Organized by Loyola Untitled & the UNO Visual Arts League
Juried by Amy Mackie
June 7 – 28, 2014
Opening reception June 7, 6 – 9pm
Etymologically, “awakening” holds many possible meanings: awareness, recognition, wakefulness, realization, the state of being conscious. Thus, it seems quite appropriate that Kate Chopin’s novel The Awakening, set in New Orleans and the Southern Louisiana coast in the late 1800s was originally titled A Solitary Soul, as the idea of being aware implies a potentially challenging inward search. I read Chopin’s pioneering feminist narrative when I was an undergraduate student at Sarah Lawrence College. This story of a women’s awakening, which ultimately ends when she drowns herself in the Gulf of Mexico, made a strong impression on me when I first encountered it. This solemn story surfaced while I was selecting the work of undergraduate and graduate art students in New Orleans for this exhibition, through both direct and oblique references to innocence lost, water, renewal, and raw sexuality paired with varied uses of natural and found materials. In concert, they represent a cross-section of the multifarious approaches to making and thinking united for a brief moment within the institution of higher education, and which transcend those walls when released into the world.
“Awakening” includes work by Del Agnew, Ricki Bratcher, Amelia Broussard, Eric Crider, Mary Crockett, Brooke Falgout, Caleb Henderson, Kyra Hodes, Natalie McLaurin, Annie Rankin, Jeffrey Stenbom, Julia Taylor, Katie Turner, and Brandon Xuereb.
ABOUT THE CURATOR
Amy Mackie is a curator and writer based in New Orleans. She curated numerous exhibitions as the Director of Visual Arts at the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans from 2011 to 2012 and as Curatorial Associate at the New Museum in New York from 2007 to 2010. Mackie was the recipient of a 2013 Curatorial Fellowship from the Stavanger Municipality Culture Department in Norway, a 2010 Research Fellowship at the Henry Moore Institute in Leeds, England, to research the work of Helen Chadwick, and a 2009 CEC Artslink Grant through which she organized an exhibition and series of performances by A.L. Steiner + robbinschilds in Sofia, Bulgaria. She has lectured at Bard College, Brooklyn College, the College of Charleston, and Yale University, and has written for Art in America, Art Papers, FANTOM Photographic Quarterly, Pelican Bomb, and Universes in Universe. She was a contributing writer for Jeremy Deller’s It Is What It Is (Creative Time, 2011), Rethinking Contemporary Art and Multicultural Education (New Museum and Routledge, 2010), and Brion Gysin: Dream Machine (New Museum and Merrell, 2010. She curated “It Could Go Either Way: Mariam Ghani + Erin Ellen Kelly” at Rogaland Kunstsenter in Stavanger, Norway in 2014. The exhibition traveled to the Anchorage Museum in Anchorage, Alaska in 2015. Mackie holds a M.A. in curatorial studies from the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College and a B.A. in liberal arts from Sarah Lawrence College.