A Day in the Life: An Externship at the Hyde Park Art Center

August 23rd, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Here is a post from Keri Asma, MA ’13,on her recent externship to the Hyde Park Art Center. Keri is also one of the MAPH mentors for the upcoming year, so you’ll probably be hearing from her fairly often.

Externships are opportunities for recently graduated or current Master’s and PhD students to shadow alumni in various careers for a day. Rather like extended informational interviews, externships provide students with a chance to explore a particular profession, no prior experience necessary. If you are interested in learning more about externships through the University of Chicago, visit the CAPS website here: https://careeradvancement.uchicago.edu/jobs-internships-research/graduate-student-externships.

 

The Hyde Park Art Center is, as many of you probably know, a perfect example of the possible intersections between art, community, education, and humanistic inquiry. My externship at the center this summer not only gave me a sense of the individual work of MAPH Alumnae Kate Lorenz and Brook Rosini, but also provided a holistic picture of how their work contributes to a much larger project—one which like MAPH is centered on creating a community which can engage critically, passionately, and excitedly with the arts.

This post will be something between an introduction/plug for the HPAC, a reflection on what I learned, and an encouragement for doing externships. This is just one account of engaging with alumni, with the community, with the arts; there are probably lots more out there.*

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Alumna Sarah Best Reflects on Art, MAPH and Invites Everyone to Dance Films Kino

January 26th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Sarah Best Self Portrait

Dance Films Kino is a three-week project that I am presenting as an artist in residence at Hyde Park Art Center, March 4-25, 2012. Over three weeks, I will present 30 works of dance on film, as well as over a dozen live music, dance, and literary readings. All of the programs will be free to the public.

The seeds of this project were planted ten years ago, back when I was a MAPH student sitting in Yuri Tsivian’s intro to film class, learning about how filmmakers whose works were censored, or considered to be too experimental for mainstream distribution, showed films out of their own homes.

The films and performance I am presenting will be shown in an environment inspired by “kinos”, underground, avant-grade art clubs of the 1920s and 30s. I’m currently getting ready to paint the walls of my residency studio red, put out the caberet tables, and art deco objects I’ve sourced from Etsy. I’m creating artwork inspired by movement to hang on the walls of the space.

My first goal is to show movies in a place that feels like someone’s home, so that people are a little more willing to give something they’ve never seen before a try. My second goal is to bring all kinds of artists, writers, musicians, dance makers and filmmakers together to create a lot of different points of access into the work.

My third goal is to invite people to help create the space by imagining what it would be like to be a part of an underground society, to feel nostalgia for a fictional place situated in the past. I think there is a collective desire to engage in this type of activity. I think it is part of the reason why bars inspired by speakeasies are so popular, and why people like to fantasize about travel, even in tough economic times.

More on how Sarah arrived at this point after the jump

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The Path from MAPH to Running an Online Art Gallery

December 5th, 2011 § 1 comment § permalink

Drew Messinger-Michaels (MAPH ’10)

Drew Messinger-Michaels  ’10

 

Some Gallery Somewhere

It’s 2010, and the week before graduating from MAPH, I walk into an art gallery with my best friend. We’re intellectual equals, this friend and I, but I’ve studied art history formally and he hasn’t, and he is painfully aware of this fact. He doesn’t form an opinion without immediately turning to me for confirmation, validation, and general assurance that he gets it.

And I try to tell him that’s silly and self-defeating. I try to make my friend understand that he’s free to find a given piece of art life-changing or yawn-inducing or anything in between, and to drive that point home, I try to humanize the sainted artists whose work we’re both trying to get.

Penitent Hour – Ruth Gregory

 

I joke about Marcel Duchamp being foremost a provocateur and a jerk (which he was), and about how so many pre-Renaissance paintings feature baby Jesuses who look like Mikhail Gorbachev in miniature (which they do). But that just makes things worse. What my friend hears is simply that I know lots of stuff, and that he should shut up because he doesn’t know nearly as much stuff as I do. He stops offering opinions, and so I clam up, too. We walk around in silence for a while.

This time next year, I’ll be the Founding Director of a new, online art gallery. I’ll be clicking that last “OK” button that will peel back the Under Construction page from our website, and I’ll be thinking about my friend, and about how badly I want to help smart-but-intimidated people like him find artwork that they’ll love.

More about Drew’s work running Gray Blush Gallery after the jump. . .

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Meet an Alum: Kristen Wahl Hagan

November 11th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Kristen Wahl Hagan entered MAPH in the Fall of 2005 after having received Bachelor’s degrees in Clothing and Textile design (Virginia Tech University) and Art History (Indiana University).  She came to MAPH intending to apply for PhD programs in Art History, but her experiences working in the art world also gave her a sense of the benefits of the MAPH degree on its own.  As she put it, “Jobs in the art world are few and far between and they’re often very coveted, so even though you know that you don’t need a PhD or a Masters degree to do the job, having that gives you a competitive edge in the job market.”

