ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Selin Balci, Bio-Artist
Selin Balci received her BFA degree from the School of Art and Design in 2008 went on to the University of Maryland for graduate study. She is currently working in Washington, D.C., as a bio-artist and sent us an update on her activities, including links to reviews of a recent exhibition and an upcoming solo show in New York City. She has also been written up in a local D.C. magazine as a young artist to watch.
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The marriage of biology and art is called Bio-Art, a term first coined in 1997. WVU art alumna Selin Balci, who also has a degree from a university in Istanbul in forest engineering, and has worked as a researcher in microbiology laboratories at various universities in the U.S., used her skills and interests to create a technique using microorganisms to create art. It yields bright and vibrant colors, similar to paint. In her work, she references the fundamental, underlying social dilemmas and principles of our existence in an effort to understand and highlight social issues.
In the fall of 2014, Selin began teaching at Washington College in Chestertown, Maryland, and also started to work collaboratively with Sandbox, Washington College’s initiative for interdisciplinary collaboration merging art and science. “Of course, I found Sandbox as heaven for my research and practice,” Selin says. “I also had an opportunity to show my work to Chestertown this month. Now, we are working on a possible Bio-Art course in collaboration with the Washington College biology department for next fall.”
Selin’s works were on view this fall in a show titled “Arena” at Honfleur Gallery in Washington D.C., which generated quite a bit of press.
Journalist Gamze Unal interviewed Selin for the Turkish magazine, Skylife, and wrote: “A Petri dish instead of a palette, microscopic mold in place of paint. Such are the materials of Selin Balci’s Art!” See the article here: Skylife.
Christine Cauterucci of Washington City Paper, a weekly arts and entertainment publication in D.C., interviewed Selin at the opening of “Arena” and published an article titled “The Mold and The Beautiful: How Selin Balci Makes her Fungal Art.” See the article here: Washington City Paper.
Also, Eric Hope’s review of Selin’s show, “Selin Balci’s ‘Arena’ at Honfleur Gallery,” was in East City Art, a publication for the art scene in eastern Washington, D.C. See it here: East City Art.
Perhaps most exciting, Selin also has her first solo show in New York City at the gallery Smack Mellon in Dumbo, Brooklyn. It opened November 22 and will be on view through January 4. See a description of the show, “Bordered World,” here: Smack Mellon.
For links to all these articles, and much more about Selin’s work, see her website at www.selinbalci.com.
Nineteen students studying in the West Virginia University College of Creative Arts have been awarded scholarships from the Valerie Canady Charitable Trust Foundation, one of the most prestigious awards given in the college.
The scholarships are named for Valerie Canady, a Morgantown native and WVU summa cum laude graduate, who was among the 270 people who died in the terrorist bombing of Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, in Dec. 1988. Canady, who worked for H.J. Heinz Co. in their London office, was an accomplished linguist and artist in different media of expression, especially in piano.
Loulie and William Canady, Valerie’s parents, and long-time residents of the Morgantown community, present the awards annually in December. Loulie Canady is a long-time supporter of the WVU School of Music and Dr. William Canady is professor emeritus of the Department of Biochemistry in the WVU School of Medicine. The Canadys are also the major patrons of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra performances at WVUa series that is named in memory of Valerie.
This year’s Canady scholars include:
Sornsuang Tangsinmonkong, of Thailand, is a doctoral student in piano performance, who won honors in several piano competitions in Bangkok, where she is also a faculty member (currently on leave) at Mahidol University, the largest school of music in Thailand. She has a bachelor’s degree in statistics from Chulalongkorn University, also in Bangkok, and a master’s degree in music performance from Mahidol University. She is fluent in Thai and English and has performed at national and international levels, winning some prestigious honors and awards.
Lucia Zung de Andrade, of Brazil, is an undergraduate student in bassoon performance. She had nearly completed a piano degree in Brazil when an injury to her wrist forced her to switch to the bassoon four years ago. Lucia plays in multiple WVU ensembles, including the WVU Symphony Orchestra and the WVU Wind Symphony. She speaks Portuguese, Spanish and also taught herself English. She previously studied at the Universidade Tecnologica Federal do Parana in Brazil.
Wei Chen (Bruce) Lin, originally of Taiwan, who also spent several years teaching in Vancouver, is currently in his third year of doctoral study in piano performance. He also holds degrees in other schools in the United States and in Canada. He is fluent in Chinese, French and English. He is one of WVU’s outstanding piano performers and is sought after as a teacher for individual lessons.
Tse Wei Chai, of Malaysia, is a doctoral student in piano performance. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Malaysia and a Master of Music from WVU. She is fluent in Malay, Chinese and English. She is a very talented pianist and is also sought after as a teacher for individual lessons. She earned her master’s degree at WVU in 2011, after several years of teaching in Singapore.
Juan Carlos Rios Betancur, of Colombia, is a doctoral student in piano performance. He is fluent in Spanish and English. In addition to his piano studies, Juan works as an assistant to WVU Piano Technician Tim Richards. Juan Carlos studied for years with Blanca Uribe, a prizewinner in the Van Cliburn Competition and probably the most famous teacher in Colombia. Prior to attending WVU, he was a faculty member and staff accompanist at a major university in Medellin, Colombia.
Youna Choi, of Korea, is studying for a doctorate in piano performance. She studied for a master’s degree in Minnesota before coming to WVU. She was the unanimous choice to fill the opera-accompanying assistantship that was vacant at the time of her application to WVU, partly because of her superb audition, and partly because then-opera director Robert Thieme regarded her sight reading to be among the very best he had observed in several decades of teaching. She also studies organ with Dr. William Haller and is fluent in Korean and English.
