By Kate Luce
In the midst of demonstrations, fine arts students rarely get the opportunity to see what art their professors like to create outside of campus.
The IU South Bend gallery is hosting an opening of the annual Faculty Exhibition on Oct. 3 at 5 p.m. This exhibition will feature fine arts and integrated new media faculty work ranging from ink drawings, conceptual sculptures, figural oil paintings and everything in between. The gallery officially opens with this show on September 23.
This exhibition is annual due to the fact that faculty work is ever-changing, and students have the opportunity to see it. Students also have the chance to have a sense of what their professors like to create in their free time and have a sense of their inspiration.
“It shows the students the work that the faculty produces outside of the classroom and it is always nice for everyone to see what the people in Fine Arts and New Media are producing. I am very lucky to be able to work with such talented people in departments all over the University and am always impressed and excited by the work they share,” John Thompson, lecturer in fine arts, said.
“The primary role of faculty is to teach, it is something we all take very seriously and are quite proud of. However, we’re all artists who create new work that explores different things. I get the sense we’re all pretty passionate people who really love creating art. Students’ don’t often get to see that side of us. My hope is that it is inspiring for students to see their professors’ art and to learn about their own artistic interests and expertise,” Jeff Horwat, assistant professor in fine arts, said.
Horwat is showcasing 18 illustrations from a short wordless book titled (Un)Comfortably Lost. His illustrations are created from ink, and he diluted the ink with water to create different shades, much like watercolor.
“The narrative itself was a collaboration between myself and a Washington D.C. based folk musician, Eli Lev, who wrote a song called ‘One Road’ for his current album Way Out West, a concept album about living in Arizona and traveling around the southwest.”
“Eli sent me an early recording of the song and asked if I would create art that reflects some of the ideas and feelings of the song itself. Listening to the song, interpreting his lyrics and reflecting on my own experiences with the theme of traveling, I wrote a short story about strangers working through the uncertainty of travel, trusting foreign landscapes and learning to enjoy the discomfort of new experiences,” Horwat said.
Horwat and Lev originally met when they worked together in Arizona on the Navajo Reservation at a Bureau of Indian Affairs School fifteen years ago. They stayed in touch throughout the years, although their careers differed.
John Thompson, a lecturer in fine arts, is showing a few pages of his documentary graphic novel that is still in progress and finished 3-D model based on my design of the main character. Thompson has worked on several graphic novels in the past.
The IU South Bend Gallery is open from 12 – 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.