May 19, 2010

COMMENCE 2010 Sculpture Students Use Public Projects to Make a Statement

book_s.jpgPolitics, conservation, sustainability; Sonoma State University's campus-wide sculpture exhibition showcases numerous sculptures designed to make a statement about issues that are important to the student artists.

COMMENCE: Sculpture Projects 2010 begins Thurs., May 27 with a reception starting at 4 p.m., in the Sculpture Courtyard, followed by a tour of the projects at 5 p.m. and is on view until May 30. The public is invited to view the projects at any time.

Several of the artists featured in the exhibition use their art as a means of expression, bringing to light issues ranging from the current need for sustainability programs and education, to concerns over the working conditions of manufacturing industries.

Diana Meehan showcases two of her sculptures, both focusing on the importance of water conservation. Through the use of reclaimed redwood, dried clay and garden hoses, Meehan created "Cracked," a bold piece capturing the essence of the necessity for water.

"Water is our most precious resource, yet most of us are unconcerned about the issues surrounding it. My current work is about bringing awareness to the issues of conservation and preservation of something we cannot live without," she said.

Eric Metz closely examines the ethics of U.S. companies who exploit the practice of Chinese manufacturing industries in his sculpture titled "A Chinese Workday." This working art piece includes a welder, welding rod, welding booth and pieces of propaganda as a means of expressing the severity of the issue.

"I welded on a single piece of metal for 12 hours (a typical Chinese workday) in this booth. A Chinese Workday examines Chinese working conditions," said Metz.

The SSU Sculpture Department, under the direction of Professor Jann Nunn, has created this exhibit as an opportunity for students to realize large-scale, temporary outdoor sculptures for the public on campus grounds. They will also be up for view during the May 29 Commencement ceremonies.

"The expressed objectives are to not only enhance the already beautiful campus environment, but to showcase of the strong visual arts program at Sonoma State and to give students a hands-on educational experience that fosters their post-college careers as practicing visual artists," said Nunn.

For further information, contact Jann Nunn, Associate Professor of Sculpture,, (707) 664-3043.

ABOVE, Rodney A. De Bois' "A Full Sentence; not a Text Message" in the University Library, second floor.

A list of the projects includes:

COMMENCE: Sculpture Projects 2010

Campus-wide Exhibition of Sculpture by SSU Sculpture Students
Sonoma State University

Thursday, May 27- Sunday, May 30
Reception 4-5 p.m., Thursday May 27, Sculpture Courtyard followed by a
tour of the projects starting at 5 p.m.

Kyle Alexander
Building Blocks for Life
Plywood, Clay, Paint, Electronic Parts
3'6" x 4' x 4'

Location: Next to the Alumni Amphitheater

"As the new generation arises, children engage with technological devices that often leaves them without crucial life experience that playing outdoors in natural environments provides."

The Daily Grind
Old Picture Frames, Wood, Paint, Electronic Parts
2'6" x 3' x 1'6"

Location: Art Building- Display case next to Room 102

"As a whole, in our society we dedicate a good portion of our lives to obtaining the latest piece of technology. We fall victim to a routine that becomes a religion."

Wood, Fabric, Electronic Parts, Paint
8' x 2'3" x 2'

Next to Art Department Computer Lab

"Large companies use advertisements to appeal to the average consumer. We buy their products thinking it will make our life better only to realize it leaves us feeling devoid, lacking the promised experience."

Wyatt Amend
Wrappings 2010
Steel, Industrial Strength Plastic Wrap
10' x 10' x 40'

Location: Art Department Hallway

"This piece attempts to deal with architectural steel wire
frames and the transformation they go through when wrapped in an everyday
household item. I use the wire to build complex forms in combination with
the plastic wrap to create new visual planes and tension filled pieces."

Dillon Crossman
Earth, Pine Needles, Pine Cones
3' x 3' x 30'

Location: Redwood Grove behind Printmaking Studio, next to Graduation Lawn

"This land art piece was inspired by an encounter with a snake near this location."

(Also see Dillon Crossman's artwork in the Library Art Gallery exhibition Past Present Future: Artists Reflect On Sustainability)

Rodney A. De Bois
A Full Sentence; not a Text Message
Books, Bronze, Wood, Chair
5' x 5' x 5'

Location: SSU Library, second floor

"As good as technology is, there is no substitute for the captivating experience of reading a story from an actual book and the pleasure one feels from knowledge acquired."

Missy Engelhardt
Clothes, Twine, Cement
4' x 4' x 6'

Location: Grassy area behind the Art Department Office deck.

1' x 11' x 11'

Grassy lawn between Stevenson Hall and the Art Building

"My work is all about the process. It's a time to reflect on the experiences that inspire me to create. I enjoy transforming mundane objects into something completely new and different that changes their meaning."

Dan Humke
Wood (Douglas Fir)
42" x 42" x 1.5"

Location: Rec Center, 2nd floor, east wing

The Chair
3' x 4' x 6'

Location: Lawn between Art Department and Stevenson Hall, east side

Ben Lastufka and Eric Metz
Glass, Steel, Aluminum Shavings, Steel Shavings, Silicon, Oil Paint
156" X 74" X 24"

Location: Sculpture Department Foundry

"Transcriptase represents the dialogue between the natural, biological processes of life with the synthetic processes embraced by modern society."

(Also see Ben Lastufka's artwork in the BFA Thesis Exhibition in the University Art Gallery)

Greg Looney
She Wolf
Wood, Metal, Chain
3.5'x 36'x .5'

Location: Outside Printmaking department, next to small pond

"As a sculptor I have always been drawn to earth art and using elements from nature. She Wolf is represented by the wood beam that is now being supported by the tree stumps Romulus and Remus."

When We Were Boys #1
Video, Mosin Nagant M38, Newspaper, Tape, Rifle Vice.
14" x 48" x 13"

Location: University Art Gallery

When We Were Boys #2
Waste Vegetable Oil, Conveyor belt, Glass Jars, Zip Ties, Sleds, Coon Skin Cap, Match Box, BB guns.
Dimensions Variable

Location: University Art Gallery

"The pieces in the BFA Thesis Exhibition are my homage, as well as a play on words, to Joseph Beuys and his influence on my work. It is also a small peek into my world from childhood to current."

Diana Meehan

Reclaimed Redwood, Dried Clay, Garden Hoses
4" x 12" x 240"

Location: Darwin Hall lobby

"Water is our most precious resource, yet most of us are unconcerned about the issues surrounding it. My current work is about bringing awareness to the issues of conservation and preservation of something we cannot live without."

PVC Pipe
10' x 8' x 12'

Location: TBD

"How often do you turn on your faucet and let it run while brushing your teeth, doing the dishes or washing your hands? Several gallons per minute splashing down the drain, wasted. Something as simple as not letting your faucet run while performing these necessary tasks can save several hundred gallons of water per year."

Eric Metz
A Chinese Workday
Performance art. Welder, welding rod, welding booth, propaganda
5' x 8' x 2'

Location: Alcove in Art department near Painting Studios

"I welded on a single piece of metal for 12 hours (a typical Chinese workday) in this booth. A Chinese Workday examines Chinese working conditions as it relates to U.S. companies that prosper by exploiting the practice of Chinese manufacturing industries."

Kristin Palmer
6' x 25' x 25'

Location: Butterfly Garden

"Walk in and around the Nautilus and experience the precision of nature."

Jean Wasp
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University Affairs
(707) 664-2057