Department of Art

High School Students selected for 2024 Student Art Showcase

Congratulations to those selected for the Showcase Exhibition!

 

  • Arianna Alagna –  CT Homeschool
  • Ellie Arcario  –  Newtown High School
  • Nina Archiere –  Danbury High School
  • Sarah Cartagena –  Newtown High School
  • Matheus casareggio –  Danbury High School
  • Schmarlee Charles –  Danbury High School
  • Miriam Da Costa –  Danbury High School
  • Prince Davenport –  Highville Charter School
    Photography Category - 1st Place
  • Madelyn DeGennaro –  Bethel High School
  • Ethan Denning –  Danbury High School
  • Bryana Diaz –  Newtown High School
    Drawing/Illustration Category - 3rd Place
  • Alexandra DiLorenzo –  Newtown High School
    Drawing/Illustration Category - 2nd Place
  • Mary Dunn –  Wethersfield High School
  • Nicole Etchie –  Westover School
    Photography Category - 3rd Place
  • Natalia Gonzales –  Ansonia High School
  • Jill Guilfoyle –  St. Joseph High School
  • Amanda Gujski –  St. Joseph High School
  • Fayrose Hussain –  St. Joseph High School
  • Lucy Jackson –  Education Without Walls
  • Emily Kokoszka –  Enfield High School
    3D Small Works Category - 1st Place & 3rd Place
  • Julia Lacasse –  St. Joseph High School
  • Ava Larsen –  Newtown High School
  • Lisa Liu –  St. Joseph High School
  • Daira Lopez –  Danbury High School
  • Emily Lu –  William H. Hall High School
  • Nora Magel –  Wethersfield High School
  • Puma Marx –  Newtown High School
  • Alexis Mastrangelo –  Enfield High School
    Painting Category - 2nd Place
  • Amber Mattioli –  Ace (Alternative Center for Excellence)
  • Sydney Melluzzo –  Wethersfield High School
  • Bailey Munroe-Ritter – Private CT High School
  • Zoey Orellana –  Ansonia High School
  • Jamie Xavier Ortiz –  Wethersfield High School
  • Madeline Paine –  Wethersfield High School
    Painting Category - 1st Place
  • Lucas Parham –  Danbury High School
  • Carolena Parker –  Wethersfield High School
  • Anushka Patel – Private CT High School
  • Grey Pomeroy –  Shepaug Valley High School
    Overall Winner - 2nd Place
  • Abby Poreda –  Enfield High School
    Painting Category - 3rd Place
  • Amaia Potashner –  William H. Hall High School
    Overall Winner - 1st Place
  • Nathaly Quinde –  Danbury High School
  • Samuel Ramirez –  Danbury High School
  • Tatiana Rivera –  St. Joseph High School
    Drawing/Illustration Category - 1st Place
  • Mariah Rodriguez –  Wethersfield High School
  • Bianca Sanchez –  St. Joseph High School
  • Kayla Smith –  Wethersfield High School
  • Marianna Sousa –  Danbury High School
    Overall Winner - 3rd Place
  • Logan Steisel –  Danbury High School
  • Selena Stevens –  Danbury High School
  • River Trotter –  Ridgefield High School
  • Niki Tsilfides –  St. Joseph High School
  • Ashley Velsmid –  St. Joseph High School
  • Emma Vincent –  Westover School
    Photography Category - 2nd Place
  • Kayla Ward –  Wethersfield High School
  • Gabriel Zagaja –  Wethersfield High School
  • Emzie Zalaznick –  Bethel High School
    3D Small Works Category - 2nd Place

 

WCSU 2024 STUDENT ART SHOWCASE
May 18 – June 7, 2024

Gallery hours are Tues–Fri, 12:00–4:00 pm, and Sat–Sun, 1:00–4:00


OPENING RECEPTION & AWARDS CEREMONY
Saturday, May 18, 2-4 pm

Western CT State University and the Cultural Alliance of Western CT presents the inaugural Student Art Showcase. High School Students in grades 9-12 were invited to submit artwork entries for this juried exhibition at The Gallery at the Visual and Performing Arts Center.

Seventy-seven artworks were selected for the exhibition from the student entries of eighteen High Schools throughout Connecticut. The top selected artists were featured and presented with special recognition and awards at the opening reception on May 18th. In selecting artwork for the exhibit, the jury was looking for overall artistic excellence. In determining the presence of artistic excellence, the following were considered heavily: creativity and originality, quality of artistic composition and overall design, interpretation and clarity of the theme to the viewer, the overall impression of the artwork.

WCSU celebrates the students contributions as a way to encourage the development of young artists as they prepare to investigate the arts in a college setting. The inaugural event hosted by WCSU seeks to provide a forum for young artists to be included in a gallery exhibition as a means to inspire continued and renewed efforts for creation of art. The arts cannot be overstated for their benefit to each generation of creatives who seek expression and engagement with a proven crucial communicating exercise that sparks numerous healthy community and professional connections. WCSU welcomes these young artists who aspire to creative heights.

 

For more information read the Press Release at WCSU in the News.


2024 MFA Thesis Exhibition

The Master of Fine Arts is the terminal degree for practicing, professional artists. The MFA Thesis Exhibition is the capstone experience of the graduate program, demonstrating a personal direction and mastery in the work of the artists. Six graduate students will present their thesis work this year: Amy Caco, Lucy Gallagher, Taylor Green, Andrew Mark, William J Parrott III, and Denise Rosa.

Amy Caco

Master of Fine Arts, Illustration
Bachelor of Arts, Illustration | WCSU

Amy Caco is an Albanian-American illustrator born in Waterbury, CT. Working in a variety of mediums, such as colored pencil or digital illustration, she continually explores new materials and methods. Her work is delicate and vulnerable, often influenced by fantasy and folklore. Most recently, she is incorporating poetry into some of her pieces. “The work should speak for itself,” Amy has said, “but sometimes there are just some things that I want to say.” She values beauty and decorative elements in illustration,  while still conveying deeper meanings. In her artist statement, she writes, “I want to experience the world through someone else’s eyes, the same way I want someone to look at my art and understand me.”

Amy earned a BA degree in Illustration from WCSU and has since worked as a Graduate Teaching Assistant in the art department. Her work has been published and exhibited in Danbury and Ridgefield, CT, and she has also done freelance work for several private clients.  In 2022 and 2023, she was commissioned to paint two large murals for the Great Hollow Nature Preserve in New Fairfield, CT.

 

Lucy Gallagher

Master of Fine Arts, Painting
Bachelor of Arts, Studio Art | WCSU

Lucy Gallagher is an artist from Waterbury, CT. She received her BA in Studio Art from WCSU. Her artistic practices include paintings, works on paper, and sculpture. They are a direct reflection of her life, both past and present. During her current studies, Lucy has worked as a Graduate Teaching Assistant in several art courses, including painting and printmaking. In her own words, she “is inspired by the creative energy that flows through each of us and the importance of nurturing that flame.”

Lucy’s work has been shown in several galleries in CT, including Alix Gallery in Waterbury and Art in Common Gallery in Ridgefield. Her work was also included in “Human Connection”, a group exhibition curated at the Danbury Fair Mall in 2023. In her artist statement, she writes, “I have this insatiable desire to figure out my identity through creating. My work focuses on moments from my past that remain in my internal narrative, invade my dreams, and constantly remind me that I am human. I embrace the inspiration that comes from my observed world and from within. In response, I create my fantastical truth through the use of color, light, and line.”

Taylor Green

Master of Fine Arts, Painting
Bachelor of Arts, Anthropology/Sociology | WCSU

Taylor Green, from Waterbury and Danbury, CT, received a BA in Anthropology and Sociology from WCSU, with a minor in Studio Art. She is a visual anthropologist who attempts to not only observe the world around her, but to understand it through creation. Her artwork stems from the human experience of wonder and exploration, as well as research and advocacy. Taylor’s paintings are strongly influenced by her background in social science and social justice; not only painting about humanitarian crises, but also the rest of the human experience. She is also a curator who firmly believes that art can bring people together to spark important conversations.

Taylor’s paintings have been shown at Art in Common Gallery, Ridgefield, CT. During the past year, she has been a Graduate Assistant in The Gallery at the Visual & Performing Arts Center. In summer 2023, she was invited by the Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut to guest curate a group exhibition at the Danbury Fair Mall, which she entitled “Human Connection.”

Andrew Mark

Master of Fine Arts, Illustration
Bachelor of Science, Digital Media | Marist College

Andrew Mark, an illustrator and designer based in Hudson Valley, New York,   graduated from Marist College with a BS degree in Digital Media. He typically works in digital illustration, as well as acrylic painting, and pen and ink. His work consists of bright colors and bold outlines reminiscent of animation and comic books, with a focus on character design. In his artist statement, he writes, “I am a passionate storyteller, building entire worlds from scratch and breathing life into characters I create. I enjoy introducing fun and zany characters that are familiar, yet out of this world. My subjects are influenced by folklore and mythology, as well as graffiti art. I also draw much of my inspiration from life experience, particularly within my heritage of being a fourth-generation Chinese-American, and of being bilingual and bicultural.”

Andrew grew up going to anime and comic book conventions through his family’s import toy business, a big influence on his art studies and art career. Andrew is the founder of Kalun Studios, a lifestyle brand dedicated to producing unique, happy, and cute designs. He has also created work for a variety of clients, including colleges, dining services, local businesses, and festivals.

William John Parrott III

Master of Fine Arts, Interdisciplinary Visual Art
Bachelor of Arts, Photography | WCSU

William John Parrott III is an interdisciplinary artist who utilizes a multitude of processes that draw inspiration from his background in photography, painting, printmaking, spray painting, sculpture, and collage. He was born in Waterbury and resides in Naugatuck, CT. He earned his B.A. in Photography from WCSU. In his artist statement, he writes, “Process is what really drives me in the creation of my art. Using traditional tools in unorthodox and unusual ways to achieve specific marks, indentations, brush strokes, and more, is what helps me set my work apart from the traditional. Getting deeply in touch with the processes I use allows me to enter the state of flow of creation where my hands work on their own, but the touch is still mine. While my physical touch is apparent in my bodies of work, they hold the capability to speak about themselves on the walls. This is my method, and where I draw my energy to create.”

William has worked as a Graduate Teaching Assistant in the photography department at WCSU, as well as a Graduate Assistant in The Gallery at the Visual & Performing Arts Center. His work has been exhibited in several local galleries, including Art In Common Gallery in Ridgefield.

Denise Rosa

Master of Fine Arts, Painting
Bachelor of Arts, Studio Art | WCSU

Denise Rosa of Danbury, CT, is a painter who received her BA degree in Studio Art from WCSU. Her current work is primarily portraiture, some self-portraits, and others of those dear to her. Her artist statement reveals much about her painting: “I was born in Brazil and proudly became a U.S. citizen in 2004. My life experience has taught me the importance of balancing reality with a spirit of hope. I am inspired by stories of people who have crossed my life. My landscapes and figurative oil paintings translate memories and recreate those narratives. My work is instinctual, allowing my inner child to express feelings. Light, color, and texture are important elements. There is always a message to be revealed through the viewer’s interpretation. I believe in the power of diversity and creative viewpoints, pushing me to be flexible as an artist and human being.”

Denise’s work has been in several local exhibitions, including a mural project in 2022 at the Danbury Fair Mall, where her painting is now in its permanent collection. In summer of 2022, she was awarded a scholarship to study at the Rome Art Program in Italy. And, upcoming in March - April 2024 is a solo exhibition of her paintings at the Danbury Public Library.


