Past Exhibitions

 

    • Installation view of "The 9th Art: Frames and Thought Bubbles" in the Don Russell Clayton Gallery at the Zuckerman Museum of Art. Photo by Mike Jensen.

      The 9th Art: Frames and Thought Bubbles

      January 23 – May 8, 2021

      Location: Don Russell Clayton Gallery

      The 9th Art: Frames and Thought Bubbles provided a comprehensive overview of comic art, sharing examples of a wide variety of visual and narrative storytelling styles from panels in early newspapers to contemporary comic images. The original drawings and prints presented in this exhibition highlighted the artistic skills of the master artists who defined the comic art form and the contemporary artists who created some of the most famous and influential characters in our shared cultural experience. This encyclopedic exhibition, curated by Geo Sipp, director of KSU's School of Art and Design and professor of art, featured a selection of American and Franco/Belgian comic book art on loan from collections and individual artists.


      The term “9th Art” acknowledges the reverence for which Franco-Belgian audiences regard comics in their culture. In France and Belgium, the term bande dessinée, which derives from the original description of the art form as drawn strips, analogous to the sequence of images in a film strip, have been given the honor of being referred to as the 9th Art since the 1960s. French film critic Claude Beylie first used the term in an article he wrote for the magazine Lettres et Medecins in 1964. Expanding on German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel’s Lectures on Aesthetics, in which major art forms are ranked, comics and bande dessinée have followed film and television into the realm of Fine Art. As such, The museum was pleased to present this prominent and extensive selection of works at the Zuckerman Museum of Art which challenged the construct of traditional narrative storytelling.

      Installation image of The 9th Art: Frames and Thought Bubbles on view at the Zuckerman Museum of Art. Photo by Mike Jensen. 
    • Installation view of the "Spring 2021 SOAAD Faculty Exhibition" in the Mortin Gallery at the Zuckerman Museum of Art. Photo by Mike Jensen.

      Spring 2021 School of Art and Design Faculty Exhibition

      January 23 – May 8, 2021

      Location: Mortin Gallery

      This exhibition highlighted the incredible talent and creativity of the artists who teach full-time in the KSU School of Art and Design. As one of the largest public art schools in the United States, the KSU School of Art and Design exemplifies a breadth of expertise in artistic practice. The faculty are the bearers and conveyers of this expertise with their demonstrably exceptional artistic skill and notable drive for innovation. The Zuckerman Museum of Art was thrilled to share the latest discoveries and accomplishments in their artistic practices with you.

      Featured artists: Craig Brasco, Page Burch, Jeff Campana, Sandee Chamberlain, Donna Colebeck, Valerie Dibble, Jonathan Fisher, Matt Haffner, Debbie Hutchinson, Joe Karg, Kristine Kim, Chris Malone, Joe Remillard, Don Robson, Robert Sherer, and Keith Smith

      Read more

      Installation image of the Spring 2021 School of Art and Design Faculty Exhibition at the Zuckerman Museum of Art. Photo by Mike Jensen. 
    • Photo of a lithograph by Aaron S. Coleman entitled "Stockholm Syndrome," created in 2013 as part of the Southern Graphics Council International Conference. The work shows a person at the bottom of the frame. Their body is facing toward the viewer but the face is turned in on itself. Surrounding the figure are blue and yellow birds, angled downward. The seven birds have hallos around their faces. The background of the work resembles stained glass, thick black lines dividing the abstracted suggestion of architecture.

