Student Work – Drawing II

Professor Steve Cope’s Drawing II student work featuring:
Rozana Almaddah, Ian Asaph, Shane Chapman, Angelica Christina, Francesca DeSapio, Matthew Erlandson, Kyndall Hawkins, Erin Kelly, Jessica Kerns, Zoe Malone, Regina Oliveri, Hunter Schmeusser, Alexa Sinatore, Andrea Warren, Anissa Wilson

Zoe Malone

Professor Steve Cope’s Drawing II course focuses on enhancing students’ drawing skills. The first half of the semester focuses on sizeable still life drawings. These drawings pay close attention to form, light and shadows, and values of light and dark. Shading within these still life drawings pays attention to the intricate folding of fabric, the features of sculpted heads and texture and shape of pottery vessels. For homework assignments, Professor Cope gives the students a word to interpret in any way that the student wants. For example, one word was “cast.” The drawings produced varied from a fisherman casting, to a cast at a closing of a show. The broad interpretations of the word demonstrate each student’s personality and interests.  Some other homework assignment words were: post, feat, multiple, turn, wearily and swanky.

Gabriella Youshock ’20
Gallery Exhibition Research Assistant


Angelica Christina


Erin Kelly  “Swanky”

 

Jessica Kerns

Within this illustration, a model shifts her head to the left to reveal scenery in the background. The dark and dense background suggests to the viewer that nighttime is swiftly approaching. This is illustrated by the light behind the figure. This drawing was done in pencil, blurring the lines between fiction and reality. This obscuring plays a crucial role in creating feelings of uncertainty, or uneasiness.
– Gabriella Youshock

Ben Schwab – “Getting Here From There”

11/9/17 Artist Talk – Ben Schwab

 
Everything Is Different, But Still The Same, Oil on canvas, 88 x 138 inches, 2017

Getting Here From There

            New York artist Ben Schwab grapples with the theme of “getting here from there” in his collection of cityscape paintings. In this gallery, viewers witness how Schwab’s work questions what he calls our “natural tendencies” as he tries to “make the unobservable, or unseen, more visible.” At first glance, each image appears to be bordering abstraction.  However, the negative space alongside minimal use of color compels the viewer to take a closer look at the details that reveal deteriorating cites such as Damascus and Aleppo.

            Getting Here From There is inspired by Schwab’s interest in video footage collected by drones. Schwab’s “honest sense of curiosity,” as he calls it, motivates him to incorporate images of decaying cities into large scale paintings. In his artistic process, Schwab manipulates and layers multiple screenshots through Photoshop to create one image. Further, the spaces that Schwab works with might appear to be equally familiar as they are unfamiliar to some viewers. Rather than presenting a single perspective in his paintings, Schwab forces viewers to step out of their comfort zones and look at spaces they most likely haven’t seen before. As a result, the nature of “getting here from there” ultimately encourages viewers to strengthen their ability to connect with a place when presented with an image depicting an unfamiliar space.

~ Kelly Smith ‘19
Gallery Exhibition Research Assistant

Transposition Of Immensity, Oil on canvas, 84 x 76 inches, 2016

 

 

Annual Alumni Exhibit – Kate Ambrose & Julia Newell

In this exhibition, alumni artists Kate Ambrose and Julia Newell prioritize the viewer’s emotional and sensory responses to their works. Both artists understand their works as vehicles of self-recognition, reflection, revelation, and remembrance.

In her exploration of abstract expressionism, Ambrose finds her ever-changing artistic approach calling forward the viewer’s subconscious. Attempting to tap into that unfiltered mindset, “evoking raw conversation,” Ambrose says, “is what [she] lives for.” Her work battles with spontaneity and intent, candidly coaxing us to self-examine with a childlike innocence.

Newell similarly places the viewer in control, offering works she says are “fuel[ed by] advocacy to help those who have suffered through mental illnesses.” Her organic forms express seemingly familiar narratives that invite viewers’ interaction. Newell understands painting, she says, as “simply a time to zone out and create.” Her works appear as moments to temporarily forget—or remember and reflect.

