Curatorial Work & Presentations
Interventions: Re-Framing the Printed Image
October 2016 - Spring 2017
21c Museum Hotel
Many thanks to the team at 21c Museum Hotel for the opportunity to curate an exhibition from their collection, in conjunction with the 2016 Mid-America Print Council conference.
For centuries, prints have been a means to illustrate, define, and share scientific findings, political ideologies, and social actions. Maps, newspapers, and magazines can provide material evidence of the ways social frameworks and cultural norms have been promoted and maintained. In Interventions: Re-framing the Printed Image, contemporary artists appropriate, intervene upon, and reinvent printed images to reveal new interpretations of their impact and agency in our times. Imagery from mass media and politics are raw material for artists like Jeremy Dean, who deconstructs and re-contextualizes iconic imagery to address popular media’s role in purposeful and “natural” forgetting.
Graphical representations of politics, pop culture, science, and commerce have changed greatly over the centuries, from the exacting detail of a wood engraving to the presumed authority of a photograph. However, the act of removing an image from its original context reminds us of the fluidity and complexity of a printed image’s communicative powers. In Harper’s Pictorial History of the Civil War (Annotated), Kara Walker’s trademark silhouettes subvert and obscure the original narratives of images published in 1866. Stephen Irwin erased information from pornographic magazine pages to isolate and emphasize the underlying beauty of gestures. As digital media further embeds graphic imagery into our everyday lives, these artists utilize printed matter to remind us of the importance of examining – and reexamining – the underlying structures and agency of published media today.
Armatures of Audubon:
Contemporary Constructions and Ecologies
September 4 - October 24, 2014
Kentucky College of Art & Design,
Many thanks to all the artists who participated in this exhibition, and special thanks to Beauvais Lyons and Diane Fox for a great visit to Kentucky School of Art's campus!
John James Audubon (courtesy of the Filson Historical Society)
Armatures of Audubon: Contemporary Constructions and Ecologies at the Kentucky School of Art
Louisville, KY – July 22, 2014 – Co-curators Rodolfo Salgado Jr. and Susanna Crum announce the upcoming exhibition, Armatures of Audubon: Contemporary Constructions and Ecologies, at the Kentucky School of Art’s 849 Gallery at 849 S. Third Street. In this multimedia exhibition, contemporary artists invoke the era of John James Audubon, in which the study of the natural world was a combination of science and spectacle, truth and fiction. The exhibition will be featured during KSA’s September 4 Gala, opens to the public on September 5, and closes on October 31.
You can look at these true shapes all day and not see the bird.
Audubon understands light as an absence of darkness,
truth as an absence of unknowing.
-Anne Carson, Audubon
The desire to depict “true” nature is complex, and related efforts and failures have become rich material for contemporary artists as they construct their own worlds. In this exhibition, artists appropriate visual languages associated with natural history, botanical illustrations, and landscape paintings. As Director of the Hokes Archives, Beauvais Lyons fabricates discoveries in archaeology, medicine, and zoology in works like Ornithological Quadrupeds, a series of lithographs that imbue invented creatures with the scientific authority of 19th-century natural history illustrations. In Diane Fox’s photographs of the unintended views of museum dioramas, the persistent wonder of painted illusion and taxidermy trumps their disconnect from nature. Mike Nudelman’s meticulous layers of ballpoint pen reproduce 19th- century and contemporary images of the sublime, from the Hudson River Valley to outer space, while Linda Lopez proposes alternate relationships between everyday and imagined objects through ceramic sculpture.
Co-curators Susanna Crum and Rodolfo Salgado Jr. moved to Louisville, Kentucky to start a fine art printmaking studio and gallery, Calliope Arts, whose research and development was supported by the M.A. Hadley Prize for Visual Arts in 2013. Rodolfo and Susanna are adjunct assistant professors at the Kentucky School of Art, and have exhibited their own artistic work internationally. Regarding the exhibition, Crum stated, “Rodolfo and I are pleased to have had the opportunity to curate an exhibition that combines a wide range of contemporary artists working throughout the US and Canada with a historical context so relevant to Louisville’s own history. John James Audubon’s working methods and legacy are complex, and raise questions about visual authenticity that remain relevant today.” Audubon lived in Louisville from 1807-1810, where he created many drawings as part of his goal to sketch all the birds of North America.
