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Spelman College Museum of Fine Art Presents New Exhibition 'Maren Hassinger . . . Dreaming'











For Immediate Release


Media Contacts:

Audrey Arthur
404-270-5892
aarthur3@spelman.edu
Twitter: @SpelmanMedia

Wyatt Phillips
404-270-5606
wphillips@spelman.edu
Twitter: @SpelmanMuseum 


ATLANTA (Feb. 6, 2015) – In 2013, New York Times art critic Holland Cotter described Maren Hassinger as “another artist awaiting serious study.” The Spelman College Museum of Fine Art agrees and will present Maren Hassinger . . .  Dreaming, from Feb. 12 to May 16, 2015. For close to four decades, nature has been a crucial element in Hassinger’s expression as a sculptor and performance artist. Throughout her career, she has explored nature’s integral, yet fragile relationship with a global population. These topics and more will be presented in this original exhibition.

This solo exhibition features works made of newspapers, plastic bags, leaves and other unconventional materials. Among the 13 works in the exhibition are a series of dramatic canopies suspended from the Museum ceiling: Weight of Dreams, made of onion skin paper spread across chicken wire; The Dream, a bed canopy comprised of preserved leaves; and Blanket of Branches, which consists of a varied collection of tree branches.

Maren Hassinger . . . Dreaming, curated by Andrea Barnwell Brownlee, Ph.D., director of the Spelman Museum, and Anne Collins Smith, curator of collections at the Museum, brings a substantial body of Hassinger’s work to the Southeast for the first time.

Maren Hassinger . . . Dreaming is a long awaited and timely examination of this pioneering artist’s life and work,” said Smith. “Her evocative and restorative works — many of which have been recreated for this solo exhibition — invite visitors to ponder the intimate relationship between art, nature, movement and transformation.”

Hassinger, a Los Angeles native, is the director of the Rinehart School of Graduate Sculpture at the Maryland Institute and College of Art. She is the recipient of numerous awards including the Anonymous Was A Woman Award and the International Association of Art Critics Award. She has received grants from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation, the Joan Mitchell Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Women’s Caucus for the Arts.

“Equality is my interest,” said Hassinger about her work as an artist. “What I want is an understanding of our connection to a vanishing nature and to one another. Nature is what we share, what we have in common.”

The exhibition is made possible by the Friends of the Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, the WISH Foundation, Inc. and the LUBO Fund. The forthcoming catalogue is made possible with support from the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation.

MEET ARTIST MAREN HASSINGER

Opening Reception and Gallery Walk with the Artist
Thursday, Feb. 12, 2015
6:30 p.m.
Be among the first to view Maren Hassinger . . . Dreaming and attend a gallery walk led by the artist and director of the Rinehart School of Graduate Sculpture at the Maryland Institute and College of Art, Maren Hassinger.

Atlanta Premiere of Women’s Work
Friday, March 20, 2015
7 p.m.
Maren Hassinger will present Women’s Work, her well-known meditative performance in which she and others repetitively manipulate newspaper, alluding to sewing, knitting, and other forms traditionally labeled women’s work. This performance is organized in collaboration with The Toni Cade Bambara Scholar-Activism Conference and the Women’s Research and Resource Center.


SIGNATURE EXHIBITION PROGRAMS

Yoga in the Museum
Mondays, Feb. 16 – April 27, 2015
12 p.m. – 1 p.m.
Enjoy a yoga class surrounded by works of art and engage in a practice that focuses on balance, focus and strength. Each yoga class will be led by a certified yoga instructor. Yoga in the Museum is free and open to beginner and experienced yogis. Space is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Yoga in the Museum is organized in partnership with the Spelman College Department of Wellness.

Community Conversations
Community Conversations invites artists, Atlanta University Center faculty, staff, and students, and Friends of the Museum to connect their passions and interests to the works of art featured in Maren Hassinger . . . Dreaming.

On Creativity
Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015
7 p.m.
Join us for an interdisciplinary conversation on creativity through the lens of visual art, food, science, and dance with topics that include process, inspiration and collaboration.

“Are You Sure, Sweetheart, That You Want To Be Well?:” A Contemplative Retreat for Self Healing
Saturday, March 21, 2015
9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Reconnect to the source of your inspiration and gain strength, courage, and tools to live more dynamically despite the challenges of daily life. Veta Goler, Ph.D., associate professor of dance and co-director of the Spelman College Teaching Resource and Research Center, will guide you through a lively mix of movement, reflection, and creative art-making to develop a deeper connection with yourself. Registration is required. Please call 404-270-5607 or email museum@spelman.edu to reserve a space.

