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Winter 2004

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Who, What, When

Centennial spotlight

On campus

Faculty focus

Arts on view



Class notes


Upcoming at the Tang


Hair: Untangling a Social History. January 31–June 6. We wash it and dry it, bleach it and dye it; it grows—where we want it and where we don’t—and we curl and straighten it, shave and transplant it. Hairstyles create a series of signs or visual codes that mark gender and age, status and sexuality. Exploring the meanings of facial, head, and body hair in western society, this show includes paintings, prints, and photographs, hair-care products and devices, popular imagery in magazine and TV ads, and works by contemporary artists who use human hair. The exhibit is organized by art historian Penny Jolly, Skidmore’s Kenan Professor of Liberal Arts. A public celebration to open the exhibit is slated for January 31.

John Coplans. January 24–April 11.

Self Portrait, Body Parts, No. 21, by John Coplans
John Coplans began his career as a museum director and founding editor of Artforum magazine. In the late 1970s he turned more to photography, focusing on his body as a means of
 investigating the self. His works have been exhibited and collected by many major museums in the US and abroad. After suffering a severe deterioration of his eyesight recently, he used magnifiers to continue working. “Of course, we do not see with our eyes, but with our minds,” he notes. “Once I recognized this, I was able to shoot many more works and finish [my] series”—dyptichs featuring “a collage of my arms and legs.” Organized by the Tang in conjunction with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Coplans exhibition will travel to MIT later this year.

Opener 6: Shahzia Sikander. January 24–April 11. Pakistan native Shahzia Sikander reinvents the tradition of Indian miniature painting, integrating precise and detailed figures with loosely rendered forms suggestive of blood, viscera, and the body. Her work addresses multiple identities, making fluid the distinctions between past and present, Hindu and Islamic, East and West. Sikander’s work has appeared in exhibitions throughout the US, Europe, and Pakistan. In 1999 she receivedan achievement award from the South Asian Women’s Creative Collective. This “opener” show is organized in collaboration with Jessica Hough, of the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art in Connecticut, where the show will travel before touring overseas.

The Tang’s regular hours are Tuesday–Sunday, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.; closed major holidays and much of January. For information about curator’s tours, children’s programs, and other events, call 518-580-8080 or check www.skidmore.edu/tang.


© 2004 Skidmore College