      Celebrating Black History Month: Honoring African American Artists in the ZMA Permanent Collection

      February 1, 2021 - February 28, 2021

      Location: Virtual Exhibition Series

      In recognition of Black History Month, the Zuckerman Museum of Art presented this series of virtual exhibitions comprised of artwork by African American artists from our permanent collection. Celebrating Black History Month: Honoring African American Artists in the ZMA Permanent Collection features work encompassing a variety of styles and mediums, expressing each artist’s plurality of vision and experience. This curatorial project offers our talented museum student assistants the opportunity to interact with academic peers and museum staff, engage in scholarly research, conceive, curate, and actualize independent exhibitions utilizing the prominent collection of the ZMA. Individual responses to the collection were realized as thoughtful and timely exhibitions, highlighting each student’s unique perspective and ability to form a personal narrative. All students were afforded guidance and support throughout the entire process from all ZMA staff, including curatorial mentorship from our director of curatorial affairs, Cynthia Nourse Thompson.

      Aaron S. Coleman, Stockholm Syndrome, 2013, ink on paper, color lithograph, gift of the Southern Graphics Council International, courtesy of the Zuckerman Museum of Art.
    • One print by Jonathan Beaumont Thomas titled "The Curtain", 8”x6” image, 14”x12” paper, intaglio, 2017. This print is number 7 in the Signs of the Times portfolio by the artist, on view at the museum.

      Jonathan Beaumont Thomas: Sign of the Times Portfolio

      In conjunction with the exhibition, The 9th Art: Frames and Thought Bubbles, the ZMA presented a portfolio of intaglio prints by artist Jonathan Beaumont Thomas, titled Sign of the Times. 

      About the Portfolio: “When I imagined that on seeing his pictures I should get a clue to the understanding of his strange character I was mistaken. They merely increased the astonishment with which he filled me. I was more at sea than ever. The only thing that seemed clear to me - and perhaps even this was fanciful - was that he was passionately striving for liberation from some power that held him. But what the power was and what line the liberation would take remained obscure. Each one of us is alone in the world. He is shut in a tower of brass, and can communicate with his fellows only by signs, and the signs have no common value, so that their sense is vague and uncertain.”  

      -W. Somerset Maughan, The Moon and Sixpence, 1919, pg.133. 

      No one has written more beautifully about the inscrutability of images and their possession of people than W. Somerset Maughan. Even today, in the great ocean of digital images, his words from a century ago speak to the vast and deepening uncertainty that lies at the end of the swim. 
       
      I spend a great deal of time collecting and organizing pictures, images of all sorts, searching for signs, for relationships, for indicators of value. I'm intrigued by the intense specificity and simultaneous randomness of the whole enterprise. The best description of my artwork is to say it is squeezed out of this process, one small drop of juice from one large piece of fruit. I have long been interested in the role of images in worship, conflict over idolatry, and the relationship between iconoclasm and shifts in communicative media.  These interests lay the groundwork for a deliberate process of creating narratives that extricate themes embedded in the mass of images that I both consciously and subconsciously collect.  
       
      The nine etchings that comprise the Sign of the Times portfolio are structurally divided into quadrants. That idea came from comics and the goal of unfolding a story. Within each window I challenge myself to create a relationship between elements that yields a type of small truth concerning the picture’s inhabitants, and perhaps their relationship to the viewer.  Working in intaglio, at least for me, has always been such a battle of wills. It can be so uncompromising, scraping copper with steel. But what a thrill to work and maneuver the texture of a metal plate just enough to capture a creeping shadow against the wall, the cast of an oncoming storm or the glow of a candle lit room. It can also take a long time. And what does it mean to spend a long time making a picture of something so fleeting and inconsequential as a chaff of wheat shifting in the wind? 

      -Jonathan Beaumont Thomas

      Jonathan Beaumont Thomas,The Curtain, 8”x6” image, 14”x12” paper, intaglio, 2017. Courtesy of the artist. 
      • Jonathan Beaumont Thomas is currently the Interim Associate Dean of Design and Media at the Maryland Insititute College of Art, in Baltimore Maryland, where he was the Chair of the Printmaking Department from 2010-2020. Previously, he taught at the University of Miami in Miami, FL and Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana. Jonathan received his MFA from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and a BS in Biology from Wake Forest University. He has shown both nationally and internationally, including exhibitions at Trudi Gallery in Los Angeles, the Bas Fisher Invitational in Miami, Untitled in New York, and Carol Jazzar in Miami. He was an Artist-in-Residence at Anchor Graphics in Chicago, IL and the Plains Art Museum in Fargo, ND and was the recipient of the Florida Individual Fellowship Grant.

