LITEN

"Liten" (Norwegian for small), organized by Laura Sharp Wilson, invites 23 artists from across the country to respond to the idea of human feelings of smallness and how that impacts the way we treat our planet and each other.

Bountiful Davis Art Center in Bountiful, Utah

September 27 - November 1, 2019

Ghost Ship , , 2017, archival digital print/Hahnemühle paper,   4 x 6 inches  Source: Giovanni di Paolo, St. Clare Rescuing the Shipwrecked, ca. 1455.

Ghost Ship, , 2017, archival digital print/Hahnemühle paper, 4 x 6 inches

Source: Giovanni di Paolo, St. Clare Rescuing the Shipwrecked, ca. 1455.

GETTING THERE

Andrew Ellis Johnson and Susanne Slavick

Schmucker Art Gallery at Gettysburg College

September 4 - December 6, 2019

Catalogue available with poems by  David Hernandez, Maria Melendez Kelson, Blas Manuel De Luna, Dunya Mikhail, Prageeta Sharma, Warsan Shire, and Wisława Szymborska; an essay by Suketu Mehta; and texts by Vu Tran.

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Getting There is aspirational; it implies a destination, marking progress toward some kind of goal. Getting There is a burden, but also a dream of many migrants and refugees. We cannot speak for those in flight, in hiding, and in desperate hope.  But we can speak to the contradictory fears and hypocrisies, ignored histories and punitive policies that we as a nation hold and enact here.

 We are all from somewhere else. At some point in our family lineage, someone has crossed a border. Escape, expulsion, exile, exodus and emigration are integral to human history.  Today, there are over 65 million refugees, asylum-seekers and internally displaced people around the world, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. They are driven from their home by persecution, conflict and violence, or human rights violations.

 Driven or displaced, cut loose or set adrift, or simply seeking safety—all are precarious states of passage. The decision to leave home may be voluntary or involuntary, arising from desperation or anticipation. Those of us not needing to flee live in comparative luxury. Yet many Americans choose to feel invaded, believing our jobs are threatened or our culture diluted or even contaminated.

There is real fear and fabricated fear. Both are fierce and ubiquitous. There is the natural fear of the unknown, shared by the vulnerable and those made to feel vulnerable. How are the vanquished so easily demonized into a formidable foe by the rhetoric of demagogues and the media that serves them? Why do alarmist claims of invasion and infestation persist despite the evidence, and despite the abusive history of such language? The “other” is imagined as larger than life—and worse, fueling the dangerous perception that “the thing that is lower than I, makes me bigger.”

Such assumptions and attitudes insist that is not enough to be strong; those perceived as weak and powerless must be punished with deportation, incarceration, and separation from those they love. They must be dehumanized and denied rights to asylum and autonomy. They must remain invisible.  The works in Getting There question these manufactured imperatives and expose the consequences of our resentment or fear of “the stranger.”

The USA is a nation of immigrants and used to lead in resettling refugees. Today, with far fewer resources, Turkey and Pakistan now host the most refugees. Our current administration is slashing admissions to its lowest point in 40 years. Immigration policies have hardened, vilifying and incarcerating people who legally seek asylum. Outrage and soul-searching followed the separation of children from parents at the border, but the fury has failed to stop their indefinite detention in unprecedented numbers, against international law.  

 Being a refugee is not a choice. Those of us who are settled may never know the anxiety, risk or terror of those uprooted, the profound loss of what is left behind, and the daunting uncertainties ahead. Through these works, we explore encounters, intersections and perceptions between radically different worlds—between security and insecurity. 

We are moved by images. We are moved by words. We are grateful to novelists, poets, anthropologists and journalists who have informed our projects and whose words we have included or cited. Among them are Jenny Erpenbeck, Lev Golinkin, Eliza Griswold, Mohsin Hamid, David Hernandez, Ali Johar, Maria Melendez Kelson, Jason De León, Blas Manuel De Luna, Suketu Mehta, Dunya Mikhail, Yasser Niksada, Prageeta Sharma, Warsan Shire, Wisława Szymborska, and Vu Tran. 

Getting There suggests movement—but more than the literal movement of migrants and refugees. We hope Getting There advances an evolving ethos, a humane reception, an empathic embrace—and  movement of our own consciences.

