Hallie G. Meredith, a teaching assistant professor of fine arts at Washington State University, is being honored with two major awards for her research into ancient Roman art processes.
Meredith received the William R. Levin Award for Research in the History of Art before 1750 from SECAC, a leading national arts education and research organization, for her project “Fragmentary and Unfinished Art: Documenting Undocumented Late Roman Art and Process.” She was also selected to receive a 2021 Clark Fellowship for her related project, “Workshops, Process, and Anonymity: The Roots of Contemporary Craft in Ancient Roman Art.”
“The Roman practice of concealing evidence of carving has led to a fundamental gap in our knowledge concerning production,” Meredith said. “My approach will enable unfinished pieces to take center stage, with the potential for fundamentally important – but obscured – visual information to be accessed, and their wider significance and cross-disciplinary implications to be addressed.”
For an Art, Science and Technology course at Washington State University Tri-Cities, the transition to virtual learning proved not only to be a natural transition. It played to the course’s sweet spot.
As the title of the course suggests, students bring together what some may consider two sides of a coin – art, and science and technology. But for Peter Christenson, an associate professor of fine arts, the blending of the two fields is natural.
“The transition to virtual has been beneficial in some ways, especially in more digitally-focused classes,” he said. “It is essentially a natural extension to everyone’s practice. Our students are brilliant and very adaptable. They are the creative class of the campus. I have been impressed with their work ethic and diligence … With the social context we are going through, I have been impressed with the work that students are putting out.”
Kyle Kopta, a senior digital technology and culture major, came up with the idea for what he calls “The Photo Machine” for his project, where the machine automates the process of taking a photo of oneself. The user turns a handle, which activates a gear mechanism, drops a marble into a tube and triggers the shutter on a camera.
From moist, cool clay to wet, drippy paint and dry, smudgy charcoal, visual art is a distinctly hands‑on, sometimes messy, field of practice and study. So, what happens when art education goes online?
“Remote teaching certainly hasn’t slowed us down. In fact, these strange times have helped us reimagine new, more expanded ways to reach out to our students while still having deep and meaningful experiences in the virtual classroom,” said Associate Professor Io Palmer.
She and many of her fine arts colleagues, including Joe Hedges, assistant professor of painting/intermedia, have created their own makeshift media studios where they shoot, produce and edit demonstrations and tutorial videos for their students to watch online anytime.
“Each of our students is really on a personal journey of creative exploration. We are not prescriptive about where that journey leads, so we use frequent one-on-one and group dialogues and critiques to help guide their learning in a highly individualized way, maintaining individual connections with each student wherever they are,” Hedges said.
Ever since humans discovered they could use sand to make glass, they’ve been experimenting with it. They even learned how to control the colors.
My friend Dustin Regul is a stained glass artist and painter who teaches fine arts at Washington State University. He told me more about where glass gets its color.
“It’s actually metals that help change the color of the glass,” he said.
In medieval times, when stained glass first became really popular, people used a different technique. The glass pieces were held together with long strips of a bendy material made of lead. On each side of the lead strip was a little channel where the edge of glass could be tucked in. And like the technique Regul uses, adding heat to the strip helped keep the glass in place.
Humans can use these really small pieces of glass—in all sorts of colors—to form a bigger picture or story. Whether you are in the lab or the studio, it’s amazing what you can create and discover when you set your mind to it.
Washington artists will have the opportunity to share their creative visions in response to the Black Lives Matter movement with help from a new grant program established by Jordan Schnitzer in partnership with Washington State University’s Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art.
The Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art WSU Black Lives Matter Artist Grant Program will distribute $2,500 grants to 20 artists across the state of Washington who will be asked to use their voices, experiences, and artistic expression to reflect on social justice efforts in response to systemic racism.
A panel is being formed to review the artist submissions which will include: Ryan Hardesty, Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art WSU; Io Palmer, associate professor , Department of Fine Arts WSU; Lisa Guerrero, professor, School of Lanuages, Cultures, and Race WSU; Trymaine Gaither, Honors College WSU; and Mikayla Makle, Black Student Union WSU. Grantees will be notified by Oct. 31.