MICA’s 2016 MFA in Studio Art Candidates

By Editorial Team on June 20, 2016

Fri, 24 June 2016 - Sat, 09 July 2016

The Female Sexual Desire Project by Jacqueline Bishop. Courtesy of MICA.
The Female Sexual Desire Project by Jacqueline Bishop. Courtesy of MICA.


On View: Friday, June 24-July 8
Closing Reception: Friday, July 8 from 5pm to 7pm


The Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) is pleased to present the 2016 MFA in Studio Art Candidates. This group exhibition will present a broad range of new painting, sculpture, textile, photography, performance, and video work by: Lindsey Bailey, Jacqueline Bishop, Howard el-Yasin, Suzy Kopf, Kirk Daniel Palmer, Georgeann Schellenger, and Azucena Trejo Williams. The exhibition is on view from June 24th through July 9th and galleries will host a closing reception on Friday, July 8th from 5 – 7pm.

The MFA in Studio Art (MFAST) is an interdisciplinary low-residency program designed for experienced artists. The strength of the program is the integration of art practice with critical theory. Uniquely, MFAST students complete their graduate studies over three years plus one summer. Each year, students complete an intensive six-week summer residency in Baltimore before returning to their independent studio practices all over the world. This year’s graduates currently reside in six different states and Qatar. During the time that students are not on campus, they keep in touch with their dedicated faculty mentors and peers through distance learning tools. Intensity and length of the program help to create a strong network of visiting artists, critics, and alumni that deeply influence the students thinking and practice.

The artists featured in this exhibition utilize a range of investigations, material choices, Each artist channels a unique range of influences that capture their perspective, while representing a contemporary aesthetic. This exhibition promises to generate a lively dialogue in the academic community of the MICA campus and the audiences of Baltimore, Maryland and beyond.

Lindsey Bailey’s installation #bangagitatetransitrepeat involves performance, video, color, sound, photography, and interactive set pieces in a contemporary arrangement that allows the viewer to become part of the story. Bailey has been living overseas for the past four years. This body of work is a commentary on cultural similarities and differences, as well as a critique on identity and belonging.

Jacqueline Bishop’s current body of work explores issues of sexuality and desire in relationship to female bodies. She is seeking to make invisible female sexual desires more visible and give agency to bodies that have been thought of as dead or damaged sites of contention. Bishop is giving voice to what has been a voiceless, yet integral,component of what it means to be female and sexual; all while tackling misogynistic and racist ideas that were exposed as the project materialized.

Howard el-Yasin’s ongoing investigation of detritus interweaves the process of collecting with spatial installation. His current body of work combines the material and sonic to explore the everyday-ness of marginalization. It includes Accumulations, a collection of commercial and domestic dryer lint, calling attention to how we may perceive aesthetic value. Kindred Voices (for Bayard Rustin) is a sonic work featuring anonymous stories of queer and transgender people of color. The voices are dematerialized yet not silent, and they subvert the visual sense as preferred over the aural.

Suzy Kopf’s installation American Monument, combines among many elements, AstroTurf, hand screenprinted wallpaper, an edition of artist books and a collection of Howard Johnson’s postcards to address the traces of midcentury advertising and ethos still evident in the American populated landscape today. This body of work focuses on the tropes of the fast food franchise, the motel and the automobile and questions what a century of consumption culture has yielded today. Kopf’s work is a collaging of elements of the midcentury American leisure and contemporary concerns like urban sprawl and shifting public space.

Kirk Daniel Palmer’s body of work combines found objects and paintings to reclaim a sense of static space in the face of contemporary information consumption. Titled after a poem by Wallace Stevens, the installation of work comprising A Clear Day and No Memories invites the viewer to reject indifference and embrace the present moment.

Georgeann Schellenger’s textiles are imbued with social and personal histories that can speak directly to unequivocal other-ing. Schellenger’s current investigation, Crossing Lines, substitutes everyday fabrics for canvas as a direct subversion of the canon of Western Art history that is dominated by the privileged white male genius. She borrows and references the canon of Modernist Art and recreates both two-dimensional surfaces and objects in space with cloth to focus attention on the work of invisible, excluded artists. She does this as an act of insistent inclusion, focusing on the artists categorically relegated to the outside.

Azucena Trejo Williams’ installations reference the landscape in relationship to the body and human interventions. She considers aspects of photography and projections to question the notion of manipulation.

Studio Art, MFA ,Decker Gallery & Meyerhoff Gallery at 1303 W. Mount Royal Ave. and Riggs & Leidy Gallery at 131 W. North Ave. For more information, visit https://mfastblog.wordpress.com/class-of-2016/.