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Download: Glassnost poster
Press release: Glassnost
PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW, "CMU exhibit brings 'transparency' to art," Kurt Shaw, June 17, 2007
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, "Glassnost at CMU gallery represents enlightened ideas," Mary Thomas, June 27, 2007
at Carnegie Mellon University
Purnell Center for the Arts
5000 Forbes Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Free and open to the public
Featuring: Patricia Bellan-Gillen, Hilary Harp, Suzie Silver, Andrew Johnson, Carol Kumata, Kathleen Mulcahy, Ron Desmett, and Martin Prekop
June 8 - July 13, 2007
June 8, Fri. 5-10pm: Reception
This exhibition was inspired from a previous exhibit titled “Artists Crossing Lines” in 2002 at the Pittsburgh Glass Center (PGC). Some of the same artwork that was displayed at the PGC have been transformed and reworked to fit the Regina Miller Gallery. Although many artists participating in “Glassnost” work primarily in other media, the exhibition exemplifies the dialogue that occurs when artists open avenues to new work and collaboration.
Paul Krainak, essayist for the exhibit’s catalogue, said, “These artists utilize glass in a multi-directional language with sensibilities that include profound insights with regard to utility, ornamentation, politics and formal style.”
Featured in this exhibition are works by Patricia Bellan-Gillen, Hilary Harp and Susie Silver, Andrew Johnson, Carol Kumata, Kathleen Mulcahy, the exhibition’s curator, and a large collaborative installation between Ron Desmett, Kathleen Mulcahy and Martin Prekop.
“I invited [the artists] to think in glass,” said Mulcahy. “An important piece of the puzzle was to connect with professional artists living in our region who do not necessarily work in glass, but whose aesthetic wisdom and intellectual pursuit led us to believe they can look at glass or making art with glass in a fresh new way.”
Bellan-Gillen’s paintings have been described as “mixtures of T.S. Eliot and slang,” and “flickering between beauty and silliness, between elegance and humor.” She has won several awards for her art, including the 1995 Pittsburgh Artist of the Year award. She received her M.F.A. from Carnegie Mellon in 1979 and is currently the associate head and Dorothy L. Stubnitz Professor of Art.
Hilary Harp and Suzie Silver
The collaborative work of Harp and Silver relies upon the interaction of video and sculpture to create multi-sensory, multi-faceted experiences. Their single-channel video “The Happiest Day” has screened at video and art festivals across the world, and their contribution to “Glassnost” is a continuation of the cross-media collaboration they have enjoyed since 2003. Silver is an associate professor of art at Carnegie Mellon and Harp recently completed a one-year residency at the Pittsburgh Glass Center that was funded by The Heinz Endowments.
Johnson works in several different types of media, from painting and drawing to sculpture, installations and performance art. Some of the topics of his past solo exhibitions include the Hatian grass roots movement, predatory economics, hemispheric hegemonies and the unabated sowing of land mines. He received his M.F.A. from Carengie Mellon in 1994, and is currently an associate professor at Carnegie Mellon’s School of Art.
Kumata’s installation reflect her interest in dichotomy by showcasing opposites and complements, inner truths and outer appearances. Several of her works rely upon the passage of time as a key element; her work in this exhibition, “Fragile,” relies upon dripping candle wax that accumulates over time. Carol has been a professor of art at Carnegie Mellon since 1979.
Kathleen Mulcahy and Ron Desmett
Mulcahy works as an independent artist with her husband and partner, Desmett. Their work has won numerous awards, both together and individually; the Renwick Galleries at the Smithsonian Institution of Washington, DC acquired their collaborative work “Crossings 1982” this year. Mulcahy and Desmett played a key role in founding the Pittsburgh Glass Center, and today both she and Desmett serve on its board of directors.
Prekop is a member of the Gandhi Group, a consortium of artists united by a commitment to internationalism and cultural exchange. Prekop is a professor of art at Carnegie Mellon and the former dean of the College of Fine Art.