Thursday, February 28, 2008

Studio Visit: Tamsen Wojtanowski

Tamsen is a second year photography grad. She works in a studio off campus because she makes the stuff she photographs and wouldn't be allowed to make as big of messes on campus in the shared photo grad studio. Her artwork is very interesting, she makes multi layer photography with all sorts of techniques. Her responses make me think she should get her own blog. She has a lot to say!!

What are you working on?
Right now I am working on the finishing touches of a group of work entitled "divine lorraine" which will be shown at my MFA exhibition April 2-5th at Temple Gallery on N. 3rd St. Opening First Friday, April 4th from 6-9pm

In these works I started with the building of an instillation of paintings/drawings/constructions/ writings and then use the camera as an additional visual tool to show you what you can't see with your eye alone. Whether it be depth of field, the application of colors or other barrier type materials to the lens, like tape, vaseline, . . . Its all about trying to say something I can't find the words for, I can only feel it. Its about making it right in my studio. Longing for some Big Love, some Big Utopian, searching and not being able to find it, and the frustration in that, the vulnerability and insecurities in wanting.

What are you excited about right now?
I am really excited to start my next works. I feel satisfied with the last and want to go out again and discover something else. I am ready to move on. Once the show is up and down, its going to be a great time of teaching and working without consequence.

I don't have a studio on campus. So I split my work between my backyard, my garage and a studio space I rent downtown from a good friend and fellow grad, Jess Perlitz.

I don't want to search to much, to look for happiness and the answers to desire as if they were the ultimate goal. I think I have made myself more unhappy by searching for a Utopian, for some Big Love, than I would have been if I just settlyed in to what is around me, the good friends and family that I have. The love and peace and memories I carry inside me all of the time, regardless of what is going on in the immediate reality.

I want to enjoy myself and my studio. I can't wait. There are going to be crayons in use and bright colored paints . . .

Biggest pet peeve?
I hate wet paper towels. They make me gag. But I am getting over it. I am working on it.

My biggest pet peeve -- it makes me crazy that people are so unkind. It doesn't take that much to be kind. I don't mean bending over backwards or putting other people first, just simple stuff. Tipping well, saying please in the cafeteria, not laying on your horn in a traffic jam, just turn up the radio and sing dammit!
Garage as studio:

Desk mess:
Studio downtown:Cyanotypes drying on the line at home:

Tema Stauffer, 'Selected Works,' 25 Feb - 21 March

Tema Stauffer is an photographer whose work is being showcased in Elkins Hall Gallery from February 25th to March 21st, 2008.

Bio, provided by Michele Tecco:
Tema Stauffer is a photographer based in Brooklyn. She graduated from Oberlin College in 1995 and received a MFA in Photography from The University of Illinois at Chicago in 1998. Her work has been shown in galleries and art institutions in Chicago, Minneapolis, San Diego, New York City and Rouchechoart, France. Her solo exhibition “American Stills” was shown at Jen Bekman Gallery in 2004, where she has also participated in seven group shows. The Museum of Contemporary Photography at Columbia College selected fifteen images from this body of work for their Midwest Photographers Project. Tema teaches at The School of the International Center of Photography.

Her personal blog.

Image titled White Horse

Special Thanks to Tamsen Wojtanowski and Dave Kube who got to drive the 'whale' to nyc to get these photographs!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Studio Visit: Lauren Abshire

Lauren is a second year printmaking grad. She makes super cool installations of topographical
imagery, she also throws a very good mardi gras party...or so I hear.

What are you working on?
I'm working on an installation with prints and other media ... I have a big floor installation I'm
trying to figure out, with lighting and everything, that involves wood bock prints and the wood
blocks (I cut into pieces with a band saw) to make a fragmented topographical landscape. I also
am trying to finish a machine I made that is a combination of a turntable and an overhead
projector ... I changed the platter out with clear acrylic, and it projects a path being made on a
landscape print as it turns. Other than that, figuring out how to set everything up in the gallery!

What are you excited about right now?
Finishing school, mostly .. And finishing my show so that I can start on new ideas. Oh, and the
new season of Lost.

If I bought you a drink what would it be?
Either vodka and cranberry or beer.
(Lauren never got her post in full, so im reposting her responses with the pictures she finally got to me!)
Jerry's post finally got answers! check it out!)

Stone Path:
Drawing with light:

Studio wall:
Music, our saving grace most days:
Lauren's fancy photo collage of her naturally lit studio:

Monday, February 25, 2008

What We Learned: Janet Koplos & Bruce Metcalf

Discuss Writing a History of American Craft

Co-Authors Janet Koplos, Senior Editor, Art in America, & Bruce Metcalf, Studio Jeweler and Independent Scholar

discuss the writing of their upcoming book "Makers: A History of American Studio Craft" (University of North Carolina Press). The book has been identified as the number one priority in advancing craft in academia and the curatorial world.

