College of Fine Arts News

AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center Houses New Art Gallery Featuring Works from Department of Art and Art History Faculty and Alumni

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Courtyard Gallery Offers New Art Exhibition Space

AUSTIN, Texas The Courtyard Gallery, a new exhibition space featuring the artwork of faculty and alumni from the Department of Art and Art History, has been opened in the AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center at The University of Texas at Austin.

The gallery is on the 2nd level of the Conference Center, adjacent to the courtyard. The gallery hours are between 9 a.m. 7 p.m. daily. The gallery is free and open to the public.

“The Courtyard Gallery is a marvelous opportunity for the Department of Art and Art History to share and celebrate the works of art created by its renowned faculty with the campus community and the guests and visitors at the Conference Center,” says Art and Art History Chairman John Yancey. “The exhibition venue in this beautiful new facility is part of an exciting and inspiring era in how the arts live and shine on The University of Texas at Austin campus, and we are delighted to be contributors and partners in this endeavor.”

There will be three faculty and alumni exhibitions a year in this space, curated by Creative Research Lab Gallery Director Jade Walker. All the works in the Courtyard Gallery will be for sale through the gift shop, and each exhibition will have an opening or closing reception.

“The Courtyard Gallery offers a unique location for local, national and international audiences to experience the energy of the Department of Art and Art History in the College of Fine Arts at The University of Texas at Austin,” says Walker. “This important throughway space, adjacent to the courtyard, frames the work of established artists from the department and provides an additional layer of creativity and artist practice to the Conference Center as a whole.”

The Courtyard Gallery is the result of a collaborative effort between the Office of the Vice President for Employee and Campus Services, which is a liaison between the university and the Conference Center and works in partnership with the College of Fine Arts to manage the gallery.

The work of Lawrence McFarland, professor of photography in the Department of Art and Art History, is on exhibition. His series Tracing: Images of Italy includes panoramic images of interior and exterior, rural and urban Italian landscapes. There will be a closing reception for this exhibition on Tuesday, Dec. 2.

The next artist slated to present work at the Courtyard Gallery is Studio Art Professor Margo Sawyer.

Winners of 12th Annual Hamilton Book Awards Announced at Four Seasons Hotel Event

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Art & Art History Professor Emerita Denise SchmandtBesserat takes home Grand Prize

AUSTIN, Texas The winners of this year’s University Coop Robert W. Hamilton Book Awards, among the highest honors of literary achievement given to published authors at The University of Texas at Austin, were announced Wednesday, Oct. 22, at the Four Seasons Hotel.

Michael H. Granof, chairman of the University Cooperative Society, hosted the event and announced the winners. William Powers Jr., president of The University of Texas at Austin, presented the awards.

Denise SchmandtBesserat, professor emerita in the departments of Art and Art History and Middle Eastern Studies won the $10,000 grand prize for her book, When Writing Met Art: From Symbol to Story, published by University of Texas Press.

The University of Texas Press describes When Writing Met Art as a pioneering investigation of the interface between writing and art [documenting] a key turning point in human history, when two of our most fundamental information media reciprocally multiplied their capacities to communicate. When writing met art, literate civilization was born.

Four faculty members were awarded $3,000 runnerup prizes:

Carlton K. Erickson, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, for The Science of Addiction: From Neurobiology to Treatment, published by W. W. Norton & Co.

James N. Loehlin, Department of English, for Chekhov: The Cherry Orchard, published by Cambridge University Press.

John T. Markert, Department of Physics, for Physics for Engineers and Scientists, 3rd edition, extended, published by W. W. Norton & Co.

Kurt G. Weyland, Department of Government, for Bounded Rationality and Policy Diffusion: Social Sector Reform in Latin America, published by Princeton University Press.

Ian W. Dalziel, of the Institute for Geophysics and Department of Geological Sciences, was awarded the $10,000 Career Research Excellence Award for maintaining a superior research program over many years at the university. Dalziel has dedicated most of his career to understanding global tectonic processes and to mapping out the geography of ancient times on Earth.

Andrea Gore and David Crews of the College of Pharmacy and Section of Integrative Biology, respectively, were awarded the $5,000 Best Research Paper Award for Transgenerational Epigenetic Imprints on Mate Preference.

Mr. Michael Smith, Department of Art and Art History, won the $3,000 Fine Arts Award for outstanding achievement.

The Huaca El Pueblo Archaeological Project

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Department of Art and Art History Associate Professor Steve Bourget is directing a critically important archaeological project at Huaca el Pueblo, near the coast of Peru.

Department of Art and Art History Associate Professor Steve Bourget is directing a critically important archaeological project at Huaca el Pueblo, near the coast of Peru. Huaca el Pueblo is a site with monumental architecture and residential areas situated in the Zaa Valley; it lies very close to the PanAmerican Highway.

The site is dominated by a stepandfret pyramid reaching 80 feet in height. The pyramid is associated with a series of residential and ritual platforms containing numerous rooms and corridors that may have constituted residential facilities for the elite. It is suspected that there is probably a vast residential area as well, but it is still buried under dense accretions of windblown sand.