      • Vivid layered print by Dennis O’Neil titled "Moscow Revisited," created in 2011 with cold wax medium and oil paint, unique print, 26.5 x 32 Inches. The print shows an abstracted city scene with layers of colors printed on top of one another on the print edges in an abstracted, irregular format.

        The Hand Print Workshop International: Process & Innovation

        June 5 – July 17, 2021

        Location: Don Russell Clayton Gallery

        Dennis O’Neil [1946  - 2020] founded the Hand Print Workshop International [HPWI] in 1984 with a vision of furthering the innovation of screen printing through establishing international collaborations with artists. Dennis was an inspirational artist and collaborator who dedicated his life to this endeavor. In 1989 at the fall of the Soviet Union, the workshop embarked on a unique journey in partnership with Russian artists in Moscow. What began as a risky endeavor to conceive the Moscow Studio would ultimately become the center for collaborative screen printing in Russia for nearly a decade, featuring some of the most renowned Russian artists of the past twenty-five years. The workshop returned to the United States in 1997 and continued to support an active artist residency program locally, nationally, and internationally— including artists from Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, Chile, Israel, and Cuba. The experiences and lessons cultivated from the Moscow Studio influenced the studio’s work and role as a model for the future of contemporary printmaking practices. By creating support and opportunities during uncertain times, HPWI provided artists with a platform and a voice to express individuality and perspective on critical social justice and human rights issues.

        The Hand Print Workshop International: Process & Innovation presented a dynamic selection of twenty-five collaborative prints by nineteen artists. The exhibition visually chronicled a studio committed to experimentation and discovery and contesting the boundaries of contemporary screen printing through innovative new practices that embrace the medium's artistic potential. Dennis was a champion of silkscreen printing, establishing a legacy of cross-cultural connections and advancing printmaking as a powerful contemporary art form. The works featured in this exhibition exemplified Dennis' visionary acumen, commitment to mutualism, and love for the medium. Moreover, through these works, his legacy endures.

        Dennis O’Neil, Moscow Revisited, 2011, cold wax medium and oil paint, unique print, 26.5 x 32 Inches.
      • Rachel Simmons work titled, "GHOST SHIP,"  Ink on paper, screenprint, Created for the 2016 Southern Graphics Council International Membership Exchange. The work is an abstracted glacier screen with a vivid red sky.

        In Collaboration: selections from the ZMA Permanent Collection and SGCI Archive

        June 5 – July 17, 2021

        Location: Mortin Gallery

        In Collaboration: Selections from the SGCI Archive, presented a rich selection of offerings illustrating the notable and vital developments in the field of contemporary printmaking practices. The SGCI organization has long maintained national and international recognition in the discipline of printmaking, which now extends into the collaborative arenas of both papermaking and book arts. This exhibition frames, in both a physical, historical and visual sense, the context of this art-making discipline as punctuated milestones chronicling its past.


        In Collaboration celebrated the achievements made by contemporary artists who are challenging and redefining the medium to create works that are technically and conceptually diverse; innovative and consistently flawless in craftsmanship; and above all true to each of the artists’ concept and vision. 


        Rachel Simmons, GHOST SHIP, 2016, Ink on paper, screenprint, Created for the 2016 Southern Graphics Council International Membership Exchange.

       Special Projects

      • Image of Greely Myatt's installation at the ZMA featuring "Untitled Pages (Hagar) and (Beetle Bailey) created in 2011 with Painted and polished steel and air, measuring 73 x 53 x 3" each. The two "pages" created by the artist are installed side by side on the wall. (Hagar) on the left features multiple steel frames of different sizes in 4 rows. All eight frames feature different sized thought bubbles. The thought bubbles come together to create an abstracted smiley face on the work on the left. (Beetle Bailey) on the right features ten different sized frames arranged into four rows. The motif in this untitled page consists of several small thought bubbles throughout and three larger thought bubbles that interact in multiple frames.

