Literature Program

Friday, April 11, 2014 at 4:00 p.m.

UB Humanities Institute and Hallwalls present

Joan Linder

Scholars@Hallwalls - Love Canal: A Drawing Project

Select Fridays between September 2013 and May 2014, Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center becomes an intellectual salon. Scholars at Hallwalls features eight thought-provoking, award-winning lectures in the humanities, presented in the intellectual and inspiring setting of Hallwalls by the UB Humanities Institute.

Faculty Fellows will present their cutting-edge humanities research in terms accessible to those in other disciplines and outside academia. The events will continue to be social occasions as well, with complimentary hors d'oeuvres.

All lectures are free and open to the public.

"Love Canal: A Drawing Project - is a large, room-sized, landscape drawing of Love Canal, one of twenty-two toxic sites listed on the EPA's website in Niagara and Erie counties. The history of our regional terrain, its use and misuse are an integral part of the economic development and collapse of the area. This project takes a slow look at the man-made environmental atrocity that prompted the creation of "Superfund" and now exists like an unmarked grave, a mundane field grown over with wild flowers and a chain link fence. Close observation, fundamental to the drawing process, will reveal subtle and not so subtle clues to the history of the site. The studio, a cube truck, allows the artwork to be created on location. In a culture hyper-saturated by electronic imagery, using traditional materials, quill pens and bottles of ink—I situate myself in specific places and create large-scale images, exploring the sub-technological processes of embodied observation and mark making. Working with drawing on heroic scale this work situates itself between the tradition of American plein air and heroic landscape painters such as Albert Bierstadt, Asian scroll painting, and contemporary artists such as Rackstraw Downes and Dawn Clements. The work will culminate in an exhibition and the mobile studio will be open to the public while I am working."

Joan Linder's labor-intensive drawings transform mundane subjects into conceptually rich images. Life size representations of figures and objects explore themes such as the banality of mass produced domestic artifacts; the politics of war; sexual identity and power. Linder has exhibited throughout the US and in Brazil, Denmark, Germany, Israel, Japan and Korea at venues including the Queens Museum of Art; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo; and the Gwanjgu Art Museum, Korea. Awards include residencies at MacDowell and Yaddo and a Pollock Krasner Foundation grant. In 2012, Linder completed a permanent public artwork at the 71st Street D Line Station commissioned by NYC's Metropolitan Transit Authority's Art for Transit program.