Just a reminder that this next Tuesday, November 8, 2011, we are happy to present a lecture on criminal justice and the arts by Phyllis Kornfeld.
The lecture will be held at 7pm in the Gallery Theatre on the 3rd floor of the Elaine Langone Center.
This past week the Samek was humming with activity as we took down our previous exhibitions, Timothy Greenfield-Sanders’s “Blacklist” and Myra Greene’s “Self-Portraits”, and installed the two new shows, the International Collage Center‘s “Remix:Selections from the International Collage Center” and “Freehand: an exhibition of artwork created by Pennsylvania prisoners” and curated by Shawna Meiser.
For me it was amazing to install the show of art by prisoners. I was overcome by waves of realizations and awe. I had never realized that prisoners were allowed to make art from bronze sheets, to carve elaborate frames, or construct decorative clocks. I was in awe of the delicacy of the drawings and their skill with photo-realistic representation.
But soon after I came down from my prison art high I got to dive into a mountain of collage, and that is a very close to accurate statement. We received and unwrapped over 100 works of art. Every second as I walked through the gallery to grab a tool or move a ladder I caught my eye on a new collage that I hadn’t yet seen. All day as we laid out the show, with the co-curators, Founder & Artistic Director, Pavel Zoubok and, Director Rachael Lawe, I could hardly fathom the amount of art that we were cramming into this gallery. (click for more photos!)
While it is not exactly as chock full of art as a salon show of the past it is just as overwhelming, given that these works of art are super condensed images made up of many many other images. I love the fact that I can and am forced to spend time with each work in order to actually see it. It is impossible to glaze over these works because they have so much visual information. Your eyes want to stop and examine in order to realize what the work is made from and how it was done.
Hanging these shows was an amazing experience. I had unpacked, hung, and lit that much art. It was amazing to work with Pavel and Rachel, to hear stories about the artists included in the exhibition and about their plans for the ICC. I am so excited to be working around this exhibition for the rest of the semester. I am sure I will never get tired with it because every time I walk through the gallery I know I will see something I hadn’t seen before.
Artists Talk: John Craig Freeman & Will Pappenheimer
7 p.m., Tuesday, October 18, 2011 Gallery Theatre, 3rd floor ELC
John Craig Freeman & Will Pappenheimer, members of the artist collective MANIFEST.AR, will discuss their new media artworks in the current Samek Art Gallery Exhibition, Not Here [link: http://www.bucknell.edu/x70622.xml].
Augmented Reality is the art of overlaying virtual content on top of physical reality. Using AR apps on smart phones, viewers look at the real world around them through their phone’s camera lens, while the app inserts additional images or 3D objects into the scene. These objects, however, are not simply “online”; rather they are sited at a specific physical spot in the real world using GPS coordinates.
MANIFEST.AR became infamous in 2010 for playfully “hijacking” an art exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art by using Augmented Reality to site their virtual artworks, uninvited, in the museum. For the Samek Art Gallery exhibition, MANIFEST.AR sited several works around the campus of Bucknell University; invisible to the naked eye, and viewable only through one’s smart phone equipped with a free app.
Will Pappenheimer is an artist and professor at Pace University, New York. He has exhibited nationally and internationally at Fringe Exhibitions in Los Angeles, the ICA and Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Exit Art, Florence Lynch, Postmasters, Vertexlist and Pocket Utopia galleries in New York, San Jose Museum of Art in ISEA 06/ZeroOne, Kunstraum Walcheturm in Zurich, the Golden Thread Gallery, Belfast, Ireland for ISEA 09, FILE 2005 at the SESI Art Gallery, Sao Paulo and Xiʼan Academy of Art Gallery in China in conjunction with the Digital Art Weeks 2010.
John Craig Freemanis a public artist with over twenty years of experience using
to produce large-scale public work at sites where the forces of globalization are impacting the lives of individuals in local communities. His work seeks to expand the notion of public by exploring how digital networked technology is transforming our sense of place. He has produced work and exhibited around the world including in Xi’an, Belfast, Los Angeles, Beijing, Zurich, New York City, Taipei, São Paulo, Warsaw, Kaliningrad, Miami, Bilbao, Havana, Atlanta, Calgary, Buffalo, Boston, Mexico City, London and San Francisco.
