Tag Archives: Artist

Winthrop Welcomes Emily Connell, Visiting Artist Workshop

Emily Connell joins
Winthrop University’s Department of Fine Arts
to host an Artist Workshop
Topic:  Slip Cast Books
Thursday, April 18, 2013
4:00p.m. to 6:15p.m.
Art Education Room


Emily Connell Bio

Emily Connell creates her work through a variety of media, including ceramics, video, photography, and performance.  Her unique background informs her work which walks a line between two spiritual extremes. 

Connell worked on her artwork at Anderson Ranch Arts Center in Snow Mass, Colorado, and the International Ceramics Studio in Kecskemet, Hungary.  Emily Connell received her BFA degree in ceramics from the Kansas City Art Institute.  Currently, she is a Ceramics Instructional Assistant to George Timock at the Kansas City Art Institute and a 2012-2013 Charlotte Street Foundation Urban Culture Project Studio Resident in Kansas City, Missouri.

Connell’s work is published in area publications and Ceramics Monthly magazine.  She exhibits nationally, including an exhibition at the Houston Center for Contemporary Crafts.  In 2012, Connell received the Regina Brown Fellowship to research Catholic processions in Italy during the spring of 2013.



Emily Connell’s Artist Statement

“The progressive secularization of modern man has altered the content of his spiritual life, but not broken the mould of his imagination; a huge residue of mythology lingers in the zones that have escaped regimentation.”

–Mircea Eliade, Images et symbols, Paris 1952.

The mysticisms I experienced as a child at Catholic school still hold a great power over me, influencing my art. I make my work in two stages. First I create objects inspired from religion, and configure them into a scene. Next I use my body to create a context and purpose for the objects. By recording these symbolic interactions through the lens of the camera I produce photographs and video to display alongside my objects. The combination of photographs and relics create a narrative while also heightening the mystery of spiritual purpose.

Using a found vade mecum, or a book of reference (encyclopedia, Bible, dictionary), I cover it, page-by-page, in slip. Firing the book in a kiln transforms it into a reliquary shell, containing the ashes of the book within. Ensuring stability for the delicate book I encase it with chalky plaster. I then use a masonry-saw to cut the piece, revealing the cross-section of the ceramic pages.index

These objects become a part of my pseudo-ritual interaction that I perform and document. The use of my body blurs the separation of roles in religious practice, from the sacred leader and practitioner/parishioner, all the way to that of the cynic.



Janet Lasher, MFA candidate, featured in the Winter’s issue of Surface Design Journal


Janet Lasher’s sculptural installation, Conscription is featured in the
Winter 2013 issue of the Surface Design Journal.  The installation featured
includes 24 figures (each 47″h x 13″w x 9″d) sculpted in handmade abaca
paper cast over reed and is completed with a stitched sinew spine.

Janet has been selected to exhibit her work in conjunction with the 17th
International Surface Design Association Conference to be held in San
Antonio, in early June. Janet is completing her MFA this semester; she is a
sculptor with particular interest in organic materials and stitch.
“Currently I am exploring themes related to childhood development.”

Janet Lasher, "Conscription"

Janet Lasher, “Conscription”

Winthrop Alumni, Doug McAbee’s art puts bright, shiny finish on a harsher reality.

"The Green Grabber"

“The Green Grabber”

The One About Scrimshaw

The One About Scrimshaw

On display until Jan. 28, 2013

Thursday, Jan. 17, reception from 6-9pm, Artist talk 7:30 pm

Spartanburg Chapman Cultural Center http://www.chapmanculturalcenter.org/

For more information, call 542-ARTS (2787).

(Originally written by Steve Wong For the Herald-Journal )

When you look at Doug McAbee’s artwork, you just know there’s a story behind each and every piece. There are whales with stick legs, big-headed people riding little animals, tabletop sculptures seemingly dipped and completely covered in high-gloss bright paint.

You’re free to take a guess at what each might be telling you, but you probably won’t connect the exhibit at the Spartanburg Chapman Cultural Center with its overall source of inspiration. “The One About Pop” was created in the wake of McAbee’s father’s death in 2012.

There is no direct mourning reflected among the 21 pieces of two- and three-dimensional abstract works. If anything, at first consideration, they are happy images: surreal Sharpie drawings of a mind’s fantasy landscapes and a cast of unreal characters; simple sculptures that might look like something real, but then again, maybe not. It’s not until that second look that you begin to wonder what’s beneath the surface.

