place where the art becomes the most important thing, where nothing else matters except oneself and the process. The experience is pure joy; utter bliss. I highly recommend it. <3
Today, on Orthodox Easter, I did, technically, go to a church. Kirkland Art Center occupies the architecture of a former house of worship in the quaint town of Clinton, New York ( 9 1/2 East Park Row, Clinton. NY 13323). The place looks like the set of the naughts TV series Gilmour Girls! I’d been invited here several times, but this was my first visit to this amazing little venue.
Penny had a show there last month, so we took the road trip to get her paintings then stayed for the new exhibit.
Needles & Glue features the work of mixed media artist Pamela Crockett, sculptor Stephanie Garon and collage artist Steven M. Specht, Ph.D., NCS. Of the three, only Specht was in attendance today.
Specht, a Psychology professor by day, sold two pieces, which were very reasonably priced. There is so much satisfaction in these little gems. Pictures are garnered from vintage magazines then arranged as narrative utilizing techniques he learned in an art course. The collages are really quite intelligently crafted.
The exhibition continues through May 24, 2019. See the website for more information – hours of operation and future events planned at the center including musical performances and dance! <3
Syracuse University Associate Professor Laura Heyman, guest Visiting-Artist and Instructor Ira Lombardia, and Everson Museum of Art Curator of Art and Programs DJ Hellerman led students through a critique tonight at Apostrophe’s Art Gallery, 1104 Oak Street, Syracuse, NY 13203.
I was there a couple weeks ago for a similar event. This time it was a joint showcase of work by Han Zhao and Hangyi Zhou.
Han Zhao’s exhibit, Flowerbility, utilizes various media to showcase a single flower. According to his artist statement, he creates on his I-Pad and laptop, which allows his ideas to flow freely and quickly. There is joy to this ease. His work ethic reminded me of artist Kiki Smith. Last year, she visited Syracuse University and talked about coming at an idea from all angles. I enjoyed the consistency of the image and saw how its use had implications and applications to interpreting and re-imagining business logos, taking the image to its unlimited potential. That was exciting!
I jumped into participating in Hangyi Zhou’s critique session. What was I thinking, lol? I guess the teacher in me couldn’t just be a fly on the wall. I loved being a part of this adventure. The artist’s four-piece photography exhibit, Chinese Tattooed Women, seemed rather simplistic until she shared some back-story.
What happens in China stays in China – except when young artists relate how their view of the world is tainted by a judgmentally governed society. In this case, the notion that tattoos suggest disreputable character, specifically in regard to women. Finding Chinese women courageous enough to pose for these photographs was quite an accomplishment, apparently.
Each model wears black and poses to portray their emotional connection to their respective tattoos, which are similarly inked in black and were all similarly executed in China.
This series seems to be in its gestation period, and a lot of what was said in the critique was thought-provoking in a helpful way.
Thank you, Transmedia gang, for including me. This SU grad loves that Syracuse University art has expanded into the off-campus community. Utilizing this unique gallery space for student exhibitions and holding receptions on Mondays is a win-win! <3