BGSU Galleries

BGSU art exhibit celebrates legacy of Bernie Casey & other African-American artists

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATION Bernie Casey’s death in September 2017 was the impetus for creating an art exhibition in his honor at his alma mater. The Bowling Green State University School of Art is hosting “So Much More … Ohio’s African-American Artists” now through Oct. 21 in the Fine Arts Center’s Willard Wankelman Gallery. Though Casey was best known to the world as an actor and professional football player, he also was remarkably talented as an artist. He attended BGSU on a football scholarship and earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in fine arts in 1961 and 1966, respectively. According to Charlie Kanwischer, director of the School of Art, the exhibition evolved from a tribute to the legacy of athlete, actor and visual artist Bernie Casey and other African-American alumni to a broader, intergenerational conversation among alumni, current students and invited African-American artists from Ohio and beyond, addressing the intersection of racial identity and personal experience. “This conversation recognizes that the experience of African-American students in the School of Art has sometimes been fraught, that it has been and continues to be marked by the same fitful and incomplete progress toward equity and inclusiveness too long symptomatic of race relations in our country,” Kanwischer said. “Yet, approaching the exhibition only through the lens of race risks essentializing the participating artists and their work. “‘So Much More’ is fundamentally a celebration of the deeply personal and particular vision of the artists who gently but forcefully remind us that we’re all ‘so much more’ than our racial and ethnic identities, that the sense of agency arising out of a committed studio practice is a powerful means to push back against the injustice of stereotypical assumptions.” Work by 15 alumni and current students is included in the exhibition. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; Thursday, 6-9 p.m., and Sunday, 1-4 p.m. “The exhibition features (Casey’s) work and that of African-American artists with ties to him, to BGSU and to the state of Ohio,” said Jacqueline Nathan, gallery director. Casey’s art was loaned from the collections of the Thelma Harris Art Gallery in Oakland, California; Barbara DuMetz; Vicken J. Festekjian CPA Inc., and Vicki McMillan. Nathan acknowledged three BGSU alumni who helped shape the exhibition’s direction: Col. John Moore Jr., Class of 1966; Edward…

Young artist wins People Choice honors at Now OH exhibit

Amanda Gargac doubled up on her honors at the 11th Now OH exhibit in the university galleries. When the show closed recently the ballots for People’s Choice were counted and Gargac was the winner. The 18-year-old from Northwood also received the Kiwanis Youth Award  for her painting “Mother to All.” The painting is a portrait of her grandmother, the mother of 13 children. Gargac will be a sophomore at the University of Saint Francis in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The Now OH exhibit is open to all artists in a 12-county region of Northwest Ohio. This year 65 artists exhibited work.

Community exhibit, Now OH 11, to celebrate local artistic talent

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Artists are invited to submit to Now OH 11, a community art exhibit hosted by Bowling Green State University Art Galleries, opening July 13. For the 11th consecutive year, BGSU Art Galleries will provide a professional setting to celebrate the talented artists of all skill levels from 12 counties in northwest Ohio. Artists who display their work at the exhibition are eligible to win up to $1,500 in cash prizes and gift certificates, including the Best of Show award, the Kiwanis Young Artist Award, Toledo Federation of Arts Society Award and a People’s Choice Award. This year’s show will be juried by Michelle Carlson, who will also deliver a gallery talk at 7 p.m. July 13. Carlson is the artist and youth services coordinator for the Toledo Arts Commission. She has taught at BGSU, the University of Toledo and Owens Community College, as well as private workshops for youth and adults throughout Toledo. Artists are eligible to submit if they are 16 years of age or older and are from the following counties: Defiance, Erie, Fulton, Hancock, Henry, Lucas, Ottawa, Paulding, Sandusky, Seneca, Williams and Wood. There is an entry fee of $15 for artists ages 16-18 and $30 for artists ages 19 and older. All entrants are able to submit up to three entries. Online registration is open until June 15. For further information, please visit Volunteers are also needed, and artists who volunteer will receive a registration discount. Volunteers will assist with the setup and takedown of the event, as well as be gallery hosts during the exhibition. Contact Jacqueline Nathan at for more information about volunteering. The Now OH Exhibition is located at the BGSU Fine Arts Center and is free and open to the public. It runs July 13-28, and is open Thursday evenings from 7 to 9 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. Sponsors for this event include Bowling Green Kiwanis, Ben Franklin, the Village Idiot, and Drs. Phipps, Levin, and Hebeka.

