Visiting Artist

The Department of Art was honored to host visiting artist John Armstrong this month.  John worked with Professor James Bailey and students to demonstrate techniques and discuss printmaking processes.  Here are some pictures of John’s visit:

Professor James Bailey and Visiting Artist John Armstrong stand beside the press John built in the 70’s.

Artist John Armstrong standing among the prints he produced during his week-long visit.

Professor James Bailey, John Armstrong and Print Graduate Student Stephanie Johnsen.

Exhibition Info:

Mary Ann Papanek-Miller, former Professor and Chair of The Department of Art at The University of Montana, and current Professor and Chair of the Department of Art Media and Design at DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois will be exhibiting new works at The Missoula Art Museum.  The exhibition titled,  ” A Snowman cares for our Memory of Water” will run from March 6 to June 14.  Mary Ann Papanek-Miller will give a gallery talk on March 6 during the opening reception from 5-8pm.   The work in this exhibition utilizes line and a variety of mixed media processes with a strong vocabulary of painting.  A deep spiritual attitude is revealed in this work as Papanek- Miller studies the philosophical nature of time and the conflict of popular culture clashing with a concern for the earth.

Papanek-Miller incorporates the technique of isolating an object, often a mass produced toy or phenomena, creating a drawing or other visual record, and subsequently creating compositions by arranging and layering those images. Through this layering, new meanings and associations emerge. There a dialogue begins between the viewers and the different, sometimes disparate symbols layered and juxtaposed.

Arguably because of television and, increasingly the computer screen, the audience has been conditioned to accept the moving image as a way of consuming visual imagery. The layering in Papanek-Miller’s works lead the viewer and encourage him or her not to think of the activities in an isolated sense but as a process and as an interrelated experience. Her process urges us not to just look, but to slow down and go beyond, to contemplate a deeper experience of seeing, and, recognize the lessons we know and can draw from art.

Through layering and exploring symbol interrelationships, Papanek-Miller incorporates the familiar in a ritual of re-examination and re-contextualizing. She makes use of a limited palette and values, and graphic lines are bounced off muted colors. The foundation she works upon is a surface that has been weathered and nature itself has left what she calls an “environmental imprint.”

Papanek-Miller incorporates reflections from childhood stories, songs, and rhymes which reveal a deep concern for the environment. Her extensive toy collection is the basis for her environmental concerns. She states, “I continue to be attracted to toys as social barometers and cultural souvenirs. I believe that toys are beautiful and magical objects and that they bridge our many cultures and age groups as ‘contemporary amulets’ and ‘time devices’ serving as truthful conceptual tools.”

Archie Bray Day:

The University of Montana Dept of Art Jim and Jane Dew Visiting Artist fund and the Starving Sculpture and Ceramics Students are pleased to host its annual Archie Bray Day on Tuesday, Mar 3 from 10am to 6pm in the Ceramics lab in the Art Annex.  Each year, three of the current resident artists from the Archie Bray Foundation in Helena are invited to demonstrate their skills in ceramic art for students and the general public.  Approximately 10 residents work and study at the Archie Bray Foundation in Helena and have been juried in from over 100 applicants from around the world.  This year the University of Montana will host Kevin Snipes, Renee Audette and Jeremy Hatch.  Demonstrations will take place from approximately 10am to 1pm, and 2-5pm.  Slide lectures of the artists work will be shown from 5-6pm.  Archie Bray Days are free and open to the public. For more information call Beth Lo 243-6476 or 243-5893.

About the Artists:

Kevin Snipes received his MFA from the University of Florida in 2003.  Creator of quirky vessels embellished with brightly colored cartoony figures, Snipes has been receiving accolades from galleries across the country.  Snipes has also been an artist in residence at the Cleveland Institute of the Arts and the Worcester Center for Crafts in Massachusetts.

Jeremy Hatch is a ceramicist and sculptor who holds a BFA from Emily Carr Institute and an MFA at the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University. He has attended residencies and exhibited his work throughout Canada and the United States. Jeremy currently employs a ceramic process of slip-casting porcelain to produce large unglazed sculptural installations. He has expanded his material investigations to incorporate rubber, plastic and fiberglass into his ceramic work. Hatch was the recipient of British Columbia’s 2005 Visual Arts Development Awards.

Renee Audette discovered her love of figurative ceramics as an art student at the University of Wyoming where she received her BFA in 2000.  She completed her MFA, in 2005, at the University of Florida where she studied under Nan Smith, Linda Arbuckle and Matt Long.  After graduating, Renee lived and worked in Gainesville FL as a studio artist and part-time professor at Santa Fe Community College. Renee exhibits her work both nationally and internationally and was featured as an emerging talent in the May 2007 edition of Ceramics Monthly magazine.  Her sculptures explore the ironic stereotypes of girlhood innocence and naiveté by creating a voyeuristic dream-world based on memory and fantasy, where everything is not as perfect as it first appears.

Alumni News:

Former Department of Art BFA student Brian Kakas was recently awarded the silver award at the 5th World Ceramic Biennale 2009 Korea in Incheon! Congratulations to Brian!  Here are some pictures of his work:

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Check back often for Art Department updates!