Bao-Vuong Nguyen, a native of Morgantown, West Virginia, is an undergraduate student in violin performance. He is fluent in Vietnamese, which is his native language, in addition to English. His ultimate career goal is medicine, but he is studying music as an undergrad, while filling his schedule with extra science and “pre-med” courses. He performs in the WVU Symphony Orchestra, where he has quickly become one of the strongest players.
Javier Camacho, of Colombia, is a doctoral student in collaborative piano and is the first recipient of a partial graduate assistantship in choral accompanying. He is an exceptionally strong player, both as a soloist and as a chamber music partner. He had extensive performance experience, both in his native Colombia, and also during his work for a master’s degree at Duquesne University, where he studied with artist-in-residence David Wehr. He is fluent in both Spanish and English.
Tak Chiu Wong, of Hong Kong, is a doctoral student in saxophone performance. He entered WVU with a wealth of professional experience as both a saxophonist and as a teacher. He plays a wide range of styles and has performed in a large number of international venues throughout Asia, Europe and North America. He is a graduate assistant assigned to teaching work in the WVU Saxophone Studio, where he teaches applied lessons to some of the undergraduate student and coaches saxophone quartets. He holds a master’s degree from the University of Wyoming.
Diego Gabete-Rodriguez, of Spain, is a doctoral student in violin performance and concertmaster of the WVU Symphony Orchestra. He holds degrees from Musikene-Centro Superior de Musica del Pais Vasco, Spain, and from Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London and Columbus State University in Georgia. He was a winner of the 2014 WVU Young Artists Competition. He competed as a soloist at the national MTNA competition in Chicago in 2014, after being named the winner in the Eastern Division’s “Young Artist Performance” category. He also competed in the competition as a member of the WVU Graduate String Quartet. Last December he performed a recital in Spain for the Argentinian consulate, and he is now working with several music schools in Spain to form a partnership with WVU performing faculty.
Sora Lee, of Korea, received WVU’s first Master of Music degree in collaborative piano in 2011 and is currently studying for a doctorate in collaborative piano, as the first student to enter this exciting new doctoral program. She has eagerly worked with wind, string, voice and other piano students in the School of Music and continues to develop her collaborative playing experiences with the choir and other ensembles. She is fluent in Korean and English and also studies organ with Dr. William Haller.
Kirill Tyulkov, of Russia, is studying for a master’s degree in music education. He is fluent in Russian, English and French. He holds a master’s degree in French and also a law degree from Nizhny Novgorod Linguistics University in Russia and received a degree in music technology from California University in Pennsylvania. He is studying both classical and jazz piano at WVU, with pedagogical work in strings, woodwinds, voice, brass, percussion and conducting, and specialized work in music education in the areas of world music and research. He also teaches in the WVU Community Music Program.
Qian Xu, of Laramie, Wyoming, is a doctoral student in piano performance at WVU. She received a master’s degree from the University of Wyoming and initially applied for a second master’s degree at WVU, but the music faculty encouraged her, on the basis of her lovely audition and her completed master’s degree, to enter the doctoral program instead. She is a graduate student of international standard and chose WVU so that she could study with Dr. Peter Amstutz.
Dipendra Sunam, of Nepal, is a doctoral student in piano, who completed bachelor’s and master’s degrees in piano performance at Berea College and Northern Arizona University. He has studied with music professionals from around the world, and was keyboardist with a Nepali pop band named Nepathya, which released several professional recordings and toured throughout Nepal. He is fluent in four languagesNepali, Hindi, Urdu and English.
Brandon Isaac Brown, of Charleston, West Virginia, is an undergraduate studying for a bachelor’s degree in violin. While only a sophomore, he has become an important member of the WVU Symphony Orchestra, due to his talent, hard work and enthusiasm for classical music. He is fluent in German, a language he is continuing to study at WVU. He intends to use the Valerie Canady Charitable Trust Foundation Scholarship to study music in Germany.
Christy Oscar, a native of Indonesia, is studying for a master’s degree in cello performance. She is also an excellent pianist and often plays accompaniments for other students. She came to WVU from Universiti Pelitas Haripan, near Jakarta, where one of her teachers included WVU School of Music graduates Dr. Mario Santoso and Dr. Tomislav Dimov. In 2012, she attended the InterHarmony Festival held in Hinterzarten, Scwarzwald, Germany. She is fluent in three languages: Bahasa Indonesia, Chinese and English.
Jocelyn Lee Jia Yin, of Malaysia and Singapore, is an undergraduate with a double major in violin and piano performance at WVU, where she excels on both instruments and is unusually gifted academically as well. She won the 2014 WVU Young Artist Competition on piano, playing the first movement of the Beethoven “Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37.” She is fluent in English and Mandarin, including the Cantonese and Hokkien dialects. She also currently studies German and Japanese.
Mirim Lee, of Korea, is studying for a doctorate in flute performance and is fluent in three languages, English, Korean and Bulgarian. She was a winner of the 2013 Young Artist Concerto Competition at WVU and plays principal flute in both the WVU Symphony Orchestra and the WVU Chamber Winds. She previously earned a bachelor’s degree in music at one of the top conservatories in Bulgaria and completed a master’s degree in flute performance at WVU last spring. She placed second at the 2013 Alexander & Buono International Flute Competition in New York, and was a semi-finalist at the Israeli Haifa International Flute Competition in 2014, and also at the 2014 International Intermusica Woodwinds Competition in Austria.
