Visiting “James Rosenquist: Illustrious Works on Paper, Illuminating Paintings”

On Wednesday, November 19 and Monday, November 24, students in my History of American Art class visited the OSU Museum of Art for the second time this semester. The first time, I led students in a visit to the study room while my teaching assistant, Teresa Kilmer, led a discussion of the exhibition “Framing History.” This time, while I once again worked with students in the study room, Teresa led a discussion of the current exhibition, “James Rosenquist: Illustrious Works on Paper, Illuminating Paintings,” which is on view at the Postal Plaza Gallery through March 14, 2015.

Standing below the iconic Grace Hamilton mural, Shelby Needham, museum staff, gives students instructions before they enter the exhibition.

Standing below the iconic Grace Hamilton mural, Shelby Needham, museum staff, gives students instructions before they enter the exhibition.

OSU Museum of Art student staff member Adam Lettkeman took photos of the students as they studied the exhibition—all photos in this post are by him. Teresa’s discussion was designed to help students complete a writing assignment in which they have been asked to connect Rosenquist’s work to the history of American art in some way. Throughout this week’s post, Teresa’s questions frame Adam’s photos of students looking at the work, taking notes, and synthesizing their thoughts. In upcoming weeks, we’ll present the best of the student essays right here.

Students enter the exhibition, “James Rosenquist: Illustrious Works on Paper, Illuminating Paintings.”

Students enter the exhibition, “James Rosenquist: Illustrious Works on Paper, Illuminating Paintings.”

What do you think of when you hear the term “American art”?

Students starting to take a closer look at individual works of art.

Students starting to take a closer look at individual works of art.

What objects do you see in Rosenquist’s works? Is there a theme?

Student taking notes from a didactic label in the exhibition.

Student taking notes from a didactic label in the exhibition.

How do titles influence your viewing?

Lines on the floor protect the work from people getting too close—but it isn’t going to stop this student from getting a close look at Rosenquist’s handling of paint!

Lines on the floor protect the work from people getting too close—but it isn’t going to stop this student from getting a close look at Rosenquist’s handling of paint!

What media does Rosenquist use? Is there a timeline to the media Rosenquist uses?

A student takes notes during the discussion led by Teresa Kilmer (in background).

A student takes notes during the discussion led by Teresa Kilmer (in background).

Do Rosenquist’s works seem personal? Ambiguous?

Students look at works on paper by Rosenquist.

Students look at works on paper by Rosenquist.

Is there a change in Rosenquist’s formal style over time?

A student stands in front of the largest painting in the exhibition, made up of multiple panels.

A student stands in front of the largest painting in the exhibition, made up of multiple panels.

Can you see Rosenquist’s process in the galleries? How?

Teaching Assistant Teresa Kilmer and students in the gallery.

Teaching Assistant Teresa Kilmer and students in the gallery.

“James Rosenquist: Illustrious Works on Paper, Illuminating Paintings” is at the Oklahoma State University Museum of Art thanks to the leadership and initiative of OSU alumnus and long-time supporter of the arts, Bill Goldston. It is curated by Sarah Bancroft, and is accompanied by a full-color catalogue.

All the works by James Rosenquist in the exhibition are copyright the artist, and licensed by VAGA, New York, NY. The photographs in the post are not intended to reproduce Rosenquist’s work in part or in whole; their presence in the photographs is intended to fall under fair use in terms of their incidental appearance in images directly connected to the educational process.

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About osucurator

Louise Siddons is Associate Professor of Art History at Oklahoma State University and founding curator of the Oklahoma State University Museum of Art. She maintains this blog as a record of her students' work with the Museum's permanent collection as well as more generally with topics related to museum studies.
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