art department Faculty Update
"Between Tongue and Teeth": A Major Museum Exhibition
In a bravura style that weaves together realism and abstraction, Angela Fraleigh, associate professor of art, creates striking works that question and reimagine women’s roles in art history, literature, and contemporary media. This fall, Fraleigh’s work appears in the exhibition, “Between Tongue and Teeth,” at the Everson Museum in Syracuse, New York.
Since the mid-2000s, Fraleigh has explored power dynamics related to gender, sexuality, and class through depictions of mythical and historical female figures. Her heroines, set within abstract, dream-like settings, frequently hail from centuries-old European paintings or other male-dominated sources where they have been relegated to the margins or shadows. Fraleigh liberates these peripheral characters and re-casts them as daring protagonists within newly constructed narratives, thereby restoring their autonomy, agency, and power.
Fraleigh’s environments couple the seen with the unseen: swirling abstract spaces combine with bold voids of color; thick pours of paint or lustrous metallic leafing obscure fleshy forms; turned heads and cropped faces reject the viewer’s gaze. The ambiguity of these richly painted worlds and the secretive nature of the women who inhabit them, create an unmistakable sense of allure; however, the resistance of Fraleigh’s female protagonists to submission, helplessness, or passive visual consumption, challenges the roles women have traditionally occupied within artistic space.
“Between Tongue and Teeth,” on display through December 31, 2016, features more than 30 pieces, bringing together more than a decade of work and including several new paintings and sculptures inspired by women activists, artists, and designers.
You can read more about Fraleigh, her work, and the exhibition in an article by arts writer Priscilla Frank in the November 28 edition of The Huffington Post.
Working with an Art Idol
Assistant Professor of Art Camille Murphy has recently worked as the assistant designer on At War with War: An Illustrated Timeline of 5,000 Years of Conquests, Invasions, and Terrorist Attacks, a highly anticipated illustrated book on war by the legendary designer and illustrator, Seymour Chwast. The book is a work in progress that includes Chwast’s black-and-white pen-and-ink drawings and woodcuts along with passages from renowned works such as The Art of War by Sun Tzu and The Complaint of Peace by Desiderius Erasmus.
“Having the opportunity to work with an American Institute of Graphic Arts medalist on such a highly reviewed book has been a great honor,” says Murphy, who has worked as a designer in Chwast's Studio for four years. In addition to the upcoming book, Murphy has assisted Chwast on many of his recent projects for clients including Playwrights Horizons, Sonos, and Print magazine.
Murphy brings Chwast to Payne Gallery in January 2017. She is curating his show, “Poster Power.”
Curating 50 Years of an Artist’s Work
Diane Radycki, associate professor of art, director of the Payne Gallery, and wife of the late artist and art critic Sidney Tilllim, is featured in “What to Do with All the Stuff? A Conversation between Mrs. Sidney Tillim and the Joan Mitchell Foundation,” Art Journal (forthcoming, Spring 2017). Here, Radycki shares the backstory.
When the College Art Association invited me to contribute to an issue of the Art Journal dedicated to artists’ estates, the opportunity seemed fated. I had just finished inventorying the extensive papers of my late husband, the artist and critic Sidney Tillim, about the American art scene in the latter half of the 20th century. A painter known in the 1970s for reviving the history painting genre (including a work depicting Count Zinzendorf and the founding of Bethlehem), Sid supported himself by reviewing art exhibitions for Arts Magazine and Artforum (he was one of the stable of contributing editors hired by Artforum’s first editor-in-chief, Philip Leider) and by teaching art at Bennington College. Sid maintained fifty years of journals and correspondence; painting, exhibition, and teaching records; publications, manuscripts, and notebooks; an annotated personal library; and catalogs of book collections he made that were acquired by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (on book-illustration processes) and Arizona State University at Tempe (on 19th-century American Art). All this goes to the New York Public Library.
When, fifteen years ago, I first discussed Sid’s literary estate with the New York Public Library, I imagined I could pack up everything in a couple of summers between academic semesters. (The library’s experienced director of manuscripts thought differently.) But when our mortgage papers fell out of one of his books as I was packing them, I knew I would have to go through everything—every book, every one of his letters—before I shipped off anything. Indeed, last summer I found correspondence with the poet Charles Olson, from the early 1950s, interleafed in some late studio notebooks. This year sees the conclusion of my grand project, and this forthcoming issue of Art Journal the announcement—to all those in the field, both art historians and artists, who teach in colleges and university—of the impending availability of this cache of documents on modern American art.
Using Yoga to Release Creativity
Associate Professor of Art Kristin Baxter is adept in the art of yoga and this past June earned her yoga teacher certification. Her expertise laid the foundation for her fall 2016 First Year Writing Seminar: Yoga and Writing. By reducing stress and fear and enhancing focus, yoga may help us tap our imaginations and creativity and improve our writing skills. So, each week, for one of their three meetings, the class would do yoga in Payne Art Gallery. Here, Baxter’s students share their experience:
“Yoga had a really profound impact on managing my stress and anxiety. I am a nursing major and constantly trying to maintain a busy schedule. I had never taken a yoga class previously, and I was surprised by how much I began to look forward to each session. I do think it helped my writing because it gave me a sense of freedom to express myself. The field notebook, in which we wrote our thoughts about our lives and the class, was a great tool for this self-expression. Yoga helped me find my creative voice again and made me feel that what I had to say was important.”–Shelby Weigel ’20
“One of the best parts was being able to get out of a classroom and onto a yoga mat. Moving around in the morning better prepared me for the rest of my day. Before every yoga class, Dr. Baxter would tell us to set an ‘intention,’ which helped us reflect more about the world around us. Additionally, she would give us a quote that she found relevant to whatever we were reading or a pose that we were going to learn that day. Overall, I suspect this will go down as the most interesting class I will ever take at Moravian.”—Krista Kunkle ’20
“Having a place that was calming and relaxing throughout my first semester of college was such a privilege. I learned how to control stress and reconnect my mind and body through breathing techniques and meditation. Yoga improved my concentration and enhanced my creativity, which made writing essays much easier than it ever had been. I cannot thank Dr. Baxter enough for her help throughout this semester and for making my transition to college easier than expected.”--Alli Warner-Senape ’20
As for Baxter’s take on the benefits of yoga: “In my experience and training, yoga doesn’t target a specific aspect of our lives. Rather it helps to calm the incessant thoughts that fill our minds—the constant flow of anxieties about the past and future,” says Baxter, “and that, I believe, invariably benefits my writing, teaching, and art.”
A New Exhibition in the New Year
Moravian College visiting artist Natessa Amin is looking forward to the opening of her exhibit “Dancing on the Water Tank” on January 20, 2017, at the Philip and Muriel Berman Museum of Art at Ursinus College in Collegeville, Pennsylvania. This is the first exhibition organized in conjunction with Ursinus’ new minor in Museum Studies and is co-curated by 10 Ursinus students enrolled in the course “Curatrial Practices” along with the instructors of the course, museum curator Ginny Kollak and Deborah Barkun, chair of the department of art and art history and director of museum studies. The opening reception will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. on January 20, and the exhibit will run through June 4, 2017. Below is Amin's painting "A Void is a Place."