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Here / Now: Art & Design Faculty Exhibition celebrates recent creative work by Art and Design faculty members. The exhibition includes traditional and new media, ranging from drawing and sculpture to video and installation art, as well as illustration and applied design for assistive devices. Exhibited works range from reflections on the isolation caused by COVID-19 to a collaborative exploration of the concept of nautical twilight. Here/Now offers an exciting opportunity to discover the innovative and thought-provoking art and design work produced by faculty at University of Delaware.

The fourteen artists represented in the exhibition are David Brinley, Jia-Ray (Gary) Chang, Jon Cox, William Deering, Abigail Donovan (with The 181 collective), Amy Hicks, Rene Marquez, David Meyer,
Robyn Phillips-Pendleton, Ashley John Pigford, Priscilla Smith, Greg Shelnutt, Aaron Terry, and Lance Winn (with Jason Ferguson).

The exhibition is a collaboration between the University of Delaware’s Department of Art and Design and the Museums, part of the Library, Museums and Press.

This exhibition has been guest curated by Robin K. Williams, Assistant Curator at The Contemporary Austin.

Lance Winn and Jason Ferguson

Distorted Americana
CNC milled foam, 3D-printed PLA, saw horses, pins
Courtesy the artists

Distorted Americana is a collaboration between Professor Lance Winn and Jason Ferguson, a graduate of the Department of Art and Design’s MFA program. Both artists are trained painters involved in creating works using digital technologies who share a sense of the absurd and interest in challenging convention. 

This sculpture is a rendering of Mount Rushmore created using digital images sourced from Google Earth. The artists navigated through Google Earth collecting images of the site from various perspectives, which they fed into a photogrammetry software program that transforms the data into a 3D model. They then brought the digitally-rendered subject back into the physical world using a CNC machine to build the structure in foam. Because the artists do not create the sculpture by hand, the object is not unique but instead one of a plethora of copies, like the source material. One aspect of the artists’ interests lies in this diffusion, revealing how in today’s image- and information-saturated society an individual’s perception and thought process may be guided, without their realizing it, by various systems.

Priscilla Smith

War Horses
Photography, Encaustic Wax
Courtesy the artist

Priscilla Smith was inspired to create a series of War Horses after visiting the Palace of Versailles. Passing through The Gallery of Great Battles, a grand hall celebrating French military successes through a collection of approximately thirty paintings spanning fifteen centuries, something caught her eye: the horses. In painting after painting, she saw commanders on horseback trampling the people they would come to dominate. While the commanders remain impassive, the horses seemed to her to register emotion, as if they were bearing witness to the ubiquity of trauma under conquest and domination. 

Smith reimagined specific paintings from the Versailles collection with the faces of contemporary commanders: Donald Trump, Xi Jinping, and Vladimir Putin. By altering the images in Photoshop and printing them with an encaustic surface that retains the tactility of the historic paintings, Smith created an allegory of world power connecting the present with the imperial past and compelling reflection on the dire consequences of unchecked power. 

Jia-Rey (Gary) Chang

Living Wonderland
Stereoscopic HD video, 2:06, looped
Courtesy the artist

In this immersive video installation Gary Chang reflects on experiences of prolonged isolation during COVID-19. A vibrant form contained within a three-dimensional box oscillates between agitated expansion and calm retreat. This dynamic might seem familiar to many people wrestling with desires for activity and human connection while also recognizing that maintaining one’s distance helps to keep everyone safe. 

Chang’s background is in architecture, and his work consistently explores ideas about how people occupy various spaces and the modes of interaction possible within them. With this digital animation, which Chang made by writing a code to generate the visual effect, the artist strives to create a virtual space that closes the typical physical and psychological distance between the viewer and work of art.

Greg Shelnutt

Tent (post-nomadic)
Canvas, wood, sand, copper, synthetic rope, steel, & mixed.
Courtesy the artistGreg Shelnutt approaches sculpture as a form of storytelling. The objects and structures he creates are open-ended, not determined by narrative elements such as plot. Nonetheless they evoke a multiplicity of ideas that both emerge from and compel viewers to reflect on life experiences. This installation was conceived and created in response to the convergence of the COVD-19 pandemic and the historic protests against police violence and in support of racial justice. The tent, along with the hazmat suit and writing desk within it, may suggest complex themes such as inhabitation, isolation, protection, concealment, exposure, ritual, threat, and violence. With reference to figures like Henry David Thoreau and James Baldwin, Shelnutt notes that writers and artists often retreat from culture in order to understand it. The tent, which is functional but not practical due to the welding and grommets puncturing the roof, offers a symbolic refuge or semi-permeable domicile in which to reckon with our nation’s past, contested present, and unseen future.


Peter Williams (American, 1952 – 2021)

Absolutely Hilarious
oil on canvas

Museums Collections. University Museums purchase made possible through the generous support of Donald Puglisi, Coleman Townsend, Cynthia Primo Martin, Teresa Mason and Margaret Andersen.