The Last Word

By Scott Sherk
Professor of Art
Head of Department



Following this theme of drawings and graphics, next January our art historian, Dr. Jadviga da Costa Nunes, will be curating an exhibition for the Martin Gallery of prints of illustrator Joseph Pennell (1860-1926) from the Tonner Collection.

Our senior art majors have been busily experimenting and creating work which will be exhibited in the Martin Art Gallery in May.

Outside of the studio and classroom, art majors Emily Hofer ‘07, Atom Kalen ‘07 and Patti Norek ‘07 have been working on an important community service project in Allentown. These students work with young people, helping them to photograph their neighborhoods, chronicling the architecture, people and environment.

March 2005 marks the debut of the art department’s digital image database. We have begun transferring our thousands of art images into digital format. Beth Buechler, administrative assistant, has taken on the additional duties of digital slide librarian and archivist.

The past year has been a busy one for the entire department. In addition to the exhibition with Kevin Tuttle in the Martin Art Gallery, I had an exhibition, “Steel Solitudes,” this winter at the Kim Foster Gallery in New York City. I will also be exhibiting at Haverford College in June.

Alexandra Block '07 uses charcoal to draw a sculpture.

Other faculty members have been just as busy, working not only to enrich the students’ experience of art, but also to continue honing their craft.

Visiting assistant professor and printmaker Liz Gross had an exhibition, “Memory Portraits” in September 2004 at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, N.J. She has also been at work on “Thesaurus: A Book Exchange,” a collaborative art project with alumni and faculty of The University of the Arts Book Arts/Printmaking Graduate Program.

Part-time lecturer, Carol Heft, will exhibit at the Blue Mountain Gallery in New York in October 2006.

Professor and photographer Joseph Elliott went to Costa Rica as part of a collaboration with the biology department. He will be returning again this summer. He also documented Anasasi dwelling sites in Bandelier National Monument, N.M. for the National Park Service in collaboration with the University of Pennsylvania program in historic preservation.

Professor da Costa Nunes delivered a lecture at the Ringling Museum in Sarasota, Fla. on Ansel Adams in Stylistic and Cultural Context. She also published the article, “Pennsylvania’s Anthracite Mines and Miners: A Portrait of the Industry in American Art” in Journal of Industrial Archeology, and “Revolution/Evolution; How the French Became Modern,” was recently published in Nineteenth Century Studies. Da Costa Nunes was a consultant to the Metropolitan Museum of Art on the drawings of Baroness Hyde de Neuville in the Fall 2004.

Associate professor Raymond Barnes, a painter, taught an exciting first-year seminar on combining writing and art. He is currently on sabbatical devoting his time to his creative work.

Finally, the art department continues collectively on its mission to energize our visions of ourselves, our pasts, and the world around us. As with any drawing, we are looking and correcting, trying to get things right. Our mission, our students, our faculty, our art and research all remain works in progress.

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