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ASU faculty to display artwork from college days

Faculty at the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts will showcase their artwork from their years in graduate school in the Harry Wood Gallery at the Tempe campus starting on Oct. 16.

The idea of showing art from the faculty’s graduate years came from a retreat last spring when professor John Risseeuw showed his work from graduate school to the rest of the staff, Herberger professor Betsy Schneider said.

“I think the idea was to provide a kind of flashback," she said. "Perhaps partly informed by nostalgia, but also to provide students with a sense of our practice and work from years gone by."

Schneider is putting a piece titled “Gleek” in the event.

“I am putting in a print that was part of my MFA thesis exhibition in 1997, a piece called ‘Gleek’," Schneider said. "It is a large black and white photograph of the underside of a tongue. I’m still quite proud of the piece, so it will be fun to show it.”

Schneider said she hopes the exhibit will inspire students and visitors while not being too serious.

“I hope people find it interesting, thought-provoking and stimulating and evidence of the excellence of the School of Art faculty, or at least worth a few laughs,” Schneider said.

Peter Bugg, director of student galleries, said the showcase is in conjunction with a faculty art exhibit that runs every two years.

“It is sort of a show-and-tell to keep the public up on what the faculty is making and exhibiting at the ASU museum,” he said.

Bugg said 18 pieces of art, including paintings, sculptures and photographs, will be on display.

Ellen Murray Meissinger, a professor at the Herberger Institute, received her bachelor's of fine arts and master's of fine arts from the University of North Carolina and will also be contributing to the exhibit.

“I am exhibiting a photograph that documents a kinetic neon sculpture, Carnival Chromatics, that was typical of my work in graduate school,” she said. “Kinetic refers to movement that creates different effects. The photograph shows four different images of the neon flashing off and on to create a sense of progressive movement and change as you view the art piece.”

Photos of the faculty from the time the art was made will also be posted up by each piece of artwork.

“I think my photo from that time period is hilarious," Meissinger said. "I have no idea now why I dressed like that way."

The exhibit is an opportunity for students to see that the faculty members were once art students themselves and were invigorated by many fresh ideas that originated in graduate school, Meissinger said.

"It's older artwork made by the faculty when they were in graduate school," Messinger said. "It shows current students what the faculty were making when they were in their shoes."

Reach the reporter at or follow her on Twitter @brittanydierken

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