        West Project Wall: Greely Myatt

        January 23 – July 17, 2021

        Curated by Cynthia Nourse Thompson

        The ZMA presented three works by artist Greely Myatt to coincide with the exhibition on view in the Don Russell Clayton Gallery January 23 – May 9, 2021titled The 9th Art: Frames and Thought Bubbles. All works by Myatt, Untitled Pages (Hagar) and (Beetle Bailey) 2011 and Oh $#*t 2014, reinterpret the recognizable graphic conventions of the comic strip and speech bubble as a reimagined visual language. Myatt is prominently known for his monumental installations and amusing sculptural works which often incorporate found elements.

        Installation view of Greely Myatt's Untitled Page (Hagar) and Untitled Page (Beetle Bailey)  2011, Painted and polished steel and air, 73 x 53 x 3”, Courtesy of the artist and David Lusk Gallery, Memphis and Nashville. Photo by Mike Jensen. 
        • Greely Myatt was born and educated in Mississippi.  He currently lives and maintains a studio in West Memphis, Arkansas. Myatt recently retired from teaching sculpture at The University of Memphis for thirty-one years and he is now Professor Emeritus.  His works have been exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions across the United States, Europe and Japan.  He has received grants and fellowships from the Tennessee Arts Commission, Arkansas Arts Council, The University of Memphis, The University of Georgia, Alternate Roots in Atlanta, and the Mississippi Arts and Letters Visual Arts Award in 1994.  Myatt was an exchange artist to Israel in 1998. In 2009, work from twenty years of living and working in Memphis was exhibited across the city in nine separate venues.  His work has been reviewed in Art Papers, Number Magazine, Art in America, ArtNews, Sculpture Magazine, American Quilter, and in online versions of ArtForum and Juxtapoz Magazine. He is represented by Sandler Hudson Gallery in Atlanta and David Lusk Gallery in Memphis/Nashville.  

         

        • An image of the colorful yo-yo quilt by Atlanta artist Jess Jones on display at the ZMA. The work is created with small circular pieces of sewn fabric arranged in strips together. All the strips have been arranged for a beautiful warm color gradient from white to dark shades of reds, blues, and purples.

          North Project Wall: Jess Jones

          August 1, 2020 - July 17, 2021

          Curated by Ginger Wolfe-Suarez

          Jess Jones is a textile artist based out of Atlanta, GA. Over the past decade she has conceptually and materially experimented with found and re-used textiles through aesthetic, layered, and stitched compositions. Weeping Quilt (Yo-yos) was a newly commissioned, site-specific installation that engaged both contemporary and historical ideas of craft, labor, and the re-use of found textiles. Because many of these quilting pieces were found in various states of completion by the artist, there is an aspect of finished and unfinished; of pulling together pieces that were abandoned or never finished by their makers. This work uses large volumes of undulating color made from small gathered circles of fabric. The individual circular pieces were commonly referred to by quilters as 'Yo-yos' in a quilting style that is associated with the 1920's, but still used by modern quilters. Her works presents the opportunity to discuss ideas about creative authorship, and what constitutes a finished work. Jones's work engages material culture through re-imagining what has been left behind, and tactile memory as a space for cultural and creative possibility in American art.

          Installation view of Jess Jones Weeping Quilt(Yo-yos), created in 2020. Image courtesy of the artist. Photo by Mike Jensen. 

           

        • Installation view of Susan O'Malley's "It Is Possible" on the exterior of the ZMA.

