The Kansas City Art Institute's spring lineup of artists, designers and scholars who spoke as part of the college's "Current Perspectives" lecture series.
In honor of the college's 125th anniversary, most of the speakers selected for the spring 2010 series are alumni of KCAI.
A presentation will be given by the 2009 Charlotte Street Foundation Visual Artist Award fellows Dylan Mortimer ('02 painting), Jaimie Warren ('02 printmaking) and Andrzej Zielinski, whose work is featured in an exhibition at the H&R Block Artspace now through March 27. About the 2009 Charlotte Street Foundation fellows: Dylan Mortimer earned his B.F.A. degree at the Kansas City Art Institute in 2002 and his M.F.A. degree from the School of Visual Arts, New York. Employing a range of formal, cultural and conceptual languages, Mortimer has most recently merged the iconographies and vocabularies of Christianity and hip-hop culture in a continued investigation of how religious beliefs, popular culture and social norms do and do not comfortably relate. Jaimie Warren is a photographer, curator and performance artist who makes theatrical, humorous, self-portraits in different scenarios and locations. She received her B.F.A. degree in 2002 from KCAI. In addition to candid, snapshot style photographs documenting her own life and surroundings, Warren is the creator of Whoop Dee Doo, an ongoing curatorial and performance-based project that creates a wild platform for diverse community talents and participants in a kid-friendly, faux public access television program format. Andrzej Zielinski received his B.F.A. degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2002 and his M.F.A. degree from Yale University in 2004. His current work consists of paintings of laptops, paper shredders and ATM machines.
Fatimah Tuggar ('92 sculpture) is a multidisciplinary artist who uses technology as both a medium and a subject in her work to serve as a metaphor for power dynamics. She combines objects, images and sounds from diverse cultures, geographies and histories to comment on how media and technology diversely impact local and global realities. Her work has been widely exhibited at international venues in more than 20 countries on five continents including the Bamako Biennale, Mali; the second Johannesburg Biennale, South Africa; Museum Kunst-Palast, Dusseldorf, Germany; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; the 24th Biennial of Graphic Art, Ljubljana Slovenia; Moscow Biennale, Russia; the V Salon CANTV Jovenes, Venezuela; the Istanbul Biennial, Turkey; the Kwangju Biennale, South Korea; and Museum of Modern Art, New York.
Jerry Eisterhold (’72 design) has been president, principal designer and project director of Eisterhold Associates Inc. since its inception in 1980. His company is a nationally recognized exhibit design firm that specializes in museum design. A particular hallmark of EAI’s work has been the creative application of media to visitor experiences. Locally, the company has completed the “Harry S. Truman: His Life and Times” exhibit at the Truman Museum and Library, the Money Museum at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and the “John Baker Film Collection” exhibit at the American Jazz Museum. Other projects include The National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tenn.; Rosa Parks Museum in Montgomery, Ala.; Walt Disney’s Boyhood Home in Marceline, Mo.; Jurassic Park Discovery Center in Orlando Fla.; and EPCOT Innovations in Orlando, Fla. More recent projects include the International Civil Rights Center and Museum, which opens Feb. 1 in Greensboro, N.C., and the National Hurricane Museum and Science Center in Lake Charles, La.
Dan S. Wang is an artist, printer and writer. He earned a B.A. degree from Carleton College in Northfield, Minn., and an M.F.A. degree from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. Wang teaches printmaking as an adjunct faculty member at Columbia College Chicago. His texts have been published in SITE magazine (Stockholm, Sweden), WhiteWalls (Chicago), Art Journal (New York), ARTasiapacific (New York), The Journal for North East Issues (Hamburg, Germany), The Journal of Aesthetics and Protest (Los Angeles) and the exhibition catalog for “Heartland” at the Smart Museum in Chicago. His drawings, prints, sculptures and other projects have been exhibited in two solo exhibitions and in more than 25 group exhibitions. Wang has lectured at The Contemporary Museum in Baltimore; the Salzburger Kunstverein in Salzburger, Austria; the Art Institute of Chicago; the Depot for Kunst and Diskussion in Vienna, Austria; and Documenta 12 in Kassel, Germany. Along with seven others, he co-founded Mess Hall, an experimental cultural space in Chicago. Wang regularly collaborates with a range of art groups, activists and researchers in creating exhibitions, publications and events.
Stuart Horodner is the artistic director of the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center. Prior to moving to Atlanta, Horodner was the curator of the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art in Oregon; director of the Bucknell University Art Gallery in Lewisburg, Pa.; and owner/director of the Horodner Romley Gallery in New York from 1992 to 1997. He was also the founder and co-organizer of Affair at the Jupiter Hotel, an intimate art fair in Portland, Ore., from 2004 to 2007. He has contributed art writing to numerous publications including Art Lies, Art Issues, Art on Paper, BOMB, Dazed & Confused and Surface. Horodner is speaking as part of the 2010 Visiting Critic and Curator Program sponsored by the H&R Block Artspace at the Kansas City Art Institute.