KSA will welcome Beauvais Lyons and Diane Fox as visiting artists from October 15-16. Both artists will present a lecture on their artwork and careers on October 15 at 6pm, at the 849 Gallery. All exhibitions and events are free and open to the public.
Constructing Programs and Communities
Friday, March 20, 12:00-1:30 PM
Knoxville Convention Center, Lecture Hall
Session Chair: Emmy Lingscheit, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA
This panel seeks printmaker-educators willing to speak about their experiences establishing, redesigning, or expanding printmaking programs, and about how their own educational backgrounds have influenced their approaches to this process. Discussion will focus on how mentor relationships and interconnectivity in the national printmaking sphere affect development of curriculum and facilities in university printmaking programs, but will touch on factors and issues affecting the development of all types of printmaking centers. As a facility-intensive medium, printmaking often requires an additional commitment and physical investment from its faculty, which contributes to a particular do-it-yourself culture among printmakers. Panelists are invited to share their firsthand anecdotes, mistakes, and innovations concerning the building of printmaking communities.
Presenter 1: Mark Bovey, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University, Nova Scotia, Canada
Paper Title: The Re-incarnation of NSCAD Printmaking
NSCAD’s printmaking program was originally defined by the minimalist conceptual history associated with the professional publishing Lithography Workshop and the editions that have been canonized by their inclusion in major collections. The program stayed essentially the same for 30 years, focusing primarily on technical achievement. So where is the educational program now in a time of hybrid practices and more emphasis on theoretical discourse? Over the past ten years the program has undergone many changes including a thorough overhaul of the facilities as well as a shift in philosophical direction. The changes have been both strategic and opportunistic, and necessary for enrollment to grow and the program to flourish again. This paper will reveal the ways in which the evolution was possible during financially difficult times. Drawing on experiences learned throughout my career I set out to reclaim the discourse by systematically altering the program over time.
Presenter 2: Susanna Crum and Rodolfo Salgado Jr., Kentucky School of Art, Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Paper Title: Establishing a Cooperative Studio
Too often, schools serve as both the starting and ending point for artists' work in printmaking. While pursuing a degree, artists discover vibrant, collaborative studio environments with historic pieces of equipment and advanced digital technology. In classes, they discover the thrill of trading and collecting prints. Upon graduation, students with a passion for printmaking face a challenge: how can they find the tools, resources, and fellow artists they need to expand their artistic practice? When Rodolfo Salgado Jr and I met at the University of Iowa, we discussed the myriad ways a cooperative printmaking studio can expand and enrich the lives of artistic producers and collectors in a community. After two years of research and travel, we will open Calliope Arts in Louisville, KY, which will create opportunities for community members to learn printmaking processes, rent access to equipment, participate in collaborative projects, and collect prints from national, regional, and local artists.
Presenter 3: Zach Stensen, Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar, Doha, Qatar
Paper Title: UNDER CONSTRUCTION: Building a Print Shop in Qatar
In less than a generation, the State of Qatar has experienced rapid infrastructural growth due to its vast hydrocarbon resources. Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar, along with a host of other branch universities, is part of the country’s larger initiative to create a knowledge-based economy through investment in research and education. The Painting + Printmaking Department at VCUQatar was created in 2010, and is currently the first and only fine arts major offered in the country’s history. Over the last four years the studios have been designed from the ground up, and empty classrooms have been converted into facilities that support a range of analog and digital print media. This presentation will share the challenges of setting up and managing a contemporary print studio in the Middle East, and the unique experience of teaching art in one of the fastest developing countries in the world.