          The Susan O'Malley Project

          August 1, 2020 - August 1, 2021

          The Susan O'Malley Project is a site specific installation featuring the work of artist Susan O’Malley. Her work explored generosity, positivity, and sincerity, and the profound possibility of listening as a kind of artistic practice. O’Malley was an artist and curator of Mexican-Irish descent whose work often interwove cultures and perspectives, engaging various aspects of production and dissemination throughout material culture. Her work appeared on fences, posts, and signs in areas that were being heavily gentrified. Throughout her practice, she met people in our society in their space as they were, as they are. Many of the works in this solo project are curated from a series titled Advice from My 80 Year-Old Self. In this series, O’Malley explored intergenerational knowledge sharing by asking members of the public what advice they would give their younger selves. O’Malley explored positivity and the human capacity for happiness, but she also explored profound loss and grief throughout her artistic career. All of her work was cohesive in its capacity for human connection across cultural space.

           

        • Installation view of Robert Sherer's vinyl graphic at ZMA. Stronghold consists of several drawing of vinyls interlacing together. The vines are warm in color, shades of burnt orange, yellows, and rusty reds.

          Robert Sherer: Stronghold

          August 1, 2020 - July 17, 2021

          Curated by Ginger Wolfe-Suarez

          Stronghold was a site-specific installation by Georgia-based artist, Robert Sherer, created to be experienced by walking over the work. Sherer eloquently and urgently represents human experience primarily through the forms of drawing and painting. Throughout the past three decades of his art practice, the artist has experimented in material and process while navigating complex topics relating to the LGBTQ community and the HIV crisis. Stronghold was initially conceptualized in relation to his own memories about being bullied in childhood which is a topic that affects youth throughout our region. Sherer's work has often included autobiographical narratives while exploring ideas of experimental portraiture and alternative forms of history-sharing. This work represents cultural growth, suffering, engagement, and hope.

          Stronghold was commissioned by the museum in an effort to support living artists in the South-East.

          Installation view of Robert Sherer's Stronghold at Zuckerman Museum of Art. Photo by Shane McDonald. 

        •  

          • Jekyll

            it's your world for the moment

            August 29 - December 6, 2020

            Take a virtual tour here.

            The group exhibition it's your world for the moment brought rare and never-been-seen work of historical and cultural significance to the Southeast while also supporting the commissioning of new work made within our region. The precariousness of our geographic and shared spaces was explored through ‘environmental portraits’, explorations into ecological sites, and art-making tactics that incorporate cultural and symbolic meanings of both our natural and cultural spaces. Each artist featured in this exhibition has inexhaustibly created works of art uniquely positioned in the present while having a simultaneous relationship with the past and future. Their work collectively engages concepts of water and land in all of its complexity and precariousness, while rigorously engaging ideas of our climate and shared geography. Each artist included has explored our lived human experience here on Earth. 

            Featured artists: Allison Janae Hamilton, Yoshua Okón, Erin Jane Nelson, Ana Mendieta, and Optics Division of the Metabolic Studio (Lauren Bon, Rich Nielsen, and Tristan Duke).



            Read KSU Professor Elizabeth Giddens' essay about Erin Jane Nelson and the ideas that motivate her work:

            Ecocritic Elizabeth Giddens interviewed Erin Jane Nelson in her studio in February 2020. They discussed Nelson’s concerns about how climate change is affecting human communities as well as the natural world. Nelson shared her intellectual and intuitive approach to several pieces in the ZMA show It’s your world for the moment. She also described features of her technique such as hapa-zome printing.In her essay Solastalgizing the Georgia Coast, Giddens interprets Nelson’s practice through the lens of ecocriticism and highlights the themes of solastalgia, anthropomorphism, and posthumanism that emerge from her sculptures, collages, and wall panels.Access the essay HERE. It is also available on Giddens’ web page.
            Image: Erin Jane Nelson, Jekyll, 2018. Image courtesy of the artist and the Zuckerman Museum of Art.  

             SDGs in it's your world for the moment

            In collaboration with CIFAL Atlanta, a former center housed in KSU's Division of Global Affairs, the ZMA identified ways that the art in it's your world for the moment corresponds to Sustainable Development Goals defined by the United Nations.

