Museum Series Will Feature Brahms Chamber Music
Pictured: Jeremy Samolesky
Museum Series Opens with American Opera and Art Song, Jazz Returns After Hours
Museum to Host Violin and Piano Music for Final 2016 Noon Concert
On December 15, from noon to 1:00 pm, A Little Lunch Music will present a free concert in the auditorium featuring violinist Elzbieta Tokarska with pianist Ksenia Kurenysheva. The duo will present music by Francis Poulenc, César Franck, and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.
A gift from Jim & Sue Haygood is helping to make the concert possible.
Thursday’s concert will mark Kurenysheva’s fifth performance at the museum. Her first was in 2012, her first year in the United States. Appearing in the series, She has performed as a soloist and with Auburn violinist Lorna Wood.
The Russian Kurenysheva and the Polish Tokarska are both winners of top prizes in international festivals. They met at Columbus State University’s Schwob school of music. They started out with a lot of classes together and soon began working on chamber music. Now, Kurenysheva is working on a doctorate at the University of Georgia in Athens, and Tokarska is doing graduate work at CSU. Making music together is still very important to them.
The duo will perform a violin sonata by Poulenc, a French composer. Kurenysheva compares his music to that of the Russian Sergei Prokofiev. She said as 20th-century music, it is adventurous in its harmonic structure, but never moves into serial music, using certain patterns and techniques that ignore traditional harmony and melody.
As an example of French music, she said Poulenc’s music is not as romantic or melodic as Claude Debussy’s or Maurice Ravel’s, but it is still entertaining. As an example of neoclassical music, it is well-organized, like Prokofiev. “You will understand themes and how they develop throughout the piece,” she added.
Though Kurenysheva said the Belgian composer Franck would perhaps not have appreciated the complement, she believes that his Sonata for Violin and Piano is a great example of typical French music. “Franck is very open and expressive,” she said.
Like many pieces, the violin part of the Franck sonata has been transcribed for other instruments. As a collaborative pianist, Kurenysheva has played it many times. “Everybody wants to play this piece,” she said, adding that no matter what the arrangement, the piece never suffers. She said this is not true of all music.
“The thematic material is interesting, it’s so sincere,” said Kurenysheva. “Everything is absolutely perfect.”
About Tokarska’s playing, Kurenysheva said she is a leader whose strength is in the music’s drive. “Her sound is very expressive,” she said, adding, “Her lower range is really dense and singing like a human voice. I love to play with her.”
The program will close with Tchaikovsky’s “Waltz of the Flower” from his “The Nutcracker Suite.”
JCSM After Hours
On Thursday night from 5-8 p.m., the museum will be open for its weekly JCSM After Hours. The exhibitions are free to the public and the cafe and gift shop are open. This week will be Holiday Family Night with pianist Mary Slaton performing Christmas music. There will be an art activity for kids, snacks, and discounts in the shop.
CALLING ALL 8TH–12TH GRADE ARTISTS IN LEE COUNTY, ALABAMA
Submit your work to be a part of a juried exhibition hosted by Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art, Auburn University (JCSM) and the JCSM Teen Council.
The exhibition is open to all originally created artwork. The title of the exhibition is soap*box, inviting you to submit works conveying some sort of personal stance. The panel of jurors for soap*box will include Gary Wagoner, an Auburn University art professor, Nate Coker, a local artist, June Corley, a well-known regional artist, and Jiha Moon, the contemporary artist featured in JCSM’s primary exhibition opening in January.
We will begin the submission process for the juried exhibition aspect of the program starting on September 1st and will continue accepting artwork through December 15th.
The jurying process will take place over winter break with the announcement of winners and an evening event on January 20th. Ten winning artists will be selected to win prizes and have their work and artists’ statements displayed at JCSM on the night of the event. Winning artwork will also be featured in a digital exhibition housed on the JCSM website.
The event, hosted by the JCSM Teen Council with support from the museum’s education staff, will include refreshments and the announcement of winners (specific place rankings) and prizes. Highlights of the event will also include: hands-on activity stations, music, a photo booth, and raffle prizes.
September 1–December 15:
Submissions accepted via jcsm.auburn.edu/soapbox
January 20, 6–8 p.m.:
soap*box (the event)
Submit your works of art below, and make sure to check this page for news and updates about the exhibition and event!
soap*box is supported in part by a charitable gift from Cameragraphics, Inc.
In this collection spotlight, JCSM remembers artist William Christenberry (1936 – 2016).
William Christenberry was born in Tuscaloosa, Alabama in 1936—coincidentally, the same year that photographer Walker Evans and writer James Agee traveled to nearby Hale County to conduct research for an article on tenant families, which developed into their book Let Us Now Praise Famous Men. Twenty-four years later, as a young artist, Christenberry discovered the publication and recognized the places and some of the people it described; he also found a strong emotional tie to the landscapes, architecture, and signage that Evans had photographed. Christenberry returned to Hale County and the surrounding area to search for those same sites, thus beginning a yearly ritual of photographing the familiar landmarks he had grown up with and documenting their transformation through the passage of time.
