None of us is untouched by the pandemic that threatens, it sometimes seems, to swallow our world almost whole. But while the measure of personal, social, economic and cultural transformation effected within our lives over these past few weeks and across the coming months can’t be predicted and has yet to be made, we are, nonetheless, still here, even if immeasurably changed.
We, in this instance, are the arts at Ohio State. Our familiar workplaces, materials and colleagues are no longer close at hand. Like everybody else, we’re still figuring this thing out. But we are not gone. We haven’t stopped. We haven’t even paused.
Over the next months, the College of Arts and Sciences will be sharing this virtual gallery of highlights from the wide variety of new and continuing forms of creative experimentation and imaginative expression recently generated by Ohio State students, faculty and alumni in the arts.
You may wonder, “What can artists do in a period of ‘social distancing’?” Here you’ll discover a few of our answers, as well as some of our questions. We hope you enjoy them (applause welcome).
Faculty Fellow for Arts and Humanities
Professor, Department of Art
This fall semester, the arts will be showcased on Ohio State’s Columbus campus in ways they haven’t before. Three outdoor tents will hold spaces for physically distanced classes, rehearsals and exhibitions in the various arts units across the College of Arts and Sciences.
“The tents are a way of making the arts visible on campus in ways they haven’t been before,” said Michael Mercil, Arts and Sciences faculty fellow for arts and humanities, who also is a professor in the Department of Art. “It takes advantage of the current pandemic condition to reimagine and rethink how we present ourselves to the public both within and outside the university.”
Join us with the Dance Graduate Student Group as we celebrate and uplift the creative voices and artistic growth of the Ohio State dance community; featuring student video submissions from the Department of Dance.
Urban Arts Space is pleased to present selected works by the recipients of the 29th Annual John Fergus Family Fund Scholarship Awards, a juried competition open to all studio-based undergraduate and graduate visual art and design majors at The Ohio State University. Recipients are chosen by a jury of faculty from the Departments of Art; Design; Arts Administration, Education and Policy; and History of Art.
The Fergus Materials and Scholarships Fund was established with gifts from John C. and Elizabeth O. Fergus, and Robert H. Fergus in honor of their mother, Edith Fergus-Gilmore. It is the strong belief of the family, and the overriding philosophy of these awards, that it is important to give back to one's community.
An exhibition featuring the work of graduating Bachelor of Art majors. The artists developed the work from a range of media and approaches during their courses of study at Ohio State.View
An exhibition featuring the work of graduating Bachelor of Fine Art majors. The artists developed the work from a range of media and approaches during their courses of study at Ohio State.View
The Third Annual Industrial Design Winter Market is the first-ever online version of an emerging tradition within the Department of Design at Ohio State. While visiting the Winter Market, you have an opportunity to see limited-edition — and in several cases unique — products designed and produced during an Autumn 2020 studio course by third-year students in the industrial design major.
Each of the seven “housewares” products in our 2020 Winter Market strike a balance between addressing the needs of potential users, the demands of small-run production, the constraints of a limited budget and approaches to sustainability.
"As the emergency situation progressed and announcements were made, I had no idea how we would move our deeply embodied work online. But after a few Zoom meetings with faculty and grad students sharing their brilliant ideas about how to be artists, scholars and teachers in this new situation, I was profoundly moved."
Department of Dance
Over the summer, Hopkins Hall Gallery exhibited five new exhibitions from a variety of unique, up-and-coming artists. These exhibitions features short-term projects including performances, installations, audience-participatory work and public programs or activities by Ohio State graduate students.
Ashley Bice, a recent graduate of the Departments of English and Theatre, is the co-founder and writing director of the brand-new arts organization First Cut Collective (FCC). “Currently, First Cut Collective serves as a virtual platform for art to thrive within self-isolation recommendations,” the mission statement reads. The organization welcomes creators from all artistic backgrounds to submit their works, which are then shared across the organization’s various social media accounts. Not only does First Cut Collective celebrate art in all its forms, but the organization also encourages artists to try their hand at creating art outside of their usual discipline.
Thompson, director of the Lawrence and Lee Theatre Research Institute, interviewed Jesse Eisenberg and Lorin Eric Salm (2020 Theatre Research Institute Award Recipient) in a live-streamed broadcast over Zoom for University Libraries. Eisenberg starred in the IFC Films biographical drama film, Resistance (2020), inspired by the life of Marcel Marceau. Salm coached Eisenberg in mime and provided choreography for the film.Watch Webinar
"Like everyone — the daily news of the spreading virus, invisible to the eye but manifesting with heartbreak in bodies across the globe, the conditions of social distancing, the recent storms with nights of thunder and lightning, even the lone, long call of the cardinal signaling for a mate — collectively work to make a different lens on everything — no less so on work in the studio. The view out my window is the same but what I see is different."
- Ann Hamilton, Distinguished University Professor of Art
Read Department of Art graduate student Karen Tharp's blog on creating throughout this distance-learning/making time. "‘Pathway’ implies flow, direction – left to right, right to left – but I think of them, often, as more universal (all the way right, then all the way left, or two parties converging in the middle), which distorts and deepens their meaning much like playing a record backwards does."Read more
Art is more than just a dispensable luxury during difficult times. Jody Patterson, Roy Lichtenstein Foundation Chair of Art History, examines in an essay for Artnews how the arts were supported by Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal measures during the Great Depression.Read more
As a message of hope for the community, Columbus Symphony Orchestra chorus members recorded themselves singing individually. Chorus accompanist and School of Music pianist Casey Cook provided the piano track.
From Department of Art graduate student Brianna Gluszak: "Returning home to Alberta, Canada, has a lot of ups and downs for me. Honestly, my saving grace is that my mom is still at work as a nurse. Amongst her rants about work and PPE, she mentioned that she was having a hard time with the mask, glasses, and goggles they are required to wear for every patient. I spent a few days sewing all my scrap fabric into scrub caps (their department doesn’t usually wear these) for the doctors and nurses, as well as sewing two buttons on each side for mask relief. Clint, one of the doctors, is showcasing how the cap relieves strain on his ears by resting his goggles in the fabric and attaching the mask to the buttons."
Always, by Melissa Vogley-Woods, a 2012 MFA graduate of the Department of Art, is now on view on Neil Avenue in Columbus. The design is a reproduction of textile fabric designed in 1920, the very end of the last pandemic of this nature. The re-vision of this pattern helps remind us to imagine that this, too, shall pass.Learn more
The Columbus-based Tower Duo, flutist Erin Helgeson Torres and School of Music saxophonist Michael Rene Torres, give a “screen concert” from their living room.