Its been great this semester to see the responses of students, faculty, staff, and other passersby to our new Video Wall right outside the doors of the Samek. Our inaugural piece of video art was by West Coast media artist, filmmaker, and researcher in interactivity, Scott Snibbe. The work Falling Girl is a whimsical video of a young woman perched atop of an ornate art deco-y skyscraper and, as the title reveals, her slow and very graceful fall. Snibbe’s website has a lot of great info about the video work with video and images of its production. In its creation he collaborated with choreographer/filmmaker Annie Loui and a cast of dancers and actors whose movements were filmed in front of a green screen. This material was then turned into the silhouetted figures who are inserted into the architecture of the skyscraper. As the girl falls she dances, floats and thoroughly enjoys her descent. At times she interacts with individuals in the building who fear for her, wave to her, and long to join her. At times, however, she passes unnoticed by windows with captivated lovers or preoccupied office workers.
As an art lover I like the work for its beautiful simplicity. There is something about the linearity and geometry of the architectural drawings inhabited by human silhouettes that captivates me, aside from the equally captivating and thought provoking theme and narrative.
As a museum professional I love how this video has additionally captured the curiosities of our visitors and students, faculty, and staff who just happen to be walking by. A month ago the Video Wall was just a “wall” and a wall you walked past on your way out of the elevator on your way to someplace else. Now the Video Wall grabs your attention. Falling Girl especially grabs your attention as you see this graceful girl falling hundreds of feet unfazed and with disregard to her ultimate destination. I have particularly enjoyed those moments when I walk out of my office to see a professor and his student standing together after class and pondering the girl’s motivation, wondering how she’ll end up, and ultimately “what does it all mean?” Equally entertaining has been the opportunity to see individuals get pulled into the story of the falling girl as they wait for the elevator. Suddenly the elevator arrives and these people are torn. How do they decide whether to enter the elevator, disrupt the story, and never know what happens at the end or to postpone their plans for a few minutes to watch the film in its entirety. Its a very interesting dilemma to watch people go through.
But unfortunately, Falling Girl will be coming down in a few weeks at then end of our first exhibition schedule. Thankfully, though the Video Wall will stay and our new Director/Curator Richard Rinehart will bring another work of video or digital art the wall. So hurry up to catch one last glimpse of Falling Girl and stay posted to see what future work will go up in its place!
October 14 – December 4, 2011
The Lewisburg Prison Project, a social justice advocacy group, produced this exhibition with the hope that viewers may consider what lies beyond the “prisoner” stereotype. One in every 32 adults is currently incarcerated, or on parole or probation in the U.S. (BJS, 2009). The nightly news and blockbuster thrillers lead many of us to believe that all people who serve time behind bars are incurably violent and evil, but this is far from the truth. What would we find if we looked past our stereotypes? Are we able to see inmates’ capacity for love, personal growth, and even kindness? This exhibition is not meant to condone prisoners’ illegal actions, but to foreground the humanity that is evidenced in their artwork.
Freehand is comprised of artworks produced by inmates at Pennsylvania correctional institutions at the county, state, and federal levels. The goal of this exhibition, through presenting the talents of Pennsylvania inmates, is to promote a dialogue of ideas between prisoners and those on the “outside.” For inmates, the act of creating is a source of productivity, self-esteem, identity, and mental peace—qualities that are not easily obtained within the prison. Longtime prison art instructor, Phyllis Kornfeld observes, “In one form of another, almost all prison inmates are making (art) or buying it. It appears to be crucial to spiritual and practical survival.”
While prison art programs no longer enjoy the level of support they had in recent decades, inmates continue to draw, sculpt, and paint. Several studies show that inmates who participate in art programs maintain better behavior while serving their sentences, and that engagement with the arts helps inmates transition more successfully back into society. Very few of the artists in Freehand have formal training in art, but many create prolifically. Their work engages fundamental aspects of life: family, politics, sexuality, nature, and religion. Through the visual language of their artwork, this exhibition allows inmates a rare opportunity to share their values and ideas with those beyond the prison walls, and allows us to reexamine our assumptions.
Guest Curator Shawna Meiser
October 24, 2011
Film: Shakespeare Behind Bars
3rd floor of the Elaine Langone Center
November 8, 2011
Lecture by Phyllis Kornfeld on Criminal Justice and the Arts
3rd floor of the Elaine Langone Center
For further information contact Cynthia Peltier at email@example.com
Leonard Peltier – Ghost Bear, Yanton Lakota, 11 x 14″
Top Floor, Elaine Langone Center
416 Market Street
Lewisburg, PA 17837
CLOSED for installation February 13—March 5