Department of Art and Art History News

Mesoamerica Center Announces New Maymester Program in Guatemala and Belize

Wed. October 5, 2016

student among ruins in Latin America
Casa Herrera is an extension of The University of Texas at Austin’s Mesoamerica Center in the UNESCO World Heritage city of Antigua in Guatemala. This upcoming May, it will become the headquarters for the new Latin America Bridging Cultures program focused on the study of Maya and colonial heritage in Guatemala and Belize. The program offers a unique chance at the kind of experiential learning abroad that is gained during a semester-long program in only four weeks from May 31 – June 27, 2016.

“We are excited to launch this new program as a Maymester because we want to give opportunities to students in COFA to experience the dynamic history, archaeology and visual cultures of Central America,” writes Dr. Astrid Runggaldier, assistant director of the Mesoamerica Center at The University of Texas at Austin and one half of the leadership team for Bridging Cultures in Latin America alongside Dr. David Stuart. “We realized with previous programs during the academic semesters that for students in the arts – especially students who need access to studio space — it is difficult to go abroad for extended periods of time. We hope that this Maymester, open to all majors across the university, will also give our COFA students the chance to learn about and be inspired by the vibrant cultures of contemporary and ancient Latin America."

The Bridging Cultures in Latin America: Maya and Colonial Heritage program coursework relies on hands-on observation and experience throughout the dynamic countries of Guatemala and Belize. As such, students will travel extensively throughout Guatemala and Belize to experience archaeological sites, museums, villages, cooperative businesses, natural reserves and protected ecosystems, and will be matched with local family stays for their time in Antigua.

The Bridging Cultures in Latin America team is committed to reducing financial barriers to the study of Central American culture and history. Financial support for one student applicant in the amount of $1,500 to defray the cost of the program will be awarded. 

Katherine Bash Debuts New Work at Museum of the Southwest

Tue. October 4, 2016

TAGS
three photographs from Bash

The Light of Consciousness: Part I, by Katherine E. Bash (M.F.A. in Design, 2004) is a multi-layered installation of photography, and poetry drawn from three years of investigatory travel into different landscapes—both interior and exterior—with a focus on ephemeral phenomena. The exhibition includes 57 unique photographs, a publication Companion Guide and a recording of the accompanying Polylogue (a multi-sourced poetic form). Public programs included a one-time collaborative performance with violinist John Madura, concertmaster of the Midland Symphony Orchestra, on August 20, 2016.

According to co-curator Pujan Gandhi, Bash's installation reminds the viewer that “objective cognitions are also subjective, and that our mind’s eye is constantly revealing, concealing, and again revealing our observed reality.” Gandhi explains that “[e]ach photograph captures a sensory semi-stasis, one that the artist then acts upon with a ‘chance reading’ of a selected text. Image, language, and performance coalesce into a cohesive whole. Her aim: to generate an alternate space to discover ‘new meanings, and new poetries.’”

Katherine E. Bash lives and works in London, UK and Midland, TX. She earned her B.A. in Biology and an M.F.A. in Design at The University of Texas at Austin. In 1998 Bash received a Fulbright Fellowship to conduct a visual anthropology of indigenous rainforest cultures of Ecuador. Bash was an awarded a Ph.D. from the Bartlett School of Architecture at the University College London in 2011 for her dissertation: Spatial Poetics: Heuristics for Experimental Poisesis. Her most recent exhibition, De Speculum Oraculum, was held at the Till Richter Museum in Buggenhagen Germany.

Julia Guernsey Published in Latin American Antiquity

Mon. October 3, 2016

Society for American Archaelegy journal
 

Art History Professor Dr. Julia Guernsey's paper, "Water, Maize, Salt, and Canoes: Iconography, Economics, and Commodities at Late Preclassic Izapa" was published in the October 2016 journal Latin American Antiquity from the Society for American Archaeology

Michael Smith's Latest Show Opens September 17, 2016 at Dan Gunn in Berlin

Sat. September 17, 2016

Image stll from "Timeline" exhibition
 

Transmedia professor Michael Smith exhibits "Timeline" at Dann Gunn in Berlin. The exhibition will be on view from Sept 17 - Nov 12, 2016. It was recently mentioned in Artforum's "Must See: Berlin" art guide listings. 

Ezra Masch to exhibit at Mattress Factory

Fri. September 9, 2016

Ezra Masch, "Mind the Gap", 2016
Ezra Masch, "Mind the Gap", 2016

 

After a summer as one of the Mattress Factory’s artists-in-residence, Ezra Masch (M.F.A. Studio Art, 2012) will exhibit all new installation work on September 30, 2016. The Mattress Factory is renowned as a leader in site-specific, contemporary art and continues its tradition of unparalleled support of its resident artists.

Masch will exhibit a multi-channel video installation comprised of footage shot in the NYC subway system. Masch has synchronized and arranged cell phone footage collected from passersby in Pittsburgh who were asked to shoot video with their own cell phones simultaneously out of different windows of a moving train. Together they create an unfolded view of the tunnels, platforms and people underground.

“When I moved to NYC last year, I began to document my surroundings by making drawings and video sketches,” writes Masch. “In part, the shift from sculpture to drawing/video was out of necessity (I couldn't afford a studio space in New York, and I had to find a way to sustain a creative practice in this challenging environment), but the sketches have turned into a catalyst for exploring new territory in my work. I'm excited about using video in a sculptural way.”

Twelve videos in all, six on each side, the exhibit is intended to be an immersive audio-visual experience.