visiting artist lecture

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We are looking forward to Katy Collier visiting Stamps School this week as a Roman J. Witt Visiting Artist 

Lecture and color woodcut demo
Tuesday, September 20 1:45pm - 4:30pm, Printmedia Studio, Room 2143

Individual critiques with students
Thursday, September 22 1:45pm - 4:30pm, Printmedia Studio, Room 2143

Painting and Drawing Visiting Artist Lecture: Charline Von Heyl

Wednesday, April 25
5:00–6:00 p.m.

Columbus Auditorium, 280 S. Columbus Dr. 
Charline von Heyl was born in Germany in 1960 and studied painting with Jorg Immendorff in Hamburg and Fritz Schwegler in Dusseldorf. She has lived in New York since 1996, and her work has been exhibited both in the United States and abroad, including solo museum exhibitions at Le Consortium, Dijon (2009), the Dallas Museum of Art (2005), and the Vienna Secession (2004). Von Heyl’s work is currently subject to two traveling survey exhibitions. The first was curated by Jenelle Porter and originated at the ICA Philadelphia and will travel to the ICA Boston in March. The second survey exhibition, curated by Gavin Delahunty and Ellen Seifermann, opens at the Tate Liverpool in late February and will travel to the Kunsthalle Nurnberg and Bonner Kunstverein. Von Heyl’s works are in the collections of the Musee d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, among others. Group exhibitions include Oranges and Sardines: Conversations on Abstract Painting at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles (2008), and Make Your Own Life: Artists In and Out of Cologne (2006), which was organized at ICA and then traveled to the Museum of Contemporary Art in North Miami and the Henry Art Gallery in Seattle.

On question asking!

I recently saw a few thoughts on students asking professional illustrators/animators/insert-person-who-does-things here questions, mostly via email. The general consensus was that while most artists want to be helpful, the unsolicited emails can pile up, and sometimes it’s pretty obvious that students were just shotgunning out copy-and-pasted letters to fulfill a class assignment. 

I am 100% for direct conversation between not only professionals and students, but professionals themselves. As artists, asking questions should be our default state. Here’s some stuff for students to keep in mind:

  • Your favorite artists are probably busy. They’re your favorites because they’ve worked hard at what they do; therefore it stands to reason that they’re pretty busy people. Don’t put a time/word requirement on any questions. They want to help you, but not if you’re demanding more than they can give.
  • Be courteous! Being nice goes a long way, just in general. But it especially helps to be respectful to someone that you respect…and want to learn from. Write your letter, don’t copy & paste between artists. Be honest.
  • Be specific! It’s hard to know what questions to ask. You don’t know what you don’t know, and ostensibly that’s why you’re sending questions. However, teaching and mentoring is a two-way street; you get what you put in. It helps the artist when you can be very specific about what you want to know about– it saves them (and you) from a 200-page treatise on relational aesthetics. 
  • Say thank you! It takes time to answer questions, even ones that are quick and to the point. Unless you’re also sending pizza and/or cakes, gratitude goes a long way.

Artists who are in the position of receiving and answering questions, I think there are some things you can think about too. Mainly: that we were (or in a way, still are) students once. Think about all the people who took time to pay it forward to you, and think about where you would be without them. I think if you’re really receiving a ton of questions every day, consider a FAQ page, or a tag to organize posts. I think monetizing this tradition of freely passing knowledge forward is pretty low. You are of course under no obligation to do anything, but just consider the person on the other end of the line.

Teachers, especially illustration teachers: I know budgets are tough. I’ve skyped people in before because I wasn’t able to get money for a visiting artist lecture. I get it. But when you make students shotgun out questions to professionals, you’re responsible for all of that time. Consider making those types of professional practice assignments voluntary; the ones who will ask questions will ask.