Wednesday, February 27th, 2008, 6:30pm

Tyler School of Art: President's Hall Auditorium

This event is free and open to the public

Sponsored by the Foundation Department at Tyler School of Art

For information: 215-782-2894 /

Sunday, February 24, 2008

TwoFold Exhibition: Part 2

So finally the follow up post! The TwoFold Exhibition is one that I have been excited about since the first rumors of it happening. Being that I am from MassArt and know many of the second year painters in the grad program there, I was excited for the exchange because it usually means openings and new artists coming to Tyler for a short visit.

Massart's grad painting department's artwork is in Tyler Gallery from
February 21st to March 1st.

The closing reception is March 1st from 5-7pm
Tyler Gallery @ Tyler School of Art
7725 Penrose Avenue
Elkins Park, PA

The pictures are single pieces because Tyler Gallery is really gigantic.

Stephanie Costello, she makes incredibly detailed, colorful, complex drawings/guache on papers. She is also one of the most hilarious people I have ever met, I don't know why but she kills me.

Owen Rundquist is super awesome, he can jump really high, his art is radical. We are friends only because of the later. Only joking! And his painting Curses from the Wasteland is not hung slanted its just the way I took the picture.
Michael Zachary's mixed media pieces that you should go look at.

Detail of Catherine Stack's prints with stitching details (my favorite)
Michelle Carter's big red painting in the first room of Tyler Gallery:

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Fiber Artists: Philadelphia #5

March 5th-30th, 2008

Opening reception:
Sunday, March 9th 1-5 pm.


DaVinci Art Alliance
704 Catharine Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147
(215) 829-0466

curated by K. Pannepacker, textile/visual artist

Wednesday evenings: 6-8 pm
Saturday and Sunday: 1-5 pm.

This show includes art from a Tyler School of Art adjunct fibers professor, Amy Orr, a fibers grad Erin M Riley and an undergraduate Caroline Gardner.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Post Crit Question

Just wondering how much time you/we/us/them as a viewer are willing to invest in a work of art?

Equivalent of how long it took to make it?
how big it is?
the artist that made it?
the location it is in?
if there is a bench?
if its interesting visually at first glance?
if it smells good?

Do you think these views change from generation to generation, from department to department at Tyler specifically or in the greater art world?

How can an artist require the viewer to spend some time?
How can an arists blatantly ask that the viewer not be apathetic or neutral?

answer, or follow up with more questions...please.

Grad Movie Night (editorialized)

I think its so safe to say that we are all nerds, we wouldn't be in grad school if we weren't obsessed with painting, weaving, ceramics, glass, art, etc. Either that or you seriously want to put yourself through two years of hell in order to just teach, I hope we are all just nerds.

On that note, movie night is a cool new thing, week one went great, need comfier seats, more refreshments.
Watched Good Night, and Good Luck, Lauren brought it via Netflix. This post has nothing to do with art, but with night was actually productive for me because I was waiting for resin to dry.

So Movie Night! 9:30 pm near the painters' studios on Thursdays.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

AIGA Interview with Sara Alway

Sustainable Student Project Comes to Life:
An Interview with Sara Alway

by Craig Schlanser

A project I did last semester was featured on an online article on the AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts) Philadelphia chapter website. I mentioned this project to all the first years last semester, so if you want to learn more about "green" building...check it out.

Sunday, February 17, 2008


A little insight courtesy of FLUXspace by Julia Schwadron and Steve Lambert it is hung in the fibers studio if you ever need to see it in person.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Studio Visit: C. Pazia Mannella

For beauty, go to Pazia's studio. She makes beautiful objects and garments out of unusual materials such as knitted or crocheted wire, torn material or sewn zippers. Its also worth mentioning that the way she says "garments" is unlike any other person I have heard (in a good way). She is a second year fiber grad, that means we share a studio and I get to hear her talk about her art quite frequently, and garment is a frequently used word. Her performances are spectacular and always make me feel a bit or a lot uncomfortable, but I have come to realize that is almost the point.

What are you working on?
I am currently making a collar made from zipper tape. I've used this material before but I would like to push the limitations of the zippers. I am planning a performance and searching for mirror beads to use in a crochet piece. I am also thinking about creating a flip book.

What are you excited about right now?
My new sewing machine, the books Extreme Beauty; The Body Transformed by Harold Koda and Fashion at the Edge by Caroline Evans, thinking about buying a computer (I've never owned one before), and puppet theatre.

Bottle or can soda?
Can -- but I call it Pop, not soda, preferably Ginger Ale

Studio Shot:

Sewn zipper collar, in progress:

Beautiful detail:
Costume/garment graveyard:

Studio Visit: Jerry Kaba

Jerry is the first boy to have a studio visit! He doesn't win anything, but its just a relief! It felt a little sexist to go on and on about the ladies at Tyler, they are great, but we need some men in this blog! Ok! So he is a second year ceramics grad, he is hooked on clay but should have more fun (in my opinion) he is though, with spray foam, rubber and lots of other weird materials. His thesis show will be interactive (finally!).....

What are you working on?
I am working on an installation for my thesis show April 2nd - 5th at Temple Gallery. The show is tittled "Great Stuff Escaping the Limits of Nature." The installation will encompass the room with playfully yet hazardous objects that can be navigated through n small scooter like objects. I hope to bring attention to the hazards that lie in the "stuff" we surround ourselves with on a daily basis.