            Please see the document below for more information.

             

            Thumbnail for PDF of UN-SDGs
            United Nations Sustainable Development Goals
             

            UN-SDGs in it's your world for the moment
            • Beltre

              A Peculiar Proximity to Spiritual Mysteries

              August 29 - December 6, 2020

              Take a virtual tour here.

              A Peculiar Proximity to Spiritual Mysteries showcased various key contemporary works from the permanent collection of the Zuckerman Museum of Art. Curated by artist Pablo Helguera and Ginger Wolfe-Suarez, the experimental exhibition drew on many rare works of art as well as some that have never been exhibited. The exhibition featured alternative methods of display, supplementary learning experiences, and sound recordings. Preparation for this exhibition included research and curatorial assistance by Michelle Lopez, registrar/collections manager, as well as collective dialogue and collaboration with the ZMA staff.

              The curators initially researched artists of diverse cultural backgrounds in the permanent collection of the ZMA and then chose artists to highlight. The highlighted artists employ a range of techniques to explore issues of identity, race, and cultural origin. They often reference geography, translocation, cultural traditions, translation, political history, and collective memory. Language and storytelling are also common threads woven throughout the exhibition.

              Issues explored by these artists regarding race, place, and migration continue to be pressing for museums and institutions around the world.

              Artists include Tia Blassingame, Mildred Beltre, Canute Caliste, Nayda Collazo-Llorens, Frederick Schiller Cozzens, Jesus De La Rosa, Ruthann Godollei, Sheila Goloborotko, Rogelio Gutierrez, Antonio Jacobsen, Eddy A. López, Athos Menaboni, Ayanah Moor, Michelle Murillo, Grace Rosario Perkins, Robert Sherer, Bernice Sims, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, Keith Smith, and Henry Ossawa Tanner. 

              • image of artwork Umbra Penumbra by Zipporah Camille Thompson

                Looming Chaos

                January 25 - July 26, 2020

                Curator: TK Smith

                Take a virtual tour here.

                Looming Chaos is a solo exhibition of artist Zipporah Camille Thompson that explores her use of weaving to engage ideas of chaos. The artist conceptualizes chaos as the consuming cyclical processes of life driven by a universal yearning for wholeness. Through object and material choice, Thompson materializes the destruction, disorder, and confusions of the world, weaving them into structure and order. Thompson’s weaving practice allows her to reconcile the deterioration of the environment, tumultuous personal histories, and the complexity of her own identity as fodder for creation. 

                Zipporah Camille Thompson is a visual artist and sculptor based in Atlanta, Georgia. Thompson explores ritual and alchemical transformations through the unknown and through universals, including death, catastrophe, chaos, and the cosmos. Metamorphosed, shapeshifters and hybrid landscapes reflect various archaeological, psychological, and ecological perspectives, as well as a personal investigation of self and identity. She received her MFA from the University of Georgia and her BFA from the University of North Carolina, Charlotte.

                View a video preview of the exhibition Looming Chaos.

                The exhibition is a cumulative project of the inaugural Tina Dunkley Curatorial Fellows at Clark Atlanta University (CAUAM). The multi-institutional, cross-regional curatorial fellowship is a collaborative project between Clark Atlanta University Art Museum, the Zuckerman Museum of Art, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Created by Dr. Maurita Poole (CAUAM), the fellowship is meant to foster the next generation of museum professionals.

                Image Courtesy of the Zuckerman Museum of Art, photo by Mike Jensen.

                • image of artwork Untitled by Sam Gilliam

                  UNBOUND

                  January 25 - July 26, 2020

                  Curator: Nzinga Simmons

                  Take a virtual tour here.