Hagan’s plans began to change pretty quickly once she got to MAPH.  She was surprised to find that the two professors of modern art history that she had most wanted to work with were on sabbatical.  Though initially disappointed, Hagan came to view this set-back as an opportunity to make her MAPH experience truly interdisciplinary, embracing the chance to become involved with other departments. Hagan says that after taking a class at the Booth graduate school of business, she began to realize that she had more of a business mind and that becoming an academic was not for her.

Hagan’s thesis, advised by Booth Professor Tanya Menon, was the product of Hagan’s cross-disciplinary interests.  By using the thesis project to explore how art museums make themselves accessible to people (or often fail to do so, as Hagan argues), she began a line of thought which is directly connected to her daily work life now. Speaking of her current position as Assistant Director at Gallery KH, Hagan says, “I deal directly with people a lot. In other museum or gallery settings, people are not always willing to speak to you.  I’m very conscious of that in how I deal with people.”

When asked what advice she would give to current MAPH students interested in pursuing careers in the art world, Hagan had this to say: “Because I got pushed out of my comfort zone and was fortunate enough to have success with that, I would say to get outside of your comfort zone, so that you can come back to your discipline with a fresh perspective.” Hagan also suggested that taking advantage of internships and opportunities around Chicago is a great way to figure out early on what kind of work you enjoy.

For more information about Gallery KH, check out their website here.

Meet an Alum: Beth Gallagher

November 8th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Beth Gallagher is the Director of Community Involvement for AON Corporation, headquartered in Chicago.  According to her bio, she is responsible for “managing the day-to-day operations of the AON Foundation giving programs, which include grants, sponsorships, business unit charitable contributions, disaster relief and employee matching gifts.  In addition, Beth oversees employee volunteer programming at the firm.”

But–as Beth put it in a phone conversation–she “never would have guessed that a job like this existed,” when she first arrived in MAPH in 2001.  At that point, she had one year of professional experience under her belt, and thought that she was on a path toward writing education.  Though she took classes in pedagogy, Beth now says that it was her job as a docent at the Smart Museum and other coursework at the University that “broadened my thoughts about education.”

She began thinking about working in fundraising.  But by the time the 2002 class graduated, the job market had collapsed.  “It wasn’t as bad as this,” she said, talking about the context of her first attempts to find employment in comparison with the current economic conditions.   After graduation she worked as an executive assistant at Youth Outreach Services before ultimately landing a gig there in development.  She has been with AON Corporation since 2006.

Beth said she looks forward to speaking with MAPH students diverse opportunities in a corporate setting.  She will be speaking at tonight’s Career Core event.

September 10th Gallery Opening

August 31st, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

After studying art history in MAPH, recent graduate Emma Stein ’10 is now the Gallery Director of Robert Bills Contemporary. Robert Bills Contemporary is a new gallery located in Chicago’s prestigious West Loop gallery district.  Named one of the top ten new galleries featured at Next 2010 on the Chicago Tribune’s Next Hotlist, the gallery opens its doors for the first time on September 10th. The owner, Robert Bills is also a University of Chicago graduate.  He completed his MBA in ’89.

The gallery’s first exhibition, oil, toil, WALLS, and foil, examines the tactics four artists employ to negotiate the fine line that divides figuration and abstraction. The exhibition investigates how each artist demonstrates his or her unique artistic vocabulary in a way that challenges the longstanding art-historical binary. While the individual artists each represent a dramatically different approach to the problem, the common thread that binds them together is the clarity of their distinctive artistic vision as it is demonstrated with remarkable skill.

Emma and Robert Bills Contemporary invite all MAPH graduates and their friends and family to attend the gallery’s fall opening reception on September 10th, from 6-9 pm.  The gallery is located at 650 West Lake Street, on the lower level.  For more information about the gallery or inquires about the reception, please contact Emma at emma@robertbillscontemporary.com.

MAPH alum curator at MCoP gets rave reviews

July 30th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink

MAPH Alum Karsten Lund’s show “Beyond the Backyard” at the Museum of Contemporary Photography is getting rave reviews for its exploration of the public and private, identity, and the suburban landscape through photographs and videos by more than fifty artists. (Reviews below)

Timeout Chicago

Chicago Tribune

Adaptation at the Smart Museum

February 7th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink

The Smart Museum’s exhibition Adaptation opened today, and it includes a new work by ARTV 24103, a collective that includes current MAPHers Laura Heldt and Natasha Long. The work grew out of a practicum taught by Catherine Sullivan — Natasha writes about the project over on the Adaptation blog-cum-catalogue.

The other works in Adaptation — by Guy Ben-Ner, Arturo Herrera, Catherine Sullivan, and Eve Sussman & The Rufus Corporation — re-envision classic literature, painting, film, ballet, and even e-mail for new video installations. You can check out clips of all the works on the online catalogue. Or, better yet, brave the snow tonight and come out for free food, refreshments, and art at the opening reception and panel discussion, from 5:30-7:30 pm.

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