Anna Clark (BA 2003)

Spotlight: Flint and the Pursuit of Accountability

"Five years ago, in Flint, Michigan, a state-appointed emergency manager made the decision to switch the city’s water supply. Local health officials then failed to ensure the safety of the water. The consequences were devastating. Children’s blood lead levels rose. Twelve people died of Legionnaires’ disease, believed to be the result of bacteria in the water.

In her 2018 book about the Flint crisis, “The Poisoned City: Flint’s Water and the American Urban Tragedy,” journalist Anna Clark wrote about how dangerous the water became:

“The drinking water, it turned out, was full of lead and other toxins. No amount of lead exposure is safe. There is no known cure for lead poisoning. The threat invaded the most intimate spaces of people’s lives: their bodies, their homes, their meals, the baths they gave their children, the formula they fed their babies. Yet it will be years before we can fully assess the effect of lead exposure on a whole generation of children. We must wait for them to grow up and see.""

Full article here.

The Appeal - June 17th, 2019

Officials are sworn in during a 2016 House oversight hearing on the Flint water crisis


Orianna Cacchione (BA 2005)

LACMA Explores the Allure of Matter

"As a whole, The Allure of Matter has been organised by Wu Hung, professor of Chinese Art History at the University of Chicago and adjunct curator at the Smart Museum of Art, alongside Orianna Cacchione, Smart Museum of Art's first appointed curator of global contemporary art. The works on view at LACMA were co-curated by Stephen Little, LACMA's curator of Chinese art and head of the Chinese, Korean, and South and Southeast Asian art departments, with curatorial assistant of Chinese and Korean art, Susanna Ferrell.

As Wu Hung explains in his catalogue essay, the show 'coins the concept "Material Art," or caizhi yishu in Chinese, to define' a 'largely unexamined' yet 'crucial component' of contemporary Chinese art. The exhibition pays close attention to the 'consistent use of unconventional materials to produce works in which material, rather than image or style, is paramount in manifesting the artist's aesthetic judgement or social critique.'"

Full article here.

Ocula - June 14th, 2019

Gu Wenda, united nations: american code (2018–2019). Exhibition view: The Allure of Matter: Material Art from China, Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2 June 2019–5 January 2020). Photo: © Museum Associates/LACMA.


Rylend Grant

Talking Action Lab Danger Zone’s BANJAX with creator Rylend Grant

"What tips would you have for aspiring writers? 

Write. Make comics. Start now and keep at it. The process has gotten so much easier in the last few years with social media groups and digital workflow. The Connecting Comic Book Writers and Artists group on Facebook has 25,000+ members, and there are a dozen more like it out there. There are TONS of talented artists in those groups, all chomping at the bit to start penciling good material. Get something down on paper, go there, and get somebody drawing it. That’s where I started. Now, I have five titles in the pipe, artist working for me in Hungary, Brazil, Portugal, and Mexico. My go-to colorist is in Indonesia. My letterer is in the UK. I communicate with them almost exclusively via email. I pay them via PayPal. Files are drop boxed back and forth. It really works marvelously.

Find a group of smart, like-minded folks headed in the same direction and hold them close. Note up each other’s work, encourage and inspire each other, make your opportunities their’s and vice versa. 

Participate in the comics eco-system. Table at cons. Buy from people who are tabling at cons. Contribute to Kickstarters. Get yourself on a con panel. Bloggers, journalists, and podcasters need content, and you need to promote your book… meet in the middle. This is a GREAT community, and everything you put into it comes back to you two-fold."

Full interview here

Times Union - June 10th, 2019


Jonathan Binstock (Ph.D. 2000)

Jonathan Binstock reappointed Memorial Art Gallery director

"The Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester is pleased to announce the reappointment of Mary W. and Donald R. Clark Director Jonathan Binstock for another five-year term. Binstock became the seventh director of the Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester in September 2014. Since then, he has led an expansion of the museum’s permanent collection, special exhibition program, public engagement and outreach efforts, and its annual operating budget.

“I am very pleased that Jonathan Binstock has been reappointed director of the Memorial Art Gallery,” said University of Rochester president Richard Feldman. “His commitment to the museum as a community asset and his dedication to artistic innovation have expanded MAG’s collection and enhanced its work with the rest of the University. I’m confident that under his continued direction, MAG will explore new and exciting ways to build community and enrich lives through the direct experience of art.""

Full article here.

University of Rochester - June 3rd, 2019


Sam Valenti IV (BA 2002)

At Movement, Ghostly International label celebrates two decades of electronic sounds

"As a freshmen at the University of Michigan, Sam Valenti IV dreamed of breaking into the music industry.

He turned to Ann Arbor’s stock of musicians, DJs, designers and photographers to make it happen, founding his own record label inspired by the Detroit-based techno labels he adored.

“It seemed like a very accessible and possible route to get into the industry,” recalls Valenti.

By the summer of 1999, Valenti released the debut record on his budding Ghostly International label. It included a version of “Put Your Hands Up For Detroit” — an anthemic jock jam that’s become a signature sound at Detroit sporting events."

Full article here.

Detroit Free Press - May 25th, 2019


Allison Martino (Ph.D. 2018)

One Stage, Many Nations: An African Fashion Show at Bowdoin

"Models were students of African descent who volunteered to either represent their own countries or walk for unrepresented countries. Participants brought their own clothing to wear in the show.

“Africa is not a monolith,” said Vanessa Apira ’21, the public representative for the Africa Alliance and a runway model, “and I think that’s what this fashion show is about. To show you the many different ways and styles of dress among different nations—that there’s so much variance within the continent."

“Clothes are such a big aspect of many African cultures," Apira continued. "One of my classes this semester, Traveling Textiles, helped to highlight for me how important they are." The course, taught by Allison Martino, Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Africana Studies, examines the histories and roles of textiles and clothing in cross-cultural exchanges."

Full article here.

Bowdoin College - April 19th, 2019


Huey Copeland (BA 1998)

Art Historian Explores African Diaspora, Intersections

"Dr. Huey Copeland, an associate professor of art history and the Arthur Andersen Teaching and Research Professor at Northwestern University, has advanced scholarship in contemporary and modern art of the African diaspora like few others.

As an affiliated faculty member in African-American studies, art theory and practice, critical theory, gender and sexuality studies and performance studies at the school, the award-winning scholar has positioned his work at the intersections of class, race, gender and sexuality in Western visual culture.

“I do think that art often represents and refracts that which we most deeply value in our culture,” says Copeland. “And it also shows us those spots of trouble or vexing or disinterest as they have materialized themselves within individual fields. Art has the potential to reframe that experience and help us think differently not only about what but how it is we see.""

Full article here.

Diverse Education - April 16th, 2019

Dr. Huey Copeland