»Visual Thinker Lecture Series

In keeping with the Chapman Art Department's mission to further its students' understanding of visual culture, the Visual Thinker Lecture Series was designed as a series of bi-monthly lectures featuring distinguished artists, graphic designers and art historians. This unique series aims to intellectually stimulate undergraduate students to think innovatively about the interdisciplinarity of creativity, inspiration and the practice of art, thus perfectly satisfying the university's emphasis on research and teaching. Invited at the suggestion of both faculty and students, all speakers are active practitioners and scholars who are deeply committed to advancing the role of the arts in today's society. The Visual Thinker Lecture Series encourages students to explore visual culture outside of their chosen medium, thus opening their eyes and minds to ideas and professional opportunities they would have otherwise not considered. The series is organized by the Department of Art. Please contact us with any questions at art@chapman.edu

  • 2014-2015
  • 2013-2014
  • 2012-2013
  • 2011-2012
  • 2010-2011
  • 2009-2010
  • Information coming soon!
  • syrop&chang

    Mitchell Syrop and York Chang - Visual Artists
    Wednesday, September 11, 2013
    Moulton Hall 213 at 7:00 p.m.

    Inaugural Graphic Design Symposium
    Wednesday, September 25, 2013
    Argyros Forum 209 A,B,C

    Nicole Woods Art Historian - CANCELED
    Wednesday, October 9, 2013
    Moulton Hall 213 at 7:00 p.m.

    Roberta Wue - Art Historian
    Wednesday, November 6, 2013
    Moulton Hall 213 at 7:00 p.m.

    Exene Cervenka - Visual Artist
    Wednesday, November 20, 2013
    Moulton Hall 213 at 7:00 p.m.

    Clint Woesner and Nick Groh
    Wednesday, December 4, 2013
    Moulton Hall 213 at 7:00 p.m.

    Marc Horowitz and Petra Cortright - Studio Artists
    Wednesday, February 26, 2014
    Beckman 401 at 7:00 p.m.
    View the flyer

    Ty Mattson - Graphic Designer
    Tuesday, March 18, 2014
    Argyros Forum 209A at 7:00 p.m.
    View the flyer

    James Luna - Performance & Installation Artist
    Wednesday, April 9, 2014
    Argyros Forum 209A & B at 7:00 p.m.
    View the flyer
    View photos

  • sofia sanabrais

    Sofia Sanabrais Art Historian
    Wednesday, September 5
    MC 213 at 7pm

    “The Spaniards of Asia”:  Portraying the Japanese in Colonial Mexican Painting
    Curiosity about Japan in New Spain peaked during the late-sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. While the modern immigration of the Japanese to the Americas that began in the nineteenth century after the re-opening of Japan to the West has received scholarly attention, considerably less is known about the Japanese colonial diaspora. Through the analysis of 17th century written and visual sources this talk provides insight in to the Japanese presence in colonial Mexico.

    View Sofia Sanabrais's presentation

     

    sean roberts

    Sean Roberts Art Historian
    Wednesday, September 19
    MC 213 at 7pm

    Material culture in its nearly infinite variety continues to amaze scholars, complicating and sometimes frustrating our impulse to organize and categorize. Yet if we often privilege the supposedly hard reality of things, we also inherit lingering moral suspicions about the material world that encourage the overview, the generalization, the reduction to category. Such oppositions are widespread, pervasive, and have proven tenacious across cultural and temporal distances. Within the study of Renaissance visual culture this stubborn binary has served, too often, to quarantine studies of the meaning of images from rigorous and technical examinations of their making. Sean’s current book project, Secrets, Lies, and the Origins of Renaissance Engraving aims to provide a materially grounded history of fifteenth-century European printmaking by bridging approaches generally separated as connoisseurial and interpretive. Rather than summarize this project, his lecture will focus on the larger question of how closer attention to the materials of Renaissance painting, sculpture, and printmaking can shed new light on familiar images and help us to steer clear of the only apparent Scylla and Charybdis of thoughts and things.

    Sean Roberts is assistant professor of art history at the University of Southern California.

    View Sean Roberts's presentation

     

    torrey sharp  tim green

    Torrey Sharp & Tim Green Book Designers at Faceout Studios
    Wednesday, October 3
    MC 213 at 7pm

    Torrey Sharp, Principal at Faceout Studio
    Having spent the majority of my growing up years living in Brazil, I’m happily settled in the Northwest. Bend, Oregon is the home of Faceout Studio, a market leading design firm that services a broad range of national and international publishing clientele. The studio focuses on brand design, brand identity systems, book packaging, photography, film production and product development. Over the years our work has been recognized by Communication Arts, the AIGA, Print magazine, Eye magazine, STEP magazine, Graphis, CMYK, Graphic Design: USA, the national American Advertising Federation, and we’ve won over a hundred local Ad Federation awards. Our work has also been published in various books, most recently from Rockport, Harper Collins, Springer and Barcelona-based Mao Mao publications. We have been invited to speak at various events hosted by the AIGA, AAUP, and the Shanghai Press and Publication Bureau as well as hosted various design conferences in Chicago, featuring some of the world’s top designers and industry consultants.

