Vernissage Follow Up

My, the local papers were good to us! Thank you, Cedric, for getting the word out to the photographers and journalists at all stages of the vernissage process.

In the photo at top, student photographers, sculptors, and a couple of painters (Ann Haley, second from left) and Julie Miller (second from right) are seen in Studio 2 in front of Sami Woolhiser’s final piece from her sculpture installation course.

In the lower right photo, Ana Gardiner (in red jacket) is seen with peers, near to a table in Olivier 3 that includes her sustained en plein air painting of the Maison Basse courtyard, a work that found a home during the vernissage.

Virtual Vernissage: A Walk-through of the Final Exhibition

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Vernissage How-To

Seven painting students applied for two Vernissage Assistant roles in painting. Sami Woolhiser, from Landscape Painting, and Carolyn Hepler-Smith, from Advanced Painting, were selected. Throughout the week preceding the exhibition (in addition to preparing their own work), they attended to a variety of responsibilities, prepared information, communicated needs, delegated duties, and problem-solved a variety of logistical factors. Their organizational abilities, good eye for placement, people skills, and skills with hand tools ensured that the painting students knew what they needed to do when.

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In the early part of the week, Sami and Hepler masterminded the submission of label information and photographs of work to be exhibited, created a schedule of volunteers, and measured all exhibition spaces that were designated for the exhibition of paintings. Throughout the process, the guiding rule was, “Everyone helps” and the spirit of camraderie spurred many painting students to help in ways that they didn’t know would be necessary or even, that they had the requisite skills. Aaron Edwards learned to bend and crimp metal when he needed to fabricate hanging supports for his “Wolf” from flat metal rods. Tyler Giordano’s experience as a preparator resulted in professional results wherever he had a hand – precise and thoughtful installation. Emily Nelms, Mizuki Katakura, and Kate Phillips took charge of production and placement of labels, which was a very important task: if the labels are crooked, messy, or poorly placed, it would be like smeared lipstick on an otherwise well-put-together woman.

In preparing to install the work, one of the main considerations regarding which works would go where was determined by if the work needed to be on a white wall or if it would be shown to best advantage on one of the stone walls (or ‘antique’ walls, as Cedric says). He provided floor plans of each space and Hepler calculated that of approximately 180 linear meters, 120 were in spaces with white walls, and 60 were in spaces with antique walls. She made a sample layout on paper to make sure that key works by every painter could find an attractive space. As the plan developed, Cedric proposed solutions based on his experience with seven prior Vernissages. Paintings were to be exhibited in nine distinctly different exhibition spaces, some small and intimate such as Olivier 3, and others grand and imposing, such as the vaulted back gallery of the printmaking studios. Additionally, paintings were hung on existing nails in the antique walls of the village streets. (It turned out that these were prime places because guests could view the work passively. In more than one instance, a painting in the street helped a student to sell a painting that was on exhibit in one of the caves.) Ten paintings were exhibited on easels around the village to visually pull guests from one exhibition area to another. Throughout the entire process, Cedric Maros made suggestions and provided the means to help realize the very best possible Vernissage. For instance, this year he rented 20 metal grids to provide additional places to display artwork. Every one of the grids was utilized.

Placing work for best effect of the overall exhibition took patience, flexibility, innovation, coordination, and in the end, physical labor. Sami and Hepler worked hand-in-hand to see the exhibition through, including de-installation on the following day, when everyone learned to give, barter, or trade their works as well as how to safely remove paintings from stretcher bars. With such a big group of painters this quarter, Cave 2 has become a well-stocked ‘stretcher bar’ cave: it’s possible that future painters in Lacoste won’t need to buy a single stretcher bar.

Thank you, Sami and Hepler, for the time and care that you put into the success of the exhibition for everyone.

Cézanne’s Atelier and Mt. Ste. Victoire

Our trip to Cézanne’s studio in Aix-enProvence was short and sweet. The painters started their journey up the mountain walking the much-celebrated footpath Paul Cézanne used to hike up to paint Mt. Ste. Victoire en plein air. Student Kate Marie Phillips said she “really enjoyed walking up there as a group of student artists. It was really exciting to look through another Artists eyes with a group of people all interested in getting more in touch with Cézanne’s inspiration and seeing it first hand rather than through his paintings.” Cézanne produced 44 oil paintings and about 43 watercolors of Mt. Ste. Victoire.