UN/SUSTAINABLE AT STAMP GALLERY, UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND

UN/Sustainable with George Lorio, Zelda ZinnKatie Kehoe, Samantha DiRosa and Susanne Slavick, opening at Stamp Gallery at the University of Maryland 

June 5 - July 12, 2019
Curated by Kat Mullineaux

Resplendent, 2010, Gouache on archival digital print/Hahnemühle paper, 60 x 23 inches


My statement for the show: 
War kills human, plant and animal life. It befouls our air, land and water with its lethal mission, toxic residue, and consumption of resources. Even in peacetime, the U.S. military is the largest institutional consumer of oil in the world. Massive transport of personnel, equipment, supplies and arms around the world demands fuel, and its combustibility threatens and incinerates even more lives. We know with scientific certainty that burning fossil fuels exacerbates climate change. Yet we continue to drill, extract, and fill endless tanks, preparing for or headed to the next siege.

Our political and economic systems perpetuate war, a behavior and condition that is the definition of unsustainability. War not only depletes, pollutes and assaults the environment, and all the living things it hosts, it diverts our attention and vast resources from everything that might slow its degradation. Another Mother for Peace, a grass-roots anti-war advocacy group founded in 1967 was right about Mother Earth. Many posters and placards were emblazoned with their signature claim: ““War is not healthy for children and other living things.”

In "Resplendent," a tree grows out of the remains of an improvised explosive device (IED) on a deserted road. The tree is derived from a 16th century illustration, The Hero Rustam Slays the Witch of the Cosmic Illusion attributed to Qadîmî from Fidawsî’s Book of Kings. The IED is based on a FLICKR image taken in Afghanistan by SSG Wayne Speek. Though rooted in destruction and mangled metal, the sprouting tree suggests some hope for survival and regeneration.

Review by Mark Jenkins, “UN/Sustainable contemplates the environment,” The Washington Post, June 28, 2019

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VISUALIZING NARRATIVES: SHAPING RESISTANCE

Stamp Gallery, University of Maryland, College Park

Curated by Alison Singer

February 13 to March 30, 2019

Protests and opposition movements have long been a social tool by which to mobilize groups of people around shared grievances, allowing them to collectively interrogate power structures and enact change through the discursive processes of resistance. Various forms of protest have been an important point at which resistance enters the public space and gains broader visibility, often through media images that become symbols of the movement. The images produced around protests and resistance movements – by artists, the media, or everyday documentarians – thus play a large role in shaping narratives for public consumption.

This exhibition at the Stamp Gallery seeks to explore the role of visual production around protests and forms of resistance. Featuring work by artists Becci Davis, Malik Lloyd, Leah Modigliani, Susanne Slavick, and the TUG Collection, this considers such questions as: How does the mass media visually shape narratives? How does artwork respond to, reshape, interrogate, or blur these narratives? How does the visual response to protests and resistance movements by artists memorialize or historicize the events?

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PROFESSOR SLAVICK WINS CAA DISTINGUISHED TEACHING AWARD

Professor Susanne Slavick will be presented the 2019 Distinguished Teaching of Art Award from the College Art Association (CAA)—the preeminent organization for professionals in the visual arts—at their annual conference in New York City in February. This prestigious award, given annually since 1972, honors an exemplary educator for which teaching and making art are inseparable.

An accomplished artist and curator, Slavick believes that “art is an intimate and generous way to share what matters to us. At its best, it moves us to respond—to act.” She sees working with her students as a mutually empowering experience toward both personal and social transformation.

“Art is constantly testing the reality principle—and challenging the status quo,” she says. “Artists can expose things we don’t want to face or imagine alternative worlds. Art is an essential political force, even if it may not immediately change the world. There is nothing more rewarding than helping students recognize how they can shape the cultural consciousness—and their futures.”

Slavick received an MFA from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University and a BA from Yale University. She began her tenure with CMU’s School of Art in 1984 after a three-year stint at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She served as Head of School from 2000-06 and has held the title of Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Art since 2001.

“There has been no single person or professor who has had a greater impact on my career than Susanne Slavick,” says Lauren F. Adams, a 2007 graduate of the School of Art’s MFA program and current painting professor at the Maryland Institute College of Art. “Her commitment to teaching and rigorous approach to the multiple pathways that students may travel has proved a durable influence upon me and many others. This has inspired me to model my own teaching techniques after her.”

