Wed. October 12, 2016
Why do you take into consideration the change of landscape? What insights does it lend?
It is so intriguing to see the evolution of the land, because everything changes. Nothing stays the same; it is interesting to see how things like human activity affect the land.
Why do you think the secondary phenomena of the eruption have been studied so little?
Well, you work on the things that you can find; that’s the nature of archaeology. And we tend not to focus on the smaller stuff. For example, people tend to take more interest in the paintings and frescos than on the imprints or pottery that is found. However, it’s the sum total of the “smaller stuff” that sometimes creates the significant insights into what we know about the lives of those at Pompeii, Oplontis and Positano.
What are the roles of art historians at the excavation site?
Any kind of visual representation has a context. Much of what art historians do is make connections and interpretations, creating a narrative so that we can understand the purpose or function of what we have found. For example, the art historians worked on fragments of frescoes left in storage after the initial reconstruction of Villa A. By studying these fragments and putting them into the original perspective schemes they were able to recover the beautiful trompe l’oeil architectural decorations of two big rooms. These are exhibited in Leisure and Luxury in the Age of Nero: The Villas of Oplontis near Pompeii, currently at the Museum of the Rockies at Montana State University.
Did any ethical issues come up during the excavations?
This region of Italy has a long and rich history. For many in the region and in Italy, these excavations remind them that it was once a city; that once there was life, but it was suddenly stolen by a natural disaster. This changes the experience of seeing the casts of the human beings or the dog exhibited at Pompeii. The city acts as a living museum. It’s reasonable and proper to recognize and remember that they are remnants of lives lived and that they tell a story.
How are sciences, like geology, becoming an essential part of collaborative humanities?
Geology is fundamental to archaeology. There are problems with depth that must be considered, and geology becomes important when making considerations for the stability of buildings. You want to avoid knocking down or collapsing buildings. But there are also other considerations and insights to be made. We had paleobotanists look at the gardens at the villas, and their work showed that the gardens had been abandoned before the eruption. We have done residue analysis on 1300 lime jars that revealed many were actually later used to carry wine. Analysis of carbonized wood showed that they were growing very tall pines. Stone analysis revealed what quarries the building stones came from, which also signified the huge reach and wealth of Oplontis. Pigment analysis finds the composition of materials, so we can date objects. So science is fundamental in every part of archaeology, without it, we could not understand Oplontis as well as we do now.
Mon. October 10, 2016
In 2013, the first Hangzhou Triennial of Fiber Art attracted over 150 thousand visitors and artists from more than 16 countries. For the first time audiences in China had an opportunity to learn about modern fiber art. At the time of the Second Hangzhou Triennial the G20 Summit will take place. Running concurrently, these two international events will run in parallel. Two global visions converge together with the creative vitality of the art works on display.
The second Triennial has a distinctive theme, “Weaving & We”, a starting point for curators and artists.
“Weaving” is a special practice. It is embedded in narrative. It tells stories that combine a history of textile labor and production with human experience. It tells these stories with raw materials and advanced technology. Technology changes at a fast pace and so too does the perception of weavers around the world, as individuals, groups and regions.
The exhibition has four sections which represent the research of curators. The artists selected echo Weaving & We from a numbers of different positions and perspectives.
Sun. October 9, 2016
As a testament to his lifelong dedication to the fine arts, the Massachusetts College of Art is awarding Professor Emeritus Paul P. Hatgil (1950-1985) with the honor of Distinguished Alumnus. The ceremony will take place on November 4, 2016 at Massachusetts College of Art in Boston.
Fri. October 7, 2016
Type Hike, a collaborative design project organized by David Rygiol and Design lecturer James Louis Walker, will be publicly exhibited starting this December in Poler stores across the U.S. The project involves 60 designers and typographers, including University of Texas alumni Jolie Durand (B.F.A. in Design, 2016), Zachary Weiland (B.S. in Advertising, 2016) and Lauren Dickens (B.F.A. in Design, 2011).
Each designer has created a unique design for a park they love in celebration of the National Parks Service centennial this year. Exhibitions of the 60 works will begin in Laguna Beach, California and Portland, Oregon before appearing in other cities such as Charleston, Chicago, St. Louis, Louisville, and Austin during 2017.
To see more designs and read more about the project, visit typehike.com or follow along on instagram @typehike.
Home, Memory, and Future, a three-part exhibition features work from Studio Art professor Nicole Awai
Fri. October 7, 2016
Home, Memory, and Future is a three-part exhibition celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the Caribbean Cultural Center and African Diaspora Institute in New York. The exhibition will explore the notion of home in the age of gentrification, dislocation, migration, exile, belonging, health and unaffordable housing. This inaugural exhibition at the Center’s new location at 120 East 125TH Street between Lexington and Park Avenues is curated by Lowery Stokes Sims, Yasmin Ramirez, Marta Moreno Vega and Regina Bultrón Bengoa. Home, Memory, and Future will feature work from 20 artists of various mediums, including augmented reality.
Awai’s work will be featured in part two of the exhibition titled “Harlem and home in the Global Context” and installed on the second floor of the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute. From the exhibition website, “[This floor] will feature work by painters, sculptors and installation artist that demonstrates how the concept of ‘home’ represents a universal and universally experienced concept for artists of color from diverse origins. The selected work will demonstrate how memory can be relied upon to recreate, imagine and reconstruct cultural traditions in varied efforts to establish ‘home’ in distant environments.”
The exhibition will be on view from October 15 – March 2017.