February 8, 2017 – William L. Coleman

NEH Post-Doctoral Fellow, The Library Company of Philadelphia
Painter-Architects and the Making of the American Landscape”

A striking number of nineteenth-century American landscape painters also aspired to the practice of architecture and constructed intriguing buildings that have received little scholarly attention. This talk explores the sources of that preoccupation with domestic architecture in particular. The houses that Thomas Cole, Frederic Church, and Jasper Francis Cropsey, among others, designed and constructed were integral to the practice of a transdisciplinary art of landscape that transmitted principles from oil on canvas to the built environment, and put them in dialogue with a transatlantic tradition of “painter-architects” that can be traced to Rubens, Raphael and beyond.

This research draws from Will’s book project “Painting Houses: The Domestic Landscape of the Hudson River School,” on which he is at work full-time for 2016-17 with the support of fellowships from the New York Public Library, the Library Company of Philadelphia, and the Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library. After graduating from Haverford as a member of the 2007 Bryn Mawr History of Art major class, he earned master’s degrees from the Courtauld Institute and Oxford and a PhD from Berkeley.

February 22, 2017 – David Neumann

Founder and Artistic Director, Advanced Beginner Group
“Plays and Performance: Multi-disciplinary Approaches to Theatre Making”

David Neumann’s Advanced Beginner Group’s original work has been presented in New York at PS 122, New York Live Arts, The Kitchen, Abrons Arts Center, Central Park Summerstage (where he collaborated with John Giorno), Celebrate Brooklyn, Symphony Space (where he collaborated with Laurie Anderson), The Chocolate Factory and The Whitney. ABG has also performed at the Walker Art Center, Alverno College, MASS MoCA, The Ringling Festival and the American Dance Institute, among others. Neumann was a performer for many years working with, among others, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Big Dance Theater, Doug Elkins, Doug Varone and Sally Silvers. Recent projects include: choreographer on Futurity (Ars Nova and Soho Rep), An Octoroon at Soho Rep/Theater for a New Audience, directing Geoff Sobelle in The Object Lesson at BAM, and choreographing Hagoromo at BAM Harvey with Wendy Whelan and Jock Soto. Recent projects include: Hadestown at NYTW, The Total Bent at the Public Theater and War at LCT III. He is currently professor of theater at Sarah Lawrence College. Most recently, Neumann’s work, I Understand Everything Better received two 2016 NY Dance and Performance Bessie Awards, one for Outstanding Production and one for Outstanding Sound Design/Music Composition. This year he has been named a 2016 Artist in Residence at the SETI Institute and was awarded a Robert Rauschenberg Residency. Over the years Neumann has received three “Bessie” Awards, a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Award, an Asian Cultural Council Fellowship (Noh immersive), and support from the Rockefeller Foundation, Creative Capital, NYFA and National Dance Projects among others.

March 1, 2017 – Christina Knight

Assistant Professor of Visual Studies, Haverford College
“A Family Affair: Jacolby Satterwhite’s Queer Utopics”

Jacolby Satterwhite is an artist known for creating virtual worlds that feature avatars of himself voguing within densely rendered neon landscapes. Imagery for those landscapes derives from thousands of drawings of utilitarian objects that the artist’s mother made during his childhood in the hopes of striking it rich on the Home Shopping Network. Satterwhite’s virtual performances are as utopic as they are queer: his animated avatars makes manifest his desire to occupy a world as multiple and far-reaching as his sense of self.  However, in this paper I argue that this queer utopics begins with Satterwhite’s mother: operating within the dual restraints of mental illness and a capitalist imaginary, her drawings center possibility on the notion of utilitarian design. By reading Satterwhite’s virtual worlds through his mother’s drawings, I investigate a similar strategy of “making do to make new,” or reworking the mundane in the service of the marvelous.

March 15, 2017 – Richard Torchia

***To Be Rescheduled***

Director, Arcadia University Art Gallery, Glenside
“Reconsidering the Exhibition as Medium”

The re-staging of Harald Szeemann’s “Live in Your Head: When Attitudes Become Form,” for the 2013 Venice Biennale served as a dramatic reminder of how gallery display impacts our experience of art. Originally presented at the Bern Kunsthalle in 1969, its recent reconstruction (curated by Germano Celant, in dialogue with Thomas Demand and Rem Koolhaas), foregrounded the ways in which our sensitivities to the staging of artworks has changed over time. The project also confirmed that the matrix of conditions that constitute exhibition making offer singular possibilities and restrictions that become more critical as new platforms of presentation emerge. Using examples of other re-stagings and a sampling of recent group shows, this talk will explore the evolution of the exhibition as a medium and its impact on artmaking, curatorial practice, and questions of authorship and interpretation.  

