Dual Exhibition Reveals Transformative Nature of Art

Exhibitions:   Francesca Baldarelli: 54 Phillips Way | Tobias Layman: Grinding Away Layman-Baldarelli exhibition images
Dates:              February 2-16, 2017
Where:            Sella-Granata Art Gallery,  109 Woods Hall, UA campus
Reception:     Thursday, February 2, 4-6 p.m., Sella-Granata Art Gallery

The University of Alabama Department of Art and Art History is pleased to present the Master of Arts exhibitions of Francesca Baldarelli and Tobias Layman, February 2-16, 2017, in the Sella-Granata Art Gallery. Layman’s exhibition, titled Grinding Away and Baldarelli’s exhibition, 54 Phillips Way, will have their opening reception on Thursday, February 2 from 4 to 6 p.m. Join us then to meet these artists and experience their work first hand!

In her exhibition, 54 Phillips Way, Francesca Baldarelli salvages and reuses discarded or re-gifted materials. As she describes it, she combines the objects “to create curious moments of memory,” for herself and the viewer. “As time passes,” Baldarelli explains, “they transform. A crack here, a bend there, they slowly become different.” Changed, the objects move into the future, to create an open-ended experience for the artist and viewer alike.

In this exhibition, Tobias Layman creates wood and metal sculptures that celebrate motion. Shaped like gears and other moving parts, Layman presents a sensory experience to the viewer, of sound, sight, texture, as well as an experience of the art works’ imperfection. “The gears are not cast from a mold or cut with state-of-the-art technology,” Layman explains, “They are created by hand. Over and over. The gears do not align perfectly and they do not spin effortlessly.” In fact, Layman says, their flaws transform them beyond the realm of machines. “The imperfections warrant a sense of mortality. Their life span is unknown, and that unpredictability helps augment them and give them life.”

About the ArtistsTobias Layman, "Gear Go Round," 2016

Tobias Layman is a graduate student in sculpture, with an assistantship teaching Ceramics I and Drawing I. Layman received the BFA, cum laude, in ceramics, from Jacksonville State University in 2014. He has exhibited in national and regional exhibitions including 35 Live: CoCA Member’s Show, Center on Contemporary Art, Seattle, WA; DAMNED IX, Detroit, MI; A Different Vision, Plymouth, MA; The Big Dance Exhibit, a juried exhibition in Des Moines, IA; and Abstracts Art Exhibition, Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery, where he received an honorable mention. Layman has been a studio assistant for the Department of Art at Jacksonville State University, an assistant instructor at John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC, and an instructor and ceramic technician at Earthworks Pottery Studio in Rome, GA. He is a recipient of the Thames Endowed Scholarship and the Joseph and Allen Sella Endowed Scholarship at UA. His art website is

Francesca Baldarelli is a graduate student in printmaking with an assistantship. She currently teaches Introduction to Printmaking and assists in Color Theory. She has assisted in Drawing II and Intro to Printmaking. Her work combining printmaking and ceramics will be in the group exhibition, Clay Review 3 at the Abernathy Arts Center in Sandy Springs, GA, in January and February, 2017. She has exhibited her work in the Chautauqua Institution Student Exhibition at the Fowler Kellogg Gallery, Chautauqua, NY. Her work by Checa BaldarelliGraduating BFA Show was held at the John J. McDonough Museum, Youngstown, OH and she has been included in several group exhibitions at Bliss Hall Gallery at Youngstown State University. Baldarelli received the BFA, cum laude, in painting and printmaking from Youngstown State University in 2012. She attended the Chautauqua Institution School of Art in Chautauqua, NY, in 2014 and the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica in Venice in 2010. She received a UA College of Arts and Sciences Graduate Council Fellowship in 2015, the CISA Visual Arts at Chautauqua Institute Scholarship in 2014. At YSU, Baldarelli received a four-year American Legion Auxiliary Scholarship, a Study Abroad Grant, Venice, Italy, in 2010 and the Student Art Association Painting Award in 2009. Her art website is

A thesis exhibition is one of the requirements for the successful completion of the Master of Arts program in the UA Department of Art and Art History. For more information about our graduate programs, go here.


The Campus Drive Parking Deck at the corner of Hackberry Lane and Campus Drive provides visitor parking at a nominal cost, and is only a five-minute walk to Garland and Woods halls. Buses also run on varying schedules from the deck. To walk to Woods Quad from the parking deck, exit the main doors of the parking deck and cross Hackberry Lane southwest to Margaret Drive. Follow Margaret Drive to Capstone Drive, which runs between Gorgas Library and Garland Hall. Follow Capstone Drive to Garland Hall and the Sarah Moody Gallery of Art, and to Woods Hall and the Sella-Granata Art Gallery. For more information on bus schedules, go to