MTSU Art Faculty Share “Collaborative Spirit”

"Mixed Signals" by Erin Anfinson and Kathleen O’Connell, video

“Mixed Signals” by Erin Anfinson and Kathleen O’Connell, video

Working in groups of two and three, art faculty and staff combined their talents to create an artistic consensus of expression. The results constitute the opening exhibit of the fall 2013 semester for the MTSU Department of Art’s Todd Art Gallery, scheduled through Sept. 19.

A few collaborative examples include the pairing of Noël Lorson and Marisa Recchia, who came up with an interactive satirical take on Tombola, an Italian version of Bingo that features common scatological euphemisms. For her part, Lorson did the graphic design for the game board and cards while Recchia made the playing pieces from clay. Lorson, one of several in the ever-growing area of graphic design, serves as an assistant professor of graphic design and vice president for Nashville’s chapter of AIGA, the professional association of design. Recchia, an associate professor of art in ceramics currently serves as the director of the Italy Summer Study Abroad program and is participating and lecturing at the CHAWAN International Exhibition to be held later this year in Taiwan, China.

"Bunny Shaman" by John Donovan and Charles Clary, ceramics

“Bunny Shaman” by John Donovan and Charles Clary, ceramics

Ashley Hairston, an assistant professor of graphic design and illustration, arrived at MTSU in 2012 after successfully completing her MFA in Studio Art at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC). Working with Rick Rishaw, the department’s gallery preparator and woodshop supervisor, the two have developed an interesting premise to pursue in their collaboration. Describing the effort, Rishaw stated, “Our installation revolves around reconciling first and second impressions of what is said and what is implied, using both verbal repetition and visual allegory”.

The artistic team of Erin Anfinson and Kathleen O’Connell describe their joint effort as a shared mutual appreciation for the visual part of art-making that walks a fine line between whimsical and formal. Anfinson further states, “Our inspiration comes from science and the unknown. We have been thinking about towers and the flow of information. Together we found ourselves imagining: What would happen if something interrupts the flow?” Their answer is, “a playful look at something horrifying.” Anfinson, an associate professor of art in foundations is well known for her encaustic work and stop-motion animations and is often found teaching mixed media encaustic workshops at regional arts and crafts schools. O’Connell, an assistant professor in book arts, letterpress and two-dimensional design, was living and teaching in Lima, Peru, before her move to MTSU in 2012.

The Todd Art Gallery is open Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. All exhibitions and receptions are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Eric Snyder at (615) 898-5653 or eric.snyder@mtsu.edu.


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The Murfreesboro Pulse: Middle Tennessee’s Source for Art, Entertainment and Culture News.

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