Elizabeth Rose Fitzgerald, of Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania, is pursuing an undergraduate degree in Art History with a minor in French. Her language skills and her understanding of French History will make her a leader during the School of Art and Design’s spring 2015 study-travel course to France, where she, along with other art students and faculty, will live in Paris for nine days, taking excursions to Chartres, Troyes and Bourges to study Medieval stained glass in cathedrals, museums and studios. Lizzy plans to use the Valerie Canady Scholarship award for study abroad.
Caption: William and Loulie Canady (in front) with the 2014 Valerie Canady Charitable Trust Foundation Scholarship winners, from left: Dipendra Sunam, Juan Carlos Betancur; Christy Oscar; Tak Chiu Wong; Javier Camacho; Qian Xu; Sornsuang Tangsinmonkong; Kirill Tyulkov; Lucia Zung de Andrade; Elizabeth Fitzgerald; Wei Chen (Bruce) Lin; Brandon Brown; Tse Wei Chai; Bao-Vuong Nguyen; Jocelyn Lee Jia Yin; Diego Gabete-Rodriguez; Mirim Lee; Youna Choi; and Sora Lee.
Sculpture Studio students will get “fired up” on Friday, Nov. 14, as the studio conducts its second annual Fall Iron Pour. Sculpture students and faculty from regional universities will also attend this event, where they will collaborate with WVU students in the use molten metal to create custom-made artworks.
The 2014 Fall Iron Pour is also free and open to the public.
Time: Noon to 6 pm
Place: Sculpture/ceramics kiln yard, rear entrance of WVU Creative Arts Center, Evansdale Campus
Food: Catering by Morgantown’s “Atomic Grill” restaurant
Info: WVU Sculpture Program Coordinator Dylan Collins: Dylan.Collins@mail.wvu.edu
As part of the College of Creative Arts Alumni-in-Residence Series, West Virginia native and former Miss West Virginia, Kim Parrish will return to the Creative Arts Center on Thursday, Nov. 6, to work with students.
A 1994 graduate of the WVU School of Theatre & Dance with a BFA in Acting, Kim Parrish, has put her degree to the test while working on national TV for more than two decades. Touted as a shopping goddess by the media, Kim is a familiar face to millions who welcomed her into their homes as a popular host on QVC for eight years, where she logged more than 6,000 hours of live TV.
In 2005, Kim launched the Kim Parrish Collection, her signature line of clothing that struck a chord with women who share the universal dilemma of having a closet full of clothes, but nothing to wear. Featured on HSN for six years, her line quickly expanded to QVC-UK, ShopNBC and The Shopping Channel in Canada.
Featured in hundreds of articles from the TV Guide to the New York Times, Kim is a branding expert. She has worked and studied with numerous nationally known designers and stylists as well as celebrity guests and fashion trendsetters including Joan Rivers, Victoria Principal, Kathie Lee Gifford, Carol Alt and Cindy Crawford.
As the President of Kim Parrish, Inc., a champion of numerous philanthropic endeavors, she also leads the Miss America’s teen division which has become one of the leading scholarship programs for teens in the nation that now awards $18 million of in-kind and cash scholarships annually.
Kim will talk with students about her life and her career path after leaving WVU. The event will be held at 3 p.m. in the Vivian Davis Michael Theatre. Kim’s talk will be followed by a Q&A session. All events are free and open to the public.
The College of Creative Arts is pleased to announce its success during the “State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University,” the comprehensive capital campaign conducted by the WVU Foundation on behalf of WVU. Thanks to the generosity of alumni, faculty, and friends, the College of Creative Arts has exceeded its initial fundraising goal of $13,500,000 by more than $2 million!
“On behalf of the faculty, staff, and students of the College of Creative Arts, I express thanks and appreciation to donors and friends who continue to invest in the arts and arts education. We will be excellent stewards of your generosity,” said Dean Paul Kreider.
During 2013-2014, the College of Creative Arts received $1,632,490 in new pledges, new planned gift expectancies, and gifts not fulfilling pledges.
The College also received $1,479,107 in cash and in-kind gifts.
Donors contributed $326,261 through the College’s annual fund program, slightly up from the 2012-2013 annual fund total of $323,167. The reason for this increase was enhanced participation by the alumni and friends, with 1,511 donors this year, versus 1,401 last year.
A total of 2,167 gifts were received from this year’s donors an increase of 229 gifts from last year’s total of 1,938.
Donors also made several significant gifts during the past year, including beautiful Steinway pianos that will enrich the experiences of students and faculty.
A new musical theatre scholarship was endowed, research activities of faculty in the School of Art and Design were supported robustly, and the Mountaineer Marching Band was able to perform in Oklahoma and at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore due to gifts to the Pride Travel Fund.
Endowed scholarships in music performance and collaborative piano were founded, and a future fund will support art education programs for middle and high school students.
A fund was established to assist College of Creative Arts students to travel domestically and internationally for study, research, and performance activities, and the Dean’s Honors Scholars Program was initiated.
An endowment was created to enable the Art Museum of WVU to acquire works by renowned international photographers.
Last, but not least, many donors have supported the nearly completed Art Museum of WVU, which will greatly expand cultural and educational opportunities for the citizens of the region.
WVU Foundation and University officials have announced that the “State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University” has been so successful that it exceeded its $750 million goal more than a year before the original deadline. The Campaign is now scheduled to continue through 2017, with a new goal of $1 billion.
Because many pressing needs remain to be met in the College of Creative Arts, our faculty and staff will not diminish their efforts to advance the College’s mission during the remainder of the comprehensive campaign.
