Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Tigist Hailu transforms F&M campus

In the next few posts, I will celebrate the most thrilling projects produced by students in my department. F&M has been buzzing with artistic productions, three student openings, the senior exhibition, and the student juried exhibition (which made the local news). My favorite project happened outside the museum walls this last Monday. It involved the marriage between personal history and architectural facade.
The Art & Art History Department at Franklin & Marshall has a new tenure-track photography professor, John Holmgren. His seminar ART 372: The Camera has produced one of the most powerful transformations of F&M's campus that I've witnessed in my last two years. Tigist Hailu's final project involved the projection of historical imagery on the walls of five F&M's buildings (Shadek Fackenthal Library, Old Main, Keiper Hall, Distler House, Steinman College Center)

I quote from the official press release:

On campus Monday evening, May 2, you'll notice unusual activity starting around 8:30 p.m. in front of Shadek Fackethal Library and progressing, in turn, to a number of F&M's main buildings. The presentation, ASSOCIATION, MEMORY, TIME: SIX DECADES OF THE AFRICAN AMERICAN EXPERIENCE AT F&M, was developed to commemorate the 60th anniversary (this year) of the first African-American students to graduate from Franklin & Marshall. Tigist began her work by contacting local F&M African-American alums (selected to represent, by class graduation year, each decade of the past 60-year span). She asked the alumni to answer three questions: 1) which building at F&M did you feel more or least comfortable during your time at F&M? 2) What was your best or worse experience in the building? and 3) What was your overall experience at F&M? She invited each participant to campus to have his/her portrait taken in Art and Art History's digital studio lab.

As the final step in the process, Tigist digitally projected the imagery (photos and text) developed from her gathered material onto the facades of the F&M buildings pinpointed in her participants' questionnaire responses. The result is a stunning display that merges the concrete and the illusory, the objective and the subjective, presence and reflection.

The alumni participants were Sydney N. Bridgett '51, Louis Butcher, Jr. '65, Donna Eileen Glover '76, Monica Gantz DuBose '85, Raymond C. DuBose '84, Anthony L. Ross '91, and Nick Peterson.

The photos above are by Eric Forberger, see The Diplomat (May 5, 2011) and by Robert Diggs, see F&M Voice (May 3, 2011).

2 comments:

Amelia said...

Hooray!

Tyko said...

Nice, Kostis...love to know what Lou Butcher said!
Tyko

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Kostis Kourelis

Philadelphia, PA, United States