Alumni Spotlight: Phoebe Hart- BA 2019

Phoebe Hart Wins 2024 Sundance Film Festival Award

WCSU Department of Art Alumna, PHOEBE JANE HART, BA STUDIO ART: PAINTING, 2019 Wins Short Film Jury Award for Animation at the prestigious 2024 Sundance Film Festival!

Phoebe is an artist, filmmaker, fabricator & stop-motion animator based in Los Angeles. Working in an array of mediums her work has an emphasis on dark humor and surreal imagery. She graduated from WCSU with a BA in Studio Art in 2019 and recently received her MFA in experimental animation from California Institute of the Arts. Her most recent short BUG DINER won the Short Film Jury Award for Animation at  Sundance 2024 and will be screening at SXSW 2024. Her previous films have screened at Slamdance Film Festival, Thomas Edison Film Festival and more. 

Read WCSU in the News interview with Phoebe to learn more.

Also check out an interview with  Animation Magazine
FOLLOW@phoebe.jane.hart

 

Meet Phoebe and learn more about her film and stop-motion process in the video below


MFA Guest Artist Lecture Series: Spring 2024

All Visiting Artist Lectures will take place at 11:00 a.m. in Room 144
Visual & Performing Arts Center
Westside Campus: 43 Lake Avenue Extension, Danbury, CT

 

Gregory Manchess
ILLUSTRATOR
Tues, Feb 6, 2024

Gregory Manchess is an award-winning illustrator whose work has appeared on the covers and feature stories of National Geographic Magazine, Time, Atlantic Monthly, and The Smithsonian. He has also had numerous commissions from the US Postal Service, recently a set of Christmas stamps in 2023.

Manchess’ projects and commissions are varied and vast in scope. In 2011, the National Geographic Society sent him on an expedition to illustrate the adventures of the first discovery of an actual pirate ship; this led to the traveling exhibition, “Real Pirates: The Untold Story of The Whydah, from Slave Ship to Pirate Ship.” In 2017, his first ‘widescreen novel,’ which he wrote and illustrated, Above the Timberline, was released. Thirty of the 120+ paintings from the book were recently featured in an exhibition at the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, MA. His work is also highlighted in the Abraham Lincoln Memorial Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois, with a large portrait of Lincoln and seven major paintings of key moments from Lincoln’s life.

Manchess exhibits frequently at the Society of Illustrators in NYC, and in 1999, he was presented with their highest honor, the Hamilton King Award. He is included in Walt Reed’s edition of The Illustrator in America, 1860-2000, and currently lectures at universities and colleges nationwide.

Seth Becker
PAINTER
Tues, Feb 20, 2024

Seth Becker is a painter who lives and works in Wappingers Falls, NY. He is also a librarian at the Newburgh Free Library. Born in New York City, he received a BFA in Art History from Marymount Manhattan College, a MFA in painting from the New York Studio School, and a Master of Library Science from Queens College, CUNY.

Becker’s work has been in solo exhibitions at numerous galleries, including recent shows at Pamela Salisbury Gallery in Hudson, NY, and at Castle Gallery in Los Angeles, CA. On February 1, 2024, a solo exhibit opens at Venus over Manhattan gallery in NYC. His work has also been shown in group exhibitions in the U.S. and abroad, at LDGR, NYC; Sears-Peyton Gallery, NYC; Bowery Gallery, NYC; Sibyl Gallery, New Orleans; Susquehanna Art Museum in Harrisburg, PA, and Cob Gallery in London.

Becker has been awarded artist residencies at Dumfries House Residency in Ayrshire, Scotland, and Four Pillars Residency in Mt. Gretna, PA. In 2019 he co-curated “Reading Painting” with Maya Strauss, an exhibition of painting and artist’s books at Treasure Town in Brooklyn. He has been a visiting artist at the University of New Hampshire, and from 2019 to 2022, he was an adjunct professor of painting at the New York Studio School.

Melinda Beck
ILLUSTRATOR
Tues, March 5, 2024

Melinda Beck is an illustrator, animator, and graphic designer who received a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design. She has worked for numerous clients, such as 2K Games; The New York Public Library; Nickelodeon; Nike; The New Yorker; The New York Times; Time Magazine; Random House; the Southern Poverty Law Center; Target; and the U.S. Postal Service. Her artwork has received many honors, including two Emmy nominations, as well as silver and gold medals from the Society of Illustrators. She has also received awards from the Art Directors Club, Society of Publication Designers, and Broadcast Design. Additionally, a series of her political illustrations was acquired by the Library of Congress for their permanent collection.

Melinda’s recent projects include a series of stamps for the U.S. Postal Service commemorating the 50th anniversary of the passage of TITLE IX; an eighty-foot mural for Mural Arts Philadelphia; a series of murals for the teen center of the newly renovated Mid-Manhattan New York Public Library at 42nd Street & 5th Avenue; and the children’s book, We Are Shapes, which she wrote and illustrated.

Melinda lives and works in NYC, where she currently teaches at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan. She has also taught at Parsons School of Design and has been a visiting artist and lecturer at many art institutions here and abroad.

Eric Aho
PAINTER
Wed, March 27, 2024

Eric Aho is a painter who lives and works in Saxtons River, VT. He studied at the Central Saint Martins School of Art and Design in London and received a BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston. In 1989, he participated in the first exchange of scholars in over thirty years between the U.S. and Cuba. He completed his graduate work at the Lahti Art Institute in Finland on a Fulbright Fellowship in 1991-92 and an American-Scandinavian Foundation grant in 1993.

Aho’s works have been exhibited widely in the U.S. and abroad. Currently represented by DC Moore Gallery in NYC, he has had 7 solo exhibitions there from 2009 to 2022. He has also had several museum shows, including the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, the Hood Museum of Art, and Portland Art Museum. In 2016, the New Britain Museum of American Art presented “Eric Aho: An Unfinished Point in a Vast Surrounding,” which comprised over 50 paintings of the French landscape exploring the path of his father’s experience in WW II.

In 2009, Aho was elected to the National Academy Museum. He is a recipient of numerous grants and awards, including a Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant; the John Koch Award for Painting from the National Academy; and an Artist Residency at the Weir Farm National Historical Park. His works are in the collections of The Metropolitan Museum of Art; The New York Public Library; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; New Britain Museum of American Art; Denver Art Museum; and Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, among others.

Judy Glantzman
INTERDISCIPLINARY ARTIST
Wed, April 24, 2024

Judy Glantzman is an interdisciplinary artist and a graduate of Rhode Island School of Design. Exhibiting since 1983, she first received critical attention for early shows in the East Village at Civilian Warfare and Gracie Mansion, then later with Blum Helman and Hirschl & Adler Modern. Since 2006, she has been represented by the Betty Cuningham Gallery. She has taught at RISD, New York Studio School, MICA, and Purchase College. In 2018, she was Artist in Residence at Dartmouth College.

Glantzman’s work has been shown and reviewed throughout the U.S. and internationally in Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, and Canada. She was honored by The Dactyl Foundation in NYC with a thirty-year retrospective in 2009. Her 2019 solo show at Betty Cuningham Gallery was a forty-year retrospective, which inspired a public interview with art historian Jennifer Samet, later published in Hyperallergic.

Glantzman’s numerous awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship; two NY Foundation for the Arts grants; a Pollock Krasner Foundation grant; Anonymous Was a Woman Foundation grant; and a NY Artist Space Exhibition grant. In 2018, she was elected to the National Academy of Design. Her works are in many private and public collections, including the Whitney Museum of American Art; Phoenix Art Museum; Tampa Museum of Art; Weatherspoon Art Museum; and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.


MFA Guest Artist Lecture Series: Fall 2023

All Visiting Artist Lectures will take place at 11:00 a.m. in Room 144
Visual & Performing Arts Center
Westside Campus: 43 Lake Avenue Extension, Danbury, CT

 

Glenn Goldberg
Monday, September 18, 2023

Glenn Goldberg is a painter and musician who lives and works in NYC. Born in the Bronx, he studied at the New York Studio School and earned his BA and MFA degrees from Queens College, CUNY. He has taught at Cooper Union, New York Studio School, and Queens College, where he is currently MFA Chair of Graduate Studio Art. He has also been a panelist and visiting artist for MFA painting programs at Yale, Columbia, Boston University, American University, Hunter College, and others. A recipient of many awards, he has received grants from the Edward Albee Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Joan Mitchell Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Glenn’s work has been reviewed in The New York Times, LA Times, New Yorker, and Chicago Tribune, among others. In an interview in Hyperallergic, Jennifer Samet described Goldberg’s painting to be “about this meeting point of the ordinary and the other, regularity and refinement. . . He likes the hobbyist nature of tinkering with objects – but his work, and ideas, are ethereal.”

Goldberg’s work has been shown extensively throughout the U.S., with solo exhibits in NYC at Willard Gallery, Betty Cuningham Gallery, Jason McCoy Gallery, and others. In 2018, he and Amber Scoon held a two-person, collaborative exhibition at the WCSU gallery, which coincided with the publication of their book, “?”, by Atropos Press. His works are in private and museum collections, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Guggenheim Museum, Brooklyn Museum, National Gallery of Art, High Museum, and Museum of Contemporary Art, LA.

Will Hutnick
Wednesday, October 11, 2023

Will Hutnick is an artist and curator based in Wassaic, NY. He received his MFA from Pratt Institute in 2011 and his BA from Providence College in 2007. He is a 2021 NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellow in Painting, and a recipient of grants from the Berkshire Taconic Foundation in 2017 and Foundation for Contemporary Arts in 2016.

Will’s work has been in solo exhibitions at Pamela Salisbury Gallery, Elijah Wheat Showroom, Standard Space, Providence College Galleries, One River School, The Java Project, and St. Thomas Aquinas College. Group exhibitions include: Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art, Hollis Taggart, Heaven Gallery, and Geary Contemporary.

Will has been awarded numerous artist-in-residencies, including  Yaddo, Elizabeth Murray Artist Residency, Vermont Studio Center, Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts and Sciences, and others. He has also been a curator-in-residence at Benaco Arte and at Trestle Projects, and has curated exhibitions at SPRING/BREAK Art Show, Pratt Institute, and Wassaic Project, among others.

From 2015 - 2020, Hutnick was one of the Co-Directors of Ortega y Gasset Projects, an artist-run curatorial collective and exhibition space in Brooklyn. He is currently the Director of Artistic Programming at the Wassaic Project, a nonprofit organization that uses art and art education to foster positive social change.

Magge Gagliardi
Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Magge Gagliardi is an award-winning illustrator, designer, and commercial artist from Connecticut. She has a BFA in Illustration from Paier College of Art and a MFA in Illustration from the University of Hartford. She is an instructor of Digital Illustration at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT. She is also a committee member for the Change in the Air Foundation Festival in New Haven.

Magge’s work has been in many publications, including Yankee Brew News, 3x3 Magazine, Collective Arts Brewing 1st - 4th Edition Zines, Connecticut Magazine, Hartford Magazine, New Haven Living Magazine, The Sacramento News Review, Ink Magazine, The Hartford Courant, The New Haven Advocate, The New London Day, and Tarnished Magazine.

Magge’s client list of breweries across the U.S. includes Austin Street Brewery, Portland, ME; Elm City Social, New Haven, CT; Housatonic River Brewing, New Milford, CT; and Fifty Fifty Brewing Company, Truckee, CA, among others.

