2008-2009 SMGA Exhibitions


Rob Matthews: Knoxville Girl | Christopher Davison: Darkness / Light / Darkness

21 August – 21 September 2008 
Two Philadelphia-based artists’ works on paper are featured in this exhibition. Rob Matthews will share the sequential drawings that have been in circulation around the region. Knoxville Girl is fascinating in its ability to coerce its patrons into the role of witness to disquieting circumstances. Matthews holds an MFA degree from Virginia Commonwealth University. Christopher Davison is a Philadelphia-based artist who has had his drawings included in a number of exhibits produced here and abroad. His colorful animated forms are both playful and foreboding. Davison completed his MFA in Printmaking from Tyler School of Art.

Look Away – Selections from the Permanent Collection

2 October – 2 November 2008
Each year the gallery assembles an exhibit from our Permanent Collection, which is dedicated to the acquisition of contemporary art. Begun by Sarah McCorkle Moody, the collection contains primarily drawings, prints, paintings, photographs and small-scale sculpture, from which will be selected more than fifty pieces. View photos of the installation here.

Reunion: Scott Stephens and Judy Major-Girardin

13 November – 14 December 2008
Two University of Alabama alumni will join forces in a presentation of paintings and printed based art work. Both artists who completed their MFA in Studio Art in 1983 have achieved successful careers as artists in academia. Stephens is professor of printmaking at the University of Montevallo. Major-Girardin is associate professor of art in the School of Art, McMaster University, Ontario. In their own ways, each artist observes and responds to landscape and flora within the natural world, transforming the subject matter through layering and patterning into planar compositions created with painting and printmaking techniques. View photos of the installation here.

Elizabeth Murray Prints

8 January – 8 February 2008
A selection of prints by the late Elizabeth Murray will offer our community an insightful examination of one of America’s prominent contemporary artists who forged her artistic career with a truly unique approach to deploying image, form, space and movement within her work. Works featured in this special exhibition are on loan from Gemini, G.E.L. of Los Angeles, and the exhibition is made possible with the support of the Farley Moody Galbraith Endowed Exhibition Fund. These prints reveal the energy of experimentation inherent in Murray’s artistic process. Her prints expose her signature use of circular or spiral form to advance motion, irregularly shaped and divided picture plane, vibrant color palette, and lyrical (often domestic) subject matter. The complexities of her art work reflect those of an ambitious female New York based painter immersed in the male dominated art world of the 1970’s. Murray studied Printmaking and Painting at the Art Institute of Chicago and Mills College, Oakland before venturing to New York which would become her home throughout her professional career. Murray’s distinctively shaped and incised canvases break with the art-historical tradition of illusionistic space in two-dimensions. Jutting out from the wall, Murray’s artwork pioneered the blurred line between painting as an object and painting as a space for depicting objects. She rebelled against the popular Minimalist movement, favoring instead the Neoexpressionists. Elizabeth Murray transformed her own narrative into a formalized language of shape, form and color. Her prints reflect the sensibilities found in her painting but also provide evidence of her ongoing dedication to drawing. Breathing life into domestic subject matter, her prints include images of cups, drawers, utensils, chairs, and tables. Such familiar objects are morphed into cartoonish fingers and floating eyeballs—macabre images that are nightmarish, appearing frozen in movement. Elizabeth Murray’s works are represented in prominent public art collections across America and abroad. Recently she was the subject of the PBS series ART 21, an ongoing documentary series dedicated to the lives and careers of contemporary artists. View photos of Patterson Sim’s lecture and reception here.

2009 Windgate Fellows Exhibition

19 February – 29 March 2009
This inaugural exhibition event will feature the work of Art Department students who have been awarded Windgate Fellowship support to pursue their studies in studio art media areas of Painting, Sculpture, Printmaking and Ceramics. Students will participate in the selection and preparation of works for the exhibit, and in the installation design. View photos of the installation here.

Clytie Alexander: Diaphans

9 April – 15 May 2008 
Alexander’s Diaphans focus on the relationship between object and the space around an object. The art work creates floating planes which employ light, shadow and reflection to generate a meditative presence. Clytie Alexander’s background includes experience in both Art anad Engineering. She divides her residence between Los Angeles and New York and has exhibited Diaphans on both coasts. Her international exhibition venues include the cities of Milan, Rome and Tokyo. Her pieces have been included in notable group exhibitions with other artists such as Louise Nevelson, Daniel Buren, Charles Arnoldi, Jon Yau and Max Gimblett. Works for this exhibition are on loan courtesy of Betty Cunningham Gallery, New York, NY. View photos of the installation here.

Funding support for the Sarah Moody Gallery of Art comes from the Department of Art and Art History and the College of Arts and Sciences. Receptions and lectures are free and open to the public. Gallery hours are 9:00-4:30 weekdays and 5:00-8:00 Thursday evenings.  For more information, contact the gallery at 348-1891.