Fall 2009

School of Art + Design Faculty Exhibition
August 28 through September 27, 2009


One of the most visible aspects of the rich collaborative relationship between KAM and the School of Art + Design, this ongoing annual exhibition provides the community with an opportunity to view new work by the school's world-class artists and designers.

Hosted by the School of Art + Design and Krannert Art Museum. Image credit: Installation view, 2009

Exhibition programming

September 3
5:30 pm: Gallery Conversation
With exhibiting artists Tammie Rubin, assistant professor of Ceramics and Stephen Cartwright, assistant professor of Painting

On Screen: Global Intimacy
August 28, 2009 through January 3, 2010

Curator: Tumelo Mosaka


This exhibition brings together ten artists from Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and the United States whose work investigate the transnational reach of globalization. Working primarily in video, they project images that traverse national boundaries, and highlight the confluence of cultures and technologies that mark our time. They call into question facile distinctions between tradition and modernity, resilience and restraint, empowerment and subjugation. Their work plays with time, space, sound, and symbols and examines the conventional definitions of community, placehood, and self-identity.

Artists include Tiong Ang, Alex M. Hérnandez Dueñas, Andrew Dosunmu, Achillekà Komguem, Donna Kukama, Keith + Mendi Obadike, Kambui Olujimi, Hank Willis Thomas, and Fatimah Tuggar

Exhibition supported in part by Frances P. Rohlen Visiting Artists Fund/College of Fine and Applied Arts; Illinois Arts Council, a State Agency; Krannert Art Museum Director's Circle; and Krannert Art Museum Council. Image credit: Alex Hernández-Dueñas, Zona Afectada, 2006, DVD, color, sound, 8 min 47 sec, Courtesy of the artist © Alex Hernández-Dueñas

View information sheet and online checklist

Review of the exhibition at the H&R Block Artspace in Kansas City, Missouri

Exhibition programming

October 1
6 pm: Artist Performance
On-Screen exhibiting artists Mendi + Keith Obadike peform A Concert Reading. Sponsored in part by the Frances P. Rohlen Visiting Artists Fund/College of Fine and Applied Arts and the School of Art + Design

Gestures in Space and Light
August 28, 2009 through January 3, 2010

Curator: Allyson Purpura



Gestures in Space and Light features the works of seven prominent American photographers selected from the Krannert Art Museum's extensive photographic collection. Among the artists represented—Aaron Siskind (1903-1992), Brett Weston (1911-1993), Harry Callahan (1912-1999), Nathan Lerner (1913-1997), Joseph Jachna (b. 1935), Alan Cohen (b. 1943) and Michael Johnson (b. 1945), all but Michael Johnson and Brett Weston (son of the renowned photographer Edward Weston) trained or taught at The New Bauhaus School of Design (known later as the Institute of Design at the Illinois Institute of Technology) founded by László Moholy–Nagy in Chicago in 1937. Together, their photographs epitomize the spirit of experimentation—of exploring the kinetic, sensorial, temporal as well as visual properties of objects, which was the school's pedagogic legacy.

The exhibition takes its cue from the creative tension that inheres in the photographic process—though a medium that holds time in place, its images, nevertheless, elude capture—motions continue, light brightens or fades, and memories are born. As studies in light, form and pattern, the photographs on display blur the boundaries between the natural and built environments, between representation and abstraction, and between the concrete and the conceptual. In so doing, they extend beyond the gallery, and open us up to new ways of seeing.

Image credit: Nathan Lerner, Light Experiment, Wooden Dowels, 1939, gelatin silver print, Gift of David C. Ruttenberg

Vivid Lines in Graphic Times
August 28, 2009 through January 3, 2010

Curator: Kathryn Koca Polite



This selection of paintings and works on paper from the museum's permanent collection explores how a diverse range of American artists engaged Pop Art elements—vibrant color, readymade images, graphic line—yet moved beyond the movement's boundaries in form, material, and message. Whether appropriating images from consumerist culture, taking influence from comic books, or simply utilizing graphic techniques in the creative process, these works from the 1970s through the late 1990s specifically illustrate how meaning and feeling may be conveyed through various graphic methods.

Image credit: David Wojnarowicz, Earth and Wind, 1990, lithograph, Art Acquisition Fund

huang yan   Effacement: Huang Yan's
   China in the 21st Century

    August 28, 2009 through May 23, 2010

    Guest Curator: Anne Burkus-Chasson

    Effacement features both photographs and
    porcelains produced by the contemporary
    Chinese artist Huang Yan (b. 1966). Through
    these works, Huang examines the trans-
    national art market and the perception of
    Chineseness in this environment. It is an
    unsettling vision. The artist selected blue and
    white porcelains, luxurious objects that were
    once exported from China and collected
    around the world, and shaped them into
    ordinary plastic water containers and liquor
    bottles, items of disposable waste.

