September 26, 2007

Case Western Reserve, CIA and SUNY bring fall shows with Latin American and Italian art to Cleveland

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This fall, Case Western Reserve University, the Cleveland Institute of Art and the State University of New York join forces to introduce works of contemporary Latin American and Italian American artists to Cleveland.

Hosted by Case Western Reserve's art studio, art history department and SAGES (Seminar Approach to General Education and Scholarship), the scheduled events include four shows of painting, sculpture, videos and installations throughout the fall. A symposium on the multimedia artist Alberto Rey is planned for November 2.

All events are free and open to the public and can be visited at the studio gallery located at Murray Hill and Adelbert Roads on the Case Western Reserve campus in University Circle. Free parking is available across the street on Sundays.

The artists featured in these shows represent a diverse sampling of Latin Americans, Italian Americans and Cubans of diverse heritage (African, Chinese, Jewish and Hispanic). The shows highlight the theme of identity that is expressed through the forms and subjects the artists have created.

Visiting SAGES fellow Lynette Bosch is the curator for these exhibitions.She is from the State University of New York at Geneseo, where she is a professor of art history.

Tim Shuckerow, director of the art studio and art education program at Csae, has provided the exhibition space in the Art Studio building. Shuckerow will host the openings and programs as an integrated part of his studio and education programs for the university and Cleveland communities.

Assisting in the preparation and presentation of these events are the Friends of Art of the Department of Art History and Art.

The gallery exhibitions complement a SAGES seminar on the contemporary Cuban American artist, Alberto Rey. He represents one of almost two million Cuban Americans who live in the United States where they have contributed to American diversity.

Rey is an insider in Cuban and American culture and draws on his experience of both for the subjects and forms of his paintings, videos, sculptures and installations. His work ranges from portraits of Cubans on the island and Cuban Americans in Miami to his current interest in landscapes and trout fishing (as a practitioner and a painter).

At the symposium "Alberto Rey: Cuban American Artist," four scholars will talk about his work and its context in contemporary art in Cuban American literature, art and philosophy.

Rey also will give a talk on his work at the Cleveland Institute of Art and will do a demonstration and an exhibition at the Cleveland Botanical Garden later this fall.

The fall season begins with "Latin American Art from Two Private Cleveland Collections," with the opening 2-4 p.m., Sunday, September 30, and continues through October 11. From 2-3 p.m., Bosch will speak on the formation and history of these collections.

Featured in this exhibit will be many contemporary artists who collectively form the strong Latin American enclave of artists with roots in the Cuban community in Miami, Fla., as well as other Latin American artists active in the United States. The show includes works by Maria Brito, Demi, Arturo Rodríguez, Humberto Calzada, Emilio Falero, Juan Carlos Llera. Also featured are the Mexican Israeli American artists, Deborah "Maddhu" Huacuja and Shoham Arad; and the Chilean painter Ernesto Barreda. These collections reflect the owners' negotiation of the diverse facets of their identity, both Latin American and American.

Tom Mac Pherson's installation "The Italian American Family Album" opens at 2 p.m.Sunday, October 14. From 2-3 p.m., Mac Pherson and Bosch will give a gallery tour of the exhibition, which closes on October 25.

Mac Pherson is a professor in drawing, watercolor and printmaking at SUNY-Geneseo. He is a third-generation Italian American with roots in Sicily. Recently, Mac Pherson has begun painting in egg tempera, the technique used by Italian Renaissance artists. His paintings incorporate affectionately satirical portraits of his family juxtaposed with imagery from Italian Renaissance paintings. He incorporates these paintings into installations intended to evoke the rooms of his Italian American family's home in the 1950s.

This interactive installation will include the family's living room and dining room. Videos will be included of family members remembering the old country and their history in the new. Take-away cards with Grandma's recipes will be provided as well as samples of Grandma's cookies. Mac Pherson will come to Cleveland to talk about his work.

The third show is a solo exhibition of Rey's work entitled "Alberto Rey: Cuban American Artist." Opening from 2-4 p.m., Sunday, October 28, Rey will talk about his work from 2-3 p.m. His show closes on November 16.

Rey is a distinguished professor in painting at SUNY-Fredonia. He was born in Cuba and grew up in Barnesboro, Pa.

"As a Cuban-American artist, Rey’s life and work encompass many roles which define his identity," Bosch said. "These concerns are evident in the subjects and themes he explores: images of Cuban and American landscapes, Cuban food, Madonnas, rafts, fish, found objects, vignettes of Cuban life, as well as portraits and recreations of the places and people who have defined his identity and his life."

The Symposium -- "Alberto Rey: Cuban American Artist" will take place from 2-4 p.m., Friday, November 2 in the Gallery at Murray Hill and Adelbert Roads.

Besides Rey and Bosch, speakers include:

  • Jorge Gracia, Samuel P. Capen Chair and distinguished professor of philosophy, University at Buffalo (SUNY)
  • Isabel Alvarez Borland, professor of Spanish literature, Department of Modern Languages, College of the Holy Cross
  • Mark Denaci, assistant professor of contemporary art history, Department of Art History, St. Lawrence University

The series of shows on identity and diversity conclude with "Tres Amigos: Eladio González, Baruj Salinas, Rafael Soriano," from November 11-16. On Sunday, November 11, Bosch will lead a gallery tour from 2-3 p.m.

The three artists, now in their 70s and 80s, are among the founders of Cuban American art in Miami, having emigrated from Cuba shortly after 1959.

As Bosch writes in her book, Cuban-American Art in Miami: Exile, Identity and the Neo-Baroque, these three artists are linked by "their Cuban identity, by their shared exile experience, by their acceptance of or rebellion against the Cuban Vanguardia traditions, and by their contact with the mainstream currents of 20th century art. They were a vital force in Miami’s Cuban American artistic culture."

Other contributing sponsors to these events include: St. Lawrence University, Buffalo University (SUNY) and the College of the Holy Cross, the Geneseo Foundation and Friends of Art of the art history department.

The Art Studio hours are 12:30-5 p.m. weekdays. During the Sunday openings, free weekend parking is available in nearby campus parking lots. For information, call the Art Studio offices at (216)368-2714.

For more information contact Jason Tirotta, (216)368-6890.

Posted by: Kimyette Finley, September 26, 2007 09:20 AM | News Topics: Collaborations/Partnerships, College of Arts and Sciences, Conferences/Symposia, Events, Faculty, HeadlinesMain, Provost Initiatives

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