    Tim Green, Senior Art Director at Faceout Studio
    According to Google, Tim Green is an NFL star turned best-selling author. You may have seen the movie about his “Odd Life”, starring Jennifer Garner (as the mom, dill-weed—not Timothy Green). For the purposes of my “lecture” (and to avoid legal action from the aforementioned parties), I would like to address you as the Tim Green of book design fame. I hail from Central Oregon, which is home to many of you Californians. In fact, I married one of your kind, so heed my words. I have over 8 years experience in the professional world of graphics design. That makes me something of an “outlier” if you buy into all that Malcolm Gladwell crap. They say experience is the greatest teacher. Don’t tell your professors that…they might take offense. All this to say, I’ve got some things I’d like to share. Pearls of wisdom from the trenches of the creative arts. More specifically, book cover design. If this interests you, that makes 2 of us. Spread the word so more people show up, or things might get awkward between us when I take to the podium…

    View the Faceout Studios presentation

     

    stark

    Jen Stark Visual Artist
    Wednesday, October 17
    MC 213 at 7pm

    Stark’s work is instantly recognizable for its breathtaking color spectrums rendered in mind-bending forms cut from paper, wood and other organic materials. She currently has an exhibition at Martha Otero gallery. Stark’s sculptures seemingly reconstruct elements of time, nature and the cosmos on an exponential scale. She draws inspiration for her works from the rhythmic visual qualities of mandalas and other such sacred objects, while they simultaneously behave like the imagery of topographic maps, geometric repetitions and three-dimensional prisms. This aligns directly with her interest in mathematics: ‘to the power of…’ being a statement of exponential growth also infers the definition of ‘power’ as both the possession of physical or mental control and the fortitude to act decisively. Her unique experience working with fibers is displayed in her delicately constructed patterns, which resemble the flowing movements of fabric versus the perceived rigidity her actual core materials. Stark’s unflinching attention to physical detail and a commitment to shaping the object into something far beyond its origins result in a body of work which borders on the unbelievable.

    View Jen Stark's Presentation

    drucker

    Zackary Drucker Visual Artist
    Wednesday, October 24
    MC 213 at 7pm

    Interested in obliterating language obstacles, pulverizing identity disorders and revealing dark subconscious layers of outsider agency? Zackary Drucker will discuss recent projects and provide a brief overview of her work, as well as an intellectual and historical context for "reading" it.

    Zackary Drucker is a multi-media artist working in performance, film/video, photography, and spoken language. Drucker has exhibited her work at MOMA PS1, Deitch Projects, Leo Koenig Projekte, and Invisible Exports in New York; Hammer Museum, REDCAT, LACE, Steve Turner Contemporary, Human Resources, and Luis De Jesus in Los Angeles; and numerous international venues including the 54th Venice Biennale (Swiss Off-site Pavilion), Moscow International Biennale For Young Art, Les Recontres Internationales Paris/Berlin/ Madrid, and Lucca Museum of Contemporary Art in Italy.

    View Zackary Drucker's Presentation

    Nicole L. Woods Art Historian
    Wednesday, February 6
    MC 213 at 7pm Cancelled

    Dr. Nicole L. Woods is a Lecturer of Modern and Contemporary Art in the Department of Art History at the University of California, Irvine. She is currently finishing a book manuscript, entitled: Alison Knowles, Fluxus, and the Enigmatic Work of Postwar Art. A second project is underway that concerns the politics of consumption in post-WWII art and culture.

    Weston Naef

    Weston Naef Photo Historian
    Wednesday, March 6
    MC 213 at 7pm

    View Weston Naef's presentation

    Genevieve Erin O'Brien

    Genevieve Erin O'Brien Art Historian
    Monday, March 18
    MC 213 at 7pm

    View Genevieve Erin O'Brien's Presentation

    Judie Bamber

    Judie Bamber Painter/Drawer
    Wednesday, April 3
    MC 213 at 7pm

    Judie Bamber received a BFA from California Institute of the Arts in 1983.

