College of Communication & Creative Arts - Art
News in the Department
Cooper Medical Students hone their drawing skills. It takes more than medical knowledge to become a great doctor so the Department of Art has been partnering with Cooper School of Medicine by offering enrichment courses in design and art visualization techniques. Drawing anatomy and human form assists the medical students in strengthening their anatomical and clinical knowledge. Currently, Assistant Professor Amanda Almon is teaching Observational Drawing for Future Physicians; last year, Assistant Professor Charles Tucker taught Figure Drawing.
Designer Steff Geissbuhler comes to Rowan. Time passed quickly as Steff Geissbuhler shared ideas with Rowan graphic design students during a two-day series of one-on-one and studio critiques. His public lecture on November 12 provided insight into the process and thinking behind his award-winning work in international identity programs for NBC, Telemundo, Radio Free Europe, Mobil, TimeWarner, NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, and many other national and international corporate and civic clients. Learn more about him at www.geissbuhler.com.
Lauren Selden, metalsmith and sculptor, visits the Department of Art on November 5 & 6. Demonstrating direct casting and sand casting techniques, Selden used an oxyacetylene torch to melt bronze, pouring it into different materials such as dry beans, rice, and spaghetti to create textures and unique formations in the cast metal. In a lecture for the Rowan community, she discussed her own metalwork and sculpture and its focus on creating narratives about the emotions of interpersonal relationships. Later, advanced metals/jewelry students benefitted from her individual critiques. Selden's work can be viewed at laurenmcselden.com.
Dusk-to-Dawn creativity in Westby Hall. A lively Cult of Print crew, led by our own David Vaccaro, created new prints and we invite everyone to see the resulting exhibition in the student gallery this week. A lively mix of current students and alumni come together as a community, experimenting on new printmaking approaches and creating some interesting work. Student Daisy Greenwell said, "The Cult of Print provides a great camaraderie that you don't get during a normal day." Vaccaro said, "We've been doing the dusk-to-dawn event every semester for ten years now. It's getting tougher for me to stay awake for twelve hours, but the students manage just fine."
Jan Conradi, Professor of Graphic Design, publishes her second book. Her book, Lella and Massimo Vignelli: Two Lives, One Vision, by RIT Press, offers a portrait of two important twentieth-century designers whose careers intertwined for over a half-century of notable works. Vignelli design solutions surround us including: identity and information systems for the U.S. National Park Service, American Airlines, Brookstone and Ducati Motors; signage systems for the subways in NY and D.C., the Italian Railway stations, and for the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain; Fodor's Travel Guides and many other books. They developed identity and interiors for SD26 Restaurant in NYC; exhibitions for The Louvre; train interiors for the Great North Eastern Railway in Britian; showrooms for Artemide, Poltrona Frau, Chicago's Italcenter, and the World Trade Center in Amsterdam. They designed furniture, housewares, jewelry and watches, and even a line of clothing. The Vignellis promoted a modernist philosophy of designing for a better society: resourceful use of space and materials, clear communication, lasting quality, and logical functionality. Through a mix of archival research and personal interviews with Lella, Massimo, and many others, Conradi documents the Vignellis’ nuanced approach to “cleaning up” an often chaotic and messy society by adhering to a minimalist and structured design method. She notes that the Vignellis’ sustained pattern of working and living has influenced, and continues to inspire, generations of designers worldwide.
A new book by Andrew D. Hottle, Associate Professor of Art History, has just been published. Hottle authored The Art of the Sister Chapel: Exemplary Women, Visionary Creators, and Feminist Collaboration (Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate Publishing Limited, 2014). "The Sister Chapel" (1974-78) was an important collaborative installation that materialized at the height of the women’s art movement. Conceived by Ilise Greenstein as a nonhierarchical, secular commemoration of female role models, "The Sister Chapel" consisted of an eighteen-foot abstract ceiling that hung above a circular arrangement of eleven monumental canvases, each depicting the standing figure of a heroic woman. The choice of subject was left entirely to the creator of each work. As a result, the paintings formed a visually cohesive group without compromising the individuality of the artists. Contemporary and historical women, deities, and conceptual figures were portrayed by a group of accomplished New York-based painters, including Alice Neel, Sylvia Sleigh, and May Stevens. Among the role models depicted were Artemisia Gentileschi, Frida Kahlo, Betty Friedan, Joan of Arc, and a female incarnation of God. Although last exhibited in 1980, "The Sister Chapel" has lingered in the minds of art historians who continue to note its significance as an exemplar of feminist collaboration. Based on previously unpublished archival materials and featuring dozens of rarely seen works of art, Hottle's comprehensive study details the fascinating history of "The Sister Chapel," its constituent paintings, and its ambitious creators.
