Archive for April, 2016

Spotlight on the Arts: Senior Visual Arts Major, Sarah Kane

April 29th, 2016 by arouel16

On Thursday April 28, senior visual arts majors presented their works in an exhibition that runs through May 27 at the Cantor Art Gallery. The exhibition, titled “Amalgam,” features the work of students Michael Allen, Liz Baker, Rebecca Blackwell, John Gallagher, Sarah Kane and Caroline O’Day.

In this Q&A reflection, Sarah Kane ’16 discusses her artistic inspiration and the creative process for two of her works: “Exploded Tutu” and “Stereotype.”

Sarah Kane '16 presents "Exploded Tutu"

                                                               Sarah Kane ’16 presents “Exploded Tutu”

How would you describe your works on exhibition?

“Through installation and sculpture, I’ve created simulated environments that place emphasis on embellishment to produce surreal and distorted landscapes. My work has shifted from the use of color in paint to the use of color in found materials. It has also transformed from replicas of miniature playgrounds and board games to installation-based works that more abstractly describe these same ideas of “play spaces.” These found objects have become my color palette, and they serve as a by-product of our material-obsessed society. In our contemporary world, the importance we place on materials and objects around us is climbing to the top of our societal hierarchy. We’re having more intimate relationships with these things than with each other. Advertisements and branding have brainwashed us into believing that we need things to be happy. My most recent work has been installation-based and large-scale with the intention to create a covetous environment that is overwhelming and strong, but also inviting with inherent beauty. My works contain a temporal quality that resembles the fleeting interests that people have in materialism and money-oriented things. Working large-scale has allowed me to prove the material’s authority and dominance, which have the power to conceal, shadow, and mesmerize space.”

What inspires your creative process?

“The inspiration of my work comes from artists such as Judy Pfaff and Jessica Stockholder, who also use found objects as their color palettes. They create installations and sculptures that are large-scale, where the viewer can walk around the piece. Their work is also very colorful and things jut out from the wall. They have strongly encouraged my creative mind, and have guided me along my journey as I’ve transformed from a two-dimensional artist to a three-dimensional artist.”

“I’m also inspired by my own personal interests, where at times I feel like I’m a hoarder, a collector, or a scrapper. I’m guilty in the sense that I often have a hard time throwing things away. In my cassette piece, I decided to use cassette tape because my father was a musician for about 20 years in Hawaii. Music has always been a big part of my life. I also feel that this piece is very different but in fact similar with “Exploded Tutu.” While “Exploded Tutu” is a simulated environment that discusses the overuse of materials in our money-obsessed society today, “Stereotype” creates this same immersive landscape, but the material used is something that might be unfamiliar to our generation today. It is a material that is so outdated that I found them at a thrift store being sold for 25 cents each. Ten cassette tapes later, and I finished the piece – meaning that it only cost me 2.50$ to make!”

What have you most enjoyed about being a visual arts major at Holy Cross?

“Honestly, in my entire four years at Holy Cross, the installation of the gallery has been my most enjoyable time in visual arts. The classes I’ve taken have encouraged my creative mind, especially Professor Remby’s “Mixed Media” course and Professor Rinklin’s “fundamentals of Color” course. However, I feel like my work slowly transformed and then reached its full potential when it was time to install. This experience was so enjoyable with the help of Cantor Art Gallery curators Roger and Tim, and also with assistance from Paula. They have all been awesome, and without their guidance, I don’t think either of my pieces would have been the same. When we presented our work for the first time on April 28, I truly felt like an artist, and that is something that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.”

– Sarah Kane ’16

The hours for the Cantor Art Gallery are Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. and Saturdays noon–5 p.m. Located in O’Kane Hall, 1st Floor, College of the Holy Cross, 1 College Street, Worcester, Mass., 01610. Visitors needing assistance with handicap accessibility should contact Public Safety at 508-793-2011. Admission to the gallery is free.

For additional information please call 508-793-3356 or visit the Gallery’s website.

Hamlet: A Shakespearean Classic Reimagined

April 14th, 2016 by arouel16

“Speak the speech, I pray you, as I pronounced it to you, trippingly on the tongue.  You must acquire and beget a temperance that may give it smoothness.  Suit the actionhamlet (2) to the word, and the word to the action…”  – Hamlet

Hamlet’s advice to the players holds some extra weight this week, as we ready ourselves for a two-weekend run of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet in Fenwick Theatre.  I think I speak for the cast when I say that we are nervous, excited and eager to make our debut on Mount Saint James.  We hope that these seven performances will serve as a celebration of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, the performing arts at Holy Cross and, perhaps a bit self-indulgently, months of hard work on the part of our cast.

Our time with Hamlet began shortly before winter break.  We auditioned on Friday, December 4th in Fenwick Theatre with two prepared Shakespearean soliloquies of our choice.  Professor Isser released the cast-list on the following Monday, and we were asked to have all our lines memorized upon our return to campus for the spring semester.  Admittedly, I’ve never been the best at memorizing lines – many fellow cast-members and former stage-managers would fervently agree – so I welcomed the additional time to get “off-book.”

Rehearsals began in February, and we have been in continual practice ever-since.  The Hamlet rehearsal-process has been a joy – I can’t imagine tackling a play of this gravity without the countless number of laughs supplied by our delightful company.  Rehearsals are intense, enlightening, sometimes frustrating, and frequently repetitive (Professor Isser’s favorite thing to say is: “so let’s do it one more time, except why don’t you try it like this…”) however, through this repetition, we gradually grew into the show and found some comfort in Shakespeare’s language.

We were lucky enough to take a brief respite from rehearsal when we performed at the Hanover Theatre on March 31st.  The audience of 1600 high school students proved to be an excellent crowd.  They cheered the death of characters they didn’t like (guess who), they laughed at elements of our modernization, and (hopefully) enjoyed themselves. We came away re-energized for the home stretch, and anxious to perform for our friends and families at Holy Cross.

Since then, we have been busy putting on the finishing touches for our home stage.  We have added video-projections, light, sound, and made some last-minute discoveries about the play and our characters.  We’re all ready – now we just need an audience…

If you’ve never seen a Shakespeare play before, leave your expectations with your torn ticket stub at the door to the theatre.  Even if you’ve seen Hamlet fifty times, it may be in your best interest to do the same.  We are performing a condensed, modernized, fast-paced imagining of Hamlet that aims to grab your attention for “two hours traffic on stage,” and not let go.  If you leave thinking, “what the heck did I just watch,” then we did our job.

Hopefully we’ll see you at some point over the next two weeks, and thanks for reading.

– Erik Schneider ’16 (King Claudius in the Holy Cross Theatre Department’s production of Hamlet)

Hamlet is directed by Edward Isser and runs April 13, 14, 15, 16, 21, 22, and 23 at 8 p.m. in the Fenwick Theatre. Tickets are available to the Holy Cross community for $10 and $15 for the general public and can be purchased by calling the Fenwick Box Office at (508) 793-2496 or online at http://HolyCrossHamlet.