“Due to the fact that the college has exceeded its campaign goal and that the campaign has been extended for two years, the college will quickly review it fundraising priorities while considering a new goal for the State of Minds Campaign,” state Dean Kreider. “The College is grateful to donors, alumni and friends for their gracious support and for their continuous and future generosity.”
Seven new faculty members have joined the WVU College of Creative Arts this fall, in the areas of musical theatre, art education, music history, costume technology, interactive media, painting, and music theory and composition.
The new faculty members are: School of Art and DesignTerese Giobbia, assistant professor of art and coordinator of art education; Jeffrey Moser, assistant professor of interactive media design, and Amy Schissel, assistant professor of painting; School of Music: Evan MacCarthy, assistant professor of music history, and Joseph Dangerfield, assistant professor of music theory and composition; School of Theatre and Dance: Bryce Britton, assistant professor of theatre and director of musical theatre, and Andrea Washington-Brown, clinical assistant professor of costuming.
“We are pleased to have such talented and experienced faculty joining the College of Creative Arts,” said Dean Paul Kreider. “I was impressed with these candidates and I am so pleased they have chosen to become members of the College of Creative Arts family.”
Terese Giobbia received a Master’s degree and a doctorate in Art Education from Northern Illinois University and also earned a Bachelor’s degree in Art from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Education. Her dissertation topic examined design education in the K-12 classroom and explored how the teaching practice of secondary school design educators can be enhanced by understanding the professional practices of fashion design professionals. Prior to joining WVU, Giobbia taught art education classes at Northern Illinois University and supervised pre-service art teachers. She has extensive experience teaching fine and applied arts in the K-12 classroom. Her research interests include design and technology education in secondary school curriculum; fashion as public art; and the hybrid identity of American youth as seen through their clothing. She has presented on these topics at numerous international and national conferences and is currently publishing a book on incorporating fashion into the K-21 art curricula.
A recent graduate of the University of Delaware, Jeffrey Moser is a digital media artist working with the transmediation of culture taking place during the 21st century, when every scrap of analogue information, sound recording, photograph, and motion picture ascends from its physical form and is preserved in simulated perfection. His work celebrates this transmediation, while warning against its inevitable consequencesthe loss of disintegrating or disappearing cultural history. Moser is influenced by the research of former Boston University film professor, Dr. Robert Steele (19181981) and his studies on light rhythms in films. Moser holds undergraduate degrees in Graphic Design and Philosophy, and has most recently taught in Omaha, Nebraska. His video work has been screened in Savannah, Georgia; Charlotte, North Carolina; Wilmington, Delaware; Providence, Rhode Island; and Zegreb, Croatia, as well as being presented at the National Gallery of Art as part of the 32nd Black Maria Film Festival.
Amy Schissel completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 2002 from the University of Ottawa and her Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Ottawa in 2009. Her work negotiates hybrid moments where paint and modes of digital representation collide, giving rise to contemporary imagery that flips between abstraction and representation. She was a finalist in the 2011 RBC Canadian Painting Competition and her work can be found in the collections of the Canada Council Art Bank, the Department of Foreign Affairs Canada, the City of Ottawa, the Free University of Brussels, Belgium, and the Gotland Museum of Fine Arts, Sweden, in addition to numerous private international collections. She was Canada’s 2009 recipient of the Brucebo Fine Arts Award, and Ottawa’s 2013 RBC Emerging Artist Award. She has exhibited both nationally and internationally.
Evan MacCarthy received an A.B. in Classics and music from the College of the Holy Cross, and a doctorate in historical musicology from Harvard University. His research focuses on the history of 15th-century music and music theory, late medieval chant, German music in the Baroque era, and late 19th-century American music. He is writing a book on the intersections of music, pedagogy, and the revival of classical literature across the Italian peninsula in the 15th century, focusing on the different spheres of humanistic and scholastic learning at Italian courts, cathedrals, and universities. He is also producing an edition and first-ever translation of Ugolino of Orvieto’s “Declaratio musice discipline” (written c. 1435) for Brepols Press. He has served on the music faculties of Harvard University (where he was the Harvard College Fellow in music from 2010 to 2012), College of the Holy Cross, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Boston University.
Joseph Dangerfield has lived and worked professionally in Germany, Russia, Holland and New York. He began his composition studies at Marshall University, where he earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in 1999. He completed his master’s degree at Bowling Green State University, and received a doctorate in 2005 from the University of Iowa. He is the recipient of many awards and recognitions, including the Aaron Copland Award (2010), the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra’s Composition Prize (2010), the Henry and Parker Pelzer Prize for Excellence in Composition (2005), the Young and Emerging Composers Award (2002), and ASCAP Standard Awards. He was a Fulbright Scholar to the Russian Federation and the Netherlands (2009-2010), where he served as composer-in-residence with the Ensemble Studio New Music at the famed Moscow Conservatory, and lectured at Maastricht Conservatorium. He has been a resident in the Leighton Studios of the prestigious Banff Centre in Alberta, Canada, and the Yaddo Colony in New York.
