Exhibition Highlights

GVSU Art Gallery, 1121 Performing Arts Center: 

Winter 2009 -

The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec, Bonnard, and Vuillard: Selections form the Robert L. Hoskins and Erwin A. Raible Collection of Fin de Siècle French Prints. A Gift of Elaine Rutowski Shay.
Thursday, January 15 - Friday, March 20 - For many people, the posters of Toulouse-Lautrec and Bonnard are emblematic of lithography in fin-de-siècle Paris. Also included were lithography-enlivened book jackets, advertisements, sheet music, literary journals, as well as humor magazines. Many of the images in this exhibition reflect the late 19th-century artists' indebtedness to Japanese woodblock prints and photography. French artists enthusiastically appropriated design strategies long used by Japanese printmakers including a-symmetry, flat color, contour line, and unusual points of view. During the last decades of the 19th century, the Parisian neighborhood of Montmartre became a central motif for artists engaged in the critique of modernity. The district's reputation for excess and public spectacle offered artists a myriad of subjects. By depicting them in familiar Monmartre settings, artists created provocative images in which themes of sexual dalliance, consumerism, and mixing of social classes challenged social conventions of the day. This collection of over 200 prints is a part of GVSU's permanent collection in the print and drawing cabinet.

BFA Exhibition:  Lamping
Monday, March 30 - Thursday, April 2 Scott Cook, illustration, Nathan Dorotiak, performance/video, and Corinne Hess, metalsmith.

BFA Exhibition:  Sense in Synonyms
Monday, April 6 - Thursday, April 9 Gwendolyn Basala, Illustrator, Justin McKee, Illustrator, Sara Nelson, Metalsmith, and Zyra Castillo, Sculptor. 

Art Gallery School of Communication Photographic Senior Thesis 2009, GVSU Art Gallery, 1121 Performing Arts Center:  Louder
Tuesday, April 14 - Friday, April 24 Ashley Budnick, Breana Cronk, Summer Danielski, Ben DeHaan, Giuliana Fuentes, Carlita Gonzales, Emily Greenlee, Melissa Lemus, Todd Manna, Jacob Pataniczek, Kate Saler, Brittanee Smeltzer, Kylie Stegenga, Briana Trudell, Riley Vaughn, Sarah L. Watson, and Alyssa Wozniak.

Spring/Summer 2009 -

New STUDENT WORK Grand Valley State University
Wednesday, May 6 - Friday, August 7, 2009 - The Grand Valley State University Art Gallery was proud to host selected work of art from recent acquisitions. The Gallery's permanent collection now exceeds 8,500 work of art. Most of the collection can be viewed in university buildings on all campuses and this exhibit showcased a sampling of student work that was installed in future building projects. Students enrolled in classes form the School of Communications and Art and Design Department of GVSU completed the art featured on this exhibit during the 2008-2009 academic year. Their work is diverse in both media and subject. From drawing to sculpture, to video, the approaches and tools utilized are varied. The students investigated a cross section of formal elements, social issues, and the influence of one's surrounding environments. In addition, all of the artwork succeeded in stirring up a wide range of emotions as well as capturing the interest of any observer.

Fall 2009 -

Returning to Earth: Recent Paintings by Jill Eggers
Friday, August 28 - Friday, September 25, 2009 - This exhibit included a new body of paintings by Jill Eggers that was loosely based on landscapes in the writing of Jim Harrison, and a selection of work from the past three years. Eggers is Associate Professor at GVSU, where she teaches painting and heads the painting program for the Art and Design Department. She received her MFA from Yale University. Her work is exhibited nationally and in private collections.

Mystic India, Land of Color and Tradition: Folk Art and Miniature Paintings from Grand Valley State University
Monday, October 5 to Friday, October 30, 2009 - India is the second most populous country in the world with over one billion people. It has successfully managed to preserve their culture and traditions through a myriad of invading foreign influences, including central Asia and various European countries. More than 60 pieces of Indian art were on exhibit in the GVSU Art Gallery, including miniature court life painting, sculptures of major deities, multicolored folk art, and intricate inlaid marble works. The exhibition focused on the stories and legends reflecting India's diverse cultures, as told through her many traditional art forms. The artwork shown in Mystic India was a selection from the university's collections acquired during the course of two visits with members of the GVSU Friends of Art. Their travels took them from Dehli to Agra, through the desert state of Rajasthan. Along the journey, they sought local art forms in paining, sculpture, carving, and other crafts.

Converge Diverge
Monday, November 9 to Thursday, November 12, 2009 - This BFA Exhibition showcased the work of Jenny Scheider, metalsmith, and Alaina Clarke, metalsmith and Kyle Fleet, sculptor.

Time · Memory · Self · Space
Monday, November 16 to Thursday, November 19, 2009 - The work of painter Katy Carlson, ceramist Dean Foster, and sculptures by Rebecca Hagler and Josh Wambaugh were on display in the BFA exhibit.

Collective Expressions
November 24 - December 5, 2009 - Presented by the GVSU School of Communications this exhibit featured photographs by Amanda Butler, Marjan Lleras, Katherine Siekmann, Jena Voogd, Jake Kosten, Laura Malaski, Amy Stubblefield, Kelsey Emeott, Matthew LaVere, Kate Jonkman, Molly Reardon, Matthew Oster, Jessica Spenner, Marcella Herington, Joshua Cygan, and Bryan Sharon


Red Wall Gallery, Lake Ontario Hall:

Missionaries Encounter the Other
February-March 2009 - Director of Grand Valley's Pew Faculty Teaching & Learning Center, Catherine Frerichs, has long been a proponent of inter-cultural learning. In that light, she shared a collection of photographs from the remote region of New Guinea, where she lived for 17 years as a daughter of missionaries. Her text enhanced the display of photographs that her father took, primarily of the Kamano tribe. They are the native people of Raipinka, in the Central Highlands of New Guinea, in what is now Papua New Guinea. Frerichs' family lived in the area from 1946-1951. Her father first worked as a missionary in New Guinea in 1937 and continued for nearly 40 years. "It's a story about how my parents' attitudes toward New Guineans changed over time, along with their attitudes about missionary work," said Freriches. "It also records a group of native people whose way of life has changed dramatically and illustrates how difficult it is to truly encounter an 'other.'"

Foreign Locations: Photographs by David Keister
Monday,November 2 to Thursday, January 14, 2010 - A selection of color and black and white photographs taken during trips to England, France, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Vienna, Canada, Bahamas and parts of the United States. Subjects range from landscapes, historical sites and urban environments.

"I love to travel; wait, scratch that, I love my destinations! (I actually hate the travel part, particularly when it comes to airplanes.) I take my camera during these many excursions, sometimes with Grand Valley State University students in England or with friends to other parts of the world.

My subject matter can be just about anything. What prompted me to capture the image may not be definable at the time. It has often been said that artists make and photographers take and to a certain degree that is true; however, ultimately it is what the photographer chooses to take that makes a good photograph. I would have to say the initial desire for me to click the shutter is the basis of a good design seen through the viewfinder. I tend to work fast and take many photographs that the digital camera makes extremely easy (sometimes I think, too easy). The editing process takes place later when I choose the images that capture a mood, a moment, a feeling of the place that resonates for me and hopefully for the viewer.

My latest work with the multiple images came about as I was cataloging current and past images. (Necessary because of the too easy part) Many times when I photograph a scene I take several shots from various angles and distances and I noticed that sometimes the forms of these different images from the same place could connect. Thus, you just never know when the muse will strike."

The Spaces In Between: Partial and Particular Views of India
Monday, July 20 to Friday, October 30, 2009 - In the summer of 2007, Kirsten Strom, Assistant Professor of Art History, joined Professor Yatin Bhagwat and a group of Grand Valley students in Pune, India, where professor Bhagwat was teaching a summer class on the Business and Culture of India. Her own purpose in traveling with them was to prepare for teaching a new course on Asian Art by documenting the major historical monuments that the class was scheduled to visit. These would include the ancient Buddhist cave sites of Kala and Bhaja, the Hindu temples at Elephant and Ellora, the paintings at Ajanta, and the Mughal architecture of Northern India, including the Taj Mahal. During her time in India, Professor Strom generated a body of nearly 900 photographs, an invaluable asset on teaching the Indian component of the Asian Art course. Roughly 500 of these photographs are now part of the University's Glean database. This exhibition represented a sampling of the other 400 photographs, those that depict not the famous monuments, but the spaces between and alongside them. Though these photos can make no claims to representing the totality of India in all its complexities, they can begin to allude to the context that situates these monuments in a rich and diverse culture living alongside the traces of its own deep history.

