Temple Gallery opens amid hoopla and discussion of horses (Trojan)

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Here’s a little news from Tyler that doesn’t involve Trojan horses — oh well maybe just a little bit at the end…

Temple Gallery had its grand opening last night and we were there to check out the space which we hadn’t seen since our hardhat tour last year.  We also wanted to see the MFA exhibits by Bassem Yousri, Charlotte Rodenberg, Fabian Lopez and Tom Gallagher.

Tyler School of Art, last night before the opening of Temple Gallery.
Tyler School of Art, last night before the opening of Temple Gallery.

The new gallery is a big high-ceilinged l-shaped space carved into four parts via petition walls so each MFA student has his or her own solo show.  The works look fantastic in the space and it’s a good strong show.

Charlotte Rodenberg's MFA show in Temple Gallery (detail). I love the couple seen through the bay window of Rodenberg's house.
Charlotte Rodenberg’s MFA show in Temple Gallery (detail). The piece has a “Wizard of Oz before the storm” quality that’s endearing.I love the couple seen through the bay window of Rodenberg’s house. They just happened to be looking while I snapped. It looks like they live in the house and are talking about re-arranging the furniture.

Temple Gallery Director Sheryl Conkelton gave me an update on the gallery’s future schedule.  The MFA shows continue until May then the gallery will close until the fall, when it re-opens with the Wolgin Prize exhibit show at the end of September (no word on what international artist will be honored with that $150,000 prize).  In January, 2010, Temple Gallery’s part of the Graphic Unconscious exhibit begins (a show that’s part of the Philagrafika 2010) with 7 artists including Swoon, Carl Pope, Thomas Kilpper (Germany), Superflex (Denmark), Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries.  Conkelton said she will be doing fundraising and mentioned that you now can become a Friend of Temple Gallery by becoming a member at various levels of support from $25 (artist/student) to $5000 (sponsor).  Conkelton also mentioned a new web project she’s creating called New Urban Imaginaries that will create virtual windows into neighborhoods around the world.  Cities to be re-imagined are Bangalore, Delhi, Durban, Johannesburg and Mumbai.  It’s not live yet but the url is www.newurbanimaginaries.org

Bassem Yousri's MFA exhibit, detail. Tiny ceramic characters, writing on the walls, all done with a light, cartoony touch and a serious video...the multi-tasking exhibit is charming.
Bassem Yousri’s MFA exhibit, detail. Tiny ceramic characters, writing on the walls, all done with a light, cartoony touch and a serious video…the multi-tasking exhibit is charming.

Everyone I talked with was happy to be in the new school building and energized by being on Temple’s main campus.  There was lots of chirping, too, about the Tyler Trojan Horses, a runaway project by some advance sculpture students apparently.  Rumor has it there will be a counterattack on Tyler waged during the March 25 Tyler School of Art official opening.  We think an effigy of a certain female body part will be delivered to the school during the ribbon cutting ceremony.  For that alone, I’ll be there as witness.

Tom Gallagher's constructed scrim and wood object teetering on one wheel. Like a crazy-tilt Mondrian skidding on one wheel, the piece towers over you like art history.
Tom Gallagher’s constructed scrim and wood object teetering on one wheel. Like a crazy-tilt Mondrian skidding on one wheel, the piece towers over you like art history.
Tyler Print Department professor Hester Stinnett with Fabian Lopez's paintings.
Tyler Print Department professor Hester Stinnett with Fabian Lopez’s paintings.
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