As soon as we reached the top, the students had to quickly run back down to make in time to tour the studio. We hustled down in the rain and Professor Reed encouraged us with a little prize for whoever got down first… which I believe went to Aaron Edwards. Continue reading

Week 7 Landscape Painting: Fontaine de Vaucluse, take two

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For our Week 7 painting site on Tuesday, November 5, the Landscape Painting class returned to Fontaine de Vaucluse. We got an early start to get more hours ahead of the earlier sunset. Aurelie in the Maison Basse kitchen prepared sandwiches and other picnic items for us so no one had to stop to buy lunch. Some students settled in to work within Petrarch’s garden. Kim Bates took on larger works focusing on the transition of water from glass smoothness into dramatic turbulence. Sujay created a painting of water that looks good upside down. Ana focused on the bands of green and gold in the surface reflections and Sami turned her talents to feature a blast of golden leaves amidst the rising crags of the area. Mizuki created several works in the garden as well. Tyler created a small sensuous study of the Sorgue as it approached an old dam. Melodie focused on the dam itself, allowing the painting of the area from the prior week to remain visible in the upper area. Julie painted the turn of the river over the damn, the weeping willow tree, and houses on the opposite bank. Just before  sunset, a rainbow warned that rain was coming. The shift of color during that time was spectacular, awe-inspiring. We were chilled by the time we loaded the van with fresh paintings and gear, and during the entire return trip, a light show unfolded with skies of colors so intense that if we’d captured them in a painting, they would have seemed exaggerated.

Painters write.

This blog is not the only thing that the painting students have been writing this term. Most students in Lacoste take at least one art history course. They are assigned a substantial amount of reading and I’ve heard so much about their research papers that I thought it might be interesting to create a list of topics from this term.

Severed Ties and Opened Eyes: Cézanne’s  Isolation and the Advancements That Followed

Gaugin in Arles

Cézanne: Pushing Formalism

Vincent Van Gogh, Mad Genius in Arles

Religious Influence on Art

Vincent Van Gogh’s Influence on the Evolution of Art

From Infrastructure to Historical Treasure: The Legacy of Pont du Gard

Cézanne and Zola: Pursuing Greatness

The painting students reported that Professor Trittel noted that painters, as a group, received the highest grades on their papers. I have yet to confirm that directly with Professor Trittel!

My little snippet of the Pompidou

By Sujay Shah, B.F.A. Painting, SCAD Savannah

“It was nice to go to the Centre Pompidou after the D’Orsay in the same day, you know, because the Pompidou is like the grandchild of the D’Orsay.”- Ann Haley

The Pompidou is electric and striking especially at night because the steel wire exoskeleton is backlit by the interior lights. A zig-zag tube runs along its frontal side that houses escalators to transport guests from one level to another. The atrium of the Pompidou looks like a mash up of a giant airport terminal, a game arcade, and a cinema lobby. The atmosphere felt very informal and helped us all to comfortably enjoy the artwork during our class visit on Thursday night, November 1, 2012. Continue reading

Landscape Painting – Week Six (Fontaine de Vaucluse)

Landscape Painting headed to Fontaine de Vaucluse today, Tuesday, October 30. After exploring Petrarch’s garden, the source, and nutella crepes, the class settled in alongside the clear Sorgue made emerald by the brilliant plants beneath the water’s surface. We all determined that we need to come back here next week.

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Landscape Painting – Week 5 (Bonnieux)

On Tuesday, October 23, Landscape Painters loaded up Van C and headed to Bonnieux. On the west face, the setting sun made it possible to paint until nearly 6 pm. Daylight savings is this weekend in France, and our afternoons will be darker earlier so we soaked up as much sun as we could before returning to Maison Basse.

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By Sandra Reed, professor of painting

Photos by Sandra Reed

Graduate Teaching Interns at SCAD Lacoste

By Sandra Reed, Professor of Painting

There are several graduate students who are completing a teaching internship as one of their graduate courses in SCAD Lacoste this fall. These students are Charles Parham (graduate painter from SCAD Atlanta interning with Professor Deems from SCAD Savannah in Travel Portfolio), Catherine Callero (graduate sculpture student from SCAD Atlanta completing an internship with Professor Peterson from SCAD Atlanta in Travel Portfolio) and Matthew King (graduate photography student from SCAD Savannah completing a teaching internship with Professor Tom Fischer from SCAD Savannah in Travelogue).

Graduate photography student Matthew King talks with undergraduate painter Mizuki Katakura.

Graduate teaching interns observe at least two other classes during the quarter as part of their internships. Catherine and Charles visited PNTG 409 Advanced Painting a few weeks ago and assisted students with their artist statements. Today, Monday, October 22, Matthew King joined the class and spoke with each undergraduate painter, Matt’s visit, and those of other guests, provide real-life studio-visit experience for the artists. And for our visitors, there’s nothing like talking with an artist in front of their canvas with the tools and source material and related works ready at hand. Matt shared some reflections regarding painting and photography following his visit to the class. Continue reading