Past Exhibitions

Spring 2019 Exhibitions at Cohen Gallery

Fitting in and Standing Out: Monica Duncan and Lara Odell

Duncan Odell graphic

April 6 - August 9, 2019

Fitting In and Standing Out showcases a comprehensive sampling of Monica Duncan and Lara Odell's work, starting with the collaborative pieces they created while at Alfred (they met in 2000, when Monica was a BFA student and Lara was working at the IEA as Technical Associate) and ending with their most recent individual projects.

In Duncan and Odell's collaborative works, a recurring theme is the close observation of how bodies fit in or take on the qualities of their environment. Whether it be in a physical space or on a 2-dimensional surface, the artists play with how bodies blend in and out, mimicking shapes, colors and gestures, and in doing so, rearrange the figure-ground relationship. Utilizing custom garments and other props as extensions of the body, Duncan and Odell are interested how we experience and perceive bodies and objects in space-how to be simultaneously seeing and the ones being seen?

Although in different capacities and interpretations, the idea of the "cut-out" has been a common trope in both Duncan and Odell's collaborative and individual artworks. Duncan plays with the notion of the cut-out in video-based performance pieces, using sets, luma-keying and other processing effects and props; Odell takes the concept into the realm of painting and drawing, merging the two practices. Both explore ways in which the body and objects mimic or defy their surroundings; where they deviate, Duncan uses actual bodies and props; Odell creates paper representations. Odell's cut-outs play with ideas of transience, mutability, the fragility of identity. She uses cut paper and paint to create figurative scenes, calling to mind the artifice and ephemeral nature of being.

About the Artists

Monica Duncan and Monica Duncan and Lara Odell began their working relationship and friendship at Alfred University in 2000, when Monica was an undergrad art student and Lara (BFA '98) was the Technical Associate at the Institute for Electronic Art. Their first collaborative project, Antibodies (2002), was realized both at Alfred and the Experimental Television Center in Owego, NY.

Local Alumni Invitational: an exhibition of (relatively) small works

Exhibition poster

February 8-March 15, 2019

Alfred is home to many artists and artisans who have put down roots in our magic valley. The Cohen Center Gallery, an historic and intimate setting on Main Street in Alfred, presents an exhibition of works by the makers in our midst. Of the more than 120 artists invited, over 70 Alfred University alumni living locally (within 20 miles of Alfred) with a BFA, MFA, B.S.Ed., M.S.Ed, or those who have attended summers school have work on view. The exhibition, which opens with a reception on February 8 from 5-8pm will be on view through March 15, 2019.

View the PDF version of the flipbook.

Artists include:

