Arts & Culture

Digital printmaker Joshua Y'barbo opens UK SA/VS Visiting Artist and Scholar Series

The Visiting Artist and Scholar Series kicks off 2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 13, in the Art and Visual Studies Building, with a lecture from Joshua Y'barbo, a London-based digital printmaker.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 12, 2023) — The University of Kentucky School of Art and Visual Studies (SA/VS) announces the 2023 Visiting Artist and Scholar Series, with exhibitions and lectures from artists from around the globe, spanning multiple disciplines. The series kicks off 2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 13, in the Art and Visual Studies Building, with a lecture from Joshua Y'barbo, a London-based digital printmaker. 

As part of the visiting artist program, two group exhibitions will be running in the Bolivar Art Gallery. "Disordered Creatures" and "Still" will be on display Sept. 29 through Oct. 28, with an opening reception 5-7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 29.  

Each year, the school hosts a series of free, public talks with scholars and artists concerned with contemporary visual culture. The Visiting Artist and Scholar Series features lectures, exhibitions and workshops in cooperation with the Art History and Visual Studies program.   

Find this semester's artists and presentations for the Visiting Artist and Scholar Series below: 

Sept. 13, 2023 | 2–3 p.m. | Art and Visual Studies Building, Rm. 242 

“My studio work over the years reflects an impulse to piece things more significant than me together by combining my singular experience with uneasy collective guesswork about the world around us. I have followed postmodernity's use of visual allegory and personal metaphor as I create visual narratives that simultaneously represent my own experiences of the world and speculate how everything around me fits together," Joshua Y'barbo said. "My most recent projects explore this ongoing existential crisis through simulation theory and nostalgia. As an artist and expert in participatory art and design, I have followed the principles that a new idea is a combination of old ideas and developing creative ideas or solutions to problems is about seeing and creating relationships. As a result, I have developed a process of techniques for creative problem-solving and producing unique ideas, which I use to create artwork and design art clubs.” 

Sept. 29, 2023 | noon–1 p.m. | Bolivar Art Gallery 

From surrealist artists utilizing "exquisite corpses" to address the unconscious effects of post-war trauma to present-day artists who use "disordered companions" to grapple with mental health, artists have long created external imaginary characters to embody their emotional and psychological struggles. The artists in this exhibition craft metaphorical narratives with "Disordered Creatures" that become empathic vessels for materializing anxieties, fears and traumas. The three contemporary women artists — Crimson Duvall, Laurie Hogan and Kelli Scott Kelley — use feminist methods of care and myth making to address the psyche and create pathways for viewers to do the same. Their creatures are toxic yet tactile, acidic yet inviting, disturbing yet endearing. With intense color palettes and material sensitivity, their works resonate with complex emotional states. In "Disordered Companions," curated by Katherine Gemperline, psychological states are brought into being in order to externalize, examine and engage mysterious regions of the mind. 

Oct. 6, 2023 | noon–1 p.m. | Art and Visual Studies Building, Room 136 

Time McClendon is an international artist and jewelry designer. His studio and gallery is located in Canoga Park, California. Time is a graduate of the Kansas City Art Institute. 

Oct. 13, 2023 | noon–1 p.m. | Bolivar Art Gallery 

Artists panel moderated by Josh Porter with Lina Tharsing and Lori Larusso. During the last three years, our homes have represented our refuge and fortress. They have protected us and provided us comfort. In this time at home, we have also increasingly acquainted ourselves with the objects and people that surround us. The parts of our daily lives that we might ignore or quickly gloss over emerged as everyday reminders of our space. Amongst the chaos of the world, we have embraced our homes as a place to be "Still."

Oct. 19, 2023 | 12:30–1:30 p.m. | Art and Visual Studies Building, Room 222 

Pete Lee grew up in Taiwan during the golden era of Asian cinema. But, due to his strict religious upbringing, secular culture was banished from his house. Instead, Lee spent his childhood making up stories in his head while watching his preacher father politely exorcize demons. 

Nov. 1, 2023 | 10:30–11:30 a.m. | Art and Visual Studies Building, Room 222 

"Through the breakdown and rebuilding of the in between, my work mimics the everyday navigation of these realms," Lisa Wicka. Temporary moments of clarity come together and fall apart creating a self in motion, evolving through experience, place, failures and successes. My work is a surface where this dialogue becomes visible explorations of my surroundings and my identity, a surrogate self with limitless possibilities. 

Nov. 13, 2023 | 5–6 p.m. | Bolivar Art Gallery 

Valencia's research investigates the dynamics of collectivity as a conduit through which we can better understand the generative possibilities and aesthetic forms of intergenerational everyday intersections of relationality. This approach to collectivity is rooted in love as articulated by Audre Lorde (1984) and Chela Sandoval (2000), and built from a desire to transform unjust structures. This enables an expansive and collaborative approach to artmaking. 

Dec. 1, 2023 | 5–7 p.m. | Bolivar Art Gallery 

"Much of the work is made with ordinary supplies like matches, quilts, stickers, popsicles, temporary tattoos and other domicile goods," Melissa Vandenberg said. "I am partial toward the 'familiar,' in hopes of making the challenging subjects addressed in the work more accessible. There is not one mode or material that is preferred over another, but I often find myself gravitating towards sculpture in addition to working with drawing, collage, photography, installation and performance." 

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

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