Saturday, November 14, 2009

Mills College Art Lecture Archive (Apr - Nov 2009)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Patty Chang Lecture

*Patty Chang* November 18, 7:30pm*  *Patty Chang received her BA from University of California, San Diego, she currently resides in Brooklyn, NY. Her work has been exhibited nationwide and internationally at such institutions as the Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, CA; Deste Foundation Center for Contemporary Art in Athens, Greece; the Fri-Art Centre d'Art Contemporian Kunsthalle, Fribourg, Switzerland; the Hamburg Kunstverein in Germany and the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid, Spain.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

On Wednesday, November 4th at 7:30pm in Danforth, the Painting and Drawing Department will be hosting a lecture by three abstract painters: Stephan Fritsch, Leonhard Hurzlmeier, and Brent Hallard. This lecture will be a small group discussion about abstraction in contemporary art practice as well as an opportunity to hear from artists who work internationally. Each artist will make a 20 minute presentation of their work and then Robin McDonnell will moderate the discussion. Although the program begins at 7:30pm, there will be an opportunity to mingle with the artists while enjoying pizza and beer at 7pm.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Uta Barth Lecture October 21st

We are very excited to present Uta Barth as part of our Artist Lecture Series.
October 21, 7:30pm*

*German-born, American-based artist Utha Barth is among the key recent figures who have brought photography to the prominent position once occupied by painting. Her photographs of interior and exterior, urban and natural environments capture fleeting moments as if glimpsed out of the corner of one's eye, where we become aware of the beauty of everyday light, space, texture and luminous surfaces. Barth's work has been exhibited at museums around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Tate Modern, London; and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. She was a recipient of the John Simon Guggenheim fellowship in 2004-05.*
*All programs will take place in Danforth Lecture Hall, Art Building unless noted.* 

Art 21 Season 5 sneak peek

We are very lucky and excited to get a chance to screen a couple of sneak peeks of the BRAND NEW season of Art 21. Last Wednesday we had our first screening, we watched Part 3. We were very pleased to have the art critic/art historian Glen Helfand give a short presentation introducing the episode.

Next Wednesday we will be screening Part 1, at 7:15 pm in the Danforth Lecture Hall. Please join us!

Pae White Lecture

Last week we had artist Pae White fill the Danforth Lecture Hall for a great lecture. 
Pae was speaking as part of the Mills Artist Lecture Series. 
Here's some info about Pae White and the lecture.
*Pae White September 30, 7:30pm   Presented in conjunction with *Pae White: In Between the Inside-Out* on view at the Mills College Art Museum from September 2-October 18, 2009. This exhibition has been co-produced by New Langton Arts, San Francisco. Major support for the production of Pae White's show has been received from the LEF Foundation, the FOR-SITE Foundation and a San Francisco Arts Commission Organization Project Grant.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


If you missed the opening reception, the Mills College MFA Thesis Exhibition is up and running through the month of May.

Also, this Saturday from 1pm to 6pm, the Spring 2009 Mills College MFA Open Studios.  Come see the work and talk with the 22 MFA students currently enrolled in this unique MFA program.  It's a wonderful setting and the museum is located next door.

For directions click here.

Thursday, April 30, 2009


Exhibition Dates:  Sunday, May 3 to Sunday May 31, 2009
Opening Reception:  Saturday, May 2, 2009.  7 to 9pm

The Mills College Art Museum is proud to present Young Americans, featuring works by the 2009 Master of Fine Arts degree recipients. This exhibition provides an opportunity to see works in all media created by a promising group of emerging artists eager to share what they have been developing during their graduate program with a broader audience. This year's exhibition is curated by Terri Cohn, Bay Area writer, independent curator, and faculty member at the San Francisco Art Institute.
In the brochure accompanying the exhibition, Cohn observes that the ten artists who will receive their MFA degrees this year are unusual in their choice to name their MFA show Young Americans. The title situates them as citizens emerging within a national context, and suggests that in addition to their collective experiences as youthful Americans-with the burden of history this implies, this identity also affords them an intrinsic right to personal freedom. A desire for a sense of security-articulated in various metaphoric and formal ways-is one fundamental concern expressed through their work.
Kate Pszotka's fascination with the idea of home and stability has motivated her consideration of family members, which she represents iconographically with everyday objects, realized as paper cut out line drawings. Gina Tuzzi's seemingly simple, naïve structures-houses, barns, huts-stacked on trucks to become rolling homes, or represented as drawings, underscore a sense of safety and comfort in the mythic past of coastal California.
In related ways, Esther Traugot's knitted tree sweaters and forest of trunks with projected flower pattern coverings suggest the utopian potential of the natural world, as well as her desire to protect and preserve it. By contrast, Leigh Merrill's large-scale photographs explore the relationship between fantasy and reality in our constructed environments, blending urban and suburban architecture and landscape styles, or cut and artificial flowers. Modesto Covarrubias has spent much time creating rooms and shelters as means to define and express his fears, insecurities, and sense of vulnerability, while Andrew Witrak's sculptures pose slightly ridiculous solutions to the question of what can provide some fleeting impression of safety or exit: lifejackets sewn together; a beeswax boarding pass. Annie Vought translates found handwritten letters to wall-mounted versions created with cutout text, fragile portraits of each author that are reminiscent of silhouettes.
Joseph Berryhill's paintings express a tension between order and chaos, proposing ways that animate experience can be distilled into visual experience. Steuart Pittman's abstract paintings reflect what he calls a "longing for quiet beauty in a chaotic, high-speed age," while Brian Caraway creates tools and rules to implement his mixed media works, relating his process-based investigations through texture as they change over time.
As artists who have come of age in the extraordinarily volatile circumstances of the 21st century, these individuals focus on singular modes of expression as a way to make sense of and stake a claim in their separate and collective futures. Their works express a sense of hope and possibility, going forward into their lives as young Americans.
In addition to an essay by Cohn, the illustrated catalog for Young Americans contains an essay by critic Glen Helfand. This publication will be available in the gallery during the course of the exhibition.

