January 28th, 2013 Comments Off
Professor Brent Funderburk presents “Walter Anderson: A World Vision of Art and Nature.” (Photo by Beth Wynn | MSU University Relations)
The Robert and Freda Harrison Auditorium in Giles Hall was filled on Thursday (Jan. 24) for a lecture presented by Professor Brent Funderburk, “Walter Anderson: A World Vision of Art and Nature.”
Walter Anderson’s youngest son John, a friend of Funderburk, was present for the lecture, which was meant to introduce the MSU community to the works and life of the artist Walter Anderson.
John Anderson was also visiting the campus to work on discussions to establish a Walter Anderson Center at Mississippi State, which would make his father’s works accessible to not just the MSU community but to scholars, artists and others worldwide.
Funderburk, a professor in the Department of Art at MSU who has spent years researching and focusing his classes toward Walter Anderson, walked the audience through the artist’s life history and paintings.
Funderburk said Walter Anderson, throughout his life, was searching for the answer of “What is art and my place in it?”
After a lifelong struggle to find the meaning – from art training in Philadelphia, Penn., New York and Europe, to a battle with depression that nearly killed him – Funderburk believes Anderson found his meaning of art. Along the way, Anderson discovered that when two different languages meet, they produce a third thing, a miracle, and he believed art could be that miracle.
Walter Anderson took some early advice from his mother to heart – to not show his work until he went as far as he can. After his death from lung cancer in 1962, Anderson’s family uncovered a mural, hidden in his cottage in Ocean Springs, Miss. In the cottage was also a wooden box that contained 85 log accounts of Anderson’s journey to discover the meaning of art and 2,000 neatly stacked watercolors.
“The box has been opened,” said Funderburk. “I believe with all of my heart that nothing could stop him and that they were meant to be seen.”
John Anderson (back, right), Walter Anderson’s youngest son, attended the lecture.
August 21st, 2011 Comments Off
In the 1930s, the U.S. government sent photographers throughout the country to document the effects of the Great Depression. As such, many of the photographers came to Mississippi from New York with a preconceived idea of ‘the South,’ and a social agenda purporting to combat poverty and racism. Their images treat the photographic subject as a substitute for an entire community and culture. Their images have become the dominant image of African Americans in the Depression Era. Eudora Welty returned home to Mississippi without a social agenda, and treated her subjects as individuals.
Eudora Welty in Context: Representing Race in New Deal Photography places Welty’s work on the New Deal project in the context of her contemporaries to make this point. Further complicating the representation of race in the 1930s are historical photos documenting the black community around Farish Street in Jackson. These urban, middle class, educated subjects stand in stark contrast to the predominantly white assumption of black life in Mississippi.
The exhibition will be on display from August 30 to October 28 in the Department of Art Gallery (McComas Hall). The opening reception will take place on September 8, from 5.30 to 7.30 pm.
December 5th, 2010 Comments Off
On Tuesday, December 14, Dr. Benjamin Harvey will be talking at the Mississippi Museum of ArtÂ (MMA) as part of the museum’s Unburied Treasures series. Dr. Harvey will be talking about a work from MMA’s collection, Vanessa Bell’s lithograph Girl Reading.
Vanessa Bell, Girl Reading
Dr. Harvey will also read excerpts from the works of Bell’s sister, Virginia Woolf. And the pianist, Lynn Raley will play selections from Philip Glass’s score for The Hours, a film that features Bell and Woolf.
For more details, visit MMA’s website.
October 12th, 2010 comments
Dr. Benjamin Harvey’s work on Virginia Woolf and the visual arts has been published in three different venues this year. His chapter on â€œVirginia Woolf, Art Galleries and Museumsâ€ was included in The Edinburgh Companion to Virginia Woolf and the Arts (Edinburgh University Press, 2010). The book, which was written by “international recognized authors” is, according to the publishers, “the most authoritative and up-to-date guide to Virginia Woolf’s artistic influences and associations.”
Palgrave Macmillan published another chapter by Harvey, â€œWoolf, Fry, and The Psycho-Aesthetics of Solidity,”Â in their Virginia Woolfâ€™s Bloomsbury: Aesthetic Theory and Literary Practice (2010). The volume considers “themes including eco-criticism, women as intellectuals and writers, implications of spaces and places, questions of identity and ideas of the self, and how Woolf’s work has influenced writers from outside Woolf’s own literary circle and cultural milieu.”
Finally, The Virginia Woolf Bulletin (no. 35, September 2010) reprinted an excerpt from one of Harvey’s previous publications.Â â€œWood is a Pleasant Thing to Think Aboutâ€ originally appeared as part of Harvey’s â€œLightness Visible: An Appreciation of Bloomsburyâ€™s Books and Blocksâ€ in the exhibition catalog, A Room Of Their Own: The Bloomsbury Artists in American Collections (Cornell University Press, 2008). The excerpt addresses a rare broadside that combines the words of Woolf with the woodcuts of her sister, Vanessa Bell.
Woolf and Bell, Chelsea Book Club Broadside, 1921
Stuart Clarke notes in his editorial that “as a matter of (unstated and unformulated) policy, we never reprint material. Well, hardly ever. In this issue of the Bulletin we have reprinted Ben Harvey’s discussion of the somewhat mysterious Chelsea Book Club Broadside (c.1921)…. Harvey’s is the most extensive and enlightening discussion of the broadside that we have come across.”
September 17th, 2010 comments
Karen Green will be giving a talk on Thursday September 30th, 2010.Â She will be addressing students from Dr. Ben Harvey’s class, The Art of the Graphic Novel, but members of the general public are also encouraged to attend.
Green is the Ancient & Medieval History and Religion Librarian at Columbia University’s Butler Library.Â Since 2005, she has been building Columbia’s outstanding collection of graphic novels and comics.Â She is also the author of the influential Comic Adventures in Academia.Â Find out more about Karen Green here.
For more information about the talk, see the poster below.
Update: You can read Karen’s account of her visit here.Â Here she is in action at MSU!
Photo by Megan Bean