5th annual Missouri Western State University/Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art Undergraduate Art History Symposium Virtual Program – April 17, 2021
Moderator: Paige Donnohue, MWSU student
“Stubborn Women: Wellesley College’s Antigone”
Megan McNally—Liliane Pingoud Soriano ’49 Fellow, Musée du Louvre and 2020 graduate of Wellesley College
Abstract: “Stubborn Women: Wellesley College’s Antigone,” examines a libretto of Jean-François Marmontel’s opera Antigone, performed at the Paris Opéra in 1790, with a focus on identifying the royal coat of arms stamped on the book’s cover. Research indicates that the original owner was likely one of three women of Versailles: the sisters the Comtesse de Provence (1753-1810) and the Comtesse d’Artois (1756-1805), or their sister-in-law Clotilde de France, Queen of Sardinia (1759-1802). The presentation will analyze how both monarchists like these royal sisters and political liberals may have interpreted Antigone’s equivocal answer to the questions of power and fair leadership raised by the French Revolution. In a time of deep upheaval, Antigone held a multitude of meanings.
“Piety and Reform: The Visual Transmission of Savonarolan Doctrine in the Cinquecento”
Brenna McWhorter—M.A. student and Florence Fellow in the Florence Graduate Program in Italian Renaissance Art at Syracuse University and 2020 graduate of Colorado State University
Abstract: The focus of this essay is to illustrate the important role that visual artists play in the dispersion of religious doctrine during the early modern period. Through iconographic interpretation of works by Botticelli, Fra Bartolommeo, and Raphael this research establishes that Savonarola’s ideologies were tempered and made more accessible through artistic interpretation. Artists who were affected by the sermons of Fra Girolamo Savonarola were also entrenched in the humanistic tradition of Florentine art, and so visually moderated Savonarola’s homilies to soften the transmission of his controversial doctrines and make the ideology promoted by Savonarolism more palatable to a general audience.
“Do Ho Suh: Infinite Movability as a Nostalgic Repercussion”
Anella Fernández—Senior, Kansas City Art Institute
Abstract: Throughout his career, South Korean artist Do Ho Suh has uniquely harnessed the crippling feelings associated with nostalgia and redirected it into productivity to become his life’s work. Nostalgia is seductive because it offers the comfort and hope of things past which is quite different from the uncertainty of the future. Do Ho Suh’s work embodies the refusal of longing by redirecting these nostalgic impulses into work that embodies the feeling, or essence, of yearning.
“The Secret Life of Venetian Beads: An Observation of Craft, Trade, and Authorship of African Trade Beads”
Chelsea Rieu-Torrez—Collections Assistant at the Denver Art Museum and 2020 graduate of University of Colorado Denver
Abstract: This examination of the Venetian glass bead trade not only explores the highly restrictive production and gendered labor laws enforced by the Venetian Republic but also investigates Venetian glass beads as the first internationally accepted form of currency. The innovative glass compositions from decorative tableware and personal adornment appealed to a dynamic market—one that was able to adapt to varying aesthetics due to the availability of materials and accessibility to the global trade route. As a result, trade beads flooded the market and staged European colonialism, which effectively altered the aesthetic and visual communication among indigenous tribes.
“(De)Construction of the Female Identity”
Renessa Rabenda—Senior, James Madison University
Abstract: Throughout the artistic canon, women have been sexualized, dehumanized, and tied to colonial, romantic ideals. (De)Construction of the Female Identity will focus on Hannah Höch and how her work during the 1920s was influenced or impacted by artists like Paula Modersohn-Becker, Suzanne Duchamp, and Martha Rosler. As well as highlighting how Hannah Höch continued the reclamation of the image of ‘woman’ in artwork, creating a radical evolution and depiction of women in art and society through her series, The Ethnographic Museum (1924-30).
Poetry and Art
Dr. Marianne Kunkel’s Missouri Western State University poetry students Brooke Sip and Connor Lindsay.
Moderator: Emily Zawodny-Walkup, MWSU student
“An Eternal Memory Mirror: Cartographic Strategies in Seventeenth-Century Dutch Execution Prints”
Dr. Maureen Warren—Curator of European and American Art, Krannert Art Museum, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
“Orpheaus and Félix González-Torres: A Paradigm of Loss and Redemption”
Ryan Haney—Senior, Kansas City Art Institute
Abstract: “Orpheus and Félix González-Torres: A Paradigm of Loss and Redemption” discusses the power of meaningful objects. Using Félix González-Torres’s “Untitled (Orpheus, Twice)” as a starting point, the essay draws comparisons between the contemporary artist and the mythical poet: their analogous quests for their lost partners, as well as their roles within artistic discourse, are discussed. Furthermore, the paper dissects the subversive quality of González-Torres’s work, such as how it interacts with heteronormative structures and literary traditions.
“Printing Circularity in Early Modern Nuremberg”
Allison Marino—M.A. student at The University of Texas at Austin and 2020 graduate of Florida State University
Abstract: By tracing cosmological depictions from Anton Koberger’s Nuremberg Chronicle (c. 1493)to those created using scientific instruments, I discover an interesting stylistic phenomenon: content rendered in a circular format. The Chronicle, celestial maps, and round aerial topographical views produced mid-century all depict an area within circular borders. I argue that artists in Nuremberg used this visual template to illustrate celestial and terrestrial realms to prompt viewers to associate such images with the intellectual capacity required to depict them on paper, thus also propagating Nuremberg’s advanced intellectual and political position within the early modern world at large.
“Alternative Cruising: Paul Cadmus and Audience Signaling”
Carter Bryant—Guest Experience Associate at Newfields in Indianapolis and 2020 graduate of Wichita State University
Abstract: In this essay I approach the work of American artist Paul Cadmus through the lens of semiotic theory. Cadmus, a queer artist, lived in a time where being “out” in one’s queerness came with a level of danger. I contextualize his paintings with the state of the queer community and the availability of queer content over the course of his career. I also analyze how his coded messaging may have been received in different audiences.
“Women in the Frame: Pop (Icon) Britney and San Vitale’s Empress Theodora Mosaic”
Christian Banez—Senior, Missouri Western State University
Abstract: Utilizing the artwork Pop (Icon): Britney created in 2010 by R. Luke DuBois, and San Vitale’s Empress Theodora mosaic panel, I will examine the similarities between these two powerful women and former child actresses by how they were treated by society and popular media. Although separated by over 1500 years, both depictions of these women illustrate the limited existence we see women in society instead of fully realized humans.