BGSU arts events through Nov. 16

Through Nov. 21 – “The Deathworks of May Elizabeth Kramer,” a mixed media installation by The Poyais Group, continues through Nov. 21 in the Dorothy Uber Bryan Gallery in the Fine Arts Center. The exhibit is a purported recreation by the Poyais Group of outsider artist Kranmer’s (1867-1977) private lifework, a tent version of the town where she lived, with each tent representing someone who had died. Discovered by a team of anthropologists after her death but then lost in a fire, the installation was remade by the Poyais Group (Jesse Ball, Thordis Bjornsdottir, Olivia Robinson and Jesse Stiles) based on notes by one of the original anthropologists. Gallery Hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays, and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Free Through Nov. 22 – “Criminal Justice?” an exhibit by activist artists Carol Jacobson and Andrea Bowers, investigates the attitudes and biases embedded in the U.S. criminal justice system. Jacobson is an award-winning social documentary artist whose works in video and photography address issues of women’s criminalization and censorship. See story: Bowers’ video “#sweetjane” and drawings explore the 2012 Steubenville, Ohio rape case and the citizens whose activism resulted in two rape convictions. The drawings reproduce the text messages sent among the teenage witnesses to the assault on an underage young woman. “Criminal Justice?” is on view in the Willard Wankelman Gallery at the Fine Arts Center. Gallery Hours are 11 a.m. – 4p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays, and 1-4 p.m. Sundays. Free Nov. 2 – The Faculty Artist Series features the BGSU woodwind faculty in an 8 p.m.performance in Bryan Recital Hall at the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Nov. 3 – The International Film Series continues with the 2015 film “Le Dernier Loup (Wolf Totem),” directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud. Life is tenuous for humans and animals in the wonderfully filmed Mongolian steppe. The story presents a stark view of the region 50 years ago, during China’s Cultural Revolution, focusing on Beijing student who goes to live among nomadic herdsmen in 1967. The modern world imperils the ecosystem form the south, while wolves, who hold spiritual meaning for the indigenous people, threaten from the North. The screening begins at 7:30 p.m. Free Nov. 3-5 – The 16th annual Winter Wheat festival of writing celebrates writers and readers alike….

Artist documents the cycle of abuse suffered by female inmates

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Carol Jacobsen’s photographs and videos of women in prison could have been self-portraits. In the late-1960s, Jacobsen was in the same kind of situation that landed many women in prison for life, Right out of high school, she said in a recent interview, she ran off and married her high school boyfriend.  “He was a sociopath. He beat the shit out of me,” she said. So many women in prison, she said, are there because they finally fought back and killed their abusers or were forced or coerced into participating in crimes, and then had to pay for the male partners’ actions. These are the issues she explores in work now on display in the exhibit “Criminal Justice?” in the Wankelman Gallery in the Bowling Green State University School of Art. Her videos explore the lives of those in prison and her photo pieces reflect the continuum of the abuse of women within the criminal justice system. The exhibit also features Andrea Bowers’ video documentary “#sweetjane” about the Steubenville rape case. The exhibit continues through Nov. 20. Unlike the women whom Jacobsen depicts and advocates for, the artist was able to flee her abusive spouse. “I ran off,” said Jacobsen, who teaches at the University of Michigan. “I had to hide out of town for month. I was pregnant. I was lucky I had family and friends who hid me, and parents who took me to the abandoned building in Detroit for the illegal abortion that I insisted on having to free myself from a violent man.” When she met the women in prison, she realized: “This could be me; this could be a lot of us.” Jacobsen went on to study art and earn a graduate degree from Eastern Michigan University. She was inspired to move her work into a political realm, something not permitted at the university, while living in London in 1980. She witnessed political activism and saw “women raising hell in court.” When she returned to the United States, “I wondered who was disturbing the peace here.” She went to district court in Detroit, and at first focused on the plight of prostitutes, mostly poor, black women. Their punishment by the state and stigmatization by society was a nexus of the feminist issues – abortion,…