In both content and media, McAbee’s work is more than it appears. His most recent cartoonish drawings are on knotty panels of birch wood: The wood grain and dark spots purposely show through the colorful scenes, giving the images a contrasting sense of creative optimism that tries to cover up a harsh and darker reality. This concept is repeated with his sculptures.

All of the work is for sale, ranging in price from $150 to $1,050.

An assistant art professor at Lander University, McAbee, 40 and a native of Spartanburg, welcomes interpretation of his work. He is content in knowing that most of the pieces were inspired by his father’s character and the entertaining stories that he told.

“At my father’s funeral, the family was standing around telling stories and laughing,” McAbee said. “Yes, it was a sad time, but we found the good in the memory of my dad and celebrated it.”

“The One About Pop” is on display until Jan. 28. McAbee will host a free reception at this month’s ArtWalk, from 6 to 9 p.m. Jan. 17. He will give an artist talk at 7:30. For more information, call 542-ARTS (2787).

This Friday: Reception for Raw Baggage by Julie Thompson

Julie Thompson

Julie Thompson, installing her Raw Baggage show

Julie Thompson presents Raw Baggage, her latest collection of art on display in the 3rd floor McLaurin Student Galleries at Winthrop University.  Raw Baggage runs from November 25th through December 1st, 2012.

Please join us for the Reception:

Friday, November 30th, 2012


3rd Floor McLaurin Student Galleries, #314 and #316

Winthrop University

For more information on Julie, you may visit her website:  CLICK HERE or visit our previous blog interview where she shared her artistic visions and her future plans:  Julie Thompson Interview.

Shameless self-promotion ahead… Thursday Night’s Art Opening – Bindings


Drop by for the opening of Bindings, a collection of artwork, yes…by me.  Forgive the self-promotion, but I hope my offer of food helps with your decision.  Oh… the art, too, of course.

Here is the serious part …{ahem}:

Art Installation by Lee Ann Harrison

You are invited….no strings attached.

Bindings is a social commentary art installation exploring family restraints, diversity, discrimination, and inclusion.

You are cordially invited to attend.  I promise the hanging lady will let you leave.  Afterwards, let’s trek to Art Frenzy for STOP #2 of a 3-stop Thursday night art adventure!

Details below:

Bindings Art Opening

Thursday night

November 15, 2012

6:00 to 7:30pm

Winthrop University

McLaurin Student Gallery

3rd Floor, #316

MFA Alumnus Stephen Lursen: Featured Artist at Donna Downey Studio’s Art Crawl

Enjoy works by our MFA Alumnus, Stephen Lursen, at the upcoming Art Crawl in Huntersville, NC.
Art by Stephen Lursen
Friday, November 23, 2012
7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Donna Downey Studio Art Crawl
Link for Directions:  CLICK HERE
Link for more artist information:  CLICK HERE

Need art inspiration? Artist Talk – TODAY! 11am


What do you get when you combine talent, life experience, hard work, passionate perspectives, and ART?

Answer:  Artist Christine Sefolosha

You are cordially invited to attend her ARTIST TALK on Winthrop Campus.


Tuesday, November 13

11:00 am Common Time

119 Rutledge

See you there!


You are invited….Gallery Talk and Reception for Tom Stanley



Clinton Junior College’s DALTON GALLERY Presents:

Untitled Exhibition: Works by Tom Stanley

Gallery Talk & Reception for the Artist:  Thursday, October 4 at 6:30 p.m.  Free & open to the public.

The paintings in this exhibition represent Stanley’s ongoing interest in silhouette as well as technical drawing or drafting. Exhibit dates: October 1, 2012 – January 25, 2013

Gallery Hours:  Monday – Thursday 9:00am – 8:00pm, Fridays 9:00am – 5:00pm


Clinton Junior College’s Dalton Gallery ▪ 1029 Crawford Road ▪ Rock Hill, SC 29730
CLICK HERE for directions.  For more information on CJC, CLICK HERE.

FYI:  CJC’s Dalton Gallery is located in the foyer of the library in the back of campus – plenty of free parking.

For additional details, please contact Marie Cheek, Associate Professor of Art and Dalton Gallery Director at Clinton Junior College.  You may also visit the Dalton Gallery website HERE.

For more information on Tom Stanley, Chair of Fine Arts; Associate Professor of Fine Arts; and Program Advisor for Master of Fine Arts at Winthrop University, and his artwork, please visit this article in Charlotte Viewpoint.


We look forward to your presence at the opening!