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A new exhibit at Fletcher Library features a collection of paintings by artist Shelley Whiting, an alumnus of Arizona State University.
Pleurants were mourning figures that decorated tombs in the Middle Ages. I was drawn to them by seeing their sad eyes and frowning lips. In these paintings, the various-sized pleurant figures are cut out and standing next to each other, with tiny sculptures of toothpaste behind them. Toothpaste used to be in metal tubes, but is now packaged in plastic. Religion often changes in a similar manner as to how everyday objects change. The figures are mourning that adjustment.
My art is influenced by caricature and mural art. When I was fifteen years old, I realized that realism did not capture the emotion or essence of the human experience. So I took a sketch pad and started experimenting with methods of distorting faces. I remember being fascinated by the caricatures of celebrities in Entertainment Weekly. Some were Cubist-inspired and others were more illustrative. After a year of painting celebrity caricatures I started creating caricatures of everyday people, which is what I do today.
I was born into a Mormon family of six children. My family was very active in the church growing up and I can't forget a Sunday where we weren't at church. I grew up in a creative household of writers and artists. My mother was a Mormon historian and published an article in the New Era, a popular Mormon magazine. My twin is a successful short story writer who has published over the internet and in zines. My brother makes his living with grants and helps out with community murals. I was influenced to be an artist with seeing my brother draw around the house. I started drawing when I was twelve but I didn't take art seriously until I was 17, when I realized a fascination for caricature, and later painting things big. Now I spend five to six days a week at Warehouse 1005, an art studio and gallery in the Phoenix art district. I am able to talk about my mental illness and cope with my symptoms through my art. I usually paint one picture a week, and am busy showing art projects around the valley in local businesses and galleries.
My current work consists of portraits, mostly representative of myself, but sometimes caricatures of other people and their inner lives. Lately I have been creating paintings that represent the roles that I play in my life. My recent paintings represent how I might be perceived by my peers coupled with the complicated nature how I view myself. I use my work as a means of defining my spiritual beliefs and my attempts at connecting with the spirituality and individuality of others.
While I have struggled with mental health issues since a very young age, in the past decade I have begun to comprehend through professional help my dual-diagnosis of bipolar disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder. That dual-diagnosis, on the other hand, does not fully explain what I feel and experience and I still struggle to choose what, if any labels define who I am. As of right now I use art as a form of catharsis. I pour my raw and vulnerable feelings into my work and really don’t care about the comfortability of my work to an audience. I hope the work will show my pain, and that the audience will sympathize with the often depressed and often silly nature of who I am.
For more information, visit shellwhiting.blogspot.com
We share it, grow it, eat it and celebrate it in our traditions. Food is the foundation of our lives.
So what can we do to ensure there is diversity in our food and that we will have access to it in the future?
Join us for lunch and conversation with local food experts to learn about how to make local agriculture and community and home gardening part of your life. We will learn about seeds, community gardens and local agriculture, as well as what we can do to keep our food diverse. Garden seeds from Arizona State University's seed library will also be available.
After the panel discussion, attendees will break into smaller groups to explore the needs and demands of supporting a local food system.
Netra Chhetri, ASU's School of Sustainability, School for the Future of Innovation in Society and Food Systems Transformation Initiative.
His expertise lies in the area of climate adaptation, energy and water, agriculture and food security, vulnerability assessment, grassroots innovation, participatory development and citizen engagement. A common thread of his scholarship sits in the nexus of science and society and the scope of his work is by its nature both local and global.
Melissa Kruse-Peeples, education and outreach coordinator with the Native Seeds/SEARCH.
Peeples received her doctorate from ASU in anthropology from the School of Human Evolution and Social Change. She will talk about her work and the mission of the NSS to provide new life for ancient crops through the cultivation and sharing of native seeds.
Christopher Wharton, ASU's School of Nutrition and Health Promotion and Food Systems Transformation Initiative.
Wharton's research focuses on connecting locally and regionally produced foods with those who need it the most. Focusing on improving healthy food access for underserved populations, students in his lab work with farmers, farmers' markets, community-supported agriculture programs and food hubs to identify effective, efficient and sustainable models for healthy food distribution.
This event is sponsored by ASU Library, School for the Future of Innovation in Society and Defend our Future.
Oct. 12–Nov. 12
A new multimedia installation at ASU Library is calling attention to the 100-year anniversary of the “forgotten pandemic,” a worldwide influenza which killed more people between 1918-1920 than were collectively killed in World War I, World War II, the Korean War and Vietnam.