What are you really excited about right now?
I am excited about finishing school and beginning my life in a non academic surrounding. Also I am traveling to Japan and hopefully China and Russia this summer which will be an amazing end cap to my 11 year college career. Not knowing where I will be this time next year is very exciting to me and I cant wait to see how things play out.

What do you drive?
Happiness, change, risk and a p.o.s. 1986 Volvo Wagon.

General studio shot, he is in the middle of Cavan and Dylan in the ceramics area:

This is art:

This will be art, is art, needs to be fired:

Desk shot, I must add the radio was playing reggae, a nice touch:

Kaba is way into music, can you tell? Oh and on the left is art:

Studio Visit: Kerry Kolenut

Kerry is a first year photo grad. She is awesome, really quiet sometimes but you should always say hi to her. She makes pictures of houses and of people watching tv, she loves to edit in the dark, or low lit studio.

What are you working on?
I am photographing people watching t.v., communities that contain houses with similar structures and something else that I don't know how to do yet.

What are you really excited about right now? many things...emails from South Africa, Kerry G Photography, cheese and new adventures.

Do you believe/appreciate romance?

e.g. low lit studio, the photo grads share one room! 6 artists in one space, craziness:

Editing the houses:
Storage device!
Taking pictures of pictures:
Houses on the wall, Kerry is determined and focused on this project:

Studio Visit: Joan Dreyer

Joan is a second year fibers grad. She has the smallest and cleanest fibers studio because she mostly works from her studio at home. She is based in New Jersey and makes the commute to Elkins Park to get her on campus studio time in a few days a week. Her work has been facilitated from found x-rays and she has been working with the topic of war ever since her first year in grad school here at Tyler.

What are you working on?
My current work is politically oriented. It is a response to our involvement in Iraq. I want to draw attention to the collective anxiety that is a result of a war being fought at a great distance with unclear motives and no resolution in sight.

What are you really excited about right now?
I'm excited about getting my work off the wall and allowing it to become more sculptural.

Worst Habit?
I often self-censor and talk myself out of ideas before I even try them. I'm getting better at quieting the conversations in my head and just moving forward and making the work.

The overall view of Joan's Studio:

Her work with xrays:
Large image printed on fabric, cotton probably:This chain is one of my favorite things in Joan's studio, its dirty and scary and yet really beautiful:

More x-rays, it looks like a dentist's office!

Monday, February 11, 2008

wake me with a tallboy - Photography Exhibition

2nd year MFA candidate Tamsen Wojtanowski, has hung an exhibition of her photography at Joshua's Cafe in Jenkintown, PA.
It is a show of color work, shot with 35mm disposable cameras over a quick summer month she spent in Upstate New York with friends.
All works are for sale.
The work will be up through the month of February.

Directions to Joshua's: Go North up 611 toward Abbington, it is the first left after the Drake Tavern, at West Ave. The cafe is about half way down the first block, on the left. There is parking on the street and also a parking lot in the rear, if you take the left at the stop sign, the parking lot is on the left.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Studio Visit: Charlotte Rodenberg

We all know Charlotte! She is the super friendly first year painting grad who is always planning fantastic events for the grads. She was the OG bowling league member, she makes really awesome installations of/about trash and the city. She constructs the trash out of found or collected materials, its really incredible.

What are you working on?
What I enjoy most, is having several projects going on at once, all informing the other. Sometimes these works have a common ending point such as in a large scale installation, which has been growing since the Fall of 2007, titled "This is My Playground." Others share a similar concept yet are meant for other destinations such as a film, performance or sculpture.

What are you really excited about right now?
At the moment I am sorting my way through this mess of a studio (which I love) and misplacing some of my favorite objects in the city realm. I have a short stop animation boiling in my mind which is spawned from the idea of these installments.
Another project is along the lines of a social activism concerning the use of plastic bags at my local grocery store whom refuses to not only offer totes as an option, give minor rebates to those who do use totes and insist upon double bagging all groceries. I firmly believe that I can use my work as a catalysis for social change.

In one word how would you describe yourself?

A sunday in the studio with the husband:
Making an overturned shopping cart, or a shopping car that has been but wont be later, overturned:

Her supplies:

Mail box, pretty legit too!

And meters, much lighter and more fragile than their "real" counterparts:

Studio Visit: Sheryl Oppenheim

So Sheryl is a first year painter, she makes brightly colored paintings and is very ambitious. She is also the first non-crafts department person I have been able to do a complete studio visit with!! She recently, pretty single handedly, organized the Twofold Exhibition which seemed like a whole lot of work. She is also my roommate and I asked her a few questions and took a few pictures...

What are you working on ?
Visually consuming and appropriating everything I find interesting, from beach balls to the alphabet. A to B?

What are you really excited about right now?
Screen printing, my new diabetes medication, beach balls, egg rolls, Matt Curry's paintings, a sale on diet coke and room in my studio for more work!

In one word, how would you describe yourself?
Industrio-ridiculous or/and pancreas-challenged

We all have messy desks...I think its really just a more visual kind of organization:
Large paintings, small paintings, mixed media, collage, letters:


Sheryl is learning to silkscreen, so far so good: