Exhibition highlights unique work of UIndy Art & Design faculty

The Christel DeHaan Fine Arts Center Gallery opens 2019 with a wide-ranging exhibition showcasing the work of the University of Indianapolis Department of Art & Design faculty. A reception from 4 to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 22 kicks off the exhibition, which runs through Feb. 8 and includes ceramics, visual communication design, painting, drawing, photography, printmaking, illustration and sculpture.

Katherine Fries, assistant professor, will exhibit seven printmaking works that continue her exploration of the relationship between people and objects.

“The exploration of various printmaking processes allows me a greater understanding and potential to explore the idea of narration, preservation, and its relationships to the viewer and myself,” Fries said.

Fries’ work in the faculty exhibition is part of “The Peat Project,” an ongoing collaboration led by Fries and Erin Beckloff, and implemented by the advanced printmaking students at the University of Indianapolis. It involves cataloging, researching and printing the over 4,000 fonts in David Peat’s collection for dissemination and completion of his “One Line Specimen Book.”

Sarah Pfohl, assistant professor, joined the department in Fall 2018. Her photographs featured in the exhibition are part of an ongoing project begun in 2012, entitled, The forest rests also in you.” Pfohl worked with Latitude, a photo lab in Chicago, to print some of her work on Habotai silk, which she used to create a 3-dimensional installation.

“I look forward to sharing my work for the first time in Indianapolis through the UIndy Faculty Exhibition and to exhibiting alongside my Art & Design faculty colleagues!” Pfohl said. “I hope that by modeling use of a new, somewhat persnickety material through my work in the show some of my students might be moved to pursue more seriously their weirder, more divergent instincts as they arise in their own work.”

Nathan Foley, assistant professor, is another new Art & Design faculty member who joined the department in Fall 2018. His sculptures, built from materials including aluminum, wood, rivets, cotton fabric and fiberglass composite, evoke the mysteries of flight. Foley explained his deep respect for aviation while growing up in a family of pilots and building plane models with his father, a certified aviation mechanic and instructor whose passion fueled Foley’s curiosity.  

“Our conversations resulted in my insatiable desire to create forms with my own hands that brought my interest in aviation to light utilizing construction techniques and processes (such as riveting and sheet metal fabrication) that have been used throughout aviation history,” Foley said.

Randi Frye, assistant professor, created a mural, “Field of Dreams,” and animation, “Electronic Fields,” for the exhibition.

“As with my other work, the subject matter and aesthetic choices for this piece were largely informed by a deep passion for the natural world, and inspired by my love of various folk art traditions as well as visual cues from printmaking and midcentury illustration,” Frye said.

Barry Barnes, assistant professor, will present his work in ceramics, which explores various construction and surface techniques applied to functional and sculptural ideas. Jim Viewegh, chair of Art & Design, takes a contemporary approach to the realistic, figurative tradition of painting to explore nuances of light and texture while creating a window into another reality. Julia Taugner, associate professor, specializes in graphic design and will exhibit her work, “Tempest in a Teacup,” a continuation of her exploration of everyday objects and sayings through her art.

Rhonda Wolverton, assistant professor, will exhibit “Building Barrios not Barriers,” a timely installation that shares the stories of those in the LatinX community in Indianapolis. The work was originally installed in Calvin Fletcher’s Coffee Shop near Fountain Square in November 2018. Wolverton said she seeks to be a creator of transformation.

“By leveraging design’s ability to inform, persuade, support and advocate I create work that empowers individuals, connects people and engages communities. My work examines activism and awareness through several conceptual frameworks including the semiotic relationship of language and symbolism,” Wolverton explained.

The exhibition also includes work by Steven Garst, associate adjunct,  and adjunct professors Alan Bundza, Christine Dearth, Donna Adams, Lauren Ditchley and Wendy Shapiro.

The Christel DeHaan Fine Arts Center Gallery at the University of Indianapolis features several exhibitions of two- and three-dimensional art each year. The gallery is open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays. Admission is free.

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