Alli (Lipani) Feenaughty (BFA ’01, MSEd ’06), Amanda Parry Oglesbee (MSEd ’84), Amanda Warren (BFA ‘10), Amy C. Powers (BFA ’00), Andrea Gill (MFA ’76), Andrew W. Deutsch (BFA ’90), Angus M. Powers (BFA ’00), Beatriz Jevremovic (BFA ’58), Carol Beato Smith (summer School), Cassandra Bull (BFA ’16), Constance D. Ehmann (BFA ’76, MSED ’94, MFA’11), Cory J. Brown (MFA ’17), Dan Napolitano (BFA) , Devin Henry (BFA ’08), Elizabeth Menichino (summer ’17), Eugenia Frith Meltzer (summer ’01-’18), Graham Marks (MFA ’76), Grant T. Akiyama (BFA ’17), Hannah Thompsett (MFA ’16), Harriet Bellows (BFA ’68, MFA ’71), Hsini Des (BFA ’01), Jackie Pancari (MFA ’96), Janet L. McClain (BFA ’00), Jason H. Green (MFA ’98), Jesse Plass (BFA ’18), Jim E. Ninos (NYS Teaching cert ’86), Joe Fasano, Joe Scheer (BFA ’84), John G. Hosford (BFA ’89), John Gill (MF’75), Kevin Jacobs (BFA ’89), Karen Tufty-Wisniewski (BFA ’76), Kathleen O'Connor Benzaquin (BFA ’74, MSEd ’77), Kimberly J. Grossman (’86), Kiyoshi Kaneshiro (BFA ’18), Koen Vrij (BFA ’18), Laura E. McGraw (BFA ’07), Len Curran (summer ’01-’09), Leonard S. Grossman (BFA ’86), Liisa Nelson (MFA ’18), Linda Huey (MFA ’93), Linda Sormin (MFA), Mahlon J. Huston (MFA ’11), Margaret Longchamp (BFA ’18), Maria T. Bentley (BFA ’15), Marie Snoreck (summer), Mark Herol Corwine (MFA ’87), Mike Haleta (MFA ’17), Nancy Alt (summer), Natalie Lambert (BFA ’18), Paige A. Henry (BFA ’10), Patrick J. Brennan (BFA ’98), Peter S. Van Tyne (BFA ’87), Ray Allstadt (BFA ’16, MBA ’17), Richard S. Lang (BFA ’71), Rick W. McLay (BFA ’89), Robin Howard (MFA ’86), Samantha Sloan Wiechert (BFA ’13), Sandra Berry Hover (BFA ’86), Sandy Cameron (summer 2017), Rïse Peacock (BFA ’15), Sharon Carn McConnell (BSEd ’86), Shawn W. Murrey (BFA ’04, MFA ’08), Sheila Kalkbrenner (BFA ’01, MSEd ’02), Stephanie E. McMahon (BFA ’98), Susan E. Kowalczyk (BFA ’76), Susan J. Jamison (BFA ’77, MSEd ’88), Tara (Quigley) Snyder (BFA ’11), Walter S. McConnell (MFA ’86), William Contino (BFA ’84), Zach Shaw (BFA ’17) and more!

Fall 2018 Exhibitions at Cohen Gallery

Ikebana Ziggurat

Ikebana Ziggurat poster

November 2-December 7, 2018
Opening reception November 2, 6-9pm

Ikebana and Ziggurat are both distinct formalist structures. The work of Ellen Bahr and Kathleen McShane can be located within a conceptual ikebana where space is the prominent compositional element. Using an often pared-down aesthetic, McShane and Bahr share a line of inquiry that focuses on the construction of space, as opposed to a representation of space.

Bahr’s temporary, abstract arrangements are influenced by the small studio space where she works and the properties of the materials she manipulates. McShane’s drawings are informed by an extended approach to what drawing can be, and often in response to the expansive sense of space she experiences in Texas.

The exhibition is a kind of laboratory. In addition to photographs and drawings, each artist will build a "ziggurat" of works by artist who have been mentors and important influences, including Alfred alumni , as well as current and former faculty: Patrick Brennan, Jonathan Faber, Charles Goldman, John Hosford, Whitney Hubbs, Paul Kotula, Mary Lum, Lydia McCarthy, Stephanie McMahon, Ted Morgan, Sally Ross, Jennifer Niederhauser-Schlup and Linda Sormin.

Ellen Bahr studied photography at the International Photography Center and at Alfred University. She has lived in Wisconsin, New York City and Alfred, where she is a librarian at Herrick Library. Recent shows include Der Greif, Germany, Southern Tier Biennial, Black Box Gallery, Portland, Oregon, and Fourth Wall Project, Boston.

Kathleen McShane has a BFA from NYSCC Alfred and an MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art. She has lived and worked in New York City, Philadelphia, Detroit and now lives in South Central Texas and teaches drawing and painting at Texas State University. Shows include the Aldrich Museum, Brooklyn Museum, MOCA Detroit, Weatherspoon Museum, Drawing Center, and her work is represented by Paul Kotula Projects in Detroit. Collections include Weatherspoon Museum, Sally and Wynn Kramarsky, Fidelity and James Rosenquist.

