Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Visual Culture: Discovering the Addison

“How are expectations thrust upon you? Do you feel the urge to compete with and impress your peers, parents, and society as a whole? Or do you reject the norms, following what you believe is right even though you face the consequences of exclusion and scrutiny?”

These questions are asked by the exhibition Pressure Points, curated by the Phillips Academy Art 300 Class, Visual Culture: Discovering the Addison, co-taught by art department faculty and museum staff. Students enrolled in the spring Art 300 course explore the development and nature of the Addison’s collection and exhibitions, meet with the museum’s curators, educators, and preparators, and read and write about cultural institutions and artists, as they come to understand the power of selecting, arranging, and interpreting artworks. Through Art 300, students become aware of and involved in many facets of museum work that are not usually visible to the public.
Starting from a list of pre-selected works from the Addison collection, students researched, wrote, and applied information and ideas gained from conversations with the curators and from readings and in-class discussions to curate an exhibition in the Museum Learning Center.
Current Addison exhibitions Making a Presence: F. Holland Day in Artistic Photography and In Character: Artists’ Role Play in Photography and Video explore the creation and projection of personas, characters, and identity in art and the ways in which our identities are influenced by gender, family, cultural, or societal roles. Complementing these themes, the Art 300 exhibition Pressure Points asks viewers to consider the pressures created by societal, familial, aesthetic, and gender expectations, and the ways in which striving for these ideals impacts one’s ability to find oneself and form an identity.

Pressure Points will be on view in the Addison’s Museum Learning Center from May 31 through July 31, 2012.

All are invited to a gallery talk followed by an opening reception on May 30, from 6:00-7:30pm.

Pressure Points was curated by the Phillips Academy Art 300 Class, Visual Culture: Discovering the Addison: Terrence Arjoon, Lucy Frey, Gregory Hosono, Helen Leahy, Emily Samson, Mary Samson, Kristen Overly, Mikaela Rabb, and Zoe Roschach.

- Posted by:
Jamie Kaplowitz, Education Associate and Museum Learning Specialist