New Music Festival showcases contemporary music at BGSU, Oct. 19-22

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS The 37th Annual Bowling Green New Music Festival will showcase the work of more than 30 guest composers and performers Oct. 19-22. The four-day international festival includes concerts, lectures and an art exhibition. This year’s featured guests include composer Dai Fujikura and the Spektral Quartet (See related stories at: and Organized by the MidAmerican Center for Contemporary Music (MACCM), the College of Musical Arts and the Fine Arts Center Galleries at BGSU, the festival supports the creation of new work and engages both the University and city communities in the process of music appreciation and awareness. Most festival events are free and open to the public. FESTIVAL SCHEDULE Wednesday, Oct. 19 7 p.m., Dorothy Uber Bryan Gallery, School of Art Exhibition opening: “The Deathworks of May Elizabeth Kramner,” a mixed media installation by The Poyais Group. Thursday, Oct. 20 1 p.m., Bryan Recital Hall Composer Talk: Dai Fujikura 3pm, Bryan Recital Hall Concert 1: chamber works by Dai Fujikura, Peter Eötvös, Marissa DiPronio, and Chin-Ting Chan. 7:30 p.m., Kobacker Hall Concert 2: Ensemble works by Roger Zare, Takuma Itoh, Dai Fujikura, Christopher Dietz and Jason Eckardt. 9:30 p.m., Clazel Theatre (127 N. Main St., downtown Bowling Green) Concert 3: Works by Dai Fujikura, Anthony Donofrio, Dan VanHassel, Alex Temple, Mario Diaz de Leon, and Matt Marks. Friday, Oct. 21 10:30 a.m., Bryan Recital Hall Concert 4: Chamber works by Steven Stucky, Dai Fujikura, Mary Kouyoumdjian, Girard Kratz, Eliza Brown and Joe Dangerfield. 2:30 p.m., Kobacker Hall Concert 5: Works by James Romig, Chun-Wai Wong, Robert Morris, Marilyn Shrude and Dai Fujikura. 8 p.m., Kobacker Hall Concert 6: Spektral Quartet. Music by Samuel Adams, George Lewis, Mikel Kuehn, and Dai Fujikura. Saturday, Oct. 22 10:30 a.m., Conrad Choral Room, Wolfe Center for the Arts Panel Discussion to be announced 2:30 p.m., Bryan Recital Hall Concert 7: Electroacoustic works by Ravi Kittappa, Daniel Pappas, C.R. Kasprzyk, Mara Gibson, Dan VanHassel, and Mario Diaz de Leon. 8pm, Kobacker Hall Concert 8: Orchestral and wind ensemble works by Dai Fujikura, Jonathan Newman, John Mackey, Emily Custer, and Leonard Slatkin.   (Programs subject to change.) Locations: The Moore Musical Arts Center houses Bryan Recital Hall and Kobacker Hall. Saturday concert can be purchased at: Online tickets will be available up to midnight the night before the concert….

BGSU Lively Arts Calendar, Sept. 28 – Oct. 12

From BGSU Office of Marketing & Communications  At the Galleries –“Face It: Reimagining Contemporary Portraits” continues in the Dorothy Uber Bryan Gallery in the Fine Arts Center. “Face It” explores an expanded definition of photographic portraiture. Curated by BGSU art faculty Lynn Whitney and Andrew Hershberger and BGSU Galleries Director Jacqueline Nathan, the exhibit features photos by 27 renowned artists. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 6 to 9 p.m. Thursdays, and 1 to 4 p.m. Sundays. Free. Sept. 29 – Award-winning author and book critic John Freeman will read from his works as a part of the Visiting Writer Series. The reading will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Prout Chapel. Free Sept. 29 – TheInternational Film Series continues with “Abrazos (Embraces),” directed by Luis Argueta. A group of children travel from Minnesota to Guatemala to meet their grandparents for the first time. The film documents their pilgrimage, exploring family, heritage and immigration. The screening begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Gish Film Theater located in Hanna Hall. Free Sept. 29 – BGSU composition students will present their works at 8 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Sept. 30 – TheBGSU Wind Symphony will be in concert at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center. On the program are “Skating on the Sheyenne,” by Ross Lee Finney; “Et Exspecto Resurrectionem Mortuorum,” by Olivier Messiaen, and “First Symphony for Band” by William Bolcom. Advance tickets are $7 for adults and $3 for students. All tickets the day of the concert are $10. Tickets can be purchased from the BGSU Arts Box Office at 419-372-8171 or visit Sept. 30, Oct. 1 &2 – Elsewhere performances continue with “boom,” written by Peter Sinn Nachtrieb and directed by Katelyn Carle. All performances will begin at 8 p.m. in the Eva Marie Saint Theatre in the Wolfe Center for the Arts. Free Oct. 2 – The University and Concert Bands will perform a joint concert, featuring works by Ticheli, Bernstein, Grainger, Sousa and more. The performance begins at 3 p.m. in Kobacker Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center. Advance tickets are $7 for adults and $3 for students. All tickets the day of the concert are $10. Tickets can be purchased from the…