Gary Sczerbaniewicz: Neil Before Zod

Neil Before Zod - Gary Sczerbaniewicz

September 14-October 19, 2018
Opening Reception September 14, 6-9pm

Sczerbaniewicz's series of installation works investigates the interplay between the rational and the irrational as illustrated in three interactive spatial vignettes. The conceptual matrix behind NBZ arises from the true-life relationship between chemist, rocket scientist, and founding member of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Jack Whiteside Parsons, and the pulp-science fiction writer and founder of Scientology, L. Ron Hubbard. The two belonged to a US offshoot of a European sex-magick cult called Ordo Templi Orientis (OTO), through which they attempted to produce a "Moon Child"... a synthesis of human and demonic entities.

This uncanny co-mingling of rational, post-enlightenment science with mystical, occult, and arcane magical practices creates a compelling impetus for artistic play and wild rumination. Sczerbaniewicz has subsumed this bizarre narrative and its extended "family" into a composition furthering his interest in creating disorienting viewing scenarios in which spectator and subject are brought together under specific physical and spatial constraints, and to create viewing environments that embrace a sense of cognitive dissonance and intellectual uncertainty.

Spring 2018 Exhibitions at Cohen Gallery

events posters

Concurrent exhibitions by:
Hope Zaccagni and Tim Pauszek
April 7 - August 3, 2018

Hope Zaccagni: Salt and Steel

Hope's formalist paintings are constructed with simple, direct color forms. Focusing on color, line, and light allow the artist to create a place for the subject to live. She plays on the geometry of her subject matter in space by paying a great deal of attention to the architecture of the painting and to emphasize the visual, rather than emotional, elements of the work.

Tim Pauszek: In Cahoots With...

This exhibition highlights the collaborative prints produced in cahoots with and printed by Tim Pauszek. The collection features works by SoAD faculty as well as IEA visiting artists who typically work across a diverse range of both 2D and 3D mediums. Every piece is the manifestation of a conversation between artist and printmaker, who each challenge one another to work within their imposed limitations.

event poster

Concurrent shows by:
Ladia Guerra and Victoria Kue
Cohen Artistic Promise Prize Exhibitions*
February 2 - March 16, 2018

Ladia Guerra: The Sweat Life

Ladia is fascinated by the artificial world created by contemporary society and is interested in the actions we take to make our lives happier through consumption and social pressure. She observes this by researching American pop culture through social media, television, and personal experience and manipulates her observations through the self. The self acts as a blank canvas to express feelings about her upbringing and her culture.

The Sweat Life explores domestic spaces and the way in which we interact in and view them. The artist has created video works conveying the feeling of loneliness, belonging, and the somewhat grotesque nature of private domestic spaces. The videos insight laughter, feelings of unease, and offer a psychological twist on what a domestic space can be through the lens of commercial objects and characters.

Victoria Kue: what's her face.

Victoria's studio practice stems from her query of autobiography and the investigation of the female narrative within her Hmong-American perspective. Victoria's observations from cultural, bodily, and emotional experiences direct her approach to material and representation. Her sculpture, installation, drawings, and abstractions evoke conversations about self-identity through patterns, color, and language.

what's her face. pushes back at the familial interrogation of a sexually-active Hmong-American woman who negotiates and claims ownership with her identity, body, and sexuality. Using the house as the setting to confront self-identity, what’s her face. explores placement, function, and language within domestic objects as a way to recognize the discomfort, struggles, and paradoxes within sexual relationships.

*The 2016 Cohen Artistic Promise Prize recognized two graduating seniors whose work, hunger, sustained growth and ambition marked them out as those who would continue on as artists beyond their academic training. The Prize, which granted the recipients concurrent solo shows at the Cohen 18 months following graduation, was designed to foster the growth begun in school, encourage the continuation of artistic practice and support the drive needed to reach full artistic potential.