Connecting the Dots: The Heidelberg Project and the Power of Art
Thursday, March 26, 2015
6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Aku Kadogo, Spelman Distinguished Visiting Scholar of the Arts and an international theater director, choreographer, educator, and creative producer of cultural arts projects, will present a special dialogue with Tyree Guyton, creator of the renowned Heidelberg Project of Detroit. Acting on his vision many years ago, Guyton set out to respond to a city that was in a state of disrepair and despondency.  Now in its 30th year, The Heidelberg Project is a thriving arts organization that aims to inspire and enrich all those who experience it. Guyton will feature the installation Heidelberg TV: The Baby Doll Show Friday, March 27, 2015, from 2 p.m.-5 p.m. in front of the Camille Olivia Hanks Cosby, Ed.D. Academic Center.

Blues for an Alabama Sky
Thursday, April 2, 2015
7 p.m.
Finding connections with Maren Hassinger’s ground-breaking contribution to performance art and interdisciplinary practice, the Alliance Theatre presents a very special evening with Pearl Cleage, C’71, the award-winning playwright, novelist, essayist, and poet commemorating the 20th anniversary of her 1995 work Blues for an Alabama Sky. The Atlanta community is invited to this behind-the-scenes reading and intimate discussion with Pearl Cleage. This program is organized in collaboration with the Alliance Theatre.

BLACK BOX  
BLACK BOX is a site for play, dialogue, and creative risk taking that encourages artists of all disciplines to engage with others connected to their subject matter. Each program affords the opportunity for a cultural producer to share in-progress works on the art and culture of the African Diaspora in front of a live audience for feedback, engagement and encouragement. It also provides a space for arts enthusiasts to view compelling work from some of the most exciting and thought-provoking artists working today.

Keith Purvis
Thursday, April 16, 2015
6:30 p.m.
Travis and Tabitha
Travis and Tabitha is an independently financed dramedy directed by Keith Purvis about a 26-year-old failed fashion designer (Tabitha) and 28-year-old aspiring cook (Travis) who, out of necessity, become reluctant roommates on the Southside of Chicago. This unexpected situation forces them to make profound decisions on what they want to do with the rest of their lives. This program is organized in collaboration with the BronzeLens Film Festival of Atlanta.

Community Day
Saturday, April 18, 2015
1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
A fun-filled exploration of Maren Hassinger . . . Dreaming for participants of all ages that includes make-and-take workshops, interactive tours, giveaways from local cultural institutions and more.

To learn more about the exhibition and additional programs, visit museum.spelman.edu or call 404-270-5607. All events are free and open to the public.

TO SCHEDULE A GROUP TOUR
To schedule a group tour of Maren Hassinger . . . Dreaming, please contact the Museum at museum@spelman.edu or 404-270-5607.

INTERACT WITH THE MUSEUM
To interact with the Museum and its community, share perspective on the College’s art collection, and receive the latest Museum news and exclusives, follow the Museum on facebook.com/spelmanmuseum, and twitter.com/spelmanmuseum. Museum visitors are encouraged to check in on foursquare.

ADDRESS
The Spelman College Museum of Fine Art is located in the Atlanta University Center on the Spelman College campus on the first floor of the Camille Olivia Hanks Cosby, Ed.D. Academic Center at 350 Spelman Lane.

For visitors using GPS navigation systems, the following address is to the front entrance of Spelman College: 440 Westview Drive, S.W. Atlanta, Ga. 30310.

HOURS
The Museum is open Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturdays, 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. The Museum is closed Sundays, Mondays, major holidays and official College breaks.

About Spelman College Museum of Fine Art
In “Six Reasons to Love Atlanta,” CNN.com praised the Spelman College Museum of Fine Art for its “fantastically curated exhibitions” that focus on art by and about women of the African Diaspora. Since the Museum opened in 1996 it has established an impressive track record for organizing first-rate, mission-specific, art exhibitions that expand art offerings in Atlanta and the southeast region. It has garnered a reputation for organizing exhibitions that merit national and international attention. Milestones include being selected as the first institution from the United States that jointly (along with the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston) represented the United States at the 2012 Havana Biennial in Havana, Cuba. The Museum is poised to continue its trajectory of pursuing ambitious relevant projects that have a lasting impact.

About Spelman College
Founded in 1881, Spelman College is a highly selective, liberal arts college widely recognized as the global leader in the education of women of African descent. Located in Atlanta, the College’s picturesque campus is home to 2,100 students. Outstanding alumnae include Children’s Defense Fund Founder Marian Wright Edelman; Sam’s Club CEO Rosalind Brewer, Broadway producer Alia Jones, former Acting Surgeon General and Spelman’s first alumna President Audrey Forbes Manley, Harvard professor Evelynn Hammonds, author Pearl Cleage and actress LaTanya Richardson Jackson. For more information, visit www.spelman.edu.

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