Wake and Temper: Rhonda Vanover
Curated by Mara Baldwin
February 1–March 5, 2017
Just as a photogram captures the shadow of an object once present and now removed, Rhonda Vanover’s images grasp at the mortal tensions between contact and loss, apparition and aberration, object and spectre. Her photographic and darkroom processes slow time to lay bare single moments for unsentimental scrutiny, tracing the iridescent shimmer of a dark feather, the gristle of an old bone found in the woods, or the smudge of dust on the edge of a fractured glass negative. The resulting images feel at once intimate, sparse, and strange—a tangled synesthetic experience where touch and smell and taste and sound become visible. Looking at Vanover’s images one becomes conscious and appreciative of the impermanence of everything—of bones, of glass, and even of photographic paper itself.
Rhonda Vanover is an assistant professor of photography at Ithaca College. She received her Master of Fine Arts in Visual Studies from Pacific Northwest College of Art (Portland), and her undergraduate degree from the Pratt Institute (Brooklyn).
Last Standing: Linn Underhill
Curated by Mara Baldwin, Text by Diane McPherson
February 1–March 5, 2017
Linn Underhill began working on "Last Standing" after her older sister and last sibling died of lung cancer. In the midst of mourning, she woke one night with the impulse to make art out of her grief--to go to her studio, take off her clothes, and cry. Using a remote-controlled digital camera set on continuous exposure, she stood naked in front of the camera, crying. In later sequences she stands from a crouch, laughs, sings, jumps into the air, splits wood, and twirls a blanket around her like a bullfighter's cape. Each sequence, between four and six panels long, becomes an astonishing narrative about discovering the power still inherent in the aging female body.
Underhill, most recently an Associate Professor in the Department of Art and Art History at Colgate University, has been teaching, exhibiting her work, and curating photo exhibitions since 1972. She earned a Master of Fine Arts in Photographic Studies from SUNY Buffalo and Visual Studies Workshop, and an undergraduate degree in Photography from Alfred University. Between 1985 and 1988, she taught Introduction to Photography at Ithaca College.
Made to Move: African Nomadic Design
Curated by Assistant Professor Risham Majeed, Geneva Bielenberg (’17), Isabella Ionni (‘17), Vin Manta (’16), Lisa Peck (’17), and Nicholas Posloski (’18)
March 22–April 21, 2017
Women have built tents throughout the world for millennia. Nomadic women invented tensile structures, one of the three archetypal methods of spanning space, thousands of years before tensile structures were implemented in Europe and America in the 19th century. Our exhibition highlights this originality, rewriting a portion of architectural history by recognizing the contribution of women’s work to engineering and design. The solutions to desert life that these tents represent have endured for a long time; their unchanged qualities are a testament to how well problems have been solved. The tent is not only a home but an adaptable tool; each of its parts can be replaced and repaired from materials sourced in the desert or from the herd, making it endlessly versatile and dependable.
The exhibition presents the ingenuity of Rendille (Kenya) and Tuareg (Mali, Niger) women, two nomadic cultures that build entirely different kinds of tents: Tuareg tents are made from leather and are tensile, whereas Rendille tents are constructed from bent wood and use a self-supporting armature. Made to Move showcases objects that demonstrate nomadic women’s creativity in mastering one of the harshest environments in the world from the architectural elements of the tents themselves to sumptuously ornate bags and vessels that facilitate their frequent movement. Loan objects will be presented as emblematic of a larger nomadic ethos centered on modularity, flexibility, efficiency, and sustainability, values that are instructive for contemporary approaches to design.
The exhibition was conceived collaboratively by Professor Majeed and her students in an exhibition seminar, taught at Ithaca College in the Fall of 2016.
The exhibition presents loans form the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University and a private collection.
Bright Speck: Desirée Holman, Anna Huff, Michelle Marie Murphy
Curated by Mara Baldwin
March 22–April 21, 2017
In 1972 the astronauts aboard the Apollo 17 likened the experience of looking back at the earth to seeing a blue marble hanging in the void. The power of this vision is the awe-inspiring realization of both the complex fragility of our planet and our alienation from and connectedness to a vast, expanding universe. The artists in Bright Speck conflate the origins of life, knowledge, and the cosmos, each with uniquely textured responses. Michelle Murphy’s photographs and performances overlay the corporeal processes of pregnancy and birth with astronomical theory, drawing from her career as a photographer working for NASA and personal convictions for social reform. Desirée Holman’s long-term projects and culminating films present fantastical worlds of hybridity, where character play investigates and proposes social solutions our own world. Her culminating films, Reborn (2009), Heterotopias (2011), and Sophont (2015), present a narrative arc that builds towards an aesthetic iconography of harmonic convergence, and cosmic unity. Anna Huff’s work traces the intersections of the body, objects, and rituals by setting up improvised performances that encourage permeation of liminal space. Her primordial toddler-designed costumes and props included in Bright Speck will be activated by a performance featuring Ithaca College students on the evening of her artist talk on April 4. Utilizing critical optimism and creative inquiry, Murphy, Holman, and Huff travel between our world and the stars, catalyzing new possibilities of seeing, thinking, and wondering.
Corpus: 2017 Senior Student Show
Featuring senior projects by Geneva Bielenberg ‘17 & Cat Tompkins ‘17
April 27-May 21, 2017
Corpus: 2017 Senior Show is an exhibition of artwork, photography, and experimental media from senior students graduating in May or December 2017. All eligible students are encouraged to apply! Submissions of work will be selected for the exhibition by faculty juries from each artistic discipline the week following Spring Break. Students selected for the show will work with gallery staff to prepare and install their work in the weeks prior to the exhibition opening. All submissions must be made to faculty juries in the Department of Art or the Cinema & Photography Program by Monday, March 20, 2017 at noon. Submission forms may be picked up from the front desk of the Handwerker Gallery, the Park School photography classroom, or the administrative office of the Department of Art.
Note: The gallery will have amended hours of operation between Monday, May 8-Saturday, May 20 for Finals Week and Senior Week.