                  UNBOUND brings together a multigenerational group of artists whose work takes an inventive and experimental approach to abstraction. Using Kobena Mercer’s definition of ‘discrepant abstraction’ — hybrid and partial, elusive and repetitive, obstinate and strange, including almost everything that does not neatly fit into the institutional narrative of abstract art as a monolithic quest for purity, UNBOUND pushes against parameters of an imagined black aesthetic that relies on figural representation, disrupts notions of purity associated with abstraction, and widens the boundaries of painting to include forms and materials not traditionally associated with the medium. Rooted in the formal, the works consider the essential elements of abstract painting: color, form, gesture, line, and space, through unorthodox use of materials that break the confines of a rectangular canvas, and implode the boundaries between painting, sculpture, and installation. The works on view hang, stretch, tether, and dangle off the walls, breaking free from the bounds of figuration, and complicating the boundaries of painting itself.

                  Artists include: Anthony Akinbola, Romare Bearden, Krista Clark, Sam Gilliam, Eric N. Mack, Joe Overstreet, and Tariku Shiferaw.

                  The exhibition is a cumulative project of the inaugural Tina Dunkley Curatorial Fellows at Clark Atlanta University (CAUAM). The multi-institutional, cross-regional curatorial fellowship is a collaborative project between Clark Atlanta University Art Museum, the Zuckerman Museum of Art, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Created by Dr. Maurita Poole (CAUAM), the fellowship is meant to foster the next generation of museum professionals.

                  Image courtesy of the Clark Atlanta University Museum of Art.


                   

                  • An image of the Cloud Chamber exhibition

                    Cloud Chamber

                    December 3 - 15, 2019

                    Curator: Ginger Wolfe-Suarez

                    Cloud Chamber is a group exhibition of textile work in the Melinda Jolley Mortin Galleries at ZMA,. Concepts in this group exhibition include the relationship between handcraft, technology, and intergenerational exchange.

                    Artists include: Libs Elliott, Sabrina Gschwandtner, Jess Jones, and Amanda Ross-Ho.

                    • painting by artist Gracie Devito

                      Painting Who?

                      August 24 - December 15, 2019

                      Curator: Teresa Bramlette Reeves

                      Painting Who? is a small exhibition that focuses on paintings that take on a personality of their own. They occupy real space and also demonstrate the illusion of space. They consciously, unapologetically, and simultaneously refer to the history of painting, the act of making a painting, and the contemporary world. In this layered and loaded territory, they reflect both the past and the present.

                      Asking the question “Who is this painting?” rather than “What is this painting about?” opens up the possibility of considering the object as a complex character in a larger narrative. It allows the gallery to be interpreted as a theatrical space in which stories are played out and plots are thickened. On this big white stage, relationships between the paintings can be explored and personalities can be assigned. This approach applies action to a group of otherwise static objects and it emphasizes the role of the gallery environment. But most importantly, it gives us a different way to think about painting, an alternative lens through which to read and interpret what we see.

                      Artists include: Jeff Conefry, Moira Dryer, Gracie Devito, Chris Hood, and Wihro Kim

                      • image of Kaitlyn Redell's photograph titled Rug

                        Fruitful Labors

                        August 24 - November 10, 2019

                        Curator: Kerstie Tepper

                        Fruitful Labors focuses on strategies for coping.  Ranging from the absurd to the essential, these tactics include conversation, repetitive labor, intergenerational storytelling, and healing practices. Each of these approaches relies on a particular belief system.

                        Stanya Kahn, who is represented in this project with two videos, is an observer of life who offers wry, off-the-cuff commentary on failure and responsibility.  Lenka Clayton’s sculptural work also ponders responsibility through the investment of unnecessary, yet poetic labor. Through disassembly, alteration, and reassembly her objects of clothing consider use and misuse of human and machine.  Kaitlynn Redell’s photographic series, Not Her(e), falls within the sphere of the domestic labor where she directly addresses the invisibility in her constancy and support through a contemporary rendition of Victorian photography techniques.