William Christenberry, (American, 1936–2016), Red Building in Forest, Hale County, Alabama, 1974 Edition:25, Printed 2006, Archival pigment print, 6 3/4 x 10 1/4 inches, Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art, Auburn University; museum purchase with funds provided by the 1072 Society, 2016 2016.01.03
Red Building in Forest, Hale County is one such iconic subject that Christenberry has revisited frequently, not only in photographs but in painted and sculpted forms. He began photographing this modest one-room structure in 1974. Isolated in the Talladega National Forest and long abandoned, it resembles a child’s drawing of a house or the mere symbol for a dwelling. With no windows on the entry façade, and walls and door covered in fake-brick asphalt sheathing, it seems more artifice than edifice. The noonday sunlight that envelopes the little building in a warm glow counters its sad state of disrepair and threat of consumption by the surrounding vegetation. Like the extant ruins from much more ancient times, its melancholy presence reminds us not only of our connections to the past but that our existence here is transitory. Christenberry is considered among the three greatest photographers of the South, alongside his mentor and friend Walker Evans and William Eggleston. His art is in the collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Museum of Modern Art, Smithsonian American Art Museum, and Whitney Museum of American Art, among many others.
(American, b. 1958)
William Christenberry, Alabama, 2005
Archival pigment print
14 x 14 inches
Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art, Auburn University; museum purchase
CALLING ALL 8TH–12TH GRADE ARTISTS
Auburn’s art museum is looking for 8th through 12th grade students to transform our gallery space. Museum educators will be there to help, but you are calling the shots! Teens this year will take on the task of responding to selected works in the JCSM collection in a project that will include both curated and created objects all built around a theme of animals and human interaction. We’ll give you the space and supplies. You’ll give us an exhibition unlike anything created before!
Teen Takeover participants will spend Spring Break in workshops creating works of art, framing and matting works, writing didactic materials, and installing objects.
The exhibition of the works from the JCSM collection will open to the public in February 11, 2017, close for a week of reinstallation, and reopen with participant-created works on March 27. The exhibition, with the addition of the works created in the Teen Takeover program will be open to the public March 27-April 30. Spaces are limited. Applications will be accepted starting Friday, December 16, 2016 (required) and will close Friday, February 3, 2017.
Applicants will be reviewed by the K-12 education staff and contacted by Friday, February 10.
$20 payment due onsite on Monday, March 13 (cash, check, or credit card payment accepted). Make checks payable to JCSM and note “Teen Takeover” in the memo line. Permission Forms (PDF) can be found on the JCSM website. Please fill out all of the forms and bring them with you along with payment. A parent/legal guardian must sign all forms for participants under the age of 19.
Experience the outcome during a special presentation for our community March 27 through April 30, 2017.
The “Teen Takeover” program and exhibition is supported in part by a charitable gift from Dr. Blue Brawner and PetVet Animal Health Center. Materials for the Teen Takeover program were generously donated by J&M Bookstore. This year, JCSM and the JCSM Teen Council have partnered with Storybook Farm, offering Teen Takeover participants the opportunity to donate artwork for an auction benefiting the farm’s mission. For more information about Storybook Farm, visit their website.
Teen Takeover III Schedule
March 13: Day one of takeover. Students create works of art based on their pre-established plans, working from 10am-4:45pm (break for lunch), in the Grand Gallery.
March 14: Continued work on art-making.
March 15: Curatorial choices, including specifics about presentation and installation. Matting and framing workshop. Continued work on art-making.
March 16: Label writing workshop. Continued framing and matting.
March 17: Completion day, finishing all works of art, matting and framing works on paper, final polish and presentation on sculpture and other media. Installation of most works, with precise plans on how to install the remaining objects. (note: this day is optional if all work is completed)
December 16 2016–January 27 2017:
March 13–March 17:
Teen Takeover program
March 27-April 17:
Teen Takeover exhibition open to the public
Apply using the form below, and make sure to check this page for news and updates about the Teen Takeover program!
Popular culture has been molded by television and electronic graphic information since the mid-20th century. Whether appearing on a TV console, computer monitor, or smart device, video has become a comfortable, accessible, and preferred medium for both consumption and creation, especially to those among us under 30. Many critics today consider it to be this generation’s quintessential format for expression. Camera Lucida features eight contemporary artists from around the world who work with video and digital moving imagery. Artists Jay Bolotin, Rob Carter, Joe Hamilton, Yeon Jin Kim, LigoranoReese, Jillian Mayer, Rosa Menkman, and Rick Silva offer fresh perspectives on enduring concerns and new issues, using a technology that is widely familiar through common exposure, if not as broadly known as an independent art form. Yet video has been used as an eloquent and powerful vehicle by artists for more than 50 years, ranging from early documentary formats and narrative expositions to digital abstraction and game-playing interaction. JCSM’s survey provides a compelling look at the state of the medium today, where age-old intentions find new purpose in new applications.
