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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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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FEMINIST BORDER ARTS FILM FESTIVAL

RESORT, a video co-created with Andrew Ellis Johnson, is included in:

BORDER ZONES LIMINAL BODIES

New Mexico State University  Art Gallery

March 12, 2018 from 10am-6pm

A second screening event occurs on April 16, 2018 from 6pm-8:30pm at the CMI Theater Milton Hall 171 on the campus of NMSU. Sponsored by the Gender & Sexuality Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies Department, and the Creative Media Institute. 

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THE OTHER BORDER WALL

Flatland Gallery, Houston TX

February 12 - March 30, 2018

Organized by JM Design Studio

https://www.otherborderwallproject.com/

Image: Susanne Slavick, Asclepius Viridis Wall shows a "wall" of milkweed plants native to the south central and south eastern United States. 

These plants attract monarch butterflies, a migratory species that travels over 2500 miles each year. These species allude to freedom of movement-- a more welcoming reception to those seeking refuge, safety, reunification with families, a living wage and a better life.

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No Vacation: 'Resort' is a voyage of ‘empathic unsettlement’

RESORT, a two person show by Andrew Ellis Johnson and Susanne Slavick at The Fed Galleries at Kendall College of Art and Design in Grand Rapids, Michigan, previewed in this REVUE article by Marla Miller.

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