October 20, 2003

Two shows highlight visual arts faculty work

By Sally Corbett

The work of Emory visual arts faculty will be featured in two dynamic exhibitions this fall, both on campus and off.

"Rivers and Ruins: Panoramic Landscape Photo-graphs of the Deep South," on view through Oct. 30, is a solo exhibition in the Visual Arts Building (700 Peavine Creek Drive) featuring approximately 20 photographs by Nancy Marshall, lecturer in visual arts.

A second, group exhibition of approximately 50 works, "The Visual Arts and Beyond by Emory University Faculty," will be on view from Oct. 23 through Jan. 8, 2004, at SunTrust Plaza, 303 Peachtree St. Both exhibitions are free and open to the public.

Recalling equipment and processes popular in the 19th century, Marshall photographed with a 1926 wooden field banquet camera on 8-by-20-inch film and contact printed on hand-sensitized, platinum-palladium paper. Her subjects explore historic landscapes, rivers and cultural ruins of Georgia, South Carolina and Mississippi, including Tibwin Plantation, Etowah River, the 19th century factory ruins at Sweetwater Creek, the El Dorado Ruin, a Civil War-era riverside villa, Windsor Ruin near Port Gibson, Miss., and more.

"My intention is to provide a document of these historic places that are often obscured by neglect or remoteness and to explore the mysterious connections they make with our past," Marshall said. "Now decontextualized, the landscape floats, existing as an artificial landscape. The camera’s horizontal panoramic view and my interest in history and its manifestation in Southern land lead me to seek out landscapes that have a mysterious and timeless quality."

Marshall has taught at Emory since 1989. She received a bachelor’s in 1974 and M.F.A. in 1996 from Georgia Sate University. In 1979 Marshall was a Genesis Project Fellow at Ossabaw Island and later received the Nexus Press/National Endowment for the Arts grant for the publication of the monograph, "Ossabaw." Her photographs have been included in international exhibitions, public and private collections, and publications such as In Their Mother’s Eyes and A Handbook of Alternative Processes.

Exhibition hours for "Rivers and Ruins" are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m.–5 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m.–3 p.m. (closed on Sundays).

"The Visual Arts and Beyond" includes the work of Marshall, photography; Linda Armstrong, sculpture; William Brown, film/video/photography; Diane Kempler, ceramics; Julia Kjelgaard, drawing and painting; and Katherine Mitchell, drawing and painting. The exhibit’s new and recent works, which touch on a wide range of themes, were created not only in Atlanta but during explorations throughout the United States, Italy, Tibet and northern India.

The presentation by faculty artists is an opportunity to highlight Emory’s role in the arts in Atlanta. To celebrate Emory’s commitment to the arts and the recent opening of the Schwartz Center, the Emory Dance Program will give a performance at SunTrust Plaza during the Turner First Thursday Arts Walk reception on the evening of Thursday, Dec. 4.

"The presence of art and those who make it—actors, dancers, musicians, poets, potters, photographers and so many others—provides the special leaven that brings joy, excitement, questioning, criticism and a rising spirit to community," said John Howett, professor emeritus of art history.

"The Visual Arts and Beyond" will be on view in the lower-level gallery of SunTrust Plaza from Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m. (evening hours on Nov. 6 and Dec. 4) and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. (closed Sundays). For exhibition information, call 404-816-9777.