Bryce Britton received his Master of Fine Arts degree in Theatre Direction from Ohio University and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Directing from the University of Puget Sound. His extensive professional credits include Seattle Children’s Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre, ACT, Village Theatre, Lyric Theatre and Contemporary American Theatre Festival. With a passion for Original Theatre, he has worked on numerous new works with the Village Originals Festival and the Seaberry Quinn Playwriting Festival. He was the recipient of the 2009 Milo Cline Award. Some of his favorite directorial credits include “West Side Story,” “Pippin,” ” Into the Woods,” “Extremities,” “Sleuth,” The Dumb Waiter, “The Grapes of Wrath,” Humperdinck’s opera version of “Hansel and Gretel,” “An Actor’s Nightmare,” “Sweet Charity,” and “Oklahoma!” He wrote and directed an original adaptation of John Webster’s classic “The Duchess of Malfi” and recently directed Monty Python’s hilarious musical “Spamalot” and Sara Ruhl’s haunting retelling of the Orpheus tale, “Eurydice.”
Andrea Washington-Brown holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Memphis and a Master of Fine Arts from Wayne State University. She has designed many costumes for the Bowling Green State University Theatre Department, Wayne State Theatre Department and Princeton University’s BAC Drama. She received the KCACTF XLII, Region III, 2010 Merit Award for “The Dancing Blanket” from the BGSU Theatre production of “You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown.” Photographs of her work for the WSU production of “The Adventures of a Black Girl in Search of God” have been published in “The Enjoyment of Theatre, Seventh Edition.” Recent designs credits include Swine Palace’s “Shapeshifter” and “King Lear” and LSU Theatre Mainstage’s “Our Lady of 121st Street.” She is a frequent guest costume designer for the eta Creative Arts Foundation in Chicago, Illinois.
WVU School of Art and Design graduate student Kaitlyn Hunter, of Lisbon Falls, Maine, has been awarded the prestigious International Sculpture Center’s “Outstanding Student Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award” for 2014.
Hunter was nominated for the award by Assistant Professor Dylan Collins and Associate Professor Jason Lee in the WVU School of Art and Design. She is pursuing a Master of Fine Arts degree in the College of Creative Arts, with an emphasis in sculpture.
The International Sculpture Center (ISC) was founded in 1960 to champion the creation and understanding of sculpture and its unique, vital contribution to society. Members include sculptors, collectors, patrons, architects, developers, journalists, curators, historians, critics, educators, foundries, galleries, and museumsanyone with an interest in and commitment to the field of sculpture.
The ISC established the annual “Outstanding Student Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award” program in 1994 to recognize young sculptors and to encourage their continued commitment to the field.
The award was also designed to draw attention to the sculpture programs of the participating universities, colleges and art schools.
More than 151 universities, as well as colleges and art school sculpture programs from six countries, nominated total of 374 students for this year’s award.
A total of 22 students were selected to receive the award, after a competitive viewing process of the submitted works.
“The selection of Kaitlyn as a recipient of this award, from such a large pool of applicants, including international students, is a great accomplishment,” said Collins, who is coordinator of the Sculpture program at WVU. “It is a testament to the artistic promise of her work.”
Kaitlyn is currently in the second year of her MFA program in sculpture.
“Last year I moved out of Maine for the first time to attend school here at WVU,” she said. “I learned about this MFA program from Damir Porobic, a WVU alumnus and professor of art at the University of Southern Maine, where I earned my BFA degree. Along with being passionate about art, I am also a Girl Scout volunteer and lifetime member.
“I feel very strongly about the transformative qualities of art and how it can be used to build community.”
Kaitlyn and the other award recipients will participate in the Grounds For Sculpture Fall/Winter Exhibition, which will be on view from October 2014 through March 2015 in Hamilton, New Jersey, adjacent to the ISC headquarters.
Kaitlyn’s work will also be featured in the October 2014 issue of the International Sculpture Center’s award winning publication, Sculpture magazine, as well as on the ISC’s website at www.sculpture.org.
See Kaitlyn’s website here.
Anna Justice has joined the WVU College of Creative Arts as the new director of development. She was previously a development officer at Loyola University New Orleans. Justice began work with Creative Arts Dean Paul Kreider and WVU Foundation Assistant Vice President Chuck Kerzak on June 16.
“I’m really excited to be joining the College of Creative Arts team and getting to know the university and its vibrant arts community,” Justice said. “I was a trumpet major in my undergraduate studies, and I’m thrilled to continue my work in the arts management in higher education. This is my dream job continued!”
“I am also excited to have Anna Justice join our College staff,” said Dean Paul Kreider of the College of Creative Arts. “She brings significant arts development experience to our team. Her experience at Loyola University of New Orleans, coupled with her arts training, provide a foundation that will help move the College closer to achieving its philanthropic goals. I am confident our faculty, staff, students, alumni, friends, and supporters will find her a wonderful addition to the team as well.”
Justice, originally from Pawleys Island, South Carolina, earned a Bachelor of Music in Trumpet Performance at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, as well as a Master of Science in Arts Administration and a Certificate in Fundraising Management from Boston University.
She joined Loyola University in 2008 where she was the development officer for the College of Music and Fine Arts.
While at Loyola, Justice served on the board of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra’s new audience group, “Prelude,” and was a member of the New Orleans Friends of Music, an organization that brings internationally renowned performing ensembles to the New Orleans community. She was also active on the advisory board for the New Orleans Opera Association.
She was a member of the Junior League of New Orleans, and holds professional memberships with the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).
Justice also taught an overview class in arts administration as an adjunct professor through the Department of Music Industry Studies in the Loyola College of Music and Fine Arts.
It was a packed house at the Creative Arts Center on Saturday, May 10, as graduates of the College of Creative Arts received their diplomas during a special ceremony featuring actor and alumnus Chris Sarandon as guest speaker.
Diplomas were awarded this year to approximately 115 students in the College of Creative Arts, including graduates of August 2013, December 2013 and August 2014.
