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Rebekah Modrak: #exstrange Project Accepted for Project Anywhere

December 9, 2016

#exstrange, the curatorial project being created by Stamps Associate Professor Rebekah Modrak and curator Marialaura Ghidini, has just been accepted for Project Anywhere’s 2017 program. Project Anywhere is a competitive, double blind peer reviewed international hosting site for artist projects undertaken outside traditional exhibition circuits. Project Anywhere is dedicated to the evaluation and dissemination of art at the outermost limits of location-specificity.

In addition to being hosted on the Project Anywhere website beginning in February 2017, #exstrange will be presented within the “peer reviewed presentations” at the Project Anywhere conference in NYC in November 2018 and will be included in their third biennial publication Anywhere v3 in 2019.

#exstrange is an interventionist curatorial project that encourages artists, designers and cultural critics to see the online commerce site eBay as an environment of interaction. The exhibition, which launches on January 15, 2017, will transform eBay into a site of artistic production and cultural exchange by inviting artists and designers to post auctions as artworks. Over the course of several months, participants will transform the online marketplace into a site for the exchange of ideas and critique.

Marialaura Ghidini is the founder of or-bits.com, a web-based curatorial platform, and a curator and writer at the Center for Experimental Media and Art, Bangalore, India, and a faculty member at Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology.

Stamps Associate Professor Rebekah Modrak is an artist and writer whose research explores the language of commerce, labor, and identity.

Rebekah Modrak: #exstrange Project Accepted for Project Anywhere

Sarah Innes Exhibits Work in ‘Eating the Pig’

December 9, 2016

Sarah Innes (BFA 1979, MFA 1989) exhibits paintings and drawings in the show Eating the Pig: A Dinner Party in Poetry, Photography and Painting, on display in the Ann Arbor District Library Main Branch through January 12. 

The 1970s at The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor was a good time for poetry.  Every week or so there was a reading by a luminary in the field: Donald Hall (who taught at U of M), Robert Bly, Galway Kinnel, Joseph Brodsky, Jorge Luis Borges, to name but a few.

In October 1974 two undergraduates, Stephen Blos and Ric Burns, decided to roast a pig and host a dinner. They invited Donald Hall, Bert Hornback and Jane Kenyon, Don’s second wife, along with half a dozen friends.

Stephen Blos took photographs of the dinner resulting in 24 images from the evening. Don Hall used a tape-recorder to capture his impressions from the night before, which became his poem, Eating The Pig, published in 1975.

Stephen Blos went on to study photography at Hampshire College and move to NYC in 1979. He made his living as a photographer, and as a printer for other photographers such as Helen Levitt and Bruce Gilden, among others. Unfortunately, Stephen died in 1985 when he was thirty years old leaving hundreds of negatives. 

Jane Kenyon became a well-known poet and translator of the Russian poet, Anna Anakmatova. Jane who lived in New Hampshire with Don, was the Poet Laureate of the state when she died in 1996 at age forty-seven.   

Donald Hall lives at Eagle Pond Farm in New Hampshire. He was the Poet Laureate of the United States in 2006 and was awarded the Presidential Medal for the Arts in 2010. He and Sarah Innes met in 2015 to discuss showing the poem and photographs together. Sarah’s sketches of their meeting in New Hampshire are included in the exhibit. 

This exhibition is a good example of how art happens: It happens out of daily life.

Eating the Pig: A Dinner Party in Poetry, Photography and Painting
For additional background information, please visit: http://www.aadl.org/eatingthepig.
On display through January 12, 2017
Arbor District Library Main Branch, 3rd Floor

Sarah Innes Exhibits Work in ‘Eating the Pig’

Nick Tobier Releases Detroit People Mover Travelogue

December 7, 2016

Compiled and edited by Stamps Professor Nick Tobier, Looping Detroit is a compilation of essays, poems, and photography by Michigan-based creative practitioners including award-winning Detroit novelists Lolita Hernandez and Michael Zardoorian; poets Gloria House and Walter Lacy; music producer Cornelius Harris; Chace “Mic Write” Morris, front man of the Detroit hip-hop trio Coldmen Young; and radio producer Zak Rosen.

In planning Looping Detroit, Professor Tobier invited contributing artists and writers to join him to take the People Mover to a given stop with the minimal brief of reporting out on “anything that would not be in a tourist’s guide to the city.” The outcome is an introspective journey of Detroit geography and culture. 

“I am interested in weaving these narratives together for a general but critical art/planning/urban affairs readership at a time when Detroit’s downtown development is booming,” Tobier stated. “While there is tremendous investment in a downtown that was ignored for decades, the very real possibility exists that this new interest will parallel the same investment patterns that brought the over invested People Mover to a fragment of the city.”

Looping Detroit: A People Mover Travelogue | Amazon.com

‘Shifting Tables’: Interarts Students Perform Dec. 15

December 7, 2016

Stamps Lecturer Emilia White’s Interarts Performance Live Art Survey class presents avant-garde and performance art works on Thursday, December 15 at Ypsi Experimental Space.