~ Nick Crouse, ‘19
Gallery Exhibition Research Assistant

“I’m in the Wrong Film” photography by Hans Gindlesberger

I’m in the Wrong Film is a consideration of our troubled relationship to the marginal places that exist in the national landscape. The title of the series is a colloquialism used to indicate a speaker’s disorientation in regard to physical surroundings that have taken on a disconcerting, fictitious quality. In this series of staged and performative photographs, the experience of individual dislocation the phrase describes is applied more broadly, in articulating the collective loss of identity that permeates the rural and post-industrial landscape of America.

Presented as a constellation of narrative fragments, each photograph manifests the shared psychology between a transient character and constructed environments suggestive of Middle America. The character, wandering with alternating senses of desire and reticent detachment amid his surroundings, is an extension of a place no longer able to sustain itself. The photographs present transitory moments, in which the agency of the character is called into question, arrested by the stillness of the photograph. His impotence and perpetual immobility mirror the circumstance of the small town, which, after being used politically, socially, and aesthetically in defining a national image and identity, is now marked by the stasis of economic decline. Whether by accepting and naturalizing their erasure or attempting to salvage viability through a nostalgic commodification of their past, these communities succumb to an estrangement from their own history and sense of themselves.

A corollary to this rupture can be found in the physical construction of the photographic tableau. The character’s performances are recorded in-studio and are later inserted into landscapes imagined out of multiple photographic fragments. Referencing the mechanics of the theater and silent film, wherein a décor foregrounds the actor’s performance, the composited backdrops provide a visual context for the performances while also establishing a physical and psychological separation. At times, these virtual stages reveal their artifice and begin to falter and collapse upon the character. This implicates not only the narrative content, but also the materiality of the photograph and fallibility of its construction as synchronous sources of the character’s sense of being “in the wrong film.”

The social narrative of the small town, the lack of agency in the character’s performance, and the faltering construction of the image compound upon one another in describing both the instinctive desire and the relative absurdity in attempting to recover a sense of belonging in a time of dislocation.

The Tobacco Project – Art & Social Change Lecture

Gallery Lecture
Thursday, September 28, 11am – 12pm.
Boland Hall Gallery, Saint Joseph’s University

Ryan Coffman, MPH, CHES, CTTS-M, Tobacco Policy and Control Program Manager for the Philadelphia Department of Public Health will come to Saint Joseph’s University to speak to students about “The Tobacco Project” and the Health Department’s initiatives to reduce tobacco addiction especially among Philadelphia youth.  He joins SJU art history professor, Dr. Emily Hage who will speak about art as a means for social change.

The lecture begins at 11am in Boland Hall.  Following the lecture, visitors can view the artwork in the gallery while enjoying a light lunch.  This event is free and open to the public.

“The Tobacco Project” on display in the Boland Hall gallery is a collaboration between Saint Joseph’s University, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Get Healthy Philly.

The tobacco used to create this art was illegally sold to undercover youth surveyors, who visited tobacco retailers and attempted to purchase tobacco.

The cigars, cigarettes, and “loosies” in these pieces were originally intended to recruit the next generation of smokers. We are using innovation and art as a tool for social change by repurposing products intended to cause harm and addiction. The art was created in Professor Ron Klein’s Art 147-Appropriated Art class by the following students:

Zachary Burns, Pablo Diaz, Danielle Dortic, Joseph Grevera, Alexis Hewish, Joshua Lascano, Sarah Mastrocola, Alana Paolella, Alejandro Seda, and  Michael Spinelli.

 

 

“Urban Fabric” by artist Heidi Nam

Inspired by natural rock formations, grid patterns, and the constant evolution of urbanity, Heidi Nam’s collage and multi-media works explore the crossroad between the organic and the metropolitan. Nam’s enamorment of urban development is influenced by both personal and artistic experience, and it is reflected in both her work and her artistic process.

On a 2011 trip to her childhood home in Korea, Nam found the small village of her memory replaced by new development and modernity. Although in many cases the new had completely replaced the old, in some instances, new development was simply layered over the small village’s history. This melding of what was and what could be, paired with her fascination with scape, pattern, and repetition, serves as the fuel on the fire for Nam’s artistic experiment.

To create these pieces, Nam deconstructs her own silkscreen and woodblock prints, drawings, photos, and paintings, and reconstructs the fragments to form new, unique urban landscapes. This construction of the new from the old symbolizes the evolution of urban space. Nam’s multi-faceted work is layered with experience, depth, and variation.

