Faculty artists enliven the art gallery

Mary Ann & artThe Dana Hall Art Gallery is currently hosting the biennial faculty exhibition, which started on October 16. This exhibition, featuring art from Dana Hall Visual Art Department teachers, gives the chance for all the art teachers to continue their studies and work as artists while showcasing their artworks to all the students. This biennial exhibition has been in the gallery every other November for the past 10 years.

Mr. Michael Frassinelli, Head of Art Department, has put his ongoing series “Legend of the Pianistas” on display, continuing his study in using piano parts to create distinct forms of art such as oil paintings and sculptures. “Imagining a world where the piano is the basis of its civilization,” Mr. Frassinelli says, “the artworks I created were displayed as if they were the artifacts from this fictional civilization. Those artworks are created to represent the anthropological display of a civilization such as masks, weapons and ceremonial objects, along with the book entitled with the name of the project, which are partly true and partly fictional, together appearing in an enchanting yet mysterious fictional pianists’ civilization.”

Ms. Kassie Teng, also an art teacher, focuses her artwork more on her expression of the organic process of art. These art pieces are created by both traditional material such as paper, pencil, marKassie with art croppedker and gesso and non-traditional material like Sheetrock, caulking and carving into surfaces that incorporate construction material and pedestrian material from Home Depot. “I was inspired when I was playing building blocks with kids,” said Ms. Teng. “The art is created by different structures with blocks being taken down and rebuilt, displaying a sense of complexity in its form while showing simplicity in its material and layout.”

Ceramics and Middle School art teacher Ms. Lindsey Hendricks works in oil paint to create realistic images that occasionally verge on the abstract. This include her series of paintings of swimmers and a recent portrait of her son broken up into a grid of small paintings. “I am really inspired by water and the way light and color interact depending on the movement of the water and how figures appear in the water as either they are surfacing or submerging,” explained Ms. Hendricks. “I grew up by the water, and I watch my sister who is a swimmer and a diver; I just love the color, and that is what inspires me in painting.” Ms. Hendricks’ paintings feature the color and the shape of a human under water.Michael adjusting art cropped

Photography teacher Ms. Mary Ann McQuillan is displaying photographs and short films from a series “Mining the Museum,” which features images in and around museums, close-ups of paintings and images of people looking at artwork. “I love going to museums and looking at art, but often it’s the spaces themselves that I find really intriguing as a photographer. It was trying not to photograph so much about the art but the art in the spaces where the experiences are found,” said Ms. McQuillan. The short film of documenting the Louvre is on display on the television in the art gallery. “This is a video about the ‘Mona Lisa room’ at the Louvre in Paris; it is a very strange experience that when people come to the Louvre, where thousands of great art works are on display, they run to go see that one. The experience of art becomes spectatorship; it becomes an event.”Lindsey with art

Students are enjoying the exhibition of the artworks by their own teachers. Helen Jiang ’17, who has studied with Ms. McQuillan for two years, said, “It’s the first time for me to see Ms. McQuillan’s work. She demonstrated great technique in capturing in the light. Nadia Myers ’17, a student in Ms. Teng’s Drawing and Painting II, commented, “It let me see a creative side of my teacher.”

The gallery show continues through the end of Trimester I classes, November 21.

Photographs: The Dana Hall faculty gather at the gallery’s opening reception, October 16. Photo credits: Michelle Ma and Dr. Karen Keely.

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