Magge’s work was recognized in 2021 by USA Today’s Top 10 Beer Labels. She is the recipient of many awards, recently from Creative Quarterly 53, 54 & 55; 3x3 Magazine Annual No.15 & 16; Connecticut Art Directors Awards Gold and Silver; and Society of Illustrators, Los Angeles, Illustration West 56 & 58.

Hangama Amiri
Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Hangama Amiri is an Afghan-Canadian artist who lives in New Haven, CT, where she earned her MFA from Yale University in 2020. She received her BFA from NSCAD University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and was a Canadian Fulbright and Post-Graduate Fellow at Yale’s School of Art and Sciences in 2015-2016.

Hangama combines painting and printmaking with textiles, sewing together stories based on memories of her homeland. “I’m pinning and sewing my identity”, she recently said. In 1996, when she was seven years old, she and her family fled Kabul. Moving through numerous countries over several years, they immigrated to Canada in 2005 when Hangama was a teenager. Her works examine notions of home; how gender, social norms, and geopolitical conflicts impact the daily lives of women in Afghanistan and the diaspora.

Amiri’s 2023 exhibitions include: “A Homage to Home” at the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Ridgefield, CT (reviewed in the New York Times), and “Thinking Historically in the Present” at Sharjah Biennial 15, United Arab Emirates. Since 2020, her work has been shown nationally and internationally, in solo exhibits in Denver, NYC, Toronto, London, and Rome. In 2024, her work will be exhibited at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, a traveling show from the Aldrich with a published catalog


2023 WCSU Art Alumni Exhibition

IMPORTANT DATES

Entry Deadline: Mon, Sept 4, 11:59 pm

Drop Off Dates: Sept 11–15
10:00–3:00 (or by appointment)

Exhibition Dates: October 5 – November 12
Opening Reception: Thurs, Oct 5, 6–8 pm

Pick Up Dates: Nov 13–17
10:00–3:00 (or by appointment)

CALL TO WCSU ART ALUMNI

The Department of Art at WCSU would like to invite all WCSU Art Alumni to participate in our 2023 WCSU Art Alumni Exhibition in the Gallery at the Visual & Performing Arts Center. This exhibition will kick off the 2023-2024 academic year, and commemorate the University's 120th year, by showcasing the talented artists who have graduated from the Bachelors & Masters of Fine Arts in Visual Arts programs at WCSU.

 

ENTRY DETAILS

Each alum may submit up to two works of art. Artworks should be no larger than 48 inches in any direction. All two-dimensional work should be ready to hang. (Work on paper can be installed with magnets. Framed works must be wired.) Sculptural works (freestanding, pedestal, wall, or suspended) are subject to gallery weight limitations. Video/multimedia or any work requiring assembly or specific installation procedure must be approved prior to submission by contacting the Department of Art at robeaul@wcsu.edu.Artwork images must be in JPG, PNG, or PDF format and labeled as follows: LastName_TitleofWork.jpg. (Please abbreviate long titles.) Image files should be sized at a min of 6” at the longest side and 144 ppi, but no larger than 10 MB/each.

Artwork submissions will be selected by a jury of Department of Art Faculty. Not all work will be selected for inclusion in the exhibition (depending on the number and size of the entries submitted). Artwork that is misrepresented or unsuitable for presentation will be refused/returned.

Artwork substitutions are not allowed. Work on display may not be removed prior to the close of the exhibition. WCSU reserves the right to photograph accepted artwork for publicity purposes.

Questions? Contact the Department of Art at robeaul@wcsu.edu


Student Art Showcase

IMPORTANT DATES:

9/1/23- 2/29/24: Submission Dates and Online Registration Deadline

3/24: Email Notifications Sent

4/27/24, 12-2pm: Dropoff at WCSU

5/4/24, 9am-2pm: In-Person Judging

5/18/24, 2pm-4pm: Art Opening

6/7/24: Art Exhibit Closing

6/8/24, 12-2pm: Pick Up Art

How to be featured among the most creative high school students in the state of Connecticut.

The theme is “Our Story”. We hope to engage students from different backgrounds and highlight a collection of unique experiences through the lens of art. We encourage students to express their unique identity through their work. The exhibit will showcase young creative talent and promote a broader conversation about community. Overall, the exhibit will reveal a representation of many voices and contributions of students through artistic excellence.

Rules

  • WCSU is responsible for work only while they are on the premise of the SVPA. CAWCT and WCSU reserve the right to photographic reproduction of the works in the exhibition for publicity and promotional purposes. WCSU and CAWCT do not discriminate with regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, or national origin.
  • No AI-generated Art
  • ORIGINALITY POLICY: We kindly remind all participants that originality is a fundamental requirement for all submissions to the Student Art Showcase. Your work should be a product of your own creative ideas and not a mere copy of someone else’s work. By entering your work, you confirm that you are the rightful creator and that it has not been plagiarized from any other source, whether it be an individual, business, school, or organization. Any work found to infringe upon someone’s intellectual property rights will be automatically disqualified. It is your responsibility, not the Cultural Alliance nor WCSU to obtain any necessary permissions or releases from individuals or for any locations or properties depicted in your submission.

Recognitions

By category – Works will be selected for 1st, 2nd, 3rd place
Overall – Works across all mediums will be selected for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place

Eligibility

  • Open to students in grades 9-12 attending public high school and home school in Connecticut.
  • See list of accepted categories.
  • All works must be original and completed within the last year. All works must be available through the entire run of the show. Do not submit works for the jury that might be sold before or shown elsewhere during the WCSU STUDENT ART SHOWCASE show time frame.

Categories

Drawing and Illustration

Drawings include renderings made by an instrument on a surface and include realistic or abstract imagery. Illustrations are works that graphically depict a concept. Pencil, charcoal, pastel, crayon, scratchboard, marker, etc.

  • No AI-generated art.
  • Drawings copied from published photographs, the internet or existing works should not be submitted and will be disqualified.
  • Animated .gif files will not be accepted.


3D Small works

  • Wire, Metal, Wood, Plaster accepted.
  • Handcrafted ceramics and hand-made clay or porcelain (no molds or greenware).
  • Unfired ceramics and oil-based clay works will not be accepted.


Painting

Art created by applying pigment to a 2D surface. Oil, acrylic, gouache, watercolor, ink, or spray paint applied on canvas, board, paper, or other flat surfaces.  

  • No AI-generated art.
  • Paintings copied from published photographs, the internet, or existing works should not be submitted and will be disqualified.


Photography

Analog or digital cameras. Black and white, color, photograms or other experimental photos. Each work submitted to the photography category should be a distinct image that presents a unique artistic vision.  

  • Editing software is acceptable to use for minor touch-ups and image correction in a manner that replicates traditional darkroom techniques (cropping, dodging, burning, adjusting brightness, contrast, color balance, etc.).
  • No AI-generated art.
  • Works that are digitally collaged, cloned, layered, merged, distorted, or heavily manipulated with computer software will not be accepted.

 

Size Limitations

  • Two-dimensional works, when displayed, cannot exceed 60” in height or width, including frame.
  • Three-dimensional works cannot exceed 36″ in height or width.

 

For more information e-mail us at: Robeaul@wcsu.edu

 

Submission Guidelines

  • All entries are submitted online only beginning Sept 1, 2023
  • Parent email and contact information is required to complete the application.
  • Each student is allowed one submission and up to three (3) art entries.
  • Each work must be represented by only one image (no detail views or duplicates).

Students must be available to attend the opening reception for the Student Art Showcase.

Accepted Works

Works must be delivered on April 27, 2024, to the School of Visual and Performing Arts.
If alternate arrangements need to be made, please contact the Department of Art at: (203) 837-8403 or Robeaul@wcsu.edu.


Breathing Space 2023

WCSU Poets & Artists Collaboration

During the Spring 2023 semester, WCSU poets collaborated with art students to create Breathing Space Broadside Series, which is a collection of poems by 10 student poets and one faculty member on beautiful posters illustrated and designed by WCSU student artists and designers on display around both campuses. You also can view all 11 broadsides in flipbook format by clicking the image to the left.


2023 MFA Thesis Exhibition

The Master of Fine Arts is the terminal degree for practicing, professional artists. The MFA Thesis Exhibition is the capstone experience of the graduate program, demonstrating a personal direction and mastery in the work of the artists. Graduate candidates presenting their thesis work in the 2023 MFA Thesis Exhibition are: Dan Baker, Marcus Escribano, Lilah Heyman, and Aimee Jette.

Dan Baker

Master of Fine Arts, Interdisciplinary Visual Art
Bachelor of Arts, Photography | WCSU


A resident of Danbury, CT, Dan is an interdisciplinary artist who works in multiple practices, including photography, printmaking, painting, drawing, and collage. In 2021, he earned a BA in Photography from WCSU, where he is currently pursuing an MFA in Interdisciplinary Visual Art. As a Graduate Teaching Assistant at WCSU, he has worked in several advanced photography courses.

In his artist statement, Dan writes, “The culmination of two years cannot be easily summed up into one show. This is an attempt to show my best within this time. This work shows the ups and downs of everything that I have faced within my education. . . Mixing my background in photography, I attempt to show the emotion that I felt to create these works. I mix the mediums that I use to show what I want to express. The work in this series does not have a continuous meaning, just as my experience.”

Dan’s work was exhibited at the Brookfield Craft Center in 2021 and at WCSU in “Covering Blue Note (1 & 2)”, collaborative shows with the art and music departments in 2019. His short film, entitled “Perfect Lovers,” was shown on The Marty Heiser Show and The Chris Pante Show, Danbury, Bethel and Ridgefield Television. Upcoming in May 2023, he will have a solo exhibition of mixed media works at Art in Common Gallery, Ridgefield.

Email: dbak7003@gmail.com
Website: danbaker.myportfolio.com
Instagram: @danbakerart

Lilah Heyman

Master of Fine Arts, Painting
Bachelor of Fine Arts, Painting | Fairfield University

Lilah, who lives in Bridgeport, CT, is a painter, drawer, printmaker, and embroiderer, currently completing her MFA in Painting at WCSU. She earned her BFA in Studio Arts from Fairfield University, where she received the CAS Arts & Sciences Award for Distinguished Work in Visual and Expressive Arts. As a Graduate Teaching Assistant at WCSU, Lilah has worked in Drawing I, Painting III, and Printmaking classes. She also worked with Fairfield University Art Museum and contributed to the creation of a coloring book based on the museum’s permanent collection.

Lilah creates from direct observation, focused on intimacy in one’s private life. She is interested in documenting a daily routine, discovering occurrences of pattern and repetition. In her artist statement, she writes, “I paint playfully, using color as light, and I pay attention to how light changes through various scenes. I enjoy using bright, bold colors to capture a sense of vitality. I paint still lives and interior scenes that focus on the rituals and beauty found in daily life. Time connects to my paintings, showing the way that time can stand still for an instant or how separate moments can blur together as one.”

In 2022, Lilah’s work was in a group exhibition at Bruce S. Kershner Gallery, Fairfield, New Beginnings… After the Pause, where she was honored with a People’s Choice Award. Her upcoming exhibits include a three-person show at Bruce S. Kershner Gallery from June to August 2023, and a solo show at Art in Common Gallery in October 2023.

Email: lgheyman@gmail.com
Website: http://www.lilahheymanart.com.
Instagram: @Lilah.Heyman.Art

Marcus Escribano | M’esco

Master of Fine Arts, Interdisciplinary Visual Art
Bachelor of Arts, Photography | WCSU

 

Marcus is a resident of Danbury, CT, pursuing his MFA in Interdisciplinary Visual Art at WCSU. He earned his BA in Photography from WCSU in 2019 and received the Department of Art’s Excellence in Photography Award. He also studied abroad at the Rome Art Program in the summer of 2018 and was invited to return in 2022 as a visiting artist and painting instructor. Marcus has also taught art classes at Harambee Youth Center in Danbury. As a Graduate Teaching Assistant at WCSU, he has worked with art students in Two-Dimensional Design.