– Devon D’Andrea
Gallery Exhibition Research Assistant

“Silent Scream” – Eun-Kyung Suh

 Silent Scream
Silk organza, printed text, cotton thread
Dimension variable
Seven comfort women survivors’ testimonies were projected on the inner faces of silk organza. Each arch, consisting of truncated pyramid forms, witnesses each survivor’s painful and unbearable memory of the abuse they suffered as sex slaves during WWII.
 
 
 

We, Survivors

Silk organza, printed images
I investigated extreme Diaspora experience of Korean Comfort Women. During World War II, 200,000 young women were recruited and forced into sexual slavery in Japan’s military brothels in Asia. The abuse of comfort women has proved a painful and unbearable memory. It was 1990 when the first South Korean women lifted the veil of shame and requested a formal apology and compensation for the thousands of women affected by the Japanese government. Today only over 50 of the 239 women who publicly acknowledged their experiences are alive in Korea. The portraits of the 50 survivors and their testimonies are incorporated into silk organza boxes to express symbolic sympathy for their suffering. The portraits of the Comfort Women survivors (military sexual slavery by Japan) provided by the Korean Council for Women Drafted for Military Sexual Slavery by Japan.
 

“The Tobacco Project”

A collaboration between Saint Joseph’s University, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Get Healthy Philly.

Through our partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Art Department at St. Joseph’s University, and Professor Ron Klein’s Appropriated Art course, we are transforming these products – initially intended for harm and deadly addiction – into works of art. Professor Klein’s students learn to manipulate everyday objects, using multiples and the technique of repetition to create something entirely new from something ordinary. In the past, they have worked with discarded books, q-tips, objects found in abundance at the dollar store, and now they are experimenting with tobacco products. They re-imagined these products, weaving them together in a visually compelling way, and created a series of wall-hangings that will draw in onlookers and surprise them as they come closer.

Art has the capacity to transform how we look at the world, how we interpret our environment, how we connect with others, and can be a powerful platform for spreading social justice messages. These pieces will provide a unique opportunity to address this life and death issue in our city, and an invaluable experience to join together the arts and public health.

 

Junior Art Majors

 

Participants:  Michaul Williams, Julian Smith, C. Sofia Naab, Hannah Kerkering, Eliana Actor-Engel

Michaul Williams – photography

Hannah Kerkering – photography

Julian Smith – ceramics

C. Sofia Naab – mosaics and photography

Eliana Actor-Engel – ceramics

Senior Art Thesis Exhibition

 

The senior art majors spent the past four years honing their artistic skills and finding ways to use their art to express their ideas formally to the world.  This exhibition is a culmination of their hard work, soul-searching, and artistic development during their time at Saint Joseph’s University.
Jesse Buxton, Krista Jaworski, Katherine Lord and Colin Mallee are exhibiting work that is varied not only in medium, but also in style and ideology.  These young artists deftly meld influences from personal struggles, life experiences, artistic research, and the work of a wide range of ancient to contemporary artists.

K A T H E R I N E     L O R D
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My work is a reflection of myself and experiences I have had throughout life. I take materials I find to be satisfying and work with them to create pieces. I enjoy the process of taking something that is "nothing" and making it in to something.  Typically I reflect on whatever thought has caught my attention, and transfer the thought to expression. This causes my work to be mostly abstract with a common theme of figurative undertones. The process of reflection and then translation in to creating is a very therapeutic process for me. In a way, you could say art is my own personal therapy. I take what I see, experience, and hear about and process it through creating and making work.

Common subjects of my work are things that have impacted my life severely, good and bad. I find strength in my family, and although a large portion of my work reflects traumatic experiences I have had in my life, there is always an undertone of strength. That strength being to overcome tragedy and find beauty in it. I find beauty in pain. There is a distinct moment when a person chooses how they will be effected by something that has hurt them. That moment is when one chooses to accept what had happened and how it will impact their lives. I have chosen to find beauty in pain in everything I have ever experienced. This could be from a lack of choice. You have to deal with what you are handed, and this must be how I do that. I try to share this beauty with others around me so they can find strength and solace in it as well. As people, we are comforted by another understanding us, it is in a moment of relation that we are able to feel cared for and find strength. I want to share my strength and experience with as many people as possible and I do that in my work. That doesn't mean I think my work will have that effect on everyone. I am successful if I am able to effect one person in a positive way. To make one person feel that they are not alone in their pain. My art is the way I choose to do this, and is the way I am capable of doing this.

