Students pursuing an art degree at the University will soon be able to get real-life, hands-on experience with art curation.
The Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art is welcoming Auburn students to curate a two-part exhibition in the Chi Omega-Hargis Gallery; exhibit one being titled “The American City: Tourists and Denizens” and exhibit two focusing on “Division of Labor.”
The research of the students will be featured in an online series of collection spotlights.
Professor of art history Emily Burns led the students in her "Art of the United States" course in their integrated approach to learning and interacting with American art. The class learned through lectures, both about the art they are working with and other art displayed around the world.
“We divided it up within our group as far as the curating process goes,” said Sarah Webb, senior in art history. “We had some group members work on research, some work on writing and others focused on design.”
“The American City: Tourists and Denizens” captures the spirit of travel to and within an American city in the 20th century. Artists featured include Andy Warhol, Martin Lewis, Yvonne Jacquette, John Sloan, Ben Shute, Frank Kleinholz, Gregorio Prestopino, William Castellana and O. Louis Guglielmi. “Division of Labor” addresses the complex role of representations of labor in America, through the work of Andrew Wyeth, William Gropper, Walker Evans and Pablo O’Higgins.
“The experience allows students to take ownership of their project by picking an object, independently conducting research and developing a presentation that combines visual analysis and research findings,” Burns said.
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Meredithe Kelsoe, sophomore in art history, said this project was a great introduction to her career path and would absolutely help her going forward in her major.
“My grandpa was an artist, so he instilled the love of art in me,” Kelsoe said. “I hope this student-led exhibition helps forge the path for more students that currently don’t show as much interest in art to come visit the museum.”
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