Richard Torchia is director of Arcadia University Art Gallery, Glenside, where, since 1997, he has organized solo exhibitions for artists including Ai Weiwei, Dave Allen, Francis Cape, Tacita Dean, Olafur Eliasson, Amy Hauft, Pati Hill, Candida Höfer, Ray Johnson, Paul Ramirez Jonas, Donald Moffett, William Larson, and Kay Rosen, among many others. Often working in collaboration, he has organized thematic group exhibitions exploring subjects such as the childhood drawings of contemporary artists, nearly imperceptible art works, the sited gesture, and photorealist painting. 

March 29, 2017 – Anthony Elms

Chief Curator, Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia
“On Life’s Inner Meaning and My Latest Fling”

Elms is Chief Curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, and is also the Editor of WhiteWalls Inc. His writings have appeared in Afterall, Art Asia Pacific, Art Papers, Artforum, Cakewalk, May Revue, Modern Painters, New Art Examiner, and Time Out Chicago. He has also written essays for many catalogs. As an artist, Elms has been included in projects exhibited at Gahlberg Gallery (Glen Ellyn), Hyde Park Art Center (Chicago), Mandrake (Los Angeles), Mess Hall (Chicago), Randolph Street Gallery (Chicago), and VONZWECK (Chicago), among others. He has independently curated many exhibitions, including: Sun Ra, El Saturn & Chicago’s Afro-Futurist Underground, 1954-61 (with John Corbett and Terri Kapsalis); Interstellar Low Ways (with Huey Copeland); Can Bigfoot Get You a Beer?, and A Unicorn Basking in the Light of Three Glowing Suns (both with Philip von Zweck). He was one of three curators for the Whitney Biennial 2014.

April 5, 2017 – Sharon Hayes

Associate Professor of Fine Arts, School of Design, University of Pennsylvania
“In My Little Corner of the World: An Artist’s Talk”

Sharon Hayes engages multiple mediums–video, performance, and installation–in ongoing investigation into specific intersections between history, politics and speech. These relationships are central to all of her work from the 2003 performance and video installation: Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA) Screeds #13, 16, 20 & 29, a re-speaking of each of the four audio tapes made by Patty Hearst and the SLA during the period of Hearst’s kidnapping to her recent work Ricerche, a large-scale video investigation that step off of Pier Paolo Pasolini’s brilliant film, Comizi d’Amore.

Hayes’ work is concerned with developing new representational strategies that examine and interrogate the present political moment as a moment that reaches simultaneously backward and forward; a present moment that is never wholly its own but rather one that is full of multiple past moments and the speculations of multiple futures.  From this ground, Hayes often addresses political events or movements from the 1960s through the 1990s. Her focus on the particular sphere of the near-past is influenced by the potent imbrication of private and public urgencies that she experienced in her own foundational encounters with feminism and AIDS activism.

Hayes has had recent solo exhibitions at Andrea Rosen Gallery (New York), Tanya Leighton Gallery (Berlin), the Whitney Museum of American Art (New York) and the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia (Madrid). Her work been shown at the Venice Biennale (2013), the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the Guggenheim Museum (New York) and numerous museums and venues in Europe and the Americas. Hayes is also a recipient of the Alpert Award in Visual Arts (2013), an Anonymous Was a Woman Award (2013), Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Fellowship (2007) among other awards.

She is an Associate Professor in the Department of Fine Arts, PennDesign, University of Pennsylvania.

April 12, 2017 – Anna Blume

Professor of History of Art, Fashion Institute of Technology
“Ancient Architecture in the Mississippi Valley: Monumentality Seen and Unseen”

In the 6th Century BC communities began to build monumental architecture and earthworks in the Lower Mississippi Valley.  One of the most remarkable, still remaining sites from the Late Archaic period is the city of Poverty Point, Louisiana.  Traveling up the Mississippi through the massive 13th Century city of Cahokia, Illinois to the animal and geometric earthworks from Iowa to Lake Michigan ones sees how diverse communities continued to shape the land over thousands of years.  In this talk I will focus on three of these sites from different periods and geographic locations to consider the importance of monumental architecture to the people who made them.  I will also question why these monuments are so rarely referred to within a broader Pre-Columbian literature and why they are not commonly recognized as the vast ancient past of North America.


April 19, 2017 – Luke Dowd

“Mute v Speech: The Beam of the Lighthouse Does Indeed Revolve”

Luke Dowd is an artist who works with screen-printed and spray-painted surfaces to create works that question our perception of value and quality.  Dowd was born in New York City and completed an MFA at Chelsea College of Art & Design. Recent exhibitions include: Galerie Jacky Strenz – Frankfurt; Tony Wight Gallery – Chicago; Nicelle Beauchene Gallery – New York; HOTEL – London and The Breeder – Athens. He lives and works in London and has a studio in SPACE’s Bridget Riley studios.