Mon. October 21, 2013
The Department of Art and Art History congratulates Professor and Associate Chair Julia E. Guernsey on being named the grand prize winner of the 2013 University Co-Op Robert W. Hamilton Book Awards for her work “Sculpture and Social Dynamics in Preclassic Mesoamerica.”
The Hamilton Awards are among the highest honors of literary achievement given to published authors at The University of Texas at Austin. This year’s winners were announced Thursday, Oct. 17, at the Four Seasons Hotel.
In “Sculpture and Social Dynamics in Preclassic Mesoamerica,” Guernsey focuses on the significance of an enigmatic but abundant type of Preclassic monumental stone sculpture known as the “potbelly,” and she links its development to the social and political transformations that accompanied the formation of the first state-level societies in Mesoamerica. This book is a unique study that bridges the domains of art history, archaeology and anthropology in an exploration of the social role of sculpture during the Preclassic period in ancient Mesoamerica.
"I am thrilled by this honor, and delighted to share this research recognition with two other colleagues from the College of Fine Arts," Guersey said. "It was a great year for COFA, and a wonderful testament to the quality and diversity of research that takes place within our college."
Julia Guernsey received her Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin in 1997, and has taught ancient Mesoamerican art and culture history in the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Texas at Austin since 2001. Her research and publications continue to focus on the Middle and Late Preclassic periods in ancient Mesoamerica, in particular on sculptural expressions of rulership during this time. She also continues to participate on the La Blanca Archaeological Project, which is exploring this large site that dominated the Pacific coastal and piedmont region of Guatemala during the Middle Preclassic period.
Wed. October 2, 2013
Associate Professor Beili Liu is part of a team of people invited by Women & Their Work to collaborate on the recently unveiled public art project THIRST, which memorializes the loss of over 500 million trees that died in the drought of 2011 and raises awareness of the importance of water conservation.
The stunning installation on Lady Bird Lake (between South Lamar and the adjacent pedestrian bridge) will be on display through December 20.
Learn more about the project at thirst art.org.
Mon. September 30, 2013
The Center for the Study of Ancient Italy (CSAI) announced the CSAI Undergraduate Excavation Fellowship early in the spring semester of 2013. Open to all undergraduate Art History majors at The University of Texas at Austin, the fellowship was intended for a single fellow. After reviewing the applications, it became clear that there were two outstanding applicants, Hallie Brewer and Arjun Reddy. With the generous support of Jack Risley, Chair of the Department of Art and Art History, CSAI was able to offer fellowships to both of these outstanding students. The fellowships fully supported Hallie and Arjun to spend two weeks at CSAI’s excavation project (The Oplontis Project) at the ancient site of Oplontis, near Pompeii. The Oplontis Project is in the process of a large-scale study of two sites identified with ancient Oplontis and buried some 28 feet beneath the modern town of Torre Annunziata: Villa A (sometimes called the Villa of Poppaea) was designed for leisure, whereas Oplontis B was a busy distribution center for wine. Both fellows participated in all aspects of the project, including excavation, masonry analysis, ceramic study, wall-painting study, and archival work.
Hallie Brewer discusses the experience:
“At Oplontis, my text-book knowledge was augmented by the empirical and physical experiences on the sites and by daily interactions with various experts. I was involved in all aspects of archaeological work, including fieldwork, post-processing of artifacts, analysis and preservation. This summer left me better informed and more competent in the field, and with a desire to continue my studies of Rome and Pompeii. Any future success I may achieve in the fields of Art History or Classical Archaeology will be, in large part, owing to my involvement with the Oplontis Project.”
Tue. September 17, 2013
Assistant Professor in Transmedia Kristin Lucas is featured in the September 2013 issue of Art in America. Read the interview online.
Lucas recently joined the faculty in the Department of Art and Art History. She previously taught at Bard College in New York.
Mon. September 16, 2013
The Department of Art and Art History is pleased to announce the appointments of Anna Collette, Carma Gorman, and Kristin Lucas.
Anna Collette joins the department as an Assistant Professor in Photography. Her series "Invasive Species" and "Dark Landscapes" address conflicted notions of the contemporary landscape. Collette leverages her medium to register images narrowly perceptible to normal vision, and consequently, our conception of the natural world. Collette received her MFA from the Yale School of Art and her BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art.
Carma Gorman joins the faculty as an Associate Professor in Design. She edited The Industrial Design Reader, a seminal collection of primary texts, and co-edited Objects, Audiences, and Literatures: Alternative Narratives in the History of Design. Gorman has written extensively about American design, from Frank Lloyd Wright's dress designs of the 1890s to contemporary "faith-based" electronics. Her current research examines the complex entanglement of patent law and American design. Gorman received her PhD in art history from UC Berkeley and her BA from Carleton College.
Kristin Lucas joins the department as an Assistant Professor in Transmedia. A disciplinary polyglot, she makes work that has taken many forms over the last two decades, but which has consistently been centered in technology—from lo-fi strategies to complex video installations, web projects, and specialized, coded digital media. Lucas received her MFA from Stanford University and her BFA from The Cooper Union. Her work is distributed by Electronic Arts Intermix and is represented by Postmasters Gallery in New York.