Face It exhibit at BGSU takes intimate look at portrait photography

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News   Photographic portraits have always had their allure. Think of those ghostly images staring back at you from 19th century daguerreotypes. Viewers will find the contemporary descendants of those models in Face It: Reimagining Contemporary Portraits now on exhibit at the Bryan Gallery in the Fine Arts Building on the Bowling Green State University campus. Recently this reporter was treated to a tour of the show accompanied by the three curators and two photographers who have work in the exhibit. The seed for Face It was planted with a passing remark by Jacqui Nathan, the gallery director, to Lynn Whitney, who teaches photography at BGSU. How about a portrait show? Nathan asked. That casual suggestion took a couple years to gestate, but with the help of art historian Andrew Hershberger it has now come to fruition. Photo portraits are “very common,” he said, “Very familiar.” We carry them around with us in our wallets, on our telephones. We have identification cards with portraits on them. And we treasure them. In the event of a disaster, after family and pets are safe, people will grab the family portraits. “Arguably this is most common type of photography ever,” he said. “Yet they remain mysterious.” Back in the days of daguerreotypes, “people were frightened of these portraits,” Hershberger said. “The kind of impact portraits can have is pretty dramatic.” That pull is evident in Face It, whether it is the tightly cropped images of photographer Nicholas Nixon and his wife, who in a couple images peers surreptitiously out at the viewer or Greg Miller’s photos of children waiting for the school bus in Connecticut. Those photos were taken near Sandy Hook not long after the horrific school shooting there. Hershberger quotes Miller as saying: “How can anyone not see children, all children, as their own, as nieces and nephews, or even as themselves?” In putting together the show, the curators drew mostly on contemporary works with a few iconic images to set the stage. Three portraits on loan from the Toledo Museum of Art include a portrait of a pastry cook from 1928 by August Sander. Sander’s work inspired that of Daniel McInnis, who teaches at BGSU. A Metropolitan Museum of Art retrospective of Sander’s Face of Our Time series, which included…

Diana Bibler wins People’s Choice Award as NowOH exhibit closes at BGSU (updated)

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Diana Bibler’s “Heart Breaking” got some love from visitors to the annual NowOH art exhibit at Bowling Green State University. Bibler’s acrylic painting won the show’s People’s Choice Award. The honor was announced Sunday after the last day of the show’s two-week run. Artists arrived at the galleries in the Fine Arts Center to collect their work. More than 100 ballots were cast for People’s Choice. “Heart Breaking” was an outgrowth of a family calamity. Bibler’s family had a house fire. In the aftermath, a 90-gallon fish tank was neglected and just kept freezing and thawing. They finally just “shoved it outside” where the bright plastic plants froze inside ice crystals. That was the image that inspired Bibler’s vivid abstraction. The title “Heart Breaking” refers, in part to the fire, but was as much inspired by viewer’s reactions to the art. “It reflects the mood you get from the painting,” Bibler said. Bibler, a graduate of Bowhser High School in Toledo, will be in her third year as a 3-D art major at BGSU. Having been encouraged to be creative by her mother, Bibler has known since age 5 that she wanted to be an artist. She’s already won awards for her felted sculpture “Hero.” She entered the painting into NowOH as a way of getting more visibility for her work, and winning People’s Choice, she said, gives her confidence as she moves forward in her career. BGSU Gallery Director Jacqueline Nathan said that was more than in the previous eight shows, and in line with what she saw as an uptick in attendance. “Every day we were open we had a pretty good number of visitors, and they were enthusiastic,” Nathan said. The Ninth Northwest Ohio Community Art Exhibition exhibit features the work of 56 area artists, from both the university and the community. Entry into NowOH is open to all artists who live in 12 Northwest Ohio counties. All work submitted is included. “This all came as a result of a class in arts administration,” Nathan said. “They wanted to do something to support local artists, and this is the result.” The exhibit draws both artists from the community and the university, especially students. For students, she said, the show “is a great line on their resume.” Having the community…