In his artist statement, Marcus writes, “Inspired by my ignorance, driven by my curiosity, I am a multimedia artist using tools to further my language. I paint, photograph, sculpt, write, anything. I am an Afro-Latino born in the United States, where my main source of inspiration comes from Taino cultures and European art during the Renaissance. I am not one, but many languages.”

Since 2017, Marcus’ work has been in gallery and online exhibitions in the U.S., as well as Italy, Greece, and Hungary. In 2022, he was represented by NYC gallery Artifact at Miami Art Basel. In an upcoming group show in South Korea, one of his paintings has been selected for the permanent collection of the Yukyung Art Museum. His work is also in the collection of the Danbury Fair Mall and has been published in British Vogue Gallery and Vanity Fair.

Email: mescophoto@gmail.com
Website: www.highbrowblog.com
Instagram: @mesco_photo

Aimee Jette

Master of Fine Arts, Interdisciplinary Visual Art
Master of Arts, Creative Arts Therapy Counseling | Hofstra University

Aimee is a resident of Ridgefield, CT, completing her MFA in Interdisciplinary Visual Art at WCSU. She received an MA in Creative Arts Therapy Counseling from Hofstra University in 2019 and a BA from Albertus Magnus College.

Since 2002, Aimee’s work has been shown in solo and group exhibitions in CT, NY, and PA. She was awarded a Gullkistan Artist in Residency in Iceland, where her work was also exhibited. In 2016, Aimee founded Art in Common, Inc., a non-profit charitable organization that connects communities by promoting creativity and compassion through the expressive arts. Art in Common Gallery, located at 602 Ridgebury Road in Ridgefield, CT, had its grand opening earlier this year and offers art classes, workshops, and gallery openings.

In her artist statement, Aimee writes, “What excites me about painting is capturing the emotional landscape of a place, whether internal or external. A landscape becomes a residence to mark contrary ideas or truths. Our memories of objects and events exist in the topography of our psyche. What is placed in the foreground and pushed back depends on the emotional intensity and chemical processes that dictate the event. I am fascinated by how these artifacts are stored. What does it mean to access this? . . . Ultimately, the external and internal landscapes personify the layers of our consciousness, which I confront and expose through art.”

Email: aimee@artincommon.org
Website: aimeejetteartist.com
Instagram: @aimeejetteartist

100@100 Off-the-Wall Art Exhibition and Fundraiser

Saturday, February 25, 2023, 3–6 pm

Snow Date: Sat, March 4, 2023, 3 – 6 p.m

“100@100” is an exciting evening of art, music, food, drinks — and anticipation.

This fun and exciting fundraiser will support the Gallery Exhibitions Program in The Gallery at the Visual and Performing Arts Center on WCSU's Westside campus, located at 43 Lake Ave. Extension in Danbury. The artwork will be on view prior to the event during regular gallery hours, where guests can preview the 100 works of art by 100 artists, that will be claimed at the "100@100 Off-the Wall Fundraiser” event on February 25th from 3 to 6 p.m.

Professional local and regional artists, including WCSU Department of Art faculty and alumni, have generously donated all 100 works of art that will be on display and included in the Off-the-Wall Fundraiser. The exhibition will open to preview, Thursday, Feb 9 through Saturday, Feb 25 during regular gallery hours: Tues-Fri 12-4 pm, Sat-Sun 1-4 pm.

Tickets are available (and selling fast) at http://wcsuvpac.eventbrite.com


Catherine Haggarty

MFA Visiting Artist Lecture

Wed, April 26, 2023

VPA 144, 11:00 am

Catherine Haggarty is an artist based in Brooklyn, New York. She earned her MFA from Mason Gross, Rutgers University, in 2011. An adjunct professor at  School of Visual Arts, she has also taught painting and drawing at FIT, Hofstra University, and Rutgers University. Additionally, she is the Executive Director and co-founder of the NYC Crit Club.

Haggarty’s paintings and curatorial work have been reviewed and featured in The New York Times, The Observer, Bomb Magazine, Hyperallergic, Two Coats of Paint, Brooklyn Magazine, and Sound and Vision Podcast, among others. Her recent solo & two person shows include: Untitled Miami (2022), Lorin Gallery (2022), Geary Contemporary, NYC (2022), Massey Klein Gallery, NYC (2020), Bloomsburg University, PA (2018), and Look and Listen in Marseille, France (2016). Her work has been in group exhibitions throughout the U.S., as well as in Berlin and Montreal. A recipient of several residencies in the US and France, she was awarded grants from Vermont Studio Center and Mana Contemporary, NJ.

As a visiting artist and lecturer, Catherine has worked with many MFA programs including: UAlbany, Rutgers, MICA, UCONN, University of Oregon, BU, Hunter, Purchase, and Brooklyn College. In 2018, she was the Anderson Endowed Lecturer at Penn State University.

https://www.catherinehaggarty.com


Amber Scoon

MFA Faculty Artist Talk

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

VPA 144, 12:30 p.m.

Amber Scoon makes art, books, and events. Assistant Professor of Art and Borgia Gallery Director at Elms College in Chicopee, MA, she also teaches Graduate Studies in Art History at WCSU. She is the John Berger Fellow at the European Graduate School, where she received her Ph.D. in Philosophy, Art, and Critical Thought. She received her MFA from American University’s two-year program in Italy and her Bachelor of Science from New York University.

During the pandemic, Amber studied Sustainable Cultural Heritage at American University in Rome. On a project, “Revive the Spirit of Mosul,” she worked with the International Center for the Study of Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property in Rome, Italy.

Amber Scoon and artist Glenn Goldberg collaborate under the name Snow Drift. They received a 2022-2023 Faculty Fellowship through Social Practice CUNY in Queens, NY. Amber was the Goetemann Distinguished Artist at the Rocky Neck Artist Colony in Gloucester, MA, in 2022, where she also lectured at the Cape Ann Museum. In the summer of 2023, she will be a Visiting Artist Lecturer at the Mount Gretna School of Art in Pennsylvania.

https://amberscoon.com/home.html


Jenny Lynn McNutt

MFA Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

VPA 144, 11:00 a.m.

Jenny Lynn McNutt is a multimedia artist living in Brooklyn and upstate NY. Her sculpture, painting, and performance work have been shown in the U.S. and in Europe, Asia, and Africa. She is the recipient of many residencies abroad, including Africa, Netherlands, Spain, India, and China, where time spent in cultures of storytelling and dance informs her work.

In 1994 Jenny Lynn was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to study/work in West and Central Africa. She received an Eastman Foundation Grant for her documentary work in West Africa, with sojourns in Ivory Coast and Cameroon.

In fall 2018 and summer 2019, she was a guest artist at Taoxichuan International Artists Studio in China, where her work is now in the permanent collection.

Other awards include a New York Foundation for the Arts Fiscal Sponsorship, a Rothman Grant, a William Hillman Foundation Grant, and the Mercedes Matter/ Ambassador Middendorf Award (NY Studio School). She was also awarded U.S.  residencies at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, the Harwood Museum in New Mexico, Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, MA, and the Watershed Center for Ceramics in Maine. Jenny Lynn received her MFA from Yale School of Art and is currently teaching at New York Studio School.

http://www.jennylynnmcnutt.com


Danny Schwartz

MFA Visiting Artist Lecture

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

VPA 144, 11:00 a.m.

Danny Schwartz is a fantasy illustrator and character designer living in Brooklyn, New York. His work has appeared in newspapers, magazines, books, games, television shows, and galleries across the U.S. for over a decade.

Recent clients of Danny’s include: Wizards of the Coast (Magic: The Gathering and Dungeons and Dragons), Wyrmwood Gaming, Viacom/CBS (Late Nite Cartoons), Orbit Books (The Witcher), and Thousand Ant/Unity Engine, among many others. His work has appeared in Gallery Nucleus's LA and Portland, Oregon locations. He is also a regular contributor to WOWxWOW and Every Day Original, both online galleries selling original artworks for collectors worldwide.

Danny received his MFA in Illustration from Hartford Art School and his BFA from Syracuse University, with additional studies at Parson’s School of Design and the Art Student’s League. As a Visiting Associate Professor, he has taught courses in drawing and illustration, as well as professional practices, at Syracuse University, Hartford Art School, and Montclair State University.

http://www.dannyschwartz.com

 

 


Chie Fueki

MFA Visiting Artist Lecture

Thursday, February 9, 2023

VPA 144, 11:00 a.m.

Chie Fueki lives and works in Beacon, NY. Born in Yokohama, Japan, and raised in São Paulo, Brazil, she earned her MFA at Yale School of Art and her BFA at Ringling College of Art and Design. In 2022, she was a recipient of a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, and in 2021, an inaugural recipient of the Joan Mitchell Fellowship. She also received two Purchase Prizes and the Rosenthal Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Chie’s work is represented by Shoshana Wayne Gallery in Los Angeles, where a solo exhibit opens in March 2023, and by DC Moore Gallery in NYC, which held a solo show in 2022. Other solo exhibitions of her work have been held at Mother Gallery, Beacon, NY; Mary Boone Gallery, NYC; Bill Maynes Gallery, NYC; and Orlando Museum of Art, FL. Her work has been in numerous group exhibitions since 2000, with reviews in The New York Times, Artnews, Art in America, Hyperallergic, and the Houston Chronicle, among others. She has public artwork at PS 92Q, Queens, NY, and at HSS Lerner Children’s Pavilion, New York, NY.

Chie’s work is in the permanent collections of the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, TX; Orlando Museum of Art, FL; San Jose Museum of Art, CA; Hirshhorn Museum, D.C.; and the Pizzuti Collection at Columbus Museum of Art, OH.

 

https://www.dcmooregallery.com/artists/chie-fueki


Gallery Talk with Marcy Freedman

RSVP to this event HERE

As part of the exhibition, Address: Earth in the Gallery at the Visual & Performing Arts Center, artist and art historian Marcy B Freedman will present a gallery talk, Landscape in Art: From Delight to Alert, on Wednesday, November 30th from 6:30 -8 pm. This event will take place in Choir Room 108 at the Visual & Performing Arts Center, WCSU's Westside Campus.

Freedman will examine the role of the natural world in works of art dating from the Renaissance to the present. She will discuss the ways in which the landscape was subordinate to the holy figures in religious paintings of the 15th and 16th centuries in Italy, where the Catholic Church was a dominant force in the world of art. Moving on to the 17th-century, Freedman will highlight those artists in the Protestant areas of northern Europe who were pioneers in the development of a tradition of landscape painting that impacted the art of the 19th-century Impressionists and Post-Impressionists. She will then discuss the Cubist and Expressionist artists of the early 20th-century, who found radical new ways of engaging with the natural world as they explored alternatives to naturalistic representation. Finally, Freedman will consider those Earth artists whose monumental outdoor projects brought attention to the environmental movement of the late 20th century. She will conclude with an homage to a number of contemporary artists – such as Olafur Eliasson and Maya Lin – who are using their art to alert us to the devastating effects of climate change upon our earth.

The Address: Earth Exhibition will be on view through December 4, 2022. The gallery will be open before and after the gallery talk and during regular gallery hours: Tues-Fri, 12-4 pm, and Sat-Sun, 1-4 pm.