Even after more than three decades teaching, Slavick remains excited by each new group of students. Though she has taught in many courses across the program, introductory painting is her favorite class to teach. “At this level, there’s a magic elixir of curiosity, spirit, energy, and work ethic,” she says. “It is exhilarating to see the growth in students’ work and their excitement about the possibilities of painting.”

Slavick says that teaching at CMU’s School of Art, which has long distinguished itself through its interdisciplinary approach, has been especially rewarding. “Teaching has led me to areas of knowledge and processes that I might not have ever considered. Teaching has broadened by own perspective.”

“Susanne’s generosity and deep commitment to our students is evident far past their classroom experience,” says Head of School Charlie White. “Even after students graduate, Susanne tirelessly advocates for our community, consistently boosting alumni successes and using her broad reach to connect them to opportunity. She manages to do all this while maintaining a vibrant studio and curatorial practice. Her work as both artist and teacher is always attuned to the political moment, responding with compassion, grace, and insight.”

Slavick has exhibited her own work nationally and internationally, with recent solo shows at the Chicago Cultural Center, McDonough Museum in Youngstown, and the Bernstein Gallery at Princeton University. Her recent curatorial projects include: Marx@200 (2018); Unloaded (2015), a traveling multimedia exhibition exploring the impact of guns in our culture; and Out of Rubble (2011), a book and traveling exhibition featuring international artists who respond to the aftermath of war.

The School of Art will honor Slavick at an alumni gathering on February 15 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at PPOW Gallery in New York City. School of Art alumni and friends of Susanne can RSVP for the party here.

Photograph by Jacquelyn Johnson

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Beyond 'Thoughts and Prayers: Gun Violence, Activism, and Controversy in Contemporary Art

Susanne Slavick presents Disarming Arms on this panel organized by Annie Dell’Aria at the College Art Associations 107th Annual Conference.

Thursday, February 14 at 6:30pm

New York Hilton Midtown Trianon Ballroom

Other panelists include:

“The Most Fascinating and Well-Designed Artifacts of Our Time“: Collecting and Exhibiting Contemporary Guns in the Art Museum

Michelle Millar Fisher, Philadelphia Museum of Art

Disarming Arms

Susanne Slavick, Carnegie Mellon University

Feeds and Triggers: On Martin Roth’s In November 2017 I collected a plant from the garden of a mass shooter (2017)

Arnaud Gerspacher, Graduate Center, City University of New York

“Why don't they buy their own billboard . . . ?” Guerrilla Strategies, Media Infiltration, and the Role of Art in the Wake of School Shootings

Nicole Scalissi, University of Pittsburgh

Report US: Humanizing the Statistics

Eileen Boxer

On Repealing the Second Amendment with Art

Joshua Smith, Artist

Image: Jessica Fenlon, Ungun, video

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JOURNAL OF VISUAL CULTURE: THE GUN ISSUE

The Journal of Visual Culture's new issue: "Armed/Unarmed: Guns in American Visual and Material Culture" Roundtable: The Politics, Ethics, and Aesthetics of Exhibitions about Guns. Contributions by Atteqa AliJonathan FerraraKathy O'Dell, and Susanne Slavick (Compiled by Faye Gleisser and Delia Solomons)
https://journals.sagepub.com/toc/vcu/current
With mentions of works by Mel ChinVanessa GermanJenn MeridianDevan Shimoyama and others. And Unloaded artist Adrian Piper's work is reproduced in the Portfolio of Artworks compiled by Faye Gleisser and Delia Solomons.

