News & Upcoming Events

Elle Friedberg to show at the 2016 Nebraska National Undergraduate Juried Art Exhibition!

Elle Friedberg 'Molecubes' artwork detail
'Molecubes' detail, work by Elle Friedberg, photo courtesy of the artist

Elle Friedberg '17 has been accepted to the 2016 Nebraska National Undergraduate Juried Art Exhibition! Two of her pieces will be in the show: Figure Study and Molecubes. Both works make creative use of printmaking, taking this typically 2D medium off the wall and out into space.

Undergraduates from 26 states entered a total of 269 pieces in the competition. Jurors Deborah Luster, Nicole Pietrantoni, and Shoko Teruyama selected works for their originality and artistic quality. This is the 5th year of this annual exhibition, which focuses on three different areas of media concentration each cycle. The 2016 competition will feature ceramics, photography, and printmaking.

The exhibition will be open from September 2-23 in the Eisentrager • Howard Gallery at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln.


Julia Marciari-Alexander '89, first female executive director of Walters Art Museum, highlighted by the Wellesley Daily Shot!

Julia Marciari-Alexander stands in front of sculptures at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore.
Julia Marciari-Alexander '89

Julia Marciari-Alexander, a Wellesley College Art History major in the Class of 1989, spoke to our very own student-run Art History Club this April about her current ground-breaking position, the impact a Wellesley education has had on her life and career, and the general status of women in the arts today.

As museum administration has long been a male-dominated field, Marciari-Alexander's ascendance has been a real testament to her own talents and to the education that Wellesley College was able to provide. The Walters Art Museum first opened as public institution in 1934, and although a number of women were involved in the founding of the museum, it had never had a woman leading its administration until Marciari-Alexander came on board in 2013.

The Wellesley Daily Shot featured Julia Marciari-Alexander on June 27, 2016. A conversation with Marciari-Alexander around the time of her Art History Club visit was published in the Wellesley News back in April. Check out both articles to learn more about the work being done by this alum!


Art Dept. staff member Thomas Willis interviewed by Big, Red & Shiny

screenshot of Thomas Willis video: woman wearing stretched canvas glasses; Retrofit Painting
Video still from Thomas Willis' Retrofit Painting Boston Release Party 2016.
CAGE Coordinator and Art Department staff member Thomas Willis was recently interviewed by Ileana Selejan for local online arts magazine Big, Red & Shiny.


Talin Ghazarian, '16, wins Susan Rappaport Knapfel Scholarship!

Talin Gazarian in Lebanon
Talin Ghazarian, Class of 2016, in Lebanon.


Talin Ghazarian, an Art History and Middle Eastern Studies major in the Class of 2016, has just won the Susan Rappaport Knapfel '52 Scholarship for Foreign Study, which funds a year of study for a senior who wants to pursue a specific subject that requires contact with foreign scholars, libraries, or other resources.

She will be working toward a master of philosophy degree in Assyriology at the University of Cambridge. Her research will focus on violence, alterity, and the body in neo-Assyrian art.

Congrats Talin, and congratulations to all the other Wellesley scholarship and award winners!



Art History professors featured in Wellesley Magazine!

Professors Kimberly Cassibry and Nikki Greene
Professors Kimberly Cassibry and Nikki Greene (right photo by Richard Howard)


Interested in what our faculty are up to? Take a look at these articles about our professors, their studies, and what they're doing with their classes in the Winter and Spring '16 issues of Wellesley Magazine.



Wellesley-Deerfield Symposium

Saturday, March 5, 2016
Wellesley-Deerfield Symposium - Modernism in New England


Modernism in New England
Saturday, March 5th
9:00 – 4:30
Collins Cinema, Wellesley College


A symposium funded by the Barra Foundation and co-sponsored by the Grace Slack McNeil Program for Studies in American Art at Wellesley College and Historic Deerfield, Inc.

The Wellesley-Deerfield Symposium will explore the impact of Modernism on New England’s art and architecture. Though long stereotyped as a bastion of conservative culture and overshadowed by milestone events such as New York City’s 1913 Armory Show, twentieth-century New England was home to a vibrant group of visual artists, architects, curators, collectors, and educators who embraced Modernism and looked for ways to develop its tenets and new media as a regional expression. Illustrated presentations by scholars from across the country will address the influence of Modernism on New England architecture, city planning, interior design, and the visual arts during the twentieth century.

The symposium is free and open to the public but seating is limited. To register in advance please sign up here

To download a copy of the Symposium Program click here



Sophie Kerwin '16 speaks at the 8th Undergraduate Art History Symposium








Julia Marciari-Alexander '89 Lecture

Thursday, February 25, 2016
Retrofit Painting Presents…Installation by Thomas Willis
Thomas Willis

Location: Jewett Sculpture Court
On View: January 25 to February 26, 2016
Opening Reception: Tuesday, January 26th 4 - 6 pm
Artist Talk: Thursday, February 25th, 12:30 - 1:30pm JAC 450

Examining the relationships and disparities between the history of painting, trademark, and entertainment, Thomas Willis’ installation, Retrofit Painting Presents… brings a representation of the hedonic Las Vegas Strip to the academic Jewett Art Center with his conceptual art brand, Retrofit Painting. Willis’ Retrofit Painting, part parody, part praise, is a designer label and online store created to market and sell paintings crafted as objects for everyday use. The label’s “luxury products” range from ready-to-wear painting shoes, bags, sunglasses, hats and other custom accessories. During the summer of 2015 The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas invited Willis as their summer artist-in-residence. He transformed the appearance of their art studio (positioned among shops and restaurants) into a “high-end retail boutique.” In this installation Willis displayed the brand's paintings-as-objects to the casino visitors as a retail outlet, while alluding to the problems and perceptions of flatness on the Las Vegas Strip. For the Jewett Sculpture Court Gallery Willis will surround the “products” and “promotional materials” of Retrofit Painting with the cultural elements of a Las Vegas nightclub to create a theatrical setting for viewing the art.
Within the context of Las Vegas and beyond, Retrofit Painting appropriates high production media, commercial advertising, minimal design, and capitalist business practices to expound on and bring into question the potency and consumption of surface in the marketplace. Visit the piece’s website, or for more information on the project.
Thomas Willis (1985) is the Technology Support Specialist for the Department of Art at Wellesley College, managing the photo, video, and new media labs and equipment for the Jewett Art Center. Willis is a Boston-based artist originally from Las Vegas, NV. He received his BFA in painting and drawing from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 2009. His art has shown in numerous exhibitions across the United States, with works in institutions such as the Luo Ruvo Center for Brain Health, Bentley University, and the deCordova Museum. Willis currently has a studio at the Dorchester Art Project in the neighborhood of Field’s Corner, Boston.