                        Shana Moulton takes the idea of invisibility in the direction of the imaginary.  Her assumed character, Cynthia, receives messages from household objects that lead her to the Galactic Pot Healer for restoration. Equally mysterious, Michelle Laxalt refers to the power that can be invested in small objects and repeated behaviors.  In her sculptural installations, the artist references her grandmother’s superstitions—long held beliefs that remain intact despite more orthodox forms of religious training.  Shanequa Gay explores the contemporary relevance of an ancient world of rites, practices, and sisterhood that she visualizes in multiple media. The photographs in this show depict women who unapologetically confront and adopt various archetypes as they embody deities of the artist’s creation.

                        Artists include: Lenka Clayton, Shanequa Gay, Stanya Kahn, Michelle Laxalt, Shana Moulton, and Kaitlynn Redell.

                        • S Yong James

                          Sonya Yong James: One Hundred Blossoms and the Sweetest Scent

                          August 25, 2018 - December 20, 2019

                          Curator: Sarah Higgins

                          Sonya Yong James’ year-long solo exhibition on the ZMA stairwell project wall, One Hundred Blossoms and the Sweetest Scent is a large-scale mixed-media installation.

                          Taking inspiration from the tale of Little Red Riding Hood, artist Sonya Jong James weaves together fiber, flowers, roots, and found objects to explore the themes of this fable and their evolution over time. She says, “The girl and wolf inhabit a place, call it the forest or the human psyche, where the spectrum of human sagas converges, and their social and cultural meanings play out.”

                          • Louder than words

                            Louder than Words

                            February 2 – May 5, 2019

                            Curator: Teresa Bramlette Reeves

                            This exhibition features artists who, in a variety of ways, privilege silence, non-linguistic sounds, symbols, and gestures over words as tools of communication. Within the often-performative space of their work, they may surrender their own power in order to shine a light on the condition of powerlessness. They may use their bodies to convey complex emotions or simulate sensations that focus your experience. Some, who work within the imposed condition of deafness, reveal the gaps inherent in communication—what is missing, misunderstood, intentionally ignored, or entirely invented. An emphasis on action over words reveals an opportunity for silent protest, suggesting the possibility of fearlessness in the nonverbal. In other work, sounds and words are muted, restricted, and undermined. The loss of this information is then made palpable, drawing attention to questions of intention and what this choice may mean socially or politically.

                            • Sahwha/Resurgence by Hicham Berrada

                              Sahwha/Resurgence

                              February 2 – May 5, 2019

                              Curator: Joe Thomas

                              In observation of the KSU’s Year of Morocco in 2020-21, the ZMA presents Sahwha/Resurgence: works by Hicham Berrada. Originally trained as a scientist in Morocco, the work of Paris-based artist Hicham Berrada exposes the beauty that can result from disruptive interactions. Represented in this exhibition by six video works, these collisions of chemicals in solution or man-made interventions in the environment create an efflorescence—or rebirth—into something new, a quality conveyed by the Arabic word sahwha. The resulting dreamlike visions represent a resurgence of something mundane or unappreciated into something eerily beautiful.

                              • Fall Senior Exhibitions I and II
                              • Pedro: Menaboni's Lost Story
                              • Trajectory
                            • At the KSU Galleries 2012 

                              • Lyle Ashton Harris: Accra My Love
                              • Room with a View: Murals by Athos Menaboni
                              • Engaging History: Continuities of Textile Traditions in the Andes 
                              • Tales from the Lonesome City
                              • Not What it Seems 
                              • Juvenile-in-Justice: Photographs by Richard Ross
                              • Modern and Contemporary Art from the Permanent Collection 
                              • Invisible Body, Conspicuous Mind: Contemporary Romanian Art from the Collection of Ambassador Nicholas F. Taubman and Mrs. Jenny Taubman 
                              • Light of Day: Realism by Joe Remillard 
                              • Unmasking Creativity: Process and Product 
                              • Water Works, Phase I 
                              • Linda Anderson: An Artful Memory
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