Film Screening & Artist Talk with Rosalind Schneider

Pond Reflection film still 2

As part of the exhibition, Address: Earth in the Gallery at the Visual & Performing Arts Center, artist, and filmmaker Rosalind Schneider will present a screening of her film, Pond Reflections, and discuss her work on Wednesday, October 19th from 6:30 -8 pm. This event will take place in Choir Room 108 at the Visual & Performing Arts Center. Pond Reflections is footage collected over three years of seasonal reflections on water as the primal source of creation. Surrounding trees, rocks, and landscape trace the cycle of life. Peter Rubin, a recent graduate of the Berkley School of music composed the film score and may also participate in the discussion.

Rosalind Schneider creates works that transcend their source to form a new reference to a visionary landscape. She creates layered landscape images with multiple realities that progress from the real into abstraction and a fusion of the two. Her Digital Fusion paintings result from the capture of a video frame as a starting point and are realized through hands-on manipulation. The surfaces are transformed by drawing, acrylic, and glass particle collage resulting in a luminous translation that speaks to its moving image origin. Multiple realities are birthed from video. Schneider was the first artist to show the film as an art at the Hirshhorn Museum, following a solo show of her films at the Whitney Museum. Exhibitions of film, video, digital prints, and paintings include the Bronx Museum of the Arts, Islip Museum, Chelsea Museum, Hudson River Museum, SculptureCenter, and MOMA (Carte Blanche: Women Writing the Language of Cinema). Her16mm films are currently being restored by The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and will be part of the film archive at the Academy Museum.

More of Schneider's work is on view in the exhibition, Address: Earth, from October 13 through December 4, 2022. The gallery will be open before and after the film screening and during regular gallery hours: Tues-Fri, 12-4 pm, and Sat-Sun, 1-4 pm.

RSVP to the Screening via Eventbrite HERE


Fritz Horstman

Visiting Artist Lecture

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

 

Fritz Horstman is an artist, educator, and curator based in Bethany, CT, where he is Education Director at the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation. He received his MFA from Maryland Institute College of Art and his BA from Kenyon College. Recent exhibitions of his work include solo shows: Glacial Movements at Ishibashi Gallery; Glacial Folds at Seton Hill University; Folded Cyanotypes and Formworks at Jennifer Terzian Gallery. His work has been exhibited in recent group shows at Wadsworth Atheneum; Martin Museum, Baylor University, TX; drj art projects, Berlin, Germany; and in a traveling exhibition “Arctic Hysteria” in Asker and Bergen, Norway, and St. Petersburg, Russia.

Fritz’s curatorial work includes many projects, among them: Anni Albers: Work with Materials at Syracuse University Art Museum; In Thread and On Paper: Anni Albers in Connecticut at the New Britain Museum of American Art; Becoming Trees at Concord Art, Concord, Massachusetts; and Water Access at the Ely Center of Contemporary Art, New Haven, Connecticut.

Fritz is the recipient of many awards and residencies, including the Connecticut Art Fellowship; Bauhaus Dessau Artist-in-Residence; the Arctic Circle Residency; and Shiro Oni Residency, Japan. He has lectured and given workshops at l'École des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, Lebanese American University in Beirut, The Royal Academy of Art in London, MoMA, Yale University, Princeton University, and many other institutions.


Ying Li

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, Sept 28, 2022

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

 

Ying Li was born in Beijing, China, and studied traditional landscape painting at Anhui Normal University, where she received her BFA and then taught for six years. She immigrated to the U.S. in 1983 and received her MFA from Parsons School of Design. She lives and works in NYC and Haverford, PA, where she is the Phlyssa Koshland Professor in Fine Arts at Haverford College, where she has taught since 1997.

Ying’s work is represented by Pamela Salisbury Gallery in Hudson, NY, Gross McCleaf Gallery in Philadelphia, and Alice Gauvin Gallery in Portland, Maine. It has been featured in international exhibitions in the U.S., Switzerland, Italy, Ireland and France. In NYC, she has shown with several galleries, including Lohin Geduld, Elizabeth Harris, Tibor de Nagy, and Lori Bookstein Fine Art. She has been in group shows at the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the National Academy Museum, where she received the Edwin Palmer Memorial Prize for Painting and the Henry Ward Ranger Fund Purchase Award.

Ying is the recipient of residency awards, among them Artist in Residence at Dartmouth College, Visiting Artist at the American Academy in Rome, and various residency fellowships in Switzerland, Spain, Ireland, France, Canada, and the U.S. Her work has been reviewed in The New York Times, The New Yorker, Art Forum, Art in America, and Hyperallergic, among others.


Eric Valasquez

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, Oct 12, 2022

*This event is closed to the public

 

Eric Velasquez is an illustrator who lives and works in New York. He was born in Spanish Harlem, the son of Afro-Puerto Rican parents, and attended the High School of Art and Design. He earned his BFA from the School of Visual Arts and studied with Harvey Dinnerstein at the Art Students’ League. He has illustrated over 30 children’s books and teaches book illustration at FIT in NYC.

Velasquez began his career as a freelance illustrator in 1984, and in the first 12 years, completed over 300 book jackets and interior illustrations. These included the complete series of Encyclopedia Brown and The Ghost Writers, among others. In 1997, he illustrated his first picture book, The Piano Man, by Debbie Chocolate, for which he won the Coretta-Scott King/John Steptoe Award for New Talent. Many books and awards have followed. He received the NAACP Image Award in 2010 for Our Children Can Soar, on which he collaborated with 12 notable illustrators of children’s literature. He also wrote and illustrated Grandma’s Records and Grandma’s Gift, which won the 2011 Pura Belpre Award for Illustration. His book Schomburg: The Man Who Built a Library, by Carole Boston Weatherford, won the 2018 Walter Award, as well as the Golden Kite Award.

Eric’s recent books include Ruth Objects: The Life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, by Doreen Rappaport, and She Was The First! The Trailblazing Life of Shirley Chisholm, by Katheryn Russell Brown, which won the 2021 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literature for Children. His newest book is ¡Mambo Mucho Mambo! The Dance that Crossed Color Lines, by Dean Robbins.


Josephine Halvorson

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, Nov 2, 2022

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

 

Josephine Halvorson makes art that foregrounds firsthand experience and takes the form of painting, sculpture, and printmaking. Born in Brewster, Massachusetts, she received her BFA at The Cooper Union and her MFA at Columbia University, with additional studies at Yale Norfolk. She is Professor of Art and Chair of Graduate Studies in Painting at Boston University and lives in western Massachusetts.

In 2021, Josephine was awarded a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship. She is also the recipient of international residencies and fellowships, including the U.S. Fulbright to Vienna, Austria, and the Harriet Hale Woolley at the Fondation des États-Unis in Paris, France. In 2014-15, she was the first American pensionnaire at the French Academy in Rome at the Villa Medici.

Josephine’s work has been exhibited internationally and is represented by Sikkema Jenkins & Co., NY, and Peter Freeman, Paris. Selected recent exhibitions include: Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, North Carolina; Storm King Art Center, New York; Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, Foster Prize Exhibition; and Ríos Intermitentes, a group exhibition part of the 2019 Havana Biennial. In 2021-22 she had a solo exhibition at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, NM, where she was the inaugural artist in residence. Halvorson’s work and practice have been written about extensively, and she is a subject of Art21’s documentary series New York Close Up.


Amy Smith-Stewart

MFA Visiting Artist Critiques

Wednesday, Nov 16, 2022

*This event is closed to the public

 

Amy Smith-Stewart is Chief Curator at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum. Since 2013 she has organized forty-two exhibitions and projects, bringing artists to the Aldrich during pivotal stages of their careers. These include first-time solo museum presentations with artists Milano Chow, Eva LeWitt, and others, as well as survey shows with Jackie Winsor, Harmony Hammond, and Karla Knight. Harmony Hammond: Material Witness, Five Decades of Art was named one of the best exhibitions of 2019 by The New York Times. The show traveled to the Sarasota Art Museum and was accompanied by the artist’s first monograph.

Smith-Stewart’s current curatorial project is 52 Artists: A Feminist Milestone. It revisits the historic exhibition, Twenty Six Contemporary Women Artists, curated by Lucy Lippard in 1971, and joins with it a new roster of 26 female-identifying and nonbinary emerging artists. It tracks the evolution of feminist art practices over half a century.

Amy is founder of the eponymous nomadic, curatorial project, Smith-Stewart, previously located on NYC’s Lower East Side from 2007–2009. She began her career as a curator at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center (now MoMA PS1), where she mounted nineteen exhibitions and projects. From 2006–2007, she was a Curatorial Advisor for the Mary Boone Gallery. Amy also organized exhibitions at Socrates Sculpture Park and the Noguchi Museum, and was the Guest Curator for the Peter Norton Collection. She has taught in the graduate art programs at SVA and Sotheby’s Institute of Art. Her writing has been published in numerous books and catalogs.


Breathing Space

WCSU Student Poets & Artists Collaboration

During the Spring 2022 semester, WCSU writing students and art students came together to create Breathing Space Broadside Series, which is a collection of poems by 15 student poets and one faculty member on beautiful posters illustrated and designed by WCSU student artists and designers on display around both campuses. You also can view all 16 broadsides in flipbook format by clicking the image to the left.


Robert Nadeau

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, April 20, 2022, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Rob Nadeau is a painter born in Rochester, NY. He received his BA degree from Brown University and his MFA in painting and printmaking from Rhode Island School of Design. He is a recipient of prestigious awards and grants, among them, a Joan Mitchell Foundation MFA Grant in 1999 and a Joan Mitchell Foundation Career Opportunity Grant in 2006. He has been awarded residencies at Yaddo, the Edward F. Albee Foundation, and the Fine Arts Work Center, Provincetown. In 2010, he was Artist-in-Residence at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, where his work was shown in a solo exhibit entitled “Primal Scene”.

Other solo shows include LFL/Zach Feuer Gallery (NYC), Mixed Greens (NYC), Marlboro College, VT, and Markus Winter Gallery in Berlin, Germany. Since 2002, he has been included in many group exhibitions, among them, Freight & Volume, Jason McCoy Gallery, Marlborough Gallery, The Painting Center, and Artspace in New Haven. Rob has also curated and co-curated several exhibitions in NYC and Berlin. His work has been reviewed in The New York Times, Artforum, Wall Street Journal, and The Brooklyn Rail, among others.

In his own words about his painting, Rob pursues “… an emphasis on process and materiality, a conscious disregard for resolution or finish in the traditional sense, a slight hint of humor, and a flirtation with near constant failure.” A resident of NYC for many years, he now lives and works in Litchfield, CT, and teaches studio art at Queens College in NY.

 

https://www.joanmitchellfoundation.org/robert-nadeau


Student Spotlight

The Department of Art is proud to announce, Art major, Daisy Gesualdi, was awarded the 2022 winner of the Steven Ward Community Service Award for her long-standing and consistent passion for community service. She has actively sought diverse experiences to improve local communities including and curating an exhibition that opens on April 2, 2022 entitled, Tangible Traces at the Brookfield Craft Center. The exhibition includes works by Janice Mauro, Ellen Schiffman, and Isabella Saraceni.

Congratulations, Daisy! 

https://www.daisygesualdi.com/


The Home Project – Closing Celebration

No Place Like Home:
Exploring the sights, sounds, and tastes of the Middle East
with artist Mohamad Hafez and guests.

Thursday, March 3, 2022, 6-8 p.m.

in the Veronica Hagman Concert Hall
at the Visual & Performing Arts Center


In celebration of the completion of the NEA supported, The Home Project with WCSU, the Department of Art invites the public to spend an evening learning about Mohamad Hafez, his artwork and the Middle Eastern culture through history, film, music, storytelling and cuisine.