    She has exhibited in New York and Los Angeles since 1989. Her work has been included in many national group exhibitions, most notable: "Sexual Politics: Judy Chicago's Dinner Party in Feminist Art History," UCLA Hammer Museum of Art, Los Angeles; "In a Different Light," University Art Museum, University of California, Berkeley, California; "Paper Trails: The Eidetic Image," Krannert Art Museum, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Illinois; "L.A. Hot and Cool," MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge, Massachusetts. She is currently represented by Angles Gallery in Los Angeles. In 2013 her work will be included Vitamin D2: New Perspectives in Drawing and Art and Queer Culture.

    Ms. Bamber was the 2012 Richard Diebenkorn teaching fellow at San Francisco Art Institute. In 2008 she was awarded the City of Los Angeles grant and the California Community Foundation grant. She has taught at San Francisco Art Institute, Harvard University, University of California Los Angeles, University of California Irvine, Cooper Union, and Bard College. From 1998-2003, she served on the faculty at the School of the Museum of Fine Art in Boston. She is currently an Associate Adjunct Professor at Otis College of Art and Design.

    View Judie Bamber's Presentation

    Cheryl Savala

    Cheryl Savala Graphic Designer
    Wednesday, April 17
    MC 213 at 7pm

    View Cheryl Savala's Presentation

    Matthias Merkel Hess

    Matthias Merkel Hess Sculptor
    Wednesday, May 1
    MC 213 at 7pm

    Sculptor, maker, manufacturer and merchandiser, Matthias Merkel Hess uses his work to mess with boundaries, adopt multiple causes and function in the art world as a gentle trickster. His best-known work replicates plastic vessels such as milk crates and trash cans in glazed ceramic, turning mass-produced items into semi-precious objects that resonate with the history of pottery. He also produces a line of artisanal, wheel-thrown pottery called MerkelWare and at the 2012 Venice Beach Biennial, launched a line called MerkelCraft Art & Novelties that pays homage to the 19th century potter George Ohr and the now defunct L.A. ceramics company Treasure Craft. Equally interested in utility and futility, Merkel Hess is the self-styled Second Tupper, Third Palissy and Potter of the Void. For the Visual Arts Thinkers Series, Merkel Hess will present a tribute to The Greatest Artist Talk Ever.
    Matthias Merkel Hess (b. 1978) received his MFA in ceramics from UCLA in 2010. He has had solo exhibitions at ACME. and Las Cienegas Projects in Los Angeles. His work has been included in group shows at the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, Kansas; Salon 94 and Louis B. James, New York; the 2012 Venice Beach Biennial in Venice Beach, Calif.; Jane Deering Gallery, Santa Barbara, Calif.; and in Los Angeles at ACME., Favorite Goods, Iko Iko, Free City, Steve Turner Contemporary and Cerritos College. In June, he will have solo shows at Salon 94 Freemans in New York City and ACME. in Los Angeles. Merkel Hess divides his time between Los Angeles and Cleghorn, Iowa.

    View Matthias Merkel Hess' Presentation

  • Gregor

    Harold Gregor Artist
    interviewed by Damon Willick Art Historian

    In 1966, Harold Gregor, the then-chair of the Chapman College Department of Art mounted an exhibition in the college’s Purcell Gallery entitled Everyman’s Infinite Art. The gallery was closed for the duration of the show, because, in Gregor’s words, “The works need not be viewed; they can be described in words.” In November 2011, Everyman’s Infinite Art will be reprised at Chapman University’s Guggenheim Gallery. Damon Willick, Professor of Art History at Loyola Marymount, will be interviewing Mr. Gregor about his exhibition and the work he has made since leaving Chapman.

    Simonian

    Melissa Simonian Graphic Designer
    Wednesday, September 28
    MC 213 at 7pm
    In 2007, Melissa graduated with a B.F.A in graphic design from Chapman University. She currently works for FILTER
    magazine as a member of the Creative Group team. Since joining FILTER, she has worked with clients such as Denny’s,
    Macys, Dickies, Toyota, Landmark Theaters, Hyundai, and Sony Playstation. Melissa worked with Orange County design
    firm, BXC for clients such as Kelly Slaters Kommunity Project, Felt Bicycles, and Hasbro, Inc. She is currently in charge of
    fully branding FILTER’S music festival collateral each year. Besides working for these clients, Melissa has also designed the last eight issues of the magazine and FILTER Good Music Guide, adapting a new and improved horizontal layout.

