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"Gone Viral" exhibit runs through April 7 at Marion Art Gallery
Friday, March 01, 2013


Lindsay Obermeyer, C-Virus, 2009. Needle-felted wool, beads, sequins, 5”. Photo: Courtesy of the artist.

Sonya Clark, Chromasomes (detail), 2002. Glass beads. Photo: Courtesy of the artist.

The exhibition was curated by Dr. Leesa Rittelmann, associate professor of Art History. A lecture by “Gone Viral” artist Anna Dumitriu is set for Thursday, March 7, at 8:30 p.m., 209 McEwen Hall.

By Roger Coda

The opening reception for “Gone Viral: Medical Science in Contemporary Textile Art” -- an exhibition that encompasses aesthetic, political and cultural issues related to current scientific and biomedical practice and research -- will be held Friday, March 8, from 7 to 9 p.m., at the Marion Art Gallery at SUNY Fredonia’s Rockefeller Arts Center.

Interdisciplinary in scope, the exhibition, featuring the works of three American and two British artists, is designed to encourage a dialogue between the arts and sciences spurred by artwork that lends visual form to often complex, abstract scientific and social concerns.

The range of media explored by these nationally or internationally known artists -- Sonya Clark, Anna Dumitriu, Paddy Hartley, Lindsay Obermeyer and Laura Splan – extends from traditional embroidering, knitting, hand-quilting and beadwork to non-traditional works made from stethoscopes, hospital sheets, intravenous tubing, digital video and computerized machine embroidery.

Although technical processes employed by these artists vary, all share a conceptual interest in examining the sublime tension between desire and fear, physical beauty and abjection, and rational science interpreted via the purportedly irrational or subjective art.

The exhibition, which continues through April 7, was curated by Leesa Rittelmann, associate professor of art history. The reception is free and open to the public.

Several events will be held in conjunction with the exhibition.

An accompanying reception will be held at the same day and time for the Algae-Bloom Yarnbomb at the Emmitt Christian Gallery, 2nd floor of Rockefeller Arts Center, made possible by students, staff, faculty and community volunteers. An additional Yarnbomb will be installed on campus by guerilla knitters at an undisclosed location in early March.

Lectures by two “Gone Viral” artists will also be held. Laura Splan will speak on Thursday, Feb. 21, at 8:30 p.m., at 209 McEwen. Anna Dumitriu will give her talk on Thursday, March 7, at 8:30 p.m., 209 McEwen Hall.

Support for “Gone Viral” and related events has been provided by: Cathy and Jesse Marion Art Gallery Endowment; Carl J. Nordell Art Gallery Endowment; Friends of the Rockefeller Arts Center; Department of Visual Arts and New Media, Visiting Artist Program at SUNY Fredonia; the Fredonia College Foundation’s Carnahan-Jackson Humanities Fund; SUNY Fredonia College of Arts and Sciences; SUNY Fredonia Women’s and Gender Studies Program; Walmart Corporation, Dunkirk store; The Wellcome Trust, London, UK; SUNY Fredonia Department of Biology and SUNY Fredonia International Education Center.

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