Featuring works by:

  • Maya Adler
  • Fee Christoph
  • Torin Clay
  • Anina Dassa
  • Dara Firoozi
  • Chelsea Hamm
  • Jonathan Hull
  • Jarinn’e Ishmel
  • Camille Johnson
  • Rosalie Li
  • Chelsea Markus
  • Frannie Miller
  • Kirsten Mossberg

LIVE ART “Shifting Tables”
Thursday, December 15 at 8 PM - 11 PM
YES - Ypsi Experimental Space
8 N Washington St, Ypsilanti, Michigan 48197
Free Admission

‘Shifting Tables’: Interarts Students Perform Dec. 15

Stephanie Rowden and Jennifer Metsker: ‘Too Many Miles’ on BBC Radio

December 7, 2016

BBC Radio 4 recently broadcast ‘Too Many Miles’, an audio prose poem by Stamps Associate Professor Stephanie Rowden and Stamps Writing Coordinator Jennifer Metsker.  On Monday December 5th, the poem was featured on Short Cuts, a radio program and podcast devoted to short documentaries and adventures in sound.

Short Cuts: The End of the Story
Josie Long presents short documentaries on things drawing to a close - from stories captured, bottled and buried over time, to reflections at the end of a life well-lived.
Series Producer: Eleanor McDowall

Stephanie Rowden and Jennifer Metsker: ‘Too Many Miles’ on BBC Radio

Titus Brooks Heagins: Solo Exhibition in Raleigh, NC

December 7, 2016

Titus Brooks Heagins (MFA 2002) recently exhibited a new series of photographic portraits in his solo exhibition Rorschach, on display at Artspace in Raleigh, NC from September 2 to October 29, 2016.

Developed in 1921 by Swiss psychoanalyst, Hermann Rorschach, and widely used as a projective personality test in the 1960’s, the Rorschach test uses inkblots to spark visual associations in the viewer purportedly revealing deep seated layers of a person’s personality. Photographer, Titus Brooks Heagins, applies this theory to the viewing experience of his portrait series, “Rorschach” in which the viewer is asked to tackle their own preconceived notions of race, class, gender, and age. In addition to functioning as a source of self-reflection, these photographs present candid portraits of vulnerability and strength and challenge conventional notions of beauty though a stunning display of diversity.

Heagins has dedicated his career to documenting people who are often thought of as “other.” From southern black church culture, to transgendered persons living in Cuba, his camera has served as a means to broaden the perceptions of his viewers and highlight societal challenges that skirt the mainstream. In “Rorschach,” Heagins pushes the bounds of his medium with a more formal approach. Each of his subjects is presented in the same bare shouldered posture against a neutral background. Through classical poses and striking lighting, every one of these individuals is elevated to an object of beauty and reverence. For Heagins, “Photography keeps me in awe. Especially while creating a portrait. There is a certain honesty, a type of spiritual integrity that comes out and does not elude itself from the camera’s lens.” Take, ‘Darron Kamal Walker,’ who gazes skyward, neck extended. A shock of bronze hair against his deep brown skin. Despite his wary eyes, he is an embodiment of the splendor of hope and aspiration.

While the portraits have undeniable veneration for the individuals portrayed, the consistent stripped down presentation also highlights the physical and racial differences among the group. There is a subtle allusion to the pseudo-scientific images of the nineteenth-century in which people of difference were studied as specimens or as racial “types.” Additionally, these larger than life portraits confront us in an aggressive way that naturally turns the gaze inward, creating discomfort through forced introspection. The portrait, ‘Nikki’ demonstrates the ways that Heagins hopes this series will challenge the viewer to examine deep rooted prejudices and assumptions and to consider the complex humanity of all his subjects. The model, Nikki, has albinism a condition that reduces the pigmentation of her skin and hair, and has a harmful impact on her vision. She exists in a space of racial ambiguity, her fair complexion juxtaposed to the coarse texture of her hair and broad facial features. Though her blindness isn’t visible, her eyes look in slightly different directions alluding to her lack of vision. As viewers we scrutinize her with our eyes, looking closely and questioning her appearance. Where does she fit? What is her status? How can she be understood? Nikki’s experience of the world is full of actual encounters with people who ask these questions of her. Her appearance is a source of curiosity and strangers will touch her skin and her with no permission. According to Heagins, “Some ask the ridiculous question, “What are you?” She [Nikki] has begun to wear a t-shirt with the bold declaration, I AM HUMAN.” In this image, Nikki’s straight posture and head on gaze present her not only as a minority, not as a disorder or a “type” but as a confident, whole and beautiful human being.