A unique, self-guided tour of experiential data, "Counting the Dead" aims to re-embody Arizona’s influenza mortality data from one century ago, illustrating the ways in which illness had spread across our then young state.
Developed by ASU scholars Elizabeth Grumbach and Jacqueline Wernimont, the exhibit highlights innovative methods to represent data sets in three dimensional space, including sonification and haptics, offering visitors alternative ways of understanding — through feeling and hearing — the unfolding of influenza in time and space.
Grumbach is the project manager of the Nexus Lab, a digital research co-op within ASU’s Institute for Humanites Research, and Wernimont is an assistant professor in the Department of English and the director of the Nexus Lab.
Comfort and wellness food will be served from 2 to 4 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 17, in Hayden Library, along with other offered wellness resources, in celebration of the exhibition launch.
A reflection of different experiences reflected through the colorful art that tells stories.
Oliverio Balcells is a scholar of the ancient Mesoamerican cultures as well as as a photographer, painter and musician. He is a native of Guadalajara, Mexico and moved to Arizona in 1999.
He creates contemporary art. “I’m interested in social themes like history, culture, human potential development, symbolism and nature. I use self-expression to inspire people in the present moment through paintings, music, photos and films. My influences stem from ancient Mexican manifestations, Wixarika (Huichol) art, the Mexican master muralists and the golden age of Mexican cinema,” Balcells said.
In 2016, he was a selected artist for the In Flux Cycle 6 for the city of Tempe to paint a mural on Apache Boulevard. In 2012, he was selected by the city of Tempe Public Art Program to design and paint a utility box on Mill Avenue. The image was also made into a library card for the city of Tempe. In 2008, Oliverio was awarded first place at the Arte Latino en la Ciudad XII at the Phoenix Center for the Arts, and in 1999, he was awarded Best Artist in the seventh annual Plastic Arts Exhibit of Cancun.
His work has been featured as a cover for a book from the author Ruth Gomber-Munoz, "Labor and Legality: An Ethnography of a Mexican Immigrant Worker," published by the Oxford University Press, Inc. in New York City.
He has done several workshops for XicoInc’s cultural arts program for youth, CALA’s Diego Community Arts Program with Child's Play as an artist in residence in schools throughout Phoenix, created a community garden mural with Free Arts of Arizona and their Professional Artist Series at the Challenger Middle School. He has also been a teaching artist with Arizona Commission on the Arts, creating a portable mural with the students of Mercury Mine Elementary School in Paradise Valley, Arizona and recently participated in an interactive workshops called the “Eagle Sun in Motion” with the International Sonoran Desert Alliance, Vision Gallery and ASU West.
Oliverio Balcells received his bachelor’s degree in graphic design from the Univa University in Guadalajara, Mexico.
For more information, visit http://oliveriobalcells.com
Join ASU Library for a celebration of Constitution Day, which will include a lecture by Peter McNamara, professor of practice. He will focus on the rivalry between Hamilton and Jefferson, as portrayed in the hit musical "Hamilton," which will be coming to ASU Gammage next year. McNamara will pay special attention to each man's views on the Constitution.
The lecture will take place from 1-2 p.m., with trivia and refreshments both before and after, at 12:30 and 2 p.m.
McNamara is a founding member of Arizona State University’s new School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership. His research and teaching interests range across American political thought, early modern political thought, and political economy. He is an expert on the political and economic thought of Alexander Hamilton and author of "Political Economy and Statesmanship: Smith, Hamilton and the Foundation of the Commercial Republic." He has taught at Utah State University, Boston College and Clemson University, where he was a Hayek Visiting Scholar. He has also worked as a research officer for the Australian Treasury.
Constitution Day is an annual event to encourage all Americans to learn more about the Constitution. Established by Congress in 1956, Constitution Week begins each year on Sept. 17, the date in 1787 when delegates to the Convention signed the Constitution. In 2004, Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia included key provisions in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of Fiscal Year 2005 designating Sept. 17 of each year as Constitution Day and requiring public schools and governmental offices to provide educational programs to promote a better understanding of the Constitution.
Join Arizona State University Library as we celebrate the legacy and contributions of the Hinojosa and Franco French families in Arizona.