    Neville

    Kristoffer Neville Art Historian
    Wednesday, October 12
    MC 213 at 7pm
    Dr. Neville, a graduate of Princeton University, currently teaches at University of California Riverside. His research focuses
    on the international aspects of the arts in the early modern period. In this lecture Dr. Neville will discuss the relationship
    between Germany, France and Italy. The arts produced in the German world in the eighteenth century drew heavily and
    often overtly on traditions elsewhere – especially Rome and Paris. This has often been viewed as a symptom of creative
    weakness, even though some of the most revered figures of the time worked this way. An eclectic mode of thought was seen as a progressive path to rich, new ideas by academics, architectural theorists, and architects. This approach underlay many major achievements, but was rejected by artists and thinkers around 1800.

    Espinosa

    John Espinosa Artist
    Wednesday, November 9
    MC 213 at 7pm
    Born in Bogota, Colombia, John Espinosa received his MFA from Yale and now lives and works in Los Angeles. His
    work has been featured in several notable group exhibitions and museum collections such as the Whitney Museum of
    Contemporary Art. From the mid 90’s, John Espinosa’s artworks have engaged themes of distortion and circulation
    utilizing a materially diverse practice. John Espinosa will discuss the biographical and cultural influences that shaped his
    art making process beginning with his early performance based photography to his most recent sculptural project based on a cluster of found wall drawings he unintentionally discovered hidden behind a crumbling wall in his studio.

    Gorman

    Cecilia Gorman Creative Recruiter
    Wednesday, November 30
    MC 213 at 7pm
    As VP, Director of Creative Services, Cecilia is the creative recruiter at Y&R/Wunderman in Irvine. Her recruitments
    have gone on to create award-winning advertising, design and digital work for brands such as Land Rover, Mattel, Jenny
    Craig, Callaway Golf and Toshiba Laptops. Cecilia’s true passion is helping students and young professionals discover their
    creative potential. Cecilia owns Creative Career Management, a career development firm, and she authors “Confessions of
    a Creative Recruiter,” a junior-focused advice blog.

    Noreen

    Kristin Noreen Art Historian
    Wednesday, December 7
    MC 213 at 7pm
    Often believed to have miraculous origins, icons of Christ and the Virgin Mary had an important ritual, spiritual, and political role in the city of Rome in the Middle Ages. These images participated in elaborate processions initiated to protect the city from invaders, ward off pestilence or celebrate religious feasts. Dr. Noreen’s talk will focus on specific topics from her book, Holy Images, Ritual, and the Cityscape of Medieval Rome, and discuss the appearance and function of various
    holy icons in Rome to explore the significant role that these representations played in the daily lives of medieval citizens.

    Roat

    Rich Roat Graphic Designer
    Wednesday, February 6
    Argyros Forum 209 at 7pm
    After picking up a degree in communication from the University of Delaware, Rich held jobs as a communications associate for United Way of Delaware and manager of a service bureau/prepress house. While serving a brief stint as a production designer at a small Wilmington design firm, Rich met Andy and allowed his new friend to talk him into a series of ill-advised but fortunate career moves that led to the formation of Brand Design Co., Inc. An avid swimmer, cyclist, volunteer firefighter and EMT, Rich lives in the bustling suburban metropolis of Hockessin, Delaware.

    Preziosi

    Donald Preziosi  Art Historian
    Thursday, February 23
    BK 404 at 7pm
    Professor Preziosi will discuss issues in his forthcoming book on art and religion. The nature of the relationships between what we conventionally distinguish as art and religion has been debated for millennia, and has been documented for as long as we have records. The question is as old as Plato’s call for banishing the arts in ancient Greece or the iconoclastic controversies in early Christianity, and it is as recent as the controversy over representing the prophet Mohammed, or picturing and segregating women in fundamentalist Jewish communities in Israel and elsewhere today. But exactly what kind of threat has art been seen as posing to religion? Or religion to art? This talk considers some of what lies behind why art has been seen as simultaneously threatening and empowering in many societies, both ancient and modern.

    Campbell   Avery

    Jeff Campbell and Scott Avery Print Professionals
    Wednesday, March 7
    MC 213 at 7pm
    Jeff Campbell has worked for 25 years at Anderson Lithograph as a production coordinator and sales executive, Jeff has produced many award winning print pieces for companies including Exxon Mobil, Hewlett-Packard, HJ Heinz, Pfizer, PepsiCo, General Motors, Nissan/Infiniti, Amgen, Fraser Papers, Univision, Chevron, UPS, Fedex, California Water Service, Disney, and Chivas Regal. He currently sells high-end printing for Lithographix.

    Scott Avery worked as a Proofer/Platemaker before becoming an apprentice 4 color film stripper, working on electronic stripping devices such as Gerber, Sytex and Macintosh computers. He has over 20 years of experience in pre-press and is responsible for managing projects through the entire manufacturing process.

