In an effort to tap Art Center’s vast alumni network for insight and inspiration from the front lines of art, design and innovation, we’re launching a new series of Q&A’s with…you guessed it: Art Center alums. Adam D. Miller and Devon Oder—Grad Art alums and business partners in the newly-minted exhibition space, The Pit—gamely agreed to kick off the series by shedding some light on their bold collaborative venture combining their own studios and an artist-run project space entitled The Pit: Exhibitions & Editions.
Posts Tagged ‘Mike Kelley’
Excavating The Pit: Eleven questions for Grad Art alums and gallery owners Adam D. Miller and Devon OderTuesday, January 27th, 2015
Of all the ways Mike Kelley has been celebrated for his pivotal contributions to contemporary art, since his death on January 31, 2012, his impact as an educator may be the most significant aspect of his legacy to go relatively unexamined, if not unsung. Kelley was a faculty member of Art Center’s Graduate Art Department from 1992 to 2007. And during his time teaching at Art Center, Kelley mentored such monumental talents as video artist Diana Thater (who now chairs the department from which she graduated), multimedia artist Pae White, installation artist Jennifer Steinkamp and Fine Art faculty member Jean Rasenberger.
In the above video, inspired by Kelley’s MOCA retrospective, these artists examine the ways in which Kelley influenced the kind of artists they’ve become, the work they create and, perhaps most importantly, how they go about crafting and sustaining a life as an exhibiting artist. Kelley has often been credited with helping raise the clout and visibility of LA’s art scene when his career took off and he declined to follow the well-worn path previous west coast supernova artists had followed to New York. As one of the first internationally acclaimed artists to root himself in Los Angeles, Kelley was, in essence, laying the groundwork for his students and their contemporaries to do the same.
If these artists’ upwardly-tilting career paths are any indication, Kelley’s impact on his students, his city and his creative discipline only gets deeper as time goes on.
Just over two months ago, Art Center provost, Fred Fehlau announced that full-time faculty members, Diana Thater and Jason Smith, would assume the roles of Chair and Associate Chair of Art Center’s Graduate Art program after longtime Chair, Jeremy Gilbert-Rolfe vacates the position in summer, 2014.
Thater, a pioneering film, video and installation artist, has been a dynamic and esteemed member of the international art community, ever since she earned her MFA from Art Center’s Grad Art program in 1990. She is a prolific artist who has exhibited around the world at first-rate institutions, including MOMA, the Walker Art Center and Dia Center for the Arts. Much of Thater’s work is informed by the social conscience she brings to her installation and video work exploring the relationship between humans and the natural world.
The Dotted Line recently visited Thater in her studio to discuss her plans for the Graduate Art Department as well as her current and future projects.
Art Center students, faculty, staff and alumni have been making news while making their mark at on the art and design worlds. For those who may have missed a headline or two, we curated this handy highlight reel of our recent media clips:
Don’t miss two lengthy, live interview segments we arranged for Interaction Design Chair, Maggie Hendrie and ACCD student Alex Cabunoc on the new cable program TakePart Live—a show tailored to Millennials (age 18-34) that reaches 40 million-plus households through Participant Media’s Pivot TV network. (Participant Media is the award-winning, socially and politically progressive production company responsible for An Inconvenient Truth, The Cove, Lincoln, among other enlightening and edifying films and TV shows).
In case you missed it, Dotted Line brings you a monthly roundup of media coverage.
From the success of the student-led Dot Independent Film Festival (DIFF | LA) and the rise of 3D printing, to reflections on the life of Mike Kelley and the connections between art and science, catch up on any news you may have missed with our March media roundup.
“In 1987, [Mike Kelley] began teaching at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, a sign among his peers that he had ‘arrived.’”–Kelly Crow writing in the Wall Street Journal. Photographs of Kelley by Grant Mudford in 1989, left, and by Tyler Hubby on December 7, 2011, right.
- Pasadena Magazine, “Dieter Rams: The Innovator,” March/April, 2013: Mark Breitenberg’s feature on legendary designer Dieter Rams includes announcement of the Honorary Doctorate Degree he will be awarded by Art Center. Republished by International Council of Societies of Industrial Design, March 18, 2013.
- Variety, “Zack Snyder Credits Lasting Friendships, Filmmaking Practice to Art Center Education,” March 17, 2013.
- Hollywood Reporter, “Zack Snyder to Hail New Filmmakers at Dot Independent Film Fest,” March 13, 2013.
- Movies.com, “‘Man of Steel’ Countdown: Early Reviews, Sequel Rumors, Running Time and a Minor Spoiler,” March 5, 2013: Story includes excerpts of our own feature story, “Re-designing movies: How Art Center educates the next generation of filmmakers,” originally published in Dot Magazine (Winter 2013) — including the interview with Art Center student Jack Foley, an actor in the film who is also a fledgling filmmaker.
- KCRW DnA: Design and Architecture, “What Will We Do With 3D Printers?,” March 19, 2013: Interview with Graduate Industrial Design Chair Andy Ogden about using 3D printers in the home.
- Los Angeles Times, “3D printing produces a fresh creative outlet for artists,” March 10, 2013: Art Center’s Director of Rapid Prototyping and Model Shops, David Cawley, is quoted.
- The Wall Street Journal, March 14, 2013: “The Escape Artist,” Kelly Crow’s in-depth story about late former faculty member Mike Kelley, “his extraordinary life — and his troubled last days.”
- ARTnews Magazine, “Under the Microscope: In museums, schools, and research facilities, scientists and artists are swapping methods to illuminate natural phenomena and solve global problems,” March 2013: Suzanne Muchnic quotes Vice President and Director of the Williamson Gallery Stephen Nowlin and features the Williamson Gallery as a contributor to the growing art/science movement.
- STEAM Journal, “Art Meets Science! Get over it . . .,” March 13, 2013: Stephen Nowlin’s essay is featured in The Claremont Graduate University transdisciplinary, international, theory-practice, peer-reviewed online journal focusing on the intersection of art and science.
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At the time, Jeremy Gilbert-Rolfe, Chair of the Grad Art program at Art Center, said, “Recognized as an important artist almost from the very beginning of his career, Mike kept teaching as long as he could before the pressures of being very famous indeed made it simply impossible for him to come to school with any regularity at all. He was, both in general and as a colleague, a brilliant combination of passion regarding art and a sense of humor… He has left us devastated.”
While much of the news following Kelley’s death focused on his cultural impact on the international art world, Sunday’s L.A. Times featured Art Center alumni reminiscing about their former teacher, who was “generous, patient, sometimes harsh but above all, eager to engage and share with fellow creators.”
Art Center would like to acknowledge our alumni–all celebrated artists themselves–and thank them for taking the time to share their thoughts with the L.A. Times.
- Ophelia Chong (FINE ’89)
- Sharon Lockhart (GART ’93)
- Julian Hoeber (GART ’01)
- Jennifer West (GART ’04)
- Jason Yates (GART ’00)
To read the article in its entirety, please click here.
UPDATE (3/15/12): Steve Roden, the student whose work was being critiqued in the above picture, recently blogged about seeing this photograph in the Los Angeles Times.