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Kenan Center Exhibit Features Buffalo State Artists

Kenan Center Exhibit Features Buffalo State Artists

Posted: May 29, 2012

An invitational exhibit of fine craft art now on display at the Kenan Center in Lockport features the work of three Buffalo State faculty members, one retired design faculty, and two alumni.

Extraordinary Forms III: Focus on Fiber and Wood opened earlier this month and runs through July 15, showcasing the studio work of 15 accomplished artists. Along with Buffalo State, the artists come from Villa Maria College, Edinboro College, Rochester Institute of Technology’s (RIT) School of American Crafts, and Sheridan College in Ontario, Canada. Gerald Mead, artist, collector, and lecturer of design, serves as guest curator.

“This is a unique exhibition that specifically concentrates on the craft media of fiber and wood. It’s not something you see very often,” Mead said. “Fiber and wood craftsmen have a specialized relationship with our area and that relationship often intersects with the outstanding craft programs at two institutions—RIT and its School for American Crafts and the design program at Buffalo State. Both have a long history of influencing the careers of artisans working in these media and many of those individuals have gone on to become educators in the field.”

Buffalo State faculty included in the exhibit are Jozef Bajus, associate professor of design; Sunhwa Kim (work pictured), assistant professor of design; Barry Yavener, professor of interior design; and Nancy Belfer, professor emeritus of design. Additionally, design alumnae Carla Castellani and Ginny O’Brien are participating.

Multiple connections exist among the artisans. Mead, who served as a curator at the Burchfield Penney Art Center for several years, honed his skills under the tutelage of Belfer when she taught at Buffalo State. Bajus recently brought Belfer into the classroom as a guest to share a technique she is well known for with another generation of students.

“This show not only celebrates and highlights the excellence in these media,” Mead said, “it also underscores that Western New York is a focus for education in fiber and wood.”

The Extraordinary Forms series began in 2007 with Binational Clay featuring work by ceramic faculty from Western New York and Ontario. Extraordinary Forms II: 40 Years of Craft Media was produced in 2010 to coincide with the 40th anniversary of 100 American Craftsmen show at the Kenan Center.

This year’s 100 American Craftsmen show will be held June 1-3. At this time, Extraordinary Forms III will be open on June 2 from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and June 3 from noon to 4:00 p.m. Afterward, the exhibit will be open during regular summer gallery hours: noon to 5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday and 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. Sunday. The Kenan Center is located at 433 Locust Street in Lockport. Admission is free.

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