Daniela Longono-Bernal, the Outstanding Graduating Senior in the School of Art & Design, was also named the overall Outstanding Graduating Senior in the College of Creative Arts for 2014.
The other outstanding graduates recognized were: Jacob Sandridge, Outstanding Graduating Senior in the School of Music, and Nora Perone, Outstanding Graduating Senior in the School of Theatre and Dance.
Guest speaker Chris Sarandon is a native of Beckley, W.Va., an alumnus of the College of Creative Arts (Drama, 1964), and an award-winning actor best known for playing Prince Humperdinck in “The Princess Bride.” His many other roles in films, on Broadway, and on television, include the vampire Jerry Dandridge in “Fright Night” and Detective Mike Norris in the first entry of the “Child’s Play” series, as well as for providing the speaking voice of Jack Skellington in “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance as Leon in the 1975 film “Dog Day Afternoon.”
“I can’t tell you how proud I am to be here today,” Sarandon said. He then told a true story:
“When one of my daughters was five years old, she and a friend were having pizza with the friend’s mom, and when the mom asked her own daughter what her daddy did, she said “He makes wires in houses.” Her mother said ‘That’s right, Daddy’s an electrician.’ Then the mother turned to my daughter and she said ‘You know what your daddy does, don’t you?’ and my daughter said ‘Yeah, he looks for work.’”
After much laughter, Sarandon told the graduates he was certainly not one who felt competent to give them the secrets of the cosmos, or tell them how to get a job, but he wanted to share four seemingly random events that occurred during his undergraduate years at WVU that each turned out to be a lightning bolt to him and helped give his life a new direction.
“I was preparing for one of several majors and thought that taking a few easy electives would be a good way to up my GPA,” he said.
Lightning bolt number one was an elective English class called “101 Scottish and Irish Ballads” taught by the renowned folklorist Patrick Gainer, who was professor of English at WVU from 1946 to 1972.
Professor Gainer would stand in front of the class and reference his book called “101 Scottish and Irish Ballads,” while punching the buttons on the 50-pound Wollensack reel-to-reel tape recorder that he had lugged up and down the mountains and hollows of West Virginia as he recorded amateur musicians singing the almost-identical words to the ballads in his book. These words had been passed down, orally, through the centuries, from Scotland and Ireland, and finally to West Virginia.
“At the time I was very snooty about what I thought of as hillbilly music, because I was a child of Greek immigrants and they worked very hard to assimilate and be all-American,” Sarandon said. “But, pow! Suddenly I was confronted by the fact that the state where I was born and raised and in which I was continuing my education and – by the way, from which I had been dying to get away – was the epicenter of a culture that went back hundreds and hundreds of years.”
Lightning bolt number two came in another English class, called “Victorian Poetry.”
“This appealed to the romanticized image I had of myself at the time as a sad, poetic soul,” Sarandon said. “And, it looked easy. It was taught by an aloof, but charismatic, professor named Gordon Pitts.”
Pitts was an English professor who founded the Victorian Poetry journal at WVU in 1962. He was passionate about poetry, and he recited it beautifully.
“His passion was catching. And his essay exams required answers that were graded on one’s ability to express original and complex interpretations of the poems,” Sarandon said. “In other words, they required one to think critically and write well, a muscle that I had used sparingly up to that time.
“I only got one C when I was here at West Virginia – I say somewhat immodestly – and I feel proud to have earned that C from Professor Pitts.”
Lightning bolt number three was a music class called “Choral Union,” taught by another charismatic teacher who was anything but aloof. His name was Joseph Golz and he was the first director of the opera and vocal program at WVU.
Somehow, Sarandon said, Professor Golz managed by force of his vivid personality and his acerbic humor to get a group of several hundred non-music students and a few voice major ringers to sing the “Carmina Burana” the Brahms “Requieum,” and the Bach “Mass in B Minor.”
“The experience of blending my voice with hundreds of others was an experience that was a high, and I’ll never forget it.”
Lightning bolt number four was a “Beginning Acting” class taught by Drama professor Charles “Chuck” Neel. This seemed like another easy class, especially since Sarandon had always had a way with accents and taking on characters and stories.
During the first semester, Professor Neel asked Sarandon to take a small part in a studio production that he was directing of “Julius Caesar.”
“I had some time and I wanted to earn some brownie points, so I accepted the three-line role,” Sarandon said. “And when it was over, he proposed that I accept another role. This time it was the lead in the studio production of a play called ‘Tartuffe,’ by Moliere.
“So then I had to make a choice,” he said. “To continue my somewhat aimless existence, going to parties and coordinating various campus activities, and taking classes that I barely cared about, or to commit myself to the theater – put on a wig, a false nose – with a wart – and, as an extra added attraction, to woo the young actress who was playing opposite me, the reigning Miss West Virginia. Well! I don’t have to tell you, the choice was not a difficult one. I bit. And I was bitten.”
As a result, Sarandon said, he was transformed from a boy, who had been trying on various identities – including jokester, rock musician, and campus politician – to a young man experiencing transcendent moments and taking on the identities of timeless characters such as Romeo, Harold Hill, and Tartuffe.
“If you graduates were as fortunate as I was to have a few lightning bolts while you were in college – classes or college experiences that led you to a wider view of the world and your place in it – then you were blessed,” he said.
He said the class in West Virginia music gave him a sense of authenticity. He felt pride in being surrounded by a centuries-old tradition and art form. The class in Victorian poetry connected him to a timeless and magnificent language taught by a teacher who expected his students to be critically original. The Choral Union made him a singer in an immense choir that was a mystical cooperative effort and collaboration.