Ezra Johnson was born in 1975 in Wenatchee, Wash., and lives in Brooklyn, N.Y. He received his B.F.A. degree in painting from the California College of Arts and Crafts in San Francisco in 2000 and completed an M.F.A. degree in painting in 2006 at Hunter College in New York. During his M.F.A. studies, he participated in an exchange program with the Universitat der Kunst in Berlin. His work has been shown at numerous exhibitions including solo gallery shows in New York, Los Angeles and Turin, Italy. His first solo museum show was at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles in 2007.
MK12 is a Kansas City-based design and filmmaking collective with acclaim in both commercial and artistic arenas. MK12’s work constantly challenges the boundaries between narrative structure and experimental storytelling via juxtapositions of live action, graphic design, nostalgic influence and new technologies. The firm was founded in 2000 by a group comprised primarily of KCAI alumni. MK12 has been sought after to direct numerous commercial and network-based projects and also has provided graphic design and animation for feature films such as “Stranger than Fiction” and “The Kite Runner.” The studio's experimental and short film catalogue has been featured in many international film festivals and has been published in design and trade journals worldwide. Most recently, their short film “Overload” — a collaboration with New York-based painter Brian Alfred — was inducted into the Guggenheim's permanent collection. MK12 continues to produce original content for television and cinema, and its most recent film, “MK12’s History of America,” proved to be its most ambitious work to date, merging experimental design and traditional storytelling to dramatic effect. More information about this and other projects can be found at mk12.com.
Tonight's roundtable discussion will be based on the exhibition “Arrival/Departure,” curated by Maria Elena Buszek, assistant professor in the School of Liberal Arts, and Jonah Criswell, assistant director of admissions and a 2005 KCAI painting graduate. The exhibition, which will be on view April 9 through May 22 at La Esquina, brings together early-career artists who see Kansas City as a site from which they came into contact with the art world. In this roundtable, led by Dr. Buszek, several of the exhibition’s artists will discuss their time in (and, in some cases, return to) Kansas City, the prestigious national and international graduate programs, residencies and exhibitions in which they have participated, and the role KCAI played in their creative evolution. All of the artists in the exhibition are graduates of KCAI.
Franklin Oviedo graduated from KCAI’s School of Design in 2004. While in school, he was selected to assist with the school’s rebranding project. After graduation he joined Bernstein-Rein Advertising as an art director and graphic designer. In 2008 he left Bernstein-Rein and joined with two business partners to run Liquid 9 and :31 in Kansas City, Mo. Liquid 9 is a production and post house that handles all aspects of the commercial video production process. Services include motion graphics, editorial and original music. :31 is a creative boutique with its niche in the entertainment industry. In its short history, :31 has branded a Canandian music television channel, shot several music videos, one of which received a “MTV u Woodie Award,” and designed album packaging for the number-one-selling independent recording artist in the United States. Throughout his career Oviedo has worked with clients such as Warner Bros., Bombay Sapphire, Tech N9ne, McDonald’s, Sprint, Bayer, Kasil Jeans, AUX TV and Lee Jeans.
Christy Georg has been called “a sculptor of wit and ingenuity, clearly in the tradition of Jean Tinguely and Bruce Nauman, but brilliantly original in her use of existential humor to invigorate the works” by sculptor Rob Fisher. Born in Chicago and raised in Houston, she received her M.F.A. degree from Massachusetts College of Art and her B.F.A. degree in sculpture in 1997 from the Kansas City Art Institute She also studied glassblowing at the Pacific Northwest College of Art. She has exhibited widely, having solo exhibitions at the Contemporary Artists Center in North Adams, the Roswell Museum, Gettysburg College, the University of Massachusetts at Lowell and the Trustman Gallery at Simmons College in Boston. She has been awarded 15 art residencies in North America including SculptureSpace, Fine Arts Work Center, Roswell AIR program and the MacDowell Colony. She is a 2006 recipient of a Visual Arts Sea Grant from the University of Rhode Island and 2009 recipient of a Blanche E. Colman award from the Mellon Foundation. This summer she will have a solo show at the Khyber Institute for Contemporary Art in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Mark Newport is an artist and educator living in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. Newport’s work has been exhibited throughout the United States, Canada and Europe, including solo exhibitions at The Arizona State University Art Museum, The Cranbrook Art Museum, The Chicago Cultural Center and here gallery in Bristol, England. His work has been recognized with grants from the Creative Capital Foundation, the Arizona Commission on the Arts and the Herberger College of Arts at Arizona State University. It is included in the collections of The Whitney Museum of American Art, The Cranbrook Art Museum, The Racine Art Museum, 4Culture in Seattle, City of Phoenix Public Art, Microsoft and Progressive Insurance. The Greg Kucera Gallery and Lemberg Gallery represent his work. Newport is the artist-in-residence and head of fiber at the Cranbrook Academy of Art. He earned his B.F.A. degree at the Kansas City Art Institute in 1986 and his M.F.A. degree at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1991.