In a photographic series, scenes from classical Chinese landscapes were digitally manipulated and reproduced on four whitened faces. The subject, merged with conventional landscape, is fugitive, his identity lost. Huang's engagement with commercialized culture may be identified with an aspect of Euro-American modernist art. Nonetheless, Huang's photographs and porcelains are bound up with local and specific meanings, which uncover the mutual implication of Asian modernity and orientalist fantasies.

Image credit: Huang Yan, Chinese Landscape: Face Painting, Summer, 2005, c-print, Purchased from the FACADES exhibition with Art Acquisition Fund

lincoln   The Morrill Act: The Land
   Grant Roots of a Great

     October 1 through October 31, 2009

     Guest Curator: Ryan Ross

     This installation showcases one of the
     United States' most important historical
     documents: The Morrill Act of 1862. Signed
     into law on July 2nd by President Abraham
     Lincoln, the document enabled states to
     make higher education accessible to all
     through the establishment of land-grant
     colleges and universities. As one of these
     institutions, the University of Illinois, together
     with KAM, is pleased to host the Morrill Act,
     only recently available for public viewing
     outside of Washington, D.C. The exhibition
     will serve as a focal point for campus-wide lectures and educational events as part of the University's ongoing celebration of the Lincoln Bicentennial.

Exhibition sponsored in part by National Archives, Washington, D.C.; Office of the Chancellor, U of I; Office of the Provost and Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs, U of I; University of Illinois Library; and Krannert Art Museum. Image credit: Mathew Brady, Abraham Lincoln, ca. 1863, cartes-de-visite, The Carnegie Arts of the United States Collection


Exhibition programming

September 30
6–7 pm: Film Screening
Lincoln: Prelude to the Presidency. Sponsored by the Office of the Chancellor, U of I; Illinois Public Media; and Krannert Art Museum

Under Control
October 23, 2009 through January 3, 2010

Guest Curators: Ginger Gregg Duggan and Judith Hoos Fox



Financial intrigue and debacle, government-sponsored spying, preemptive war, and more: an endless stream of news underscores the manipulation of power and resources with consequences for us all. The news headlines that have intrigued and horrified us of late have become, not surprisingly, inspiration for many contemporary artists worldwide.  Whether exposing the complexity or folly of conspiracy theory, or analyzing money trails and their surprising beneficiaries, all of the artists in this exhibition are essentially questioning control. Who controls whom? Who controls what? Where does it leave the rest of us? Despite the heavily-politicized subject matter, the exhibition will present an objective point of view on the power of control as a construct within our society.
Under Control featured approximately 30 works, all created within the past 10 years, in a variety of media by artists from surprisingly vast geographic locations. There is an accompanying exhibition catalogue available for purchase.

Click here to listen to an interview with one of the curators.

Major funding provided by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts with addtional sponsorship by Office of the Chancellor, U of I; Office of the Provost and Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs, U of I; Illinois Arts Council, a State Agency; Krannert Art Museum Director's Circle; and Krannert Art Museum Council. Image credit: Michael Bell-Smith, Birds Over the White House, 2006, custom software, computer, wood, glass + certificate, programmed generative algorithm (no fixed duration), edition of 3 + 2AP, Courtesy of Foxy Production © Michael Bell-Smith

View information sheet and online checklist

Exhibition programming

October 29
5:30 pm: Gallery Conversation
With Ryan Griffis, assistant professor of New Media; Steven Wagner, associate professor emeritus of Philosophy; and David Wilson, professor of Geography, African American Studies, and Unit for Criticism and Interpretive Theory

November 12
5:30 pm: Gallery Conversation
With KAM education coordinator Andrea Ferber, which will follow the IPRH Film Series screening of Brazil (1985), directed by Terry Gilliam

Imag(in)ing Life:
"Nature in her genius had imitated art"

October 23, 2009 through May 23, 2010

Guest Curator: Hank Kaczmarski


While Ovid's Metamorphoses might be the first written observation that "Nature in her genius had imitated art," the human eye, alone or with the help of scientific instruments, continues to marvel at nature's imagery. Whether at the scale of the vast expanse of galaxies or the subatomic level, nature, as artist, provides us with an unending body of breathtaking imagery, a truly infinite oeuvre.

Showcasing nature's artistry as seen through scientific instrumentation, the Krannert Art Museum's CANVAS Gallery in collaboration with the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology present Imag(in)ing Life, an exhibition using conventional two-dimensional pictures, three-dimensional computer-printed sculpture, and immersive virtual reality spaces.

Exhibition sponsored by Illinois Arts Council, a State Agency; Krannert Art Museum Director's Circle; and Krannert Art Museum Council. Image credit: Installation view, 2009