And finally, through his acting mentor, Professor Chuck Neel, he was able to understand “how to connect with the characters that lived inside this manufactured exterior that I had worked so long to create.”
“An artist is made up of everything the he or she experiences,” he said. “I hope that during your time here you have used, absorbed, synthesized, grabbed onto, sucked into yourselves – personalities, artworks, music, personal tragedy, mundane everyday events, the prodigious minutia of life that will continue to inform your work throughout your life.
“By living a life in the arts you will be at times deeply discouraged in a culture that values celebrity over accomplishment and making money over making something lasting that enriches the world around you. But stick with it, whatever you do.
“Please, stick with it, whether it’s your vocation, or your avocation, for believe me there will be times when many of you will be doing other jobs to support your art habit or will be looking for work, just as I have. But if your life is an artwork, whatever job you do will be filled with dancing, breathless laughter, and maybe a few finger puppets.”
Sarandon ended his speech by reading a poem called “For the Young Who Want To” by Marge Piercy.
Talent is what they say
you have after the novel
is published and favorably
reviewed. Beforehand what
you have is a tedious
delusion, a hobby like knitting.
Work is what you have done
after the play is produced
and the audience claps.
Before that friends keep asking
when you are planning to go
out and get a job.
Genius is what they know you
had after the third volume
of remarkable poems. Earlier
they accuse you of withdrawing,
asking why you don’t have a baby,
call you a bum.
The reason people want M.F.A.s,
take workshops with fancy names
when all you can really
learn is a few techniques,
typing instructions and some-
body else’s mannerisms
is that every artist lacks
a license to hang on the wall
like your optician, your vet
proving you may be a clumsy sadist
whose fillings fall into the stew
but you’re certified a dentist.
The real writer is one
who really writes. Talent
is an invention like phlogiston
after the fact of fire.
Work is its own cure. You have to
like it better than being loved.
Outstanding Senior – College of Creative Arts
Outstanding Senior – School of Art and Design
Daniela Londona-Bernal was the outstanding senior in the School of Art and Design and she was presented with the award as overall outstanding senior in the College of Creative Arts during the Commencement ceremony by Dean Paul Kreider and Provost Michele Wheatly. Daniela received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Photography and samples of her photographs were projected on a screen above the stage at Commencement. Her work was also displayed in the lobby and in the Mesaros Galleries.
Daniela is a native of Antioquia, Columbia. While a student at WVU, she has been the recipient of numerous academic and artistic awards. She received a number of merit based academic scholarships, including the WVU Foundation Outstanding Senior Award, a WVU Presidential Award for Excellence in Scholarship, a WVU Fine Arts Scholarship, and a Valerie Canady Scholarship Award. As an artist, Daniela’s work has been exhibited and/or published in Small Art/Big Impact, juried exhibition through Manhattan Arts international; Art Biologic, juried exhibition at the Limner Gallery in Hudson, New York; 15th International Juried Krappy Kamera Competition in New York, New York; 16th Annual International Open Exhibition at the Women Made Gallery in Chicago, Illinois; and Best of College Photography 2013 by the Photographers’ Forum Magazine. Additionally, Daniella has worked as a photographer for the WVU student newspaper, The Daily Athenaeum, and as a Student Ambassador for the College of Creative Arts.
Outstanding Senior – School of Music
Jacob Sandridge was this year’s outstanding senior in the School of Music and was congratulated by Dean Paul Kreider. Jake received a Bachelor of Music degree in composition and piano performance. During the Commencement ceremony, Jake performed “Skyscraper” from his work titled “Pieces of Glass.”
Jake is from Philippi, West Virginia. At WVU he has studied composition under Dr. John Beall, electronic composition under Dr. David Taddie, and piano under Dr. Peter Amstutz. Jake has composed for a variety of chamber ensembles including string quartet, piano quintet, woodwind sextet, art song, solo piano, and choir. He has also composed for electronic media with percussion and piano, and his art songs have been performed in a number of venues. Sandridge is the secretary of the WVU chapter of the Society of Composers and an active member in the Music Teachers National Association and served as a Student Ambassador for the College of Creative Arts. After graduation, Jake will attend Bowling Green State University for graduate study.
Outstanding Senior – School of Theatre and Dance
Nora Perone was congratulated by Provost Michele Wheatly for being the outstanding senior in the School of Theatre and Dance. Nora received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Acting. During the Commencement ceremony, Nora sang “What I Did for Love.”
Nora is a Morgantown native. She attended Morgantown High School, where she was an International Honor Thespian. She has also been very active in community theatre in Morgantown and Fairmont. During her time with the WVU School of Theatre and Dance, she appeared on the main stage as a cigarette girl in “Carmen,” as Sally Bowles in “Cabaret,” and as a rebel soldier and Justice Shallow in “Henry IV,” as well as performing in several student-run productions. She will continue her education next fall in a postgraduate musical theatre course at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London, England.
Following the conferring of degrees, there was a reception in the Douglas O. Blaney Lobby of the Creative Arts Center for the graduates, their families and friends, as well as College of Creative Arts faculty and staff.
See the entire College of Creative Arts Graduation Commencement Ceremony on YouTube Link to CCA Commencement 2014.
View a video capturing the thoughts, emotions and images of WVU Commencement Weekend 2014 at 2014 Video.
See photos of the ceremony, including photos of each of this year’s graduates, at the University Relations Photography link.
