In prints and paintings, glass and ceramics, wood and mixed-media, seven full-time faculty members of the Newcomb Art Department weave together ideas of scale, perception, texture, pattern and contrast in “Tulane Contemporary,” the current exhibit at the Carroll Art Gallery.
Barry Bailey, Sandy Chism, Teresa A. Cole, Ronna S. Harris, Jeremy Jernegan, Kevin H. Jones and Gene Koss bridge similar ideas with entirely different approaches, revealing influences of culture and experiences from Wisconsin to New Orleans to India.
“Tulane Contemporary” is a parallel activity of Prospect.1 New Orleans, a citywide international art biennial that opens this weekend.
“This is an opportunity for Tulane to shine the spotlight on our faculty,” says Laura Richens, curator of the Carroll Gallery. “All of the shows across the city in Prospect.1 highlight the importance of the arts in the rebuilding of New Orleans.”
In Jernegan's large-scale ceramic tile wall sculptures, he deals with proximity and approach. The tiles' rigid, dense and opaque nature contradicts with shifting, watery, surface images.
“I think we continue to come to terms with the vulnerability we find ourselves in here in south Louisiana, internalizing both fascination and fear,” says Jernegan, whose work also will be shown on the academic quad of the Tulane uptown campus as part of Prospect.1. He is an associate professor in the art department and associate dean of the School of Liberal Arts.
In Chism's paintings of icebergs and miniature figurines, she grapples with scale and size, shrinking the large and enlarging the miniature as she shifts the perception of power and innocence. She is an associate professor of drawing and painting.
Koss, professor in the glass program, also deals with ideas of scale in his monumental sculptures of cast glass, steel and light.
Developed through his own innovative techniques, Koss's foundry-made glass sculptures evoke his experience as a youth on a mechanized Wisconsin farm. One of his recent works also will be installed on the Tulane quad this week.
Cole's fascination with patterns led her on a quest as visual collector to India to discover narratives in patterns for her art. An associate professor of printmaking, Cole said her prints are inspired by her travel experiences as she absorbed a new place and culture.
Harris addresses contrast in her paintings as she presents a state of controlled chaos, combining two conflicting forces and approaches realism and abstract expression. Rooted in the realist tradition, Harris's paintings transform into something else entirely. She is associate professor in drawing and painting.
The work by Bailey, associate professor in sculpture, is influenced by early Greek simplicity and Italian expressions of emotion. His representations of the human figure are created with wood, stone, steel and cast metals.
Jones' mixed-media installation seeks to test and undermine scientific authority as he re-contextualizes and dissects natural systems, questioning common understanding of the physical world. Jones is an assistant professor specializing in digital media.
The “Tulane Contemporary” exhibit continues through Nov. 21, with a closing reception on Thursday, Nov. 20, from 6 until 8:30 p.m.