    Strauss

    Sarah Strauss Architect
    Monday, March 12
    MC 213 at 7pm
    Sarah Strauss received her Master of Architecture from Yale School of Architecture in 2002, and her B.A. in Studio Art, Art History and Chemistry from Duke University. Sarah co-founded Bigprototype in 2004 to pursue interests in architecture, product, and furniture design. Dedicated to an ongoing interest in the history of ornament and pattern in the built world, Sarah teaches at the graduate and undergraduate level at Pratt Institute. Her scholarly work encourages the playful exploration of digital tools with an emphasis on the translation to physical building. In 2010, Strauss teamed up with Lia Halloran to form Collider, an installation art project to continue conversations across disciplines. Collider has become a vehicle for questioning the limits of their respective disciplines and an opportunity for exuberant production. 

    Bress

    Brian Bress Video Artist
    Wednesday, March 14
    MC 213 at 7pm
    In the past two years, Bress has exhibited his work at the Museum of Contemporary Art (North Miami, FL); the Institute of Contemporary Art (Philadelphia, PA); Arthouse (Austin, TX); the Parrish Art Museum (South Hampton, NY) and at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Salt Lake City, Utah. His video, “Under Cover” (2007), was included in the landmark exhibition California Video (2008) at the Getty Museum, Los Angeles, and the accompanying catalog, California Video: Artists and Histories. His work has been reviewed in such publications as The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times. Uncertainty on the part of both viewer and artist is a core element of Bress’s work. It contributes to the pathos—and the humor—driving the questioning of the artwork’s overarching structure, revealing new meanings and new emotions.

    Ursula

    Ursula Von Rydingsvard Sculptor
    Rescheduled, check back for further updates.
    Born in Germany in 1942, Ursula von Rydingsvard and her family were among the dispossessed that, after the war, were forced to move from one refugee camp for displaced Poles to another, eventually settling in the United States in 1950. Von Rydingsvard is a sculptor who has been working in Brooklyn, New York, for the past 30 years. She is best known for creating large-scale, often monumental sculpture from cedar beams, which she painstakingly cuts, assembles, and laminates, finally rubbing powdered graphite into the work’s textured, faceted surfaces.  Her signature abstract shapes refer to things in the real world—simple vessels, bowls, tools, and other objects—each revealing the mark of the human hand while also summoning natural forms and forces.

    S

    Alex Sofroniew Art Historian
    Wednesday, April 11
    AF 209B at 7pm
    Alex Sofroniew will be discussing “The Lansdowne Ancient Marbles and Californian Collectors”. From the time of their discovery in Italy in the mid-18th century onwards; the Greek and Roman marble statues amassed by the British Lord Lansdowne and displayed in his house in London were celebrated as some of the finest artworks produced in antiquity. When they finally went up for auction in 1930, after being in the possession of the Lansdowne family for generations, collectors were hungry to buy. In particular a group of extravagantly wealthy men from California would try to snatch up the best pieces, and bring them West.

    Liz Glynn Performance Artist
    Wednesday, April 25
    MC 213 at 7pm
    Information coming soon

  • Angela Glenn  Graphic Designer
    September 16, 2010

    Bryan Fisher Graphic Designer
    September 29, 2010

    Marc Horowitz Interdisciplinary Artist
    October 14, 2010

    Kirsten Everberg Artist
    October 28, 2010

    Matthew Coolidge  Bensussen Speaker
    November 3, 2010

    Lyle Massey Art History
    November 10, 2010

    Muchelle Dizon & Camilo Ontiveros Artists
    December 1, 2010

    Jason Weems Art History 
    December 8, 2010

    Kristen Morhin Sculptor
    February 16, 2011

    Ron Leland Graphic Designer
    Mar
    ch 16, 2011

    Nicole Camerlenghi Art Historian
    April 6, 2011

    Graphic Design Career Panel
    April 27, 2011

    Charles Gaines Bensussen Speaker
    May 4, 2011

    ADDITIONAL ART HISTORIAN LECTURES
    Dr. Laura Whatney March 21, 2011
    Dr. Alison Perchuk March 28, 2011
    Dr Justin Walsh April 4, 2011
    Dr. Mariah Procter-Tiffany April 11, 2011

  • Todd Gray, MFA Multimedia Artist
    September 9, 2009

    Fernando Del Rosario Graphic Design
    September 23, 2009

    John Garton Art Historian
    October 6, 2009

    Michelle Grabner Fine Artist
    October 20, 2009

    Parker Jacobs Graphic Design
    November 4, 2009

    Justin St. Paul Walsh Art Historian
    December 2, 2009