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ANTI-NOSTALGIA

A group show of manipulated found photographs

Curated by Olivia Huntley and elin o’Hara slavick

The Carrack / 947 E Main Street / Durham, NC / 27701

October 4-21, 2018

Opening Reception Friday, October 5, 7-9:30pm

Gallery Hours: Thursdays-Sundays 11am - 5pm and Wednesdays by appointment

With works by: Ben Alper, Andy Berner, Michael Barefield, Becky Brown, Allison Coleman, Diego Camposeco, Martha Carter, Joy Drury Cox, Meredith Emery, Jon Feinstein, Ashley Florence, Victor Foster, Adrian Garcia, Raymond Goodman, Beth Grabowski, Rachel Greene, Sharon Lee Hart, Brenda Miller Holmes, Peter Hoffman, Olivia Huntley, Michael Itkoff, Ellie Ivanova, Andrew Ellis Johnson, Ann Pegalow Kaplan, Siri Kaur, Michael Keaveney, Angela Kelly, Jasper Lee, Susan Alta Martin, Cathy McLaurin, Lindsay Metivier, Joy Meyer, Deepanjan Mukhopadhyay, Susan Mullally, Annika Nordenskiold, Ashely Oates, Lesley Patterson-Marx, Kelly Popoff, Samprati Prasad, Bill Santen, Leslie Sheryll, Annie Simpson, elin o’Hara slavick, Susanne Slavick, Leah Sobsey, Cindy Steiler, Liz Steketee, Bill Thelen, Hong-An Truong, Amy White, Laura Sharp Wilson

Workshop / Panel

October 7, Sunday, 2-4pm with Michael Keaveney – Transforming the Photographic

October 21, Sunday, 2-4pm

Panel discussion / gallery talk with curators Olivia Huntley and elin o’Hara slavick and local artists in the exhibition, including Ben Alper, Deepan Mukhopadhyay and Ann Pegalow Kaplan 

Desire has no history. – Susan Sontag

 Anti-Nostalgia is a group exhibition of artists invited to create works utilizing found photographs. Artists explore: our relationship to the photograph as an object; memories and sentimentality; history and the familial; the vernacular and the archive; and alternative and interventionist narratives. A photograph provides both a historical and unattainable reality. Anti-Nostalgia investigates how our attraction to and/or repulsion by found photographs does not come from nostalgia, but comes from a desire to confirm, deny and transform a reality. Theorists argue that nostalgia can be a form of fascism - a longing for a glorified past that leads us down an authoritarian path. Anti-Nostalgia is a topical and critical approach to our current global situation, an attempt to draw attention to the way we read, feel, understand and use imagery in the name of ideology and personal whim.

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DISPLAY OF ARMS

Shared my curatorial experience with UNLOADED in "DISPLAY OF ARMS: A Roundtable Discussion about the Public Exhibition of Firearms and Their History" in Technology and Culture, published by Johns Hopkins University Press and edited by Jennifer Tucker.  In conversation with Glenn Adamson, Jonathan S. Ferguson, Josh Garrett-Davis, Erik Goldstein, Ashley Hlebinsky, and David D. Miller.

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RESORT : ANDREW ELLIS JOHNSON AND SUSANNE SLAVICK

The McDonough Museum of Art at Youngstown State University

September 7 – October 26, 2018

Public Reception, Friday, September 7, 5-7pm

Gallery Talk, Friday, September 7, 5 pm

New Immigrant and Refugee Visions screening, 6-7pm

The John J. McDonough Museum of Art, on the campus of Youngstown State University opens the fall season with RESORT, a traveling exhibition of works by Andrew Ellis Johnson and Susanne Slavick. It accompanies Sanctuary, an exhibition of paintings by John Guy Petruzzi. Both shows will be on view in the galleries September 7 – October 26 with an opening reception on Friday, September 7 from 5-7pm. Susanne Slavick and Andrew Ellis Johnson will give a gallery talk on the evening of the reception beginning at 5pm.

In addressing RESORT Slavick and Johnson comment: “Driven or displaced, cut loose or set adrift, or simply seeking safety—all are precarious states of passage. The decision to leave home may be voluntary or involuntary, arising from desperation or anticipation. RESORT, as a title, reflects that duality. To flee is a last resort. The destination is often another shore, literally or figuratively. The shore can also be a place for a benign kind of escape—an actual vacation resort. Some European vacationers have actually watched refugees wash ashore, from vessels both intact and capsized. We have similar scenarios on land at our own borders, worsened by recent separations of children from their families. RESORT explores the intersection of these two worlds—of security and insecurity— and our responses to those caught between them.”