Offering a variety of perspectives, the presenters educate the audience about their cultural heritage by sharing personal stories, music, art and food, deepening understanding and appreciation for Arabic culture.

Joined by other guests, they will focus on the traditions of the Middle East, illuminating the region’s beauty and diversity, encouraging connection and empathy, fostering dialogue and understanding.

This event is funded in part by a grant from the CT Humanities Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and WCSU's Office of Diversity and Equity, the Office of Intercultural Affairs, and the Kathwari Honors Program.

Free and open to the public. Seats are limited:
Reserve your seats through Eventbrite Here

Judy Glantzman

Visiting Artist Lecture

Tuesday, March 29, 2022, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Judy Glantzman is a native New Yorker and graduate of Rhode Island School of Design. Exhibiting since 1983, she first received critical attention for early shows in the East Village at Civilian Warfare and Gracie Mansion, then later with Blum Helman and Hirschl & Adler Modern. Since 2006, she has been represented by the Betty Cuningham Gallery. She has taught at RISD, New York Studio School, MICA, and Purchase College. In 2018 she was artist in residence at Dartmouth College.

Glantzman’s work was honored by the The Dactyl Foundation in NY with a thirty-year retrospective in 2009. Among her numerous awards are a Guggenheim Fellowship, two NY Foundation for the Arts grants, a Pollock Krasner Foundation grant, and a NY Artist Space exhibition grant. Her works are in many collections, including the Whitney Museum and San Francisco Museum of Contemporary Art.

Judy’s 2019 solo show at Betty Cuningham was a forty-year retrospective. It inspired a public interview with art historian Jennifer Samet, later published in Hyperallergic. In speaking about her work, Glantzman said, “I come out of an Abstract Expressionist tradition. The notions of impulse, improvisation, and intuition are at the core of my interests.” In Samet’s words, “Glantzman’s work has a pulsating energy . . in harmony with the way she navigates the world: rapidly, generously, in motion and in conversation. Her paintings and her sculptural objects feel emergent and raw, suggesting unadulterated desire, yearning, and grief.”

 

http://www.bettycuninghamgallery.com/artists/judy-glantzman


Caitlin Berndt

Visiting Artist Lecture

Tuesday, March 8, 2022, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Caitlin Berndt was born in Baltimore, MD, and lives in Brooklyn, NY. She received her BFA from Maryland Institute of Art (MICA) and her MFA from the University of Washington in Seattle. In 2007, she was awarded the Elizabeth Greenshield’s Foundation grant and has had fellowships in Spain, Italy, and Israel. In 2013, she was awarded a residency at the Vermont Studio Center. Her work is in private and public collections including the Corcoran Museum in Washington, D.C.

Since 2008, Berndt’s paintings have been exhibited in NYC, Chicago, and Seattle. She has had numerous shows in NYC, most recently a solo exhibition in 2019 with Kate Oh Gallery. From the press release, “This series of small gouache paintings and larger oil paintings incorporates spray paint, acrylic airbrush, and sand. Like waking dreams, it takes your eyes a minute to adjust and decode what you’re looking at. Couples, little girls, spiky cacti, and Venus flytrap structures flicker in and out of focus revealing themselves in psychedelic-colored worlds. These dreamlands are playful, sexual, and strange.”

In addition to her studio practice, Caitlin has taught at Pratt Institute, MICA, University of Washington, and College of New Jersey. Currently she is an Adjunct Professor at City College of New York.

 

http://www.caitlin-berndt.com/


Stephen Kroninger

Visiting Artist Lecture

Tuesday, February 22, 2022, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Stephen Kroninger is an award-winning illustrator and photo-collage artist, based in New York City. His work has appeared in major U.S. and international publications, and he is also the author/illustrator of three award-winning children’s books. He is the recipient of numerous honors, including the Stevan J. Dohanas Award from the Society of Illustrators.
Stephen has also worked in animation. A short film produced for Nickelodeon was selected for the Annecy International Animated Film Festival. Another, for Chris Rock, was a festival award-winner, and he also created animation for an exhibit at the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Kroninger’s work is in the permanent collections of MoMA, The Library of Congress, and the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. It has been exhibited in NYC at the Society of Illustrators and most notably in a solo exhibition at MoMA in 1992.

Kroninger has participated in MoMA’s Family Education program and has lectured in MoMA’s Conversation with Contemporary Artist series. He has been active in the metropolitan area in a wide range of education programs, from workshops in elementary schools to the Art Directors Club’s program for high school students. He has also worked with Scholastic’s program, serving as a judge and keynote speaker for their National Student Art & Writing Awards. He currently teaches at NYC's Parsons School of Design

https://www.stephenkroninger.net/


Stephanie Pierce

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, February 9, 2022, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Stephanie Pierce was raised in Memphis, TN. She received her BFA from the Art Institute of Boston and also studied at Yale Norfolk School of Art. She earned her MFA from the University of Washington in Seattle.

Pierce’s paintings explore relationships between light, time, and perception. In a 2018 interview, she said, “I paint during all times of the day, preferring daylight, and use the changes in light as it happens. In the process . . . I paint both towards understanding what I see and away from it until things are brought to a heightened experiential intensity and have a hallucinatory sensation.”

Stephanie’s work is represented by Alpha Gallery in Boston and Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects in NYC. With numerous exhibitions throughout the U.S. since 1993, her work has been published and reviewed in the New Yorker Magazine, Harper’s Magazine, Hyperallergic, and the Boston Globe, among others. Collections include William Dreyfus, Boston Public Library, and the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. Stephanie received a Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant in 2014, and a Peter S. Reid Foundation grant in 2018. For 10 years, she taught at the University of Arkansas before moving to NYC in 2016. Currently she is Assistant Professor of Painting at FIT in NYC, where she also serves as Chair of her department. She lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

https://stephanie-pierce.com


Chuck Webster

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, October 13, 2021, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Chuck Webster is a painter and printmaker in NYC who has also engaged in collaborative and curatorial work. He received his MFA in painting from American University and his BA from Oberlin College. He is a recipient of awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the American Academy in Rome, and Marie Walsh Sharpe Art Foundation, with residencies at the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, and Virginia Center for Creative Arts, among others.

Webster’s paintings and editions are in the public collections of MOMA, Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Whitney Museum of American Art, as well as Baltimore Museum of Art, Dallas Museum of Art and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. His work has been widely reviewed in publications such as The Boston Globe, The New York Times, New York Observer, Hyperallergic, The Brooklyn Rail, and Artforum.

In a New York Times review of a solo show, Roberta Smith described Webster’s paintings as “very much, if not startlingly, little big paintings: they have a strange, irrepressible scale, a largeness that exceeds their size and creates a distinctive, slightly comedic sense of intimacy. . .The bigness resides within the paintings, in the three-way tension involving panel size, the drawing of the linear motif and surface textures. . .The whole thing jumps. But each painting is very much its own pictorial being: vulnerable, rambunctious and fully inhabited.”

https://www.chuck-webster.com/


Dorie Petrochko

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, September 29, 2021, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Dorie Petrochko is an award-winning wildlife painter and illustrator. She is a  founding instructor of the Natural Science Illustration Program at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, teaching classes in drawing, watercolor, mixed media and colored pencil. She is an active member and exhibitor of the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators. In 2019, her work was included in the guild’s International Exhibit in Sydney, Australia. She has also had recent shows in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Oregon.

Petrochko is the recipient of the Don Eckelberry Fellowship for wildlife painting, the Julia and David White Artist Fellowship in Costa Rica, and the Big Cypress National Park artist residency in Florida. She received her master’s degree in art education from SCSU and a certificate in botanical and natural science illustration from the New York Botanical Garden.

Petrochko’s dedication to educating others through art about the changing environment and species preservation is a life-long commitment. In her artist statement, she writes about her bird paintings: “What does it take to be a bird artist? Primarily, a passion for birds and an intense focus on all things avian, including research, birding, travel and conservation. Bird paintings are ever evolving. The added challenge is that there is something intrinsically spiritual and secretive about birds that is often untouchable. That is what keeps me going.”

http://www.doriepetrochko-studio.com/


Kyle Staver

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, September 15, 2021, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Kyle Staver is a New York artist originally from Minnesota. She received her BFA from Minneapolis College of Art and Design and her MFA from Yale University. She is a recipient of a Louis Comfort Tiffany Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and an American Academy of Arts & Letters Purchase Prize. In 2019, she received the College Art Association Artist Award for a Distinguished Body of Work.

Staver’s work encompasses paintings, relief sculptures, drawings and prints. They are narrative, employing myths and legends, often with a strong female protagonist. Her work has been shown throughout the U.S. and in NYC at The National Academy Museum, Tibor de Nagy, Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects, Kent Fine Art, and Zurcher Gallery, where she is now represented. In 2019, she had her first solo exhibition in Paris.

Her work has been reviewed in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The New York Sun, NY Observer, Art in America, and Hyperallergic, to name a few. In a review of Staver’s 2020 show at Zurcher Gallery, Dana Gordon wrote, “Staver’s new work is gloriously conceived, magnificently painted, and seriously fun. I can’t remember a group of new paintings this thrilling.” Staver has been a visiting artist at many schools, among them MICA, University of Indiana, Chautauqua, and Vermont Studio Center. She also teaches at The New York Studio School.

https://www.kylestaver.com/


Glenn Goldberg

Visiting Artist Lecture

Tuesday, November 2, 2021, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Glenn Goldberg is a painter who lives and works in NYC. Born in the Bronx, he studied at the New York Studio School and earned his BA and MFA degrees from Queens College, CUNY. He has taught at Cooper Union and the NY Studio School and currently teaches at Queens College. He has also been a panelist and visiting artist for MFA painting programs at Yale, Columbia, Boston University, American University, Hunter College, and others. A recipient of many awards, he has received grants from the Edward Albee Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

In Hyperallergic, Jennifer Samet described Goldberg’s painting to be “about this meeting point of the ordinary and the other, regularity and refinement. . . He likes the hobbyist nature of tinkering with objects – but his work, and ideas, are ethereal.”

Goldberg’s work has been shown extensively throughout the U.S., with solo exhibitions at Betty Cuningham Gallery and Jason McCoy Gallery in NYC. In 2018, a two-person exhibition with Goldberg and Amber Scoon, entitled “?” (A Series of Collaborative Works), was held at the gallery at WCSU, which coincided with the publication of their book, “?”, by Atropos Press. His works are in private and museum collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, Guggenheim Museum, Brooklyn Museum, National Gallery of Art, High Museum, and Museum of Contemporary Art, LA.


Maria De Los Angeles

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, November 17, 2021, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Maria de Los Angeles is a multidisciplinary artist who addresses ideas of migration, belonging, and identity through her drawing, painting, printmaking, and wearable art. She was born in 1988 in Mexico and is based in New York, New Jersey, and California. De Los Angeles holds an MFA in Painting & Printmaking from Yale University and a BFA in Painting from Pratt Institute. She was awarded the Blair Dickinson Memorial Prize by Yale University in 2015 for her artwork and her role in the community.

De Los Angeles has been an artist in residence at several institutions, including MASS MoCA, El Museo del Barrio in NY, the LA County Museum of Art, Mana Contemporary in NJ, and the Schneider Museum of Art in Ashland, Oregon, where she had a solo show in 2018. In 2019, she had a solo exhibition at the Museum of Sonoma County in her hometown of Santa Rosa, CA, where she also curated a group show with ten artists in her community.

