Fall 2015 was an energetic semester for sculpture students and faculty in the LSU School of Art. From actively showing faculty to award-winning students and participation in an iron pour, sculpture students and faculty were enthusiastic and productive.
Associate Professor Malcolm McClay and Instructor Chicory Miles exhibited at Sternstudios in Vienna in summer 2015. After leading the Art in Ireland intersession program at the Burren College of Art, they installed their work and gave gallery talks about their processes. McClay discussed the large-format photographs of his 36-hour performance, Ekstasis, and Miles introduced her new cast-aluminum sculptures based on her Hybrid Realities series. After Vienna they travelled to Sarajevo in Bosnia Hertzagovina for an exhibition of McClay’s Donegal Ghost Estate drawings at Duplex Gallery. During the semester, McClay traveled to the University of Dallas for an artist talk about his Ekstasis performance.
McClay studied at the University of Ulster, Belfast, where he received his BA honors degree in three-dimensional design. He earned his MA in sculpture from New Mexico State University and his MFA in sculpture and performance from Ohio State University. He moved from San Francisco to Louisiana in 2002 and joined the faculty of LSU’s School of Art in the fall of 2003. He is a founding member of the Good Children Gallery in New Orleans, where he regularly curates and exhibits.
Associate Professor Loren Schwerd also had an eventful semester exhibiting in New Orleans. She was featured in Reverb: Past, Present, Future, a group show centered on the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina curated by Isolde Briemaier at the Contemporary Arts Center. At an artist talk at the Foundation Gallery in New Orleans, Arts and Activism with Blights Out: Loren Schwerd and Cypress Building Conservation, Schwerd discussed urban development and the relationship between art and activism.
Schwerd received her BFA in studio art from Tulane University and her MFA in sculpture from Syracuse University. She joined the LSU School of Art Faculty in 2005 and teaches three-dimensional design and all levels of sculpture studios.
A group of LSU students, staff, and faculty prepared and participated in an iron pour at Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, Louisiana, hosted by the Nicholls Art Club at the Nicholls Farm. Undergraduate students Grace Simonson, Michelle Springette, and Jennifer Carwile, along with graduate student Cassidy Creek, sculpture technician Alex Cooper, and associate professor Loren Schwerd, all made the trip to Thibodaux and participated in the pour.
Two works by sculpture MFA candidate Leah Hamel of Birmingham, Alabama, were chosen for the prestigious 6th National Collegiate Handmade Paper Art Triennial. Her works were on display at Morgan Conservatory in Cleveland, Ohio, in fall 2015, and will move to the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, D.C., this spring 2016. The show was founded in 1999, and each triennial offers college students a way to show the country what they add to the field of handmade paper art. This year’s juror was Joan Hall, artist/educator and Emerita Kenneth E. Hudson Professor of Art at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.
Brittany Sievers traveled to Hamilton, New Jersey, in October to receive her 2015 Outstanding Student Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award and to attend the opening of the Grounds for Sculpture show. The exhibition will be on display in until March 2016 then travel on to the city that hosts the 2016 International Sculpture Conference.
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Meet the Sculpture Graduate Students!
Leah Hamel earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts with concentrations in sculpture and ceramics from the University of Alabama in Birmingham in 2012. Her artistic practice has focused primarily on sculpting with clay as a means to bring her ideas into three dimensions. Through experimentation she discovered a love for paper-making, which has become the primary material in her current works. In 2016, Leah is expecting to graduate from LSU with a Master of Fine Arts in sculpture. Her thesis reception will take place April 15, 2016, on campus at the LSU Foster Gallery.
Cassidy Creek earned her BFA in sculpture from the University of Kansas in Lawrence in 2010. During her time at the University of Kansas, she received numerous honors for her work in ceramic and metal casting, including entry into the National Iron Competition in Missoula, Montana, and receipt of the Norma Batcheller Burrows Memorial Scholarship. After graduating from the University of Kansas, she was selected as a resident artist at Red Star Studios in Kansas City. In 2014, she began her studies at LSU in pursuit of an MFA in studio art. Her current research is focused on devising alternative art teaching strategies through social engagement. During the summer of 2015, Creek worked at the Baton Rouge Gallery where she led a collaborative drawing and storytelling project with artists age 6–14. Creek plans to continue to develop collaborative art-making projects with young artists for the remainder of her tenure at LSU.
While pursuing her MFA in sculpture, Brittany Sievers is serving as a graduate assistant and is currently an instructor of record at LSU. Additionally, Sievers was awarded the 2015 Outstanding Student Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award, first place at Forum 35’s Art Melt in Louisiana, and the Dandelion Spring/ Watershed Ceramic Internship at the Watershed Center for Ceramic Arts in Newcastle, Maine. Prior to LSU, Brittany was awarded the Efroymson Arts Internship at DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana. She was a teaching assistant in ceramics at DePauw, while simultaneously managing the Low Road Gallery. She received her BA from DePauw University in 2013, and her artwork has been in numerous shows throughout the United States. Check out her work at brittanysievers.com.
Matthew Barton is a sculptor and ceramicist hailing from Alabaster, Alabama. He received his BFA in sculpture and ceramics from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. His work consists of materials from wood and metal to paper, rope, clay, and wire and tells stories about primal spirituality, intimacy, and the rural south.
Lucas Bush is a sculptor from Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Bush graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi with a BA in sculpture and drawing. Currently, he is serving as a graduate assistant. His sculptures are influenced from growing up in the rural South and embrace a twisted, playful perception of toys and childhood. Bush primarily works in wood and metal.