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      with Joey Hays



































Jennifer Gooch, installation, 2007-2009
Joseph Hays, Gardez L'eau, detail, 2009
Samina Mansuri, After Images: Cedibidaee/Reconstruction Site 8, 2009, detail
Michael Nixon, All That Remains, 2007-2008
Gregory Witt, installation, 2009


Carnegie Mellon 2009 MFA Thesis Exhibition

Mar. 20 - Apr. 19, 2009

About the Exhibition

“A Word From Our C.E.O.”

The deceptively simple poetic interventions of Jennifer Gooch, wryly activate a delicate and awkward territory between the private and the public. Joey Hays proposes a playful approach to environmental and social concerns through genial kinetic experimentation and friendly, participatory sculptures. With her fabricated aerial views of fictional locations, Samina Mansuri substitutes media generated images of war zones with a haunting psychological terrain. Michael Nixon uses photography to poignantly represent the post-industrial malaise, manifest in the blighted urban fabric of Pittsburgh. Greg Witt invents digitally and mechanically ingenuous machines which intrigue, entertain and delight with their winsome, intricate clunkiness.

I wholeheartedly support their artistic ambitions and would recommend them to you highly. Managing to complete the graduate program at Carnegie Mellon, has them well suited for success.

John Carson,
Regina Gouger Miller and Marlin Miller Jr. Professor of Art
and Head of the School of Art

About the Artists

Jennifer Gooch
I find simple solutions to enormous problems, sensibly misguided but solutions none-the-less. I bring my “what-ifs” into fruition and paste together scraps of reality in an attempt to contend with it. Underneath the veneer of wry simplicity, my work seeks to reckon with absurdity.

Joseph Hays
Over the past three years in the Carnegie Mellon University MFA my work has evolved from studio- based kinetic sculptures to collaborative and interdisciplinary public works that integrate natural systems into the built environment. Currently I am investigating ecologically productive, cost effective and culturally catalytic urban renewal strategies in the Wilkinsburg borough of Pittsburgh. Inspired by nature, these strategies reframe crises as opportunities, detritus as resources and restore significance to the land through a heightened environmental consciousness.

Samina Mansuri
In this work I am investigating ‘place’ and its intersection with tertiary memory. I appropriate media depictions of war-torn places such as Pakistan, Afghanistan, Palestine and Iraq as a starting point. Through a transformed language of aerial cartography I create subjective mappings of an ambiguous location of trauma. I invent these fictional sites and alter histories in order to release time and bodily experience. Through this work I aim to bring attention to viewers about mediated representations of misery and its impact on individual and public memory.

Michael Nixon
My photographs are mere suggestions of Pittsburgh. In making them, I’ve searched for some undercurrent of spirit—a psychology of place. These un-peopled images of object, scene and landscape are meant to be more poetic than encyclopedic, where hope and neglect share the same space. While the subjects of individual images are often abstracted to the point of “anywhere-ness,” when gathered together as a whole, I hope the viewer experiences a sense of place that is identifiable and unique to Pittsburgh.

Gregory Witt
Forming something like tangential extensions of the mostly normal stuff that is often their basis, my recent sculptures portray familiar but unlikely versions of specific subjects. Employing processes and materials from carpentry, robotics and video, I aim to create closed spaces or systems within which built instances of everyday things can function on their own. Set in motion in the gallery, the finished works question both their relationship to the viewer as well as to their stated subjects.


Mar. 20, Fri.
6-8pm: Reception

Mar. 27, Fri.
Artists Talks.
Start on 3rd floor of gallery.