Caring for Kids Means Caring for Our Future
April-July 2009 - The Grand Valley Children's Enrichment Center sponsored this exhibit in celebration of April being Month of the Young Child. Artwork done by the center's Children, ages 2-12, was on display, as well as a dozen black and white photographs of the children by Grand Valley Photography Manager Bernadine Carey-Tucker and Amanda Pitts, Grand Valley Photographer. "Each of the last three years, we've upped the level of excitement surrounding Month of the Young Child", said Sharelle Arnold, director of the center. " We keep striving to reach the campus community and beyond, to make them aware of the many issues children face and to become advocates for them. They are our future." Early childhood professionals all across the country celebrate young children and families every April through programs in advocacy, health and human services and literacy.


West Wall Gallery, Eberhard Center:

Winter 2009 - This was part of a planned series of small exhibitions showcasing the work of local artists to be featured in the Eberhard Center, Robert C. Pew Grand Rapids Campus. Jon McDonald was born on June 28, 1946. After attending Grand Haven High School, Jon received an Illustrator's Certificate from Kendall College in 1969. In 1972, he went on to receive an MFA in painting with a drawing minor form the San Francisco Art Institute. Currently Jon lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan and holds a position as Professor of Art at Kendall College of Art and Design. When not teaching, Jon paints full time and has had several one-man exhibits throughout the country.

Fall 2009 - Printmaker Alynn Guerra was the third of a planned series of small exhibitions showcasing the work of local artists. Guerra's first contact with printmaking was on the streets of Mexico City where 'Her Soul' is constantly portrayed in handmade posters glued on any surface available. Her favorite of these images were the ones created by ìel movimientoî, or the grass roots movement; she loved the bold expressive lines of their relief prints and the aggressiveness that spoke of social injustice. Later she learned about the close relationship between printmaking and social movements around the world, which has helped to shape her own artistic language. She creates art to help her understand and assimilate her everyday life tribulations. In her work you will find a broad range of themes: first creating the plate and giving it form with her hands, then inking and discovering the shape of the carved plate, and lastly pulling prints from the press. When she is finished with printing, the works are hung to dry: pinned in rows as if they were devoted militants ready to communicate her own personal messages.


Faculty/Staff Dining, Kirkhof Center:

Winter 2009 - This was the first of a planned series of small exhibitions showcasing the work of local artists to be featured in the Eberhard Center, Robert C. Pew Grand Rapids Campus. Caroline Fehsenfeld is a noted regional artist whose work reflects views of the streets and neighborhoods of Grand Rapids and surrounding rural areas. Fehsenfeld is often called a "painters painter." Through her rich palette and textures, she explores various relationships of abstracted shapes, realism and her own enthusiasm for life. This exhibit was on display in Winter 2009 in the Faculty/Staff Dining Gallery in the Kirkhof Center, Allendale Campus. It was presented with the support of LaFontsee Gallery.

Fall 2009 - Brita Brookes Native American Photography was part of a planned series of small exhibitions showcasing the work of Michigan artists to be featured on Robert C. Pew Grand Rapids Campus.

This exhibit displayed Brookes' experiences participating in Native American Pow Wows in the Three Fires Confederacy area of Michigan and Ontario. These photos reflected some of the qualities of light, dance, movement, texture, emotion and energy found at a Pow Wow event.

Although she is not Native American in her personal heritage, she has been actively involved in the Native American community in Michigan, California, South Dakota, North Dakota and Ontario. She is a past Board Member of the American Indian Movement of Michigan, a member of the Press Committee for the Longest Walk 2, a freelance writer for both Indian Country Today and Uncensored News and has been taking Ojibwe Language classes under the teachings of Margaret Noori and Howard Kimewon at the University of Michigan for two years. Her heritage is Irish, English, and Latvian American and she grew up in the suburbs of Detroit. Upon graduating from high school she went on to obtain a degree in Architecture from the University of Michigan and a Masters in Architecture & Design from Harvard University where Photo Journalism became a surprise minor and a new hobby. Photography has always been her passport for learning about people and community.