Christian Dalonzo interns with Facebook. Christian Dalonzo, BFA Specialization in Graphic Design, spent his summer on the west coast, working with Facebook's Mobile Messenger team. Now he's back on the Rowan campus and continuing his studies. "Christian is smart, thoughtful, and willing to push himself out of his comfort-zone to expand his skills. He's a quietly determined kind of guy and he definitely has a bright future ahead," said Jan Conradi, one of his graphic design professors. For more information about his summer internship, see the article on Rowan Today.
Welcome to our new Assistant Professor, Amanda Almon. After conducting a national search, the Department of Art, with assistance from people in the Cooper School of Medicine and other areas across Rowan University, is pleased to announce that we hired Amanda Almon as the driving force for our department's new Biomedical Art and Visualization specialization. Almon has a track record of success in her work and her teaching. Her animations and illustrations have been seen on The Discovery Health Channel, National Geographic, and the Oprah Winfrey Show. Novartis Animal Health, Merck, Bayer Pharmaceutical companies and ThatsNice Productions have used her medical and scientific illustrations, as have many leading book publishers. Most recently, Almon has expanded her research and work to include educational game design for kids, patients and doctors. Her instructional design, animation and illustrations are being used in collaboration with Lemming Labs LTD. to design new methods of interacting with information that turn play into learning.
Prior to joining our faculty, Almon worked at the Cleveland Institute of Art eight years. There, she served as the Chair of Biomedical Art, Animation, Game Design, building departments and innovative curriculum in arts education. We are excited to work with her in advancing new opportunities at Rowan University. Almon's credentials, combined with her energy and vision, will provide a great foundation for this new area of study at Rowan. Built on the traditional field of scientific and medical illustration, the specialization in Biomedical Art and Visualization will operate at the intersection of art, science and medicine. Students will establish skills in digital media techniques, interactivity, and animation and educational game design.
Congratulations to junior Derek Koch, BFA Specialization in Graphic Design. He was awarded The Nikki Pedersen “Best of the Fest” Award at this year’s scholarship competition by the Art Director’s Club of New Jersey.
Congratulations to Paige Stecklair. Her acrylic painting of historic Bunce Hall was selected by President Houshmand for this year's Rowan University holiday card. Paige is currently a junior in the Department of Art, studying for her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art with a concentration in painting. She shares a favorite view of this landmark building by focusing on the impressive tower and the graceful Ionic columns of the front entrance. Bunce Hall, circa 1922, was the first academic building on the Glassboro campus.
There is a foundry in the Department of Art and at 2200 degrees, it is HOT! Congratulations to Jim Greenwell and Charles Tucker for getting the foundry up and running again. On November 4, there was a successful test pouring for pieces that will be produced in the sculpture area over the next several weeks. Charles initiated a collaboration with internationally recognized artist Mel Chin and his assistant, Bradley Tucker (pictured, no relation to Charles). An edition of the bronze sculpture “Shape of a Lie,” which will be poured in our foundry, is scheduled to be included in Mr. Chin’s upcoming retrospective “Rematch” at the New Orleans Museum of Art in February 2014.
Please visit http://www.melchin.org/ for more information on Mr. Chin's work.
Welcome Joseph Leroux, our 2013 Artist In Residence. Joseph Leroux was born and raised in the small town of Newton Falls in the Adirondack Park of upstate New York. He attended The State University of New York at Potsdam in hopes of putting together a band and pursuing a career as a professional musician. In his freshman year, Leroux took his first sculpture class and was instantly addicted to the creative process and expansive techniques and materials associated within the field of sculpture. Sculpture was instantly a familiar practice to Leroux due to his family’s long lineage of hand laborers. He continued his studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he earned a Master of Fine Arts in 2010. While at Madison, he began to utilize his personal narrative and allowed the freedom he felt in his music-making to influence his art works. Leroux combines images, objects, and performances into a single practice that defies the traditional categories within art. Leroux currently makes artwork, plays music, and teaches sculpture courses at Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia, PA.
Congratulations to Dr. Tingting Wang! Her proposal, “Use of Digital Technologies and their Teaching and Learning Effectiveness at Rowan University Saturday Morning Art Classes” received Rowan University Seed Funding. A review panel appointed by the Senate Research Committee approved her grant proposal, awarding $10,000 for purchasing electronics and hiring research assistants to implement this research project. The project was one of 17 awarded in the university for the academic year of 2013-2014.
Rowan designers do it together! On May 11, more than 30 alumni and current design students gathered in a New York gallery apartment for a graphic design reunion. It was a great afternoon of sharing stories, showing portfolios, catching up with old friends and making new connections. The photos above show part of the mingling group (left), and present and former directors of The Gallery publication (right).
Congratulations to our 2013 Department of Art graduates! Here’s to success and new adventures. We’ll miss you!