J E S S E     B U X T O N
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My strong interest in history informs my work in ceramics. The shards left behind act as physical evidence of ancient cultures.  From pots left behind, we can learn how people used them for utilitarian purposes and also track aesthetic trends. I am interested in integrating features from historical vessels into a more contemporary context. My work is an expression of my experiences and taps into the material culture that has been created by those before me.

My contemporary influences include Carl Cunningham-Cole, Svend Bayer, and Ben Carter in his podcast Tales of a Red Clay Rambler, which introduced me to the close-knit clay community. As far as material culture from the antiquity, Greek and Roman pots have particularly held my interest.  These pots have also impacted the forms that I create to a great extent.  Specifically, the ancient Pithos, or storage jars associated with Greece from the Bronze and Iron ages that held food and store liquids are an exceptional display of technical achievement and necessary function.  These massive forms make the audience wonder what is contained within and marvel at the sheer volume of the jars.

My process for making includes creating composite vessels, or vessels made up of many building blocks.  This is done by using the wheel as a tool to create inventive features for traditional parts of a vessel.  I am also experimenting with the Onggi method of throwing coils, allowing me to make larger work and presenting an intense technical challenge. These methods allow one to play with proportions and experiment with ancient Greek proportionate ideals.  I aim to bring my own creative take on traditional notions of beauty and proportions. I strive to master the technical ability and blend historical references with my own artistic voice.

C O L I N    M A L L E E
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I found out I was good at art in my freshman year of high school. At the time I was very religious and I remember recalling a bible passage that went something along the lines of, “Whatever you are, strive to be the best at it.” Nowadays, I look at my art from a slightly different kind of view. Striving to be the best I can be, my work is now more personal. By that, I mean to say, my art is an inside joke with myself.

I like comic books both of the western and eastern variety. Much of the inspiration for my work and style comes from things like cartoons and anime.  Stories of heroes drawn with thick outlines that seem to pop right off the page have always interested me. When making my art I like to incorporate many of the techniques involved in making comics and graphic novels such as line weight variation, strong, confident mark making, and dynamic angles.

Comic book artists and graphic novelists like Jim Lee, Alan Moore, and Frank Miller are some of my biggest inspirations.  I admire their unique takes on the use of line and line weight variation as well as their employment of various shading techniques.  I’ve also drawn some inspiration from more traditional artists like Roy Lichtenstein and Kehinde Wiley.  Their particular use of vivid colors and attention to the human figure is what inspires me most about their work. The inspiration to add three dimensional elements to some of my pieces came both from a curiosity in expanding on what I could do on a canvas as well as a desire to blend my love for painting and drawing.

I’m not a political person and neither is my work. I make what I know and what I know best is what makes me happy. As an actor, especially in an ensemble performance, the most important rule is if you don’t look like you are enjoying yourself the audience won’t either. In this way, I hope my work shows how much care and delight goes into each piece. I’ll keep the punch line of my inside joke between me and my art, but I hope those who view my art will still smile along with us.

K R I S T A    J A W O R S K I
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Social media is admittedly a very large part of our lives. Our virtual worlds and reality are one and the same, yet the way people behave online and in real life are very different. I am fascinated by the way people have developed their lives alongside social media, and what it means in our society today. In everyone’s bubble of virtual media people are obsessed with creating a better image of themselves online and gaining arbitrary instant gratification. We’re often bombarded with this media, and sometimes peek into the real lives’ excessive thoughts and anxiety behind posting these forgetful images. It doesn’t matter.

In this show, I aim to bring these ideas to life with multiplicity of the most recognizable image: our own faces and digital icons. I’ve personified characteristics of social media and those who use it in my imagery.

I’ve mainly used a combination of acrylic paint, paint markers, and acetate layering. I wanted to replicate the feeling of my sharpie sketches, and transfer it to a different medium, so using the paint makers on canvas accomplished that.