—Annah Lee, Director of Artistic Programs at Artspace

Titus Brooks Heagins is a documentary and fine art photographer based in Durham, NC. Heagins holds a Master of Fine Arts Degree in Photography from the School of Art and Design at the University of Michigan. Heagins projects have taken him to Africa, Asia, South America, Europe and through the Caribbean, working extensively in Cuba and Haiti. Heagins has shown his work extensively in publications and galleries nationally and internationally. Portfolios of his photography are included in the collections of several museums including the Smithsonian Anacostia Museum of African American Art and History, the North Carolina Museum of Art and LeHigh University’s Zoeller Galleries. Heagins is represented by the Arnika Dawkins Gallery in Atlanta, GA.

Titus Brooks Heagins: Solo Exhibition in Raleigh, NC

Christine Golus: Q LTD Brand Design Firm Celebrates 35 Years

December 7, 2016

Ann Arbor-based branding and design firm Q LTD celebrates 35 years of developing visual identities, brand strategies, and marketing communications for a broad range of local, regional, and global clients.

Ann Arbor-based branding and design firm Q LTD celebrates 35 years of developing visual identities, brand strategies, and marketing communications for a broad range of local, regional, and global clients.

Founded in 1981 by partners Tom Rieke, Jim Frenza, and Doug Hesseltine as Quorum Communications, the company changed its name and brand mark to Q LTD in 1994.  Today, the firm is owned by Christine Golus and Jeffrey Callender, both longtime Q operatives. Managing director Christine Golus is a graduate of the University of Michigan School of Art & Design (BFA Graphic Design, 1980) and has served as an industry advisor to the Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design.

To mark the occasion and share a look back at the firm’s history and people, the Q crew developed a custom anniversary website, featuring the Q story, milestones, photos, info on alumni and interns, and a retrospective of the firm’s own brand history.

Over the past 35 years, notable Q clients have included the annual SIGGRAPH conference on computer graphics; the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, School of Nursing, and Wallace House; Yale University’s C2; The Kresge Foundation; Bosch; NuStep; and North Star Reach. Q also designed and developed the first website for Borders Books and Music.

“We’re proud of the history we have as an independent design firm, and the work we do to help clients. We’re consistently delivering fresh ideas and cutting edge work. That will always be part of Q’s culture,” says Golus.

“Q is the world’s smallest global branding and design firm,” says Tom Rieke. With headquarters in Ann Arbor, Michigan, the firm also has satellite offices in Palm Springs, California and Toronto, Ontario. On international projects, Q collaborates with its European partner agency, Q GmbH in Wiesbaden, Germany.

Christine Golus: Q LTD Brand Design Firm Celebrates 35 Years

David Turnley: Chicago Ideas Week Presentation

December 5, 2016

Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer and Stamps Associate Professor David Turnley’s October 19 Chicago Ideas Week presentation “Documenting Life Around the World Through Photographs” has been released.

The presentation was part of Unlocking Genius: The Dynamics Behind the World’s Greatest Minds featuring Annette Gordon-Reed (Professor, Harvard Law School & Harvard University), Brian Grazer (Award-Winning Film & TV Producer; New York Times Best-selling Author), Graham Moore (Best-selling Author & Academy Award-Winning Screenwriter), and David Turnley (Pulitzer Prize-Winning Photographer).

Chicago Ideas is a movement built on one core belief: When a broad spectrum of thinkers and instigators share ideas, we have the power to transform our world.

David Turnley is a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer who has documented events around the world ranging from the war in Beirut to 9/11. He speaks about what his work means to him, and how everyone should lead a life that is dignified.

University Record Covers Stamps DE&I Plan

December 2, 2016

The University Record recently published a story covering the Stamps School’s development of diversity-related curriculum.  Stamps Associate Professor Irina Aristarkhova is leading the implementation of the School’s plan, which is part of a universitywide five-year diversity, equity and inclusion strategic plan.

“This new universitywide initiative enabled us to consolidate our previous strategies, identify, more systematically, what has worked well and where we need to do better, and compare ourselves to other schools, colleges and units on campus,” Aristarkhova says.

“We now have a visible public face related to the efforts we have already implemented and new ones we plan to implement. Working with CRLT towards formulating the best DE&I practices is very exciting. Supporting students’ efforts to make Stamps more inclusive for all students is very exciting.”

Stamps School DE&I plan includes diversity-related courses | University Record

University Record Covers Stamps DE&I Plan

Melanie Manos Exhibits New Work at Edition 2016, Detroit

December 2, 2016

Stamps Lecturer Melanie Manos presents new work derived from her 2016 performance Lofty Bitch for EDITION 2016, open November 26 - December 24 at Simone DeSousa Gallery, Detroit.  Manos also will have limited edition merchandise for the feminist/nasty woman/professional woman available, including shopping bags, coasters, and cards with motivational messages.  Stamps lecturers Susan Hoge, Katie MacDonald and Ryan Standfest are also exhibiting artists in Edition 2016.

EDITION 2016 - PRINT
November 26 - December 24, 2016
Simone DeSousa Gallery
444 W. Willis, #112, Detroit, MI 48201
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Wednesday - Saturday, 11 am - 6 pm

Melanie Manos Exhibits New Work at Edition 2016, Detroit