The Fidencio and Diana Hinojosa Collection documents the family’s musical career that began in Phoenix in 1954 and their efforts to preserve Mexican music from Veracruz, Mexico. The Franco French Family Papers document the family's political and social presence in Arizona between the 1930s and the 1990s. Most notably, the Franco French family established the Fiestas Patrias in 1934 and founded El Sol, among the earliest Spanish language newspapers in Phoenix, in 1938.
This special reception will include food and live music performed by Diana Hinojosa DeLugan and Johnny Montoya, and is part of ASU Library's celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month.
Reynaldo Hahn (1875-1947) is best remembered for his songs. Of which, the popular “Si Mes Vers Avaient des Ailes,” best exemplifies the easy salon elegance of his style; however, his music for the theatre is much more voluminous.
In addition to several ballets and incidental scores, Hahn composed 17 operas, operettas and musical plays. Most of these works are comedies with singing and dialogue. This is a genre in which Hahn, with his love of classical lightness, wit and good taste, excelled.
“At all costs,” Hahn once said, “heaviness and boredom are to be avoided; the Muses do not wear glasses.”
On display are 10 opera scores, all in first edition, representing the light, frothy and inventive nature of Hahn’s compositional style. Several scores are autographed, including a presentation copy of "Le Carmélite" to Jules Massenet, the quintessential French opera composer and Hahn’s teacher at the Paris Conservatoire.
The exhibit will be on display through Dec. 15 in the Music Library. All scores are from the private collection of Robert Mills, clinical associate professor and vocal coach for the Lyric Opera.
For further information or questions, please contact Robert Mills at Robert.Mills@asu.edu.
Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month by learning about Arizona State University’s Latin@ history!
Christine Marin, founder of the Chicano/a Research Collection at ASU Library, will lead a walking tour that highlights important historical landmarks on the ASU Tempe campus.
Tour begins at the School of Transborder Studies (Interdisciplinary Building B) and ends at the Hayden Library (room C52) with a small reception and makerspace activities.
The art activism — "artivism" — of Jewell Medina will be on exhibit in the second floor of Fletcher Library through Oct. 14.
Artist statement: "My own art activism started as a young girl when I would design altar installations with my grandmothers and grow medicinal herbs in our gardens for healing. As early as second grade with Ms. Martin, I wrote an award-winning testimony about my mother and grandmother's life growing up in Guadalupe, Arizona. I was living with my parents and two sisters and a brother in a one-bedroom home in Barrio Campito. El Campito was named the camp because this was once the outskirt of the city and city dwellers would see campfires out in this location because that is where the migrants lived. The teacher told me I had a flare for writing. After this I wrote all our grief, pain and suffering into the stories and design of installations in the forms of altars and cajitas.
"My artist career grew in graduate school while working an internship for the Arizona State Chicano archives. At the archives, I learned about arrangement and stories through oral history and visual ethnography. I further expanded my perception and knowledge about art as activism. All of my work is targeted to speak to a revolution. In my time before becoming an artist, most of the time I worked on human trafficking networks, domestic violence councils and as an art historian and ethnic studies professor. I feel strongly that art is a tool to mobilize people to take action on the issues that are most passionate to their hearts. I believe, as Frida Kahlo stated, that 'I paint my own reality.' Art shapes reality and influences the outer. It all starts in the mind, and our creativity shapes the world we live in and create. Currently I am working on a piece to assist women in the arts. I am mostly interested in how women navigate the political climate and speak truth to power. Women are powerful agents of change to create their own stories and herstories with their artivism.
"I am a cultural arts productions visual scholar with research interests in art as it relates to social justice. I have a permanent collection of my art and papers in the Chicano Archives at Arizona State University."
For more information, visit:
Arizona State University Fine Arts alumna Brenda Edwards brings the color of the desert to Polytechnic campus Library.
“I consider everything art. My home, nature, the desert, animals and people, all are works of art," Edwards says. "I approach everything as an artist, and take a creative approach to all that I do. I made a decision to live in Arizona when I was 18 years old. I have never regretted that. I love the color and the light of the Sonoran Desert, and spend a good percentage of my week hiking near my home in South Mountain. In the heat of the summer I am on the mountain at 5 a.m. with my dog — and the coyote, owl, javelina and rattlesnake — whoever shows up. Nature preserves all that is precious to us, and I honor nature with my paintings. Arizona is breathtaking and is the inspiration for many of my paintings. I hope to impart to my audience a unique, smile-provoking perspective.”
The exhibit will be on display through Dec. 31.
For more information on the artist, please visit: artistbrendaedwards.com