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Tyler School of Art and Architecture Announces 2021 MFA Thesis Exhibitions

Tyler School of Art and Architecture announces their 2021 MFA Thesis Exhibitions! 30 Master of Fine Arts candidates will showcase works developed during their two years spent at Tyler. The solo and collaborative shows are on display this spring (today, March 31 until May 1, 2021) and next fall (October 20 to December 18, 2021).

Isaac Scott photograph of three Black men standing side by side in front of a tall city building. The men on the left and right hold megaphones, the man on the right speaking into it and the man on the left holding it above their shoulder as they look into the distance. The man in the middle looks downwards as he holds one arm over the other, holding his wrist in front of his hips.
Isaac Scott, “JUNE 3RD, 2020. CECIL B. MOORE AVE AND BROAD ST”, 2020. Digital photograph.

The stunning works by graduate students in the annual MFA Thesis Exhibitions at the Tyler School of Art and Architecture, Temple University find common ground in themes such as displacement, memory and yearning for connection after an unprecedented year full of societal, personal and academic challenges.

Tyler School of Art and Architecture is excited to unveil this year’s MFA Thesis Exhibitions—a longstanding tradition that culminates two years of intensive artistic and critical development for the school’s Master of Fine Arts candidates.

The 2021 MFA Thesis Exhibitions showcase the works of more than 30 graduate students celebrating the breadth of Tyler’s MFA degree programs in solo and collaborative shows spanning both the spring and fall semesters (March 31–May 1, 2021 and October 20–December 18, 2021). For more information on participating students, please click here.

Two values critical to the Tyler MFA experience are adaptability and resilience—qualities that have been tested throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Tyler students met this challenge head-on as they confronted the unknown and found ways to sustain their studio practices and education. It is no surprise that the deeply moving work of this cohort finds common ground among themes of displacement, memory and yearning for connection.

“In addition to relevant contemporary themes that speak to us all at this time,” said Tyler Associate Dean Chad Curtis, “we’ve witnessed a great deal of overlap across mediums and disciplines. In spite of the challenges, it has been especially exciting to see the strength of our community this year—the MFAs have been offering each other ‘skill shares’ within their own fields of expertise. It’s strengthened the quality of their work while forging connections between the students.”

The exhibitions are installed on the ground floor of Tyler School of Art and Architecture on Temple University’s Main Campus in Philadelphia, at N. 12th and E. Norris Streets. New exhibitions featuring the work of one to five students will be shown every Wednesday through Saturday, 11 a.m.–6 p.m. All events are free and open to the public.

When they graduate, Tyler’s MFA Class of 2021 will join a community of distinguished alumni that includes Barbara Chase-Riboud (BFA ‘57); Hannah Wilke (BFA ‘62); Albert Paley (MFA ‘69); Moe Brooker, (BFA ’70, MFA ‘72); Dennis Adams (MFA ‘71); Laurie Simmons (BFA ‘71);
Allan Edmunds (BFA ’71, MFA ‘75); Martha Jackson Jarvis (BFA ‘75); Polly Apfelbaum (BFA ‘78); Jean Foos (MFA ‘78); Edgard Heap of Birds (MFA ‘79); Harriete Estel Berman (MFA ’80);
Lisa Yuskavage (BFA ‘84); Lisa Sigal (BFA ‘85); Angela Dufresne (MFA ‘89); John Hatfield (MFA ‘89); Carl Fudge (MFA ‘90); Anoka Faruqee (MFA ‘97); Trenton Doyle Hancock (MFA ‘00); Will Villalongo (MFA ‘01); Jennifer Packer (BFA ‘07); Doreen Garner (BFA ‘09); Erin Riley (MFA ‘09);
Amber Cowan (MFA ‘11); Erica Prince (MFA ’12); Jeffrey Meris (BFA ‘15); Kara Springer (MFA ‘17); and Ayana Evans (MFA ‘00); among many others.

Tyler’s 2021 MFA Thesis Exhibitions participants:

March 31–April 3
Allison Anderson
Ossie Jon-Nwakalo
Cooper O’Brien
Mollie Schaidt

April 7–10
Max Adrian
Nick Carter
Naomi Lemus
Victoria Ravelo

April 14–17
Vatina Cangelosi
Madeleine Conover
Nicolo Gentile
Rachel Hsu

April 21–24
Anna Graves
Gilberto López-Elías
Kaitlin Santoro
Sixuan Zhu

April 21: Virtual Graphic & Interactive Design Exhibition
Justine Kelley
Wenqing Liu
Marisa Watanabe
Kathleen Brissette

April 28–May 1
James Betts
Wensi Huang
Sarah Montagnoli
Ellen Sisti
Yuye Zhang

October 20–23
Isaac Scott

October 27–30
Marilla Cubberly

November 3–6
Charlotte G. Chin Greene

November 10–13
Brian McNamara

November 17–20
Matt Witmer

December 1–4
Liz Ashley Martin

December 8–11
Melanie Bernier

December 15–18
Leah Frances