This exhibition has been made possible by grants from the Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Rosa Menkman makes art of a truly interactive nature by engaging her “audience” to become physical participants in completing the work. Xilitla is designed in a video game format. The viewer is transformed into a collaborator by way of a game controller to explore the malleable realms and conditions latent in the experience. However, this is not your normal role-playing game by any stretch of the imagination. Dead ends, unexpected or random consequences, and visual and auditory feedback artifacts, which were they to occur in a conventional game context would be considered negative glitches, are instead coded in and emphasized. Menkman’s work is centered in an aesthetic known as glitch art. Digital and analog errors—bugs in the system—are accepted and incorporated as intentional malfunctions. In Menkman’s work, the glitch disrupts one’s expectations and carries the user/viewer into a new moment or new momentum of understanding.
On December 1, from noon to 1:00 pm, the series will present a free concert featuring classical guitarist Andrew Wilder. Andrew will present music by Johann Sebastian Bach, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Juan Antonio Sanchez.
The concert will be in the Auditorium. Thanks to anonymous friends of the series for helping to make this performance possible.
Much of classical guitar’s repertoire is transcriptions. One of the two Mozart pieces Wilder will play was originally written for clavichord, a stringed keyboard instrument. Another was written for the glass harmonium which uses a series of spinning bowls and finger friction to make pitches.
Bach transcribed some of his own cello suites for a guitar-like instrument, but not Suite No. 3 which is on Thursday’s program. Even without an original version for guitar, Wilder said it works very well on the instrument.
Wilder said he is inspired by Bach’s devotion, not only to his faith, but also to his attention to detail and his groundbreaking counterpoint style. Counterpoint is basically multiple independent melodies happening at the same time. “It’s amazing writing,” said Wilder, “I listen to Bach almost every day.” Wilder said Bach had a great ability to see his strength in writing this style, and didn’t stop writing it even after other Baroque composers had moved away from it.
A senior now at Columbus State University’s Schwob School of Music, Wilder said that as a freshman he met Chilean guitarist Jose Antonio Escobar when Escobar visited the school as a clinician. Through that contact, he became aware of the music of still-living Chilean composer Juan Antonio Sanchez. Sanchez wrote “Sonata Para Guitar” for Escobar.
Escobar is a virtuoso, and Wilder said Sanchez’s “Sonata” is extremely difficult. Wilder has wanted to perform it since he heard the piece. “I was obsessed with it,” he said. He would listen to it over and over again. Three years later, he has taken it on for himself, and has received good feedback from the composer who heard a recording online.
Wilder said “Sonata para Guitarra” is new, difficult, and obscure. Besides Escobar, Wilder said he is the only person playing it right now. But he hopes listeners won’t hear the difficulty. He said it is full of singable melodies, percussive Chilean rhythms and jazz influences.
Wilder was born into a musical family with 10 brothers and sisters who have all studied classical music extensively, and with parents who are both professional classical musicians. He has performed and studied throughout Europe, the United States, and South America.
As a soloist, Wilder has been the recipient of awards including first prizes in the Senior Guitar competition of the Society of American Musicians, the International Tennessee Guitar Competition, and the Art of Strings international competition.
He was a prizewinner in the East Carolina University Guitar competition and the Troy University Guitar competition and was a recipient of the Koch Cultural Trust grant.
JCSM After Hours
Separate from the noon series is another music offering at the museum. Each Thursday night, the museum’s cafe, exhibitions, and gift shop are open from 5-8 pm for JCSM After Hours. Live music is featured each week, often with the house band being the jazz trio, Cullars improvisational Rotation.
This week instead of jazz, the Auburn University Cultural Music Society will perform a mix of music. In addition to traditional Indian music and Indian-Western fusion, the group will bring in American gospel, blues, and old-time folk. Its members will present some original songs and spoken word pieces.
The Society is an Auburn University student organization that was founded in spring 2014 with the mission of bringing awareness to the Auburn community about the importance of cultural diversity through music. It was formed with the understanding that each culture has a different perspective on the uses of music and the sounds produced by its instruments. Members are guided by the idea that music has a way of unifying people with different nationalities and ideologies.
Spend your holidays here at Auburn’s art museum for our extended holiday hours, where our galleries and gift shop will be open for you and your family to enjoy.
Closed November 23-24
November 25-26: 10-4:30 pm
November 27: 1-4 pm
Closed December 24-25
December 21-23: 1-4 pm
December 27-30: 1-4 pm
Closed December 31-January 1
Regular operations begin on January 3
Holiday Gift Shop Sales
Give the gift of art! The museum gift shop is taking a 20% off regularly priced merchandise for the holiday season. Museum members can enjoy this discount on December 1, and regular shoppers on December 15 from 10 am to 8 pm.