Dr. Bourget has worked closely with Art History division graduate students on this project, providing them with professional field experience. Unlike other projects in Peru, this project is an investigation into the organization of north coast polities and the development of social complexity during the Early Intermediate Period (100 800 A.D.) in South America. With the investigation of Moche sites possessing monumental architecture, and the assessment of the Moche presence in the Zaa and Lambayeque valleys, Bourget is studying the regional organization of this cultural formation.

Although great advances have been made over the last two decades in the field of Moche studies, most of the research in regards to social organization has concentrated in only the Jequetepeque, Chicama and Moche valleys. Bourget’s work in Huaca El Pueblo is providing key insights into a new geographical area, allowing Andean scholars and students to continue to piece together this puzzle of the past.

Blanton Museum of Art Poised to Become Largest University Museum in the United States

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Grand Opening of the Edgar A. Smith Building in November

AUSTIN, TexasThe Blanton Museum of Art at The University of Texas at Austin will become the largest university museum in the United States when it opens its Edgar A. Smith Building in November.

The new structure, along with the celebrated Mari and James A. Michener Gallery Building, marks the completion of the Blanton complex.

“The Smith Building completes the museum facility,” said Ann Wilson, interim director of the Blanton, “opens up new opportunities for education and finally allows us to offer a total visitor experience.”

In celebration, several events are scheduled throughout November, culminating with a public grand opening party on Nov. 16. Visitors will have an opportunity to browse the newly expanded museum shop and sample treats from the new Blanton caf. There will be music performances by The Guy Forsyth Trio and others, film screenings, art activities and a book signing by noted New York art historian and critic Jed Perl.

The Edgar A. Smith Building contains a 299seat auditorium, the new Blanton caf and a museum shop that will offer an expanded book selection, jewelry, children’s toys, designer chocolates and a large assortment of items made by local artists/artisans, including Chandra Michaels of SugarLuxe and jewelry from Ingrid Kuper. A new line of “ART IS” merchandise (inspired by the Blanton’s advertising tagline) is being developed and will include totes, umbrellas and more.

The Smith Building was named in honor of Edgar A. Smith, a University of Texas alumnus and member of the Chancellor’s Council. Smith, a prominent supporter of the university and veteran of the oil and gas industry, lives in Houston.

Designed by Kallman McKinnell & Wood Architects, Inc. of Boston, the Smith Building was planned to complement the Michener Building, and to use the Larry and Mary Ann Faulkner Plaza in between the two, creating a gateway to the university and community.

Grand Opening of the Co-op Fine Arts Student Center Monday, October 6

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Please join us in Celebrating the Grand Opening

Please join us on Monday, October 6, 2008, to celebrate the long-awaited opening of the Co-op Fine Arts Student Center in the basement of the Doty Fine Arts Building (DFA). The redesigned and renovated space houses a large student lounge with WiFi, a soon-to-open O’s Campus Cafe, an outdoor patio seating area, a large art exhibition space and the College of Fine Arts’ division of Student Affairs and Career Services offices. The Co-op Fine Arts Student Center was made possible by the generosity of George Mitchell and the University Co-op.

Student Affairs and Career Services advisors and staff will host an open house beginning at noon, and a grand opening party from 4 p.m. 6 p.m. The space’s premiere art exhibition will include works by current graduate students in the Department of Art and Art History and will be on display for visitors to enjoy. Throughout the afternoon currently enrolled Fine Arts students may register for door prize drawings and give-aways, including a semeter’s worth of free books and gift cards courtesy of the University Co-op, iTunes cards and two iPods.

There will be live music, O’s Campus Cafe will provide refreshments and Dean Dempster will make brief formal remarks at a 4:15 p.m. ribbon cutting ceremony.

Please join us for the festivities at 4:00 p.m. if your schedule permits, and, if not, just drop by beginning at noon for a quick look-around. We look forward to welcoming you to this vibrant new College of Fine Arts space!

College Hires New Development Staff

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The college has hired three new staff to its development team. Michele Baylor, Lauren Zachry-Reynolds and, Cathryn Seymour Dorsey.

Michele BaylorMichele Baylor

Lauren ZachryReynoldsLauren ZachryReynolds

Cathryn Seymour DorseyCathryn Seymour DorseyThe college is pleased to announce the hiring of three new staff to its development team. Michele Baylor joins the college as the assistant director of development, focusing her efforts on the Department of Theatre and Dance. Michele previously worked at Zach Scott Theatre here in Austin, where she was the director of development. Lauren Zachry-Reynolds is the new development specialist, who will concentrate on the Butler School of Music. Lauren has a background in voice and performance, but was most recently employed by UT Press here on campus. Cathryn Seymour Dorsey joined the college over the summer and came to us from Caritas, a local charity. Cathryn is the director for corporate and member relations at the Performing Arts Center.

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