Mills College Art Museum
5000 MacArthur Boulevard
Oakland, CA 94613

Museum Hours:
Tuesday-Sunday 11:00-4:00pm
Wednesday 11:00-7:30pm
Monday Closed

Admission is free for all exhibitions and programs. 

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Spring Is Here!

Young Americans and Open Studios on the horizon...

The Senior Thesis Exhibition, Meridian, just closed this past weekend.  Now, the graduate students are gearing up for the MFA Thesis Exhibition as well as Spring 2009 Open Studios.

Come back for updates...

Mills College MFA Open Studios Blog Page:

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Mary Heilmann - Thursday April 16, 2009

The Mills College Art Department's annual Correnah Wright art lecture will feature artist Mary Heilmann on April 16 at 7:30 pm at the Littlefield Concert Hall, 5000 MacArthur Blvd., Oakland, CA 94613. The event is free and all members of the public are invited.

The New York Times describes Heilmann's work as "wildly colorful abstractions that riff with irreverent verve on basic elements of Modernist painting: the grid, the monochromatic rectangle, stripes, organic forms, linear webs, spots, checks, and drips...She makes it look easy and fun...the final picture almost always seems spontaneous, and her lively touch gives her works a sensuous intimacy."

The New Yorker said she is "a formalist impatient with formal consistency" and describes her technique as "Big, fluid strokes often seem to sail, albeit invisibly, into surrounding space. When she does emphasize the edge, it's as if she were observing the arbitrary rules of a rather silly but interesting game."

Heilmann will present Her Life which is a multimedia presentation she said is arranged in a poetic rather than linear narrative tale. "I'd like the people that are watching it to get a feeling for how it felt to be making that work," she said.

Her recent exhibition Mary Heilmann: To Be Someone was at the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York City.

Heilmann, 68, is a California native who grew up in San Francisco. She received a BA from the University of California, Santa Barbara, in 1962, and a MA from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1967. In 1968, Heilmann went to New York City to try to break into the minimalism and post-minimalism art scene dominated by male artists. She came as a woman, a Californian, and a painter and with that she faced challenges from the art establishment.

"She's an inspiration," said Mills College art professor and head of the department Ron Nagle, "She stuck to her guns, got into fights with the art world, but didn't change her style."

Nagle, who knew Heilmann when they were at UC Berkeley together where she originally trained in ceramics, calls Heilmann a "minimalist with a funky edge."

Her colorful, playful, and abstract painted works range from truncated drips of paint to nesting canvases and looping brushstrokes, but she also creates chairs and ceramics.

While her works have been in major galleries and museums, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Guggenheim Museum, for more than three decades, their price have only recently escalated with the demand from collectors clamoring for them. In the late 1990s, the Hauser & Wirth gallery in London, which represents her, also began cultivating an audience for her in Europe.

Heilmann's current auction record for a single work is $169,000, set at Sotheby's in May 2008 for The Yellow Blue of the Square Pair, 1976, which sold for $38,4000 only four years earlier. However, 303 Gallery in New York, which also represents Heilmann, said her large paintings sell for about $300,000.

Each year the Mills College Art Department sponsors a practicing artist for the Correnah Wright lecture. The annual event gives graduate studio art students access to some of the top artists in the country. More information about this selective art program is available at

Nestled in the foothills of Oakland, California, Mills College is a nationally renowned, independent liberal arts college offering a dynamic progressive education that fosters leadership, social responsibility, and creativity to approximately 950 undergraduate women and 500 graduate women and men. Since 2000, applications to Mills College have more than doubled. The College is one of the top colleges in the West by U.S. News & World Report, one of the Best 368 Colleges by the Princeton Review, and ranks 75th among America's best colleges by Visit us at

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