College of Creative Arts alumnus Chris Sarandon, an award-winning actor actor best known for playing Prince Humperdinck in “The Princess Bride, will be the guest speaker for the College of Creative Arts Commencement ceremony, Saturday, May 10.
The ceremony begins at 5:30 p.m. in the Lyell B. Clay Concert Theatre of the Creative Arts Center and is open to the public.
In addition to his role in “The Princess Bride,” Sarandon is known for his role as the vampire Jerry Dandridge in “Fright Night” and Detective Mike Norris in the first entry of the “Child’s Play” series, as well as for providing the speaking voice of Jack Skellington in “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance as Leon in the 1975 film “Dog Day Afternoon.”
Sarandon was born and raised in Beckley, W.Va., and earned his degree in speech and drama at WVU, graduating magna cum laude in 1964. While at WVU, he performed as a rabble rouser in a Theatre Lab production of “Julius Caesar,” in 1961; as the ultimate hypocrite in the Molière comedy “Tartuffe” in 1962; as a singing charmer in “Little Mary Sunshine” in 1963; and as Romeo in “Romeo and Juliet” in 1964. His mentor was WVU Theatre Professor Charles Neel. Sarandon was named to the Academy of Distinguished Alumni at WVU in 1998.
Following his graduation from WVU, he earned his master’s degree in theater from The Catholic University of America (CUA) in Washington, D.C., and then toured with CUA’s National Players, performing Shakespeare and Molière. He worked at an improv company in Washington, D.C., and then became heavily involved in regional theatre.
In 1968, Sarandon moved to New York, where he landed his first television role as Dr. Tom Halverson on the soap opera “The Guiding Light” (1969-1973). He also appeared in several prime-time TV movies before landing the role of Al Pacino’s transsexual wife in “Dog Day Afternoon,” a performance which earned him a nomination for Best New Male Star of the Year at the Golden Globes in 1975 and the nomination for Best Supporting Actor at the Academy Awards.
Sarandon has appeared on Broadway, as well making regular appearances at Shakespeare and George Bernard Shaw festivals in the United States and Canada. He also appeared opposite the late Margaux Hemingway in the thriller “Lipstick” (1976) and as attorney turned demon in the shocker “The Sentinel” (1977). He co-starred with Dennis Hopper in “The Osterman Weekend” in 1983, and with Goldie Hawn in “Protocol” in 1984. He received accolades for his dual portrayals of Sydney Carton and Charles Darnay in a television version of “A Tale of Two Cities” in 1980.
Over the years, he continued to work on television with a recurring role as Dr. Burke on NBC’s long-running medical drama “ER,” and also recurring character on “The Practice.” In the 2000s he made guest appearances in quite a few TV series, notably as the Necromancer demon, Armand, in “Charmed,” and as superior court judge Barry Krumble in six episodes of “Judging Amy.” More recently, he has appeared as a guest star on “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit” and “The Good Wife.”
Sarandon also reprised his role as Jack Skellington for many other subsequent productions, including the Disney/Square video games “Kingdom Hearts” and “Kingdom Hearts II” and the Capcom sequel to the original film, “Oogie’s Revenge.” He also reprised the role for “Halloween Screams” and the Haunted Mansion Holiday, a three-month overlay of the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland.
He returned to Broadway in 2006 playing Signor Naccarelli in the six-time Tony award-winning Broadway musical “The Light in the Piazza” at Lincoln Center. More recently he appeared in “Cyrano de Bergerac” as Antoine de Guiche, alongside Kevin Kline, Jennifer Garner and Daniel Sunjata.
Sarandon is married to actress Joanna Gleason and they have appeared together in a number of films. Between them, they have four grown children and two grandchildren.
During the May 10 Commencement ceremony, the College of Creative Arts will individually recognize approximately 100 graduates, including those who completed their requirements in August or December of 2013. Alison Helm, director of the School of Art and Design, Keith Jackson, director of the School of Music, and Joshua Williamson, director of the School of Theatre and Dance, will recognize each of the degree candidates by name and they will receive congratulations from Dean Paul Kreider, Associate Dean William Winsor, and Assistant Dean John Hendricks.
There will also be several special presentations, including awards to outstanding students in the Schools of Art and Design, Music, and Theatre and Dance.
Student Marshals, who lead the procession of graduates, are undergraduates in the College who have achieved the highest cumulative grade point average in their school. The Student Marshals for 2013-2013 are: Megan Emma Bean, Bachelor of Arts, School of Art and Design; Christie Elizabeth Curley, Bachelor of Music, School of Music; and Cody Leroy Wilson, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre, School of Theatre and Dance.
Outstanding Graduating Senior awards for the three schools include: Daniela Londono-Bernal, Bachelor of Fine Arts, School of Art and Design; Jacob Daniel Sandridge, Bachelor of Music, School of Music; and Nora Lynn Perone, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre, School of Theatre and Dance.
The College of Creative Arts Outstanding Graduating Senior for 2013-2014 will be announced by Dean Kreider during the Commencement ceremony.
Doors to the Lyell B. Clay Theatre will open at 5 p.m. Tickets are not required for admission and seating is open except where reserved for degree candidates. The academic procession begins sharply at 5:30 p.m. Parking is available at various locations near the Creative Arts Center. Families and friends of graduates are welcome to take photos during the ceremony.
The ceremony will also be webcast, for those who are unable to attend. Coverage begins ten minutes prior to the start of the event. For more information, go to Commencement Webcasts.
Following the ceremony, there will be a reception in the lobby of the Creative Arts Center for the graduates, their families and friends, and College of Creative Arts faculty and staff.