Conley Art Gallery - Past exhibitions
2015 Artist Invitational, Water in Crisis
(Click on names for Bios)
January 29 - February 27th
Reception 5 - 8 p.m. on January 29th
Artist Lectures 6 - 8 p.m. January 28th and from 3 - 5 p.m. on January 29th
In Conley Arts 101
The 2015 Artist Invitational Exhibition, Water in Crisis, presents the works of four major artists, Robert Dawson, Newton and Helen Harrison, and Isabelle Hayeur, who offer unique visual strategies for engagement with issues of water in our times. These artists approach water from a wide range of perspectives, including aesthetic, cultural, economic, and environmental.
The artists in this exhibition exemplify some of the newer forms of artistic research and artistic practice. They employ a broad range of methodologies, from intensive field research to the development of engaging texts and experimentation with emerging visual technologies. Their work is related to their communities, beginning with dialogue with experts in the fields they are researching. The works they create are not only visual representations, but opportunities for viewers to become part of a community of inquiry on significant issues.
Robert Dawson’s work explores the range of humanity’s relationship to water, from sustenance to recreation, from crises of floods to crises of droughts. Newton and Helen Harrison have devoted a long and distinguished career to conducting research on the broad ecological context of water in the West and globally, from the snowpack of the Sierras to the changing tidal wetlands and estuaries of the San Francisco Bay and Delta. Isabelle Hayeur has looked intensively at the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and at issues of toxicity in the waterways of the Eastern United States and Canada.
Visual art has the unique ability to give a direct, sensual evocation of the subjects it treats. Each of these installation artists, photographers and video artists invents means to convey the physicality of water and its surrounding landscape. They evoke the relationship of water to the ecosystem and to human cultures and societies. They engage us with the physical traces of the crises that people face in relation to water, crises that are urgently omnipresent in our times. In November, 2014, the drought in California was in its third year. The water table was dropping, and many wells were being lowered. Four hundred homes in Porterville were without water. News reports documented the land dropping near Los Banos. The median level of lakes and reservoirs in the central valley and surrounding Sierra region was 12%. Snowpacks had been decreasing for several years, the elevation of the snowpack had been rising, and with it numerous plant and animal species were threatened. Water left in rivers to restore ecosystems continued to be a center of debate between farmers, fisherman, and scientists.
2014 Faculty Show
August 28 – September 26, 2014
Reception: Thursday August 28th, 5-8pm
Ben White and Greg Curtis
October 6–24, 2014
Reception: Thursday October 9th, 5-8pm
Murleen Ray– Master of Arts Exhibition
October 30- November 7, 2014
Reception: Thursday October 30th, 5-8pm
Annual Student Art Show
November 20- December 5, 2014
Reception: Thursday November 20th, 5-8pm
2012 Artist Invitational
January 17 – February 10, 2012
KETAB: Scroll Series by Hadieh Shafie
Four artists’ exhibit works that imply an obsessive or repetitive process at the Conley Art Gallery in the Department of Art and Design at California State University, Fresno. The artists represented in the exhibition work in the mediums of digital media and photography (Kirkman Amyx), painting (Richard Bruland), ceramics (Roger Lee) and scrolled paper (Hadieh Shafie).
Art Professor Nick Potter, who helped organize the exhibition, said that “we were interested in bringing together a diverse group of artists who spend hours and hours working in a repetitive manner to create astoundingly interesting work.” Potter continues “a thread that combines the works of all these artists is the interweaving of concepts of time, repetition and obsessive art practices into the finished works.”
Photographer Kirkman Amyx is a digital media artist based in San Francisco. His recent work explores the use of photography as a data visualization tool which can allow for the seeing of patterns, structure, and meaning through image repetition. Through the use of image repetition, “Basic Cable” is a visualization that explores media over-saturation and the abundance of specialty programming. By capturing nearly 500,000 images, 7200 images per week and per channel, a unique visual representation is created of all 69 channels found on Comcast’s Basic Cable broadcasting.
Painter RichardBruland has set himself the task of using only traditional methods and materials to produce paintings that - even in this modern world of sensory overload, can hold their own and draw people in. His work looks laborious and yet the forms he creates have an abstract quality. Born in Peru and now living in Los Angeles, Bruland is interested in making paintings that refer to landscape in a non-specific way. They are not about ‘that’ mountain or ‘this’ tree – instead they suggest the effects of nature and the real world.
Los Angeles situated ceramic artist Roger Lee explores the sensual relationship between the object and the body. He investigates forms that address the intimacy of form, scale, surface, gesture, and the human interaction. Through the repetition of folds and bulbous objects, Lee builds a relationship between the viewer and his or her body.
In creating her time-consuming paper scroll ‘paintings’, the Iranian born artist Hadieh Shafie marks the significance of process, repetition and time. In her KETAB: Scroll Series individual strips of paper have been marked with hand-written and printed Farsi (Persian language) text. Each strip is then tightly rolled to create a core, around which successive strips are added. During the repetitive process of adding paper strips to create individual rolls, text and symbols are sometimes revealed and often hidden within the concentric rings of the finished object. The time it takes to make each work can vary and the time spent in writing and rolling the strips of paper is an important part of the artistic process and a performative aspect of the making of this work.
Consuelo Jimenez Underwood
9th September - 30th September 2011
Contemporary fiber artist and weaver Consuelo Jiménez Underwood exhibits “Undocumented Borderlands” - an art exhibition that links physical and cultural borders and the condition of the natural environment around those national borders - at the Conley Art Gallery in the Department of Art and Design at California State University, Fresno.
Created specifically for the Conley Art Gallery the installation ‘Undocumented Border Flowers’, is a representation of the ten pairs of sister cities of the U.S./Mexican border and the environmental and political struggle along the border. By using textiles, paint, barbed-wires and nails Jiménez Underwood captures the tension and the beauty of the land between these two states. “My art is a combination of land, spirit and struggle” says Jiménez Underwood “and by weaving historical, social and personal references into my artwork I am representing cultural resistance and spirituality.”
Frequently using the tortilla as a symbol, Jiménez Underwood uses fibers, wire, corn husks and other materials to visually represent the beauty and the political and cultural struggle of the Mexican border. Melding weaving and fiber techniques, Jiménez Underwood encourages viewers to consider borders as cultural constructs. Writing of her work, Dr. Clara Román-Odio of Kenyon College says: “the artist presents us with multiple iterations of the simple tortilla, as a symbol of the pervasiveness of indigenous cultures, and of the immemorial eating habits they shared. Masterfully she also employs the tortilla as a platform to engage the viewer in political commentary about national territories, while addressing spirituality as a form of cultural resistance.”
Born in Sacramento in 1949, Consuelo Jiménez Underwood is the daughter of migrant agricultural workers —a Chicana mother and an undocumented father of Huichol Indian descent. Her work is in the collections of the Oakland Art Museum, CA; the American Art Museum of the Smithsonian Institute, Washington DC; and the Museum of Art and Design in New York City among others. She has degrees in religious studies and art, and is an Emeritus Professor at San Jose State University, California.
January - February 4, 2011
Artist Invitational: Diran Lyons, Terrance Reimer, Jen Sachs, Monica Van den Dool
February 10 - 16 - Azusa Ozoe and Ali
February 22 - 28 - David Brooks
March 3 - 9 - Edgar Saldivar
March 14 - 18 - Yalle Ondarza
March 28 - April 1 - Senior Art Exhibit
April 11 - 15 - Graphic Design Portfolio
May 2 - 6 - Interior Design Portfolio