Northwest Ohio gets its close up in NowOH art exhibit

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News A portrait of Northwest Ohio is now on display in the galleries in the Bowling Green State University Fine Arts Center. Friday the 9th Northwest Ohio Community Art Exhibition exhibit opened featuring work by 56 area artists. Entry into NowOH is open to all artists who live in 12 Northwest Ohio counties. “Everything that got sent in got included in the show,” said the Detroit artist Sarah Rose Sharp, who served as the exhibit juror.  “Something that’s really beautiful about that is it paints kind of a collective picture of a community which is great to see.” Art, she said, is “subjective” and when so many works are brought together “you can get kind of an aggregate of a community’s experience.” Roxanne Shea’s “Ariel View,” which Sharp selected for Best of Show honors, reflected that vision. Sharp praised the work for its blend of an archaic printing technique with references to geo mapping. Shea’s portrayals of the trailer park where her grandfather lived are rooted in the Rust Belt experience. Shea, who received her Master of Fine Arts in 2-D Studies this spring from BGSU, said her grandfather died right before she started these prints. Shea, who grew up in a low-income family in Grand Rapids, Michigan said: “I was trying to understand where I came from, where I’m at now and how I feel a little distance from my family because I’ve gone through college.” The winning work is an overview of the park, while another print shows a few trailers. She used the collagraph technique that involves employing found materials. In her case that was wood and 24-inch masking tape. She build up the surface and then cut away material to create the images. “Growing up I didn’t have much, so I had to use what I had around me,” Shea said. “The collagraph process involves grabbing what you can and applying it to the plate. Finding the materials is a big part of the process for me, bringing it back and showing its beauty.” Using salvaged materials, Sharp said, is becoming a common practice among Rust Belt artists. “Finding use for discarded objects… has become a metaphor for redemption.” At Friday’s awards reception, Sharp took viewers through the collection and commented on those pieces she chose as award winners….

Now OH show open to all regional artists

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Bowling Green State University Art Galleries is hosting the Ninth Annual Northwest Ohio (Now OH) Community Art Exhibition. Now OH celebrates the talents of regional artists in a professional setting. The show will open on Friday, July 15 at 7 p.m. with a gallery talk by the award juror Sarah Rose Sharp, followed by the opening reception with light refreshments. Located at the BGSU Fine Arts Center, the exhibition is free and open to the public. A Detroit-based writer, activist, photographer and multimedia artist, Sharp writes about art and culture for Art in America, Hyperallergic, FlashArt, Knight Arts, and others. She was named a 2015 Kresge Literary Arts Fellow for Arts Criticism, and was a 2016 participant in the Art Writer’s Grant Mentorship Program. Artists who display their work at the exhibition are eligible to win up to $1,500 in cash prizes and gift certificates. Among these awards, are a Best of Show award, the Kiwanis Young Artist Awards, Toledo Federation of Arts Societies Award and a People’s Choice Award. Artists of all skill levels 16 years of age and older are encouraged to enter. Online registration is open until July 1. Further information regarding how to enter can be found Artists from the following counties are eligible: Defiance, Erie, Fulton, Hancock, Henry, Lucas, Ottawa, Paulding, Sandusky, Seneca, Williams and Wood. For artists ages 16-18 the entry fees are $15, and for artists 19 and older entry fees are $30. All entrants are able to submit up to three entries. Volunteers are needed to assist with the set up and take down of the event as well as gallery hosting during the exhibition. Artists who volunteer for the event will receive a registration discount. Contact Jacqueline Nathan at for more information about volunteering. Now OH hours are Thursday evenings, 6-8 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 1-4 p.m. The exhibit will continue until July 30. Show Sponsors include the Toledo Federation of Arts Societies, BGSU Arts Village, Bowling Green Kiwanis, Henry County Bank, Drs. Phipps, Levin and Hebeka, the Art Depo and The Ohio Arts Council. For more information regarding the exhibition visit the NOWOH website at Guests with disabilities are requested to indicate if they need special services, assistance or appropriate modifications to fully…