Recent group exhibitions include Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, LA County Museum of Art, International Print Center NY, Every Woman Biennial, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, St. Johnʼs University, Robert Mann Gallery, and E.TAY Gallery. De Los Angeles has also participated in a panel discussion on xenophobia and deportation in America at Gavin Brown’s Enterprise. Her work has been featured in Hyperallergic, NY Magazine, HelloGiggles, and The Observer.

https://www.instagram.com/delosangelesart


Art Department awarded NEA Grant for “The Home Project”

We are pleased to announce that the Department of Art was awarded a $13,000 National Endowment for the Arts "Project Grant" in the Fiscal Year 2021 granting round. "Grants for Arts Projects (GAP) is the principal grant category of the National Endowment for the Arts, supporting public engagement with, and access to, various forms of art across the nation, the creation of excellent art, learning in the arts at all stages of life, and the integration of the arts into the fabric of community life."

The awarding grant will be used to support "The Home Project," which is a year-long artist residency and exhibition for Syrian American artist and architect, Mohamad Hafez. Born in Damascus and educated in the United States, Hafez creates 3D assemblages incorporating found objects that explore the devastation of war, feelings of displacement, and nostalgia for home. The year-long residency framed around the concept of "home" and "displacement" will include collaborative art installations, an exhibition, an artist talk, panel discussion, and extensive outreach to the Harambee Youth Center in Danbury.

After communicating with Mohamad Hafez for the past three years, Melissa Ralston-Jones, project director/gallery curator, and Lori Robeau, project coordinator/Visual Arts Assistant, worked with the artist to develop a concept for an exhibition and residency at WCSU. Mohamad’s contemporary art practice deals in issues of home insecurity and The Home Project focuses on these issues as it relates to displacement and how these concepts are represented in art, as well as the artist’s role in depicting and humanizing these experiences for the students and community.

As part of the residency, Hafez will mentor WCSU students and Harambee Youth Center 6-12 grade students in Danbury to create personal three-dimensional assemblages representing "Home." Assemblages will be combined into a collaborative installation and exhibited alongside the artist's work in the university art gallery (The Gallery at the Visual and Performing Arts Center) and in downtown Danbury storefront windows, where work is accessible to the surrounding community. Hafez offers a unique artistic perspective and skills, nurturing inspiration for student expression. Students benefit by working with a renowned professional artist and engage with scholars from the university to explore the relationship between people and their environment. Social issues are addressed through multiple perspectives of “home,” encouraging connection, and empathy, for displaced persons.

The Home Project will take place in the fall 2021 semester in conjunction with a class offered through WCSU, “There’s No Place Like Home,” led by faculty mentors, Sabrina Marques and Dr. Christine Hegel-Cantarella. Together with Mohamad, they will help students broaden technical skills across various media and organize visual elements to communicate concepts and experiences of home. Sharing their experiences, students become active listeners and demonstrate presence while engaging in cross-cultural conversations. Through a holistic approach using dialogue and the creative process, incorporating found objects and other materials to create three-dimensional assemblages representing their personal interpretations of “Home.” Students from WCSU combine their assemblages to create a single collaborative installation exhibited alongside Mohamad’s work in the university art gallery. Juxtaposing the varying home environments as seen through a multitude of perspectives.

A public panel discussion and artist talk will take place at the university, highlighting important issues of our time and extending the conversation to the community to help deepen understanding for people affected by home insecurity. The project will also work with Harambee Youth Center students in Danbury, Spring 2022. Mohamad, faculty mentors, and two student peer mentors from WCSU will assist Harambee youth in the creation of assemblages, over 6 weeks in April and May. Selected by faculty mentors, peer mentors from the university will lead discussions and work with youth, reinforcing their own learning while sharing similar discourse with younger students, allowing for greater understanding. Community partner City Center, Danbury will secure locations where the completed assemblages are installed in storefront windows.


Spring Virtual Art Workshop Series

The Department of Art presents

a series of Virtual Art Workshops by WCSU MFA Alumnae throughout the month of April

Intuitive Watercolor Painting with Abbie Rabinowitz

Come join us on Friday, April 9, 2021 from 3:00–5:00 pm for an Alumna-led virtual art workshop where Abbie will begin the workshop from Hawaii with a guided meditation and gentle breath work, designed to promote balance and prepare for creative expansion and surrender. The workshop will focus on experimentation and abstraction. Watercolor allows us to explore our use of control while challenging our ability to let go. A variety of watercolor painting techniques will be introduced including wet-on-wet, layering, and creating different textures. Students will be encouraged to experiment with materials and have fun! Supportive critique. All skill levels are welcome from beginner to advanced. The Workshop Zoom link will be provided with registration.

REGISTER HERE


About the instructor:

Abbie paints in an expressive, painterly style while observing and painting intuitively from nature. Her subjects include pleinair landscape, figure and portraits, and painterly abstractions. She completed an emotionally evocative portrait series of her elderly parents for her MFA thesis (2015 WCSU). After receiving her 200hr yoga teacher training certification (in India) in 2017, Abbie has at times, integrated aspects of her yoga training with her art courses. She encourages her students to breathe and relax and to come from a place of equanimity in their creative practice. Abbie currently lives on the Big Island of Hawaii where she has established herself as an island artist. She teaches art workshops online and leads art retreats in Hawaii.
Check out more of her work on her website at https://www.abbierabinowitz.com

Potato Print: printed mandala with Karin Mansberg

Come join us on Sunday, April 18, 2021 from 1:00–3:00 pm for an Alumna-led virtual art workshop where we will make stamps out of potatoes and create mandala prints and other patterns (on paper or fabric). The marks you print can be as simple as a circle, a semi-circle, or more complex ones. The emphasis is on process and experimentation with printed pattern and color. All skill levels are welcome from beginner to advanced. The Zoom link to the workshop will be provided with registration. Be creative! Grab some potatoes and let’s print!

REGISTER HERE


About the instructor:

Karin Mansberg, a WCSU MFA Alumna, is a printmaker and a teaching-artist. She teaches multidisciplinary classes and printmaking to all age groups. Since 2014 her focus has been on block-printing and sharing her experience with others. Karin's style has developed over the decades through her personal art practice and academic training (including studies in art history and criticism). She has worked for private clients, collaborated with small businesses, solo entrepreneurs, and non-profit organizations on various projects such as banners, logo design, art stamps, book illustration, art direction, wall murals, and art projects for a forest school. She also creates surface pattern designs for private clients and sells fabric, gift wrap, and wallpaper at her online store Spoonflower. Check out more of her work on her website at https://www.karinmansberg.com/.

Out the Window: Amaryllis Cityscape Watercolor Painting Workshop with Jess Bartlett

Come join us on Friday, April 23, 2021 from 3:00–5:00 pm for an Alumna-led virtual art workshop. Be inspired by women painters and look no further than out the window to make art. Students will learn about organic vs inorganic shapes, the nuances of 3D space in a 2D picture, and a fun way to use watercolor to suggest buildings! Don’t worry about the drawing! A sketchbook scale copy of just the drawing will be sent out to students ahead of time to transfer. This class will be focused on making beautiful watercolor paintings that are super simple to create and pack an added benefit of teaching valuable lessons about technique, color theory, and women in art history.

REGISTER HERE


About the instructor:

Jess is a professional artist living and working in Northwest CT. She holds a BFA from Eastern Michigan University and an MFA from Western Connecticut University. She has been professionally showing in New York City as a member of First Street Gallery since 2010. Bartlet is passionate about art and excited for getting the chance to share it with you!

Laini Nemett

Visiting Artist Lecture

Tuesday, April 20, 2021, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Laini Nemett holds a dual BA degree from Brown University in Visual Arts and History of Art & Architecture, and an MFA in Painting from Maryland Institute College of Art. She has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Joan Mitchell Foundation, Queens Council on the Arts, The Awesome Foundation New York, and the Fulbright Program. She has been awarded many U.S. residencies, including Yaddo, Joan Mitchell Center, and Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, as well as international residencies in Ireland and France.

From Laini’s artist statement, “My work responds to the lived, remembered, and imagined histories that emerge from aging buildings, ancient dwellings, and new constructions to reflect on how we live across cultures and communities. I collage and collapse planes to fuse times and places. . . . My current work includes large-scale canvases that explore the epic nature of endangered sites, as well as more intimate paintings of their inner walls.”

Nemett’s work has been exhibited in solo exhibitions throughout the United States and abroad, including Italy, China and Africa. She has lectured about her work at universities including Cornell, Adelphi, Pace, and MICA, and at art institutions in Italy, Germany and Spain. Nemett lives and works between Brooklyn and Schenectady, New York, and is Assistant Professor of Drawing and Painting at Union College.

Co-sponsored by Weir Farm Art Alliance

https://www.laininemett.com/


Nina Buxenbaum

Faculty Artist Lecture

Wednesday, April 7, 2021, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Nina Buxenbaum was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, in a multiracial and politically active family. As a biracial woman, she addresses themes of race and identity in her work, particularly in her Topsy-Turvy doll paintings. Confronting contemporary issues of the public versus private persona, Nina works in a traditional figurative painting style and maintains her studio in Bethel, CT.

She received her BFA in Drawing and Printmaking from Washington University in St. Louis, and her MFA in Painting from Maryland Institute College of Art. She was awarded residencies in France and the U.S., among them the Skowhegan School, Artists Alliance, and Vermont Studio Center. Her work has been exhibited at the Studio Museum of Harlem, the Slater Museum, The Painting Center, Kentler International Drawing Space, and many other galleries. Reviewed in the International Review of African American Art, her work has also been written about in The Daily Times, Time Out New York, and The Examiner.

Nina is a Professor of Fine Arts at York College, CUNY, where she has taught since 2002. She is also the Coordinator of the Fine Arts Discipline in the Department of Performing and Fine Arts. Additionally, she is an adjunct professor of painting at WCSU.

 

https://www.ninabuxenbaum.com/


Clintel Steed

Faculty Artist Lecture

Wednesday, March 17, 2021, 1:00 am
Zoom

Clintel Steed was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, and received his BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and his MFA from Indiana University. He also completed Advanced Studies at the New York Studio School. His work has been in numerous exhibitions, recently his 2020 solo show “Allegory of Now” at M + B gallery in Los Angeles. His current solo exhibit at Mark Borghi, NY, “Under the Hood” is a response to the postponement of the Philip Guston retrospective.

From Mark Borghi, “Steed joins more than 2,000 artists in opposition, arguing that the decision silences an important conversation to be had . . . In Behind the Hood, Steed presents 24 figurative paintings – the same number of works that depicted Ku Klux Klan imagery in the Guston exhibition – that reference the prejudice experienced by Black Americans both in the past and present day.”

From M + B gallery, “Steed has made a suite of new paintings based on works by canonical painters such as David, Rubens, and Giotto. Selected for . . . such universal themes as loyalty, judgment, and punishment, each narrative remains relevant today and is a reflection of how the world feels to the artist now.”

Clintel is the recipient of the John Koch Award from the National Academy of Arts and Letters. Recent press includes Hyperallergic, Artcritical, and The New York Sun. He has taught at the New York Studio School since 2007 and also teaches at Pratt and at WCSU in the MFA painting programs.

 

https://www.clintelsteed.com/


Virtual Faculty Artist Talk

Colleen McGuire

WCSU Alumna, Painter & Adjunct Professor of Art
Tuesday, February 16, 2021, 6:00 pm

Free & Open to the Public
Zoom

Colleen McGuire is a professional artist whose work focuses on domestic interiors and scenes from ordinary life. Her process involves careful observation and attention to composition and light in order to emphasize painting’s traditional use of light and illusion. McGuire’s work relates to early modernist painters such as Hopper and Vuillard.

