Bonnie Collura, Penn State associate professor of art, will be one of 40 artists exhibiting at the galleries of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, March 12–April 12, 2015, in New York City. The artists were chosen from a pool of 200 nominees submitted by the members of the Academy, America’s most prestigious honorary society of architects, artists, writers and composers. Works on display will include paintings, sculptures, photographs and works on paper.
Collura will install two new sculptures for the exhibition: “Armor for White Light” (2014) and “A More Perfect Union” (2015). “Armor for White Light,” built over the course of two years, is a 10-layer muslin and ink garment encrusted with 1,000 colorful paper forms. These paper bits were cut from airbrushed drawings made during 2002–2012 and represent the scaling textures that can be seen on most samurai warrior armor.
“A More Perfect Union” is one of nine heads in the Imperceptible Rupture series, consisting of graft-cast shells made from a decade of flexible mold rubber imprints. Imperceptible Rupture is partially supported by a 2014 Penn State Institute for the Arts and Humanities Research Grant.
The American Academy of Arts and Letters was established in 1898 to “foster, assist and sustain an interest in literature, music and fine arts,” and is chartered by Congress. Founding members include William Merritt Chase, Kenyon Cox, Daniel Chester French, Childe Hassam, Henry James, Theodore Roosevelt, Elihu Vedder and Woodrow Wilson. Each year, the Academy gives approximately $1 million in awards to artists, architects, writers and composers. It presents exhibitions of art, architecture and manuscripts, and subsidizes readings and performances of new musicals. The 117-year-old organization is located in three landmark buildings, designed by McKim, Mead & White, Cass Gilbert and Charles Pratt Huntington, on Audubon Terrace at 155th Street and Broadway.
The full press release from the Academy can be read here: http://www.artsandletters.org/press_releases/2015invitational.php.
Image: "A More Perfect Union" by Bonnie Collura. Photo by Cody Goddard.