 

In conjunction with RESORT, there will be several screenings from New Immigrant and Refugee Visions, produced by Community Supported Film. A preview screening will take place on Friday, September 7, 6-7pm. Additional screenings will take place from 12:30 to 1:30pm on September 11,14, 25, 28 and October 9, 12, 23 and 26. New Immigrant and Refugee Visions is a collection of documentary films made by new immigrants that provide unique insider perspectives on both the challenges of integration and the contributions immigrants make to our culture, economy and social fabric.

http://csfilm.org

McDonough galleries are open Tuesday through Saturday from 11am until 4pm.

Office hours are Monday through Friday from 8am to 5pm.

The Museum is open to the public and admission is free.

ARTISTS WHO TEACH

Westmoreland Museum of Art, Greensburg PA

August 25 - November 25, 2018

Susanne Slavick will join other artists for gallery talks on Wednesday, September 12 > 5:30-7pm | RSVP

The Cantilever Gallery at The Westmoreland is brimming with contemporary artworks created in a broad range of mediums—painting, sculpture, photography, video, stained glass, installation and mixed media.

While the works themselves explore diverse themes using various techniques and materials, each of the artists in this exhibition share one thing in common—they all teach at one of the numerous colleges and universities in our region.

Artists Who Teach celebrates the incredible talent and broad range of art making in this region today. The 58 artists in this exhibition are all inspiring the next generation of artists by teaching at Carlow University, Carnegie Mellon University, Chatham University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Robert Morris University, Seton Hill University, Saint Vincent College, University of Pittsburgh/University of Pittsburgh-Greensburg and Westmoreland County Community College.

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Recuperation:Diurnal, 2007, oil and acrylic on three panels, 80 x 109 inches  The convalescing Cedar of Lebanon in  Recuperation  simultaneously embodies bleak realism and hopeful romanticism.  It is a metaphor for the damage we do to ourselves and how we try to recover. In the daytime version of the painting, pale atmosphere alternates with raw flesh color, suggesting both cruelty and compassion. In the nighttime version, the tree’s amputated limbs are silhouetted against a deep blue vapor.  In 2006, I visited Isola Bella on Lago Maggiore in Italy. That summer, the gardens were in disarray. A freak tornado had torn it apart and uprooted an ancient Cedar of Lebanon. Maintenance workers and gardeners had propped up this huge specimen with pulleys, slings, and guy ropes. Bandages wrapped fractured and stumpy limbs and sprinkler systems were suspended high amongst its branches in hopes for resuscitation. At the time these paintings were made, it was not known if the cedar would survive.  I photographed this poignant spectacle partly because it coincided with my prior research into landscapes of ruin, especially those devastated by war. That summer, the world watched as the 2006 Lebanon War decimated the country, all while the larger war in Iraq raged. The Lebanese town of Qana was attacked for the second time in a decade and suffered extraordinary numbers of civilian deaths, lives that could never be resuscitated.

Recuperation:Diurnal, 2007, oil and acrylic on three panels, 80 x 109 inches

The convalescing Cedar of Lebanon in Recuperation simultaneously embodies bleak realism and hopeful romanticism.  It is a metaphor for the damage we do to ourselves and how we try to recover. In the daytime version of the painting, pale atmosphere alternates with raw flesh color, suggesting both cruelty and compassion. In the nighttime version, the tree’s amputated limbs are silhouetted against a deep blue vapor.

In 2006, I visited Isola Bella on Lago Maggiore in Italy. That summer, the gardens were in disarray. A freak tornado had torn it apart and uprooted an ancient Cedar of Lebanon. Maintenance workers and gardeners had propped up this huge specimen with pulleys, slings, and guy ropes. Bandages wrapped fractured and stumpy limbs and sprinkler systems were suspended high amongst its branches in hopes for resuscitation. At the time these paintings were made, it was not known if the cedar would survive.

I photographed this poignant spectacle partly because it coincided with my prior research into landscapes of ruin, especially those devastated by war. That summer, the world watched as the 2006 Lebanon War decimated the country, all while the larger war in Iraq raged. The Lebanese town of Qana was attacked for the second time in a decade and suffered extraordinary numbers of civilian deaths, lives that could never be resuscitated.

Marx@200 in The Brooklyn Rail

A review by Matthew Friday of Marx@200 in The Brooklyn Rail, June 5, 2018.

Curated y Kathy M. Newman and Susanne Slavick

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