"I see my paintings as a visual record of places I encounter throughout my day, with the intention of capturing sensations of light and space. I am drawn to architecture and nature, different times of day, and the seasons. Finding motifs in surroundings that are familiar to me allows me to examine them deeply, with the hope of capturing the experience of seeing through the materiality of paint."

Colleen received a B.F.A. from SUNY Purchase and her M.F.A. from Western Connecticut State University. She has taught at Southern CT State University and currently teaches Studio Art courses at WCSU.

Register to attend via Eventbrite here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/art-faculty-lecture-series-colleen-mcguire-tickets-140014199239


Scott Bakal

Visiting Artist Lecture

Tuesday, March 9, 2021, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Scott Bakal has been creating art for print and exhibition since 1993 when he graduated from the School of Visual Arts in NYC.  He earned his MA from Syracuse University and his MFA from Hartford Art School, where he received the prestigious Hartford Art School Regent’s Honor Award.

Other numerous awards include gold and silver medals from the Society of Illustrators and Creative Quarterly. He has been honored by Alt Weekly, 3 x 3, Association of Education Publishers, American Illustration, Communication Arts, and many others.  In 2010, he received the Dean Cornwall Achievement Award from the Society of Illustrators, and the Artist / Educator Award from 3 x 3.

Scott’s client list includes the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Rolling Stone, Discover, Smithsonian, to list a few. His work has been widely exhibited and featured in the permanent collections of the Norman Rockwell Museum and the New Britain Museum of American Art, wherein 2012, he curated the exhibition “Pixelated: The Art of Digital Illustration”. He has lectured at many colleges, organizations, and museums throughout the US, in England and Ireland. Currently, he is an Associate Professor at Massachusetts College of Art and Design.

http://www.scottbakal.com/


Grier Torrence

Torrence_Cup That I Drink lighter

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, February 24, 2021, 11:00 am

Visual & Performing Arts Center
WCSU, Westside Campus

Grier Torrence received his BFA degree at Rhode Island School of Design and his MFA degree at Yale University. He also studied at Stanford University. He has taught at several art schools including Pratt and is currently the Visual Arts Director at Miss Porter’s School in Farmington, CT.

Grier is a recipient of numerous grants and awards, among them a Ford Foundation grant, an Ingram Merrill Foundation grant, and 4 residency awards at Vermont Studio Center. His works have been shown in many solo and group exhibitions and he is represented at Bowery Gallery in NYC.

In his own words, Torrence is “interested in the world within, the psychology of being, the spiritual. This is a devotion, a practice, and a process. Interiors and buildings interest me. There is a parallel. Light comes into a place. There is depth. . . The ideas that come, seem to me to be a gift, and my job is to serve as a conduit for them, in reverence to the creative force. Those whom I love, those who affect me, are here in my work.”

https://www.griertorrence.com/


Guy Billout

Visiting Artist Lecture

Wednesday, February 10, 2021, 1:00 am
Zoom

Guy Billout has been called the Buster Keaton of the illustration world. His works are funny, acrobatic feats of mental agility that challenge the laws of logic. His characters retain composure no matter what; impending doom does not unnerve them; and under the dark humor, optimism prevails. In 2016, Billout received the highest honor: he was inducted into the Society of Illustrator’s Hall of Fame.

He was born and educated in France and moved to Paris in the 1960s to work in advertising design. He came to the U.S. in 1969 as an inexperienced illustrator with an improvised, unique portfolio, presented to Milton Glaser at New York magazine. Glaser loved his work and published it in its entirety.

For 24 years Billout created a stand-alone page in The Atlantic magazine, in full-color, with total editorial freedom. His client list includes Esquire, Rolling Stone, Time, Newsweek, The Washington Post, The New York Times, and The New Yorker. He is the recipient of many awards, among them the Hamilton King Award and The New York Times “Ten Best Illustrated Children’s Books” for five years. At his Hall of Fame induction, Billout was described as “more than an illustrator, a compassionate poet of the absurd.”

View more of his work HERE.


MFA Visiting Artists – Spring 2021

We have a great lineup for the Spring 2021 Visiting Artists. Click on the image below for more information.


WCSU Podcast Tribute to Late Professor Margaret Grimes

@WCSU pays tribute to one of WCSU's revered professors and the founder of the MFA program, Margaret Grimes. Host, Paul Steinmetz is joined by six of Margaret's former students to help give us an idea of who Margaret was and what she meant to them.


Alumni Spotlight: Andréa Rios- BA 2017 / MFA 2019

Andréa Rios – BA 2017 / MFA 2019

Congratulations to BA & MFA alumna, Andréa Rios whose biological illustration was recently published in an article in the scientific journal, PHYTOTAXA. Over the past year, Andrea had been working closely with WCSU's Professor of Biology, Dr. Thomas Philbrick in creating scientific illustrations for one of his research papers on new species of aquatic plants from the Amazon. The article entitled, A new species of Lophogyne s.l (Podostemaceae) from the Amazonian savanna of Amapá, Brazil, by Claudia P. Bove, C. Thomas Philbrick, and Arthur R. Lourenço contains Andréa's illustration seen here.

To view the article click here.

For more information about Andréa Rios and to see more of her work
check out her website and Instagram page!

 


Virtual Portfolio Day

Free portfolio review for high school and college transfer students interested in pursuing higher education and careers in Art & Design.

The Western Connecticut State University  Department of Art will offer an opportunity for high school and college transfer students interested in the fields of art and design to have their artwork reviewed by members of the WCSU art faculty during a “Portfolio Review Day” zoom meeting from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020.

Register to schedule your individual 20 minute time-slot. After registration, participants will be sent an email with a link to the Portfolio Review Zoom meeting and details about submitting portfolios as a single multi-page pdf.

On Dec 5th participants will Zoom meet individually at their selected time slot with professional artists who teach at WCSU. Faculty members will critique portfolios to provide feedback and guidance on works presented and also will be prepared to discuss professional career opportunities in art and design, as well as specific concentrations for study in the Art Department’s Bachelor of Arts program.

Admission is free and advance registration is required; reservations may be submitted online at https://wcsuvpac.eventbrite.com. Attendance is not only encouraged for high school and college transfer students interested in the fields of art and design, but parents, teachers, and guidance counselors are welcome to sit in as well. 

Limited time slots are available. A waitlist will be available for those who were not able to register for a time slot and if there is enough time they may be taken at the end or if enough are on the list, a second review session may be scheduled.

For questions or more information email the Department of Art at robeaul@wcsu.edu or call (203) 837-8403.

The Department of Art at Western Connecticut State University is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design


IN HONOR OF

Margaret Grimes

1943 – 2020
Professor of Art, 1980 – 2012

It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of Margaret Grimes. Professor of Art at Western Connecticut State University, she taught for thirty-two years before retiring in 2012. She was awarded the Henry Barnard Foundation Distinguished Lectureship award in 1990 and in 1992 received a lifetime appointment as a Connecticut State University Professor, a distinguished professor award. She also initiated the Master of Fine Arts in Visual Arts program, which she coordinated from 2000 to 2012. The MFA was one of only three MFA programs in painting in Connecticut.

Margaret’s work has been exhibited widely in museums and galleries both regionally and nationally, including one person shows at Fischbach Gallery, Green Mountain Gallery, Weir Farm National Trust, the National Academy of Sciences as well as numerous colleges and universities. She has also had solo shows at Blue Mountain Gallery in New York City since 1980. Her work has been included in many group shows, including the National Academy of Design, NYC; Denise Bibro Fine Art Gallery, NYC; the Chautauqua Institution; the Philbrook Museum of Art in Tulsa, OK; the Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, FL; the Davenport Museum, Davenport, IA; the Center for Contemporary Arts, Wilmington DE; the Newport Art Museum, Newport, RI; the Rahr-West Art Museum in Manitowoc, WI; the Reading Museum, Reading, PA; the Queens Museum of Art, NYC; the Provincetown Art Museum in Provincetown, MA; and the Woodmere Art Museum in Philadelphia, PA.

Margaret’s work has been discussed and reviewed in a number of publications, among them: Art in America, Art New England, The Hartford Courant, The Boston Globe, The New Haven Register, Art Critical, Gallery & Studio, and Art Scope. Her paintings have also been included and discussed in several books on American landscape painting including, Green Woods and Crystal Waters: The American Landscape Tradition, by John Arthur, The Artist in the American Landscape, by John Driscoll, Paintings of New England, by Carl Little and Fractals: the Patterns of Chaos, by John Briggs. Her biography is listed in Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who in American Art. She is a member of the National Academy of Design, where she was awarded the Benjamin Altman prize in 2004. She continued to receive awards throughout her career, including her most recent in 2019, The Hassam, Speicher, Betts, and Symons Purchase Award from The American Academy of Arts and Letters for her painting, Baldwin Hill Road, February 2010.

In a review by Jennifer Samet for the exhibition Margaret Grimes, A Retrospective, at WCSU in 2013, Samet writes, “Margaret Grimes’s paintings are about vastness, not just the all-encompassing kind, but also vastness at the molecular or cellular level. She paints the individual leaf and the entire screen of the forest.” She continues, “The patterns the roots form are not exactly grids, but they nonetheless imply matrixes because they play with our desire to find patterns and regularity in the midst of chaos. In this sense, they are about the sublime, the beauty that is at the edge of our grasp.”

Margaret studied at Washington University in St Louis, Governors State University in Illinois, and in a workshop at Notre Dame with Alice Neel. She received her BA from Governors State in 1972 and an MA in 1975. In 1980 she received an MFA from the University of Pennsylvania, where she studied with Neil Welliver.

Margaret Grimes was a prolific, powerhouse artist, working up until her health began to fail in 2019. “In art school, we were told to look at nature as if we were seeing it for the first time. Now we look at it as if we were seeing it for the last time, hence the need to meticulously observe. I desire to find the abstract in the natural, and, by close observation of the intensity of individual moments, approach the transcendent.” (Margaret Grimes)

 

margaretgrimes.com


Jon Sideriadis

Visiting Artist Lecture - MFA Program

Tues, November 10, 2020

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the Visiting Artist Lectures are closed to the public. Check back closer to the date of each lecture as some may go online and be attended virtually.

 

Jon Sideriadis is an illustrator, author, and adjunct professor at the University of New Haven. He is also the Art Director and curator of the Spartan Museum of Art. His specialty is mythological art and storytelling / world building. In July 2020, his original mythology of the cosmos, a book of 200 pages and over 100 artworks entitled Astromythos, was published by The Art Order.

Jon’s works have also been published in film, television, video games, books, comics, board games, trading cards, and the music industry. He has worked in Hollywood as a creature-effects artist and sculptor. Represented by Haven Gallery in NY, he has exhibited in solo and group shows throughout the country, including Society of Illustrators, NYC, Eric Carle Museum, Amherst, MA, and The Gallery at WCSU.

Sideriadis has been a guest artist, guest speaker, and panelist at many conventions, including FaerieCon 2015, 2016, 2018 and IlluxCon 2018. He received the Best in Show Award at GenCon 2019. He has lectured at Trinity College, Paier College of Art, and the University of Hartford MFA program. He has been a featured artist in several publications: Ink Magazine, The Hartford Courant, and the National Herald, among others. A graduate of Rhode Island School of Design, Jon received his MFA in Illustration at the Hartford Art School.

https://www.astromythos.com/