Art Professor's Exhibit on Display at Walton Arts Center

The Walton Arts Center will host a new art exhibit Thursday, Feb.2, entitled “Made in the USA,” featuring sculptures created by Jeannie Hulen, the Chair of the art department and associate professor of ceramics at the University of Arkansas. Known for integrating everyday materials like plastic, Astroturf, and other construction materials with traditional fine art media like fired clay, Hulen’s sculptural installations challenge artistic conventions, cultural norms and the way the marketplace shapes personal, gender and cultural identities.

“This exhibit is a critique of contemporary culture,” said Hulen. “Despite the cute, candy-coated exterior, there is a subversive undertone reflecting America. In America, we tend to live with rose-colored glasses and this exhibit visually explores the underlying subtleties of consumerism and capitalism.”

The exhibit displays free-standing figures and a backdrop all hand-made by Hulen. The centerpiece, a terracotta nude sculpture modeled after Hulen’s daughter, is surrounded by porcelain toy cars molded from her daughter’s plastic Big Wheel toys, showing Hulen’s signature style of integrating different combinations of materials.

Pairing sexually charged objects like bows, associated with femininity, and cars, associated with masculinity, allows viewers to consider the ways our culture applies gender-codes to consumerism. “There are a lot of fine print and subtle details to pay attention to,” said Hulen. “A lot of the content reflects American history and the meaning of manifest destiny and paternalism.”

After studying for three months at Tainan National University in the 2009 fall semester, Hulen produced “Made in Taiwan,” an installation representing the complex consumer toy culture and relationship between Taiwan, Japan, China and the United States. “Made in the USA” is a diptych installation and companion to “Made in Taiwan.” 

The installation will be displayed at the Joy Pratt Markham Gallery from Feb. 2 to April 22 with an opening reception from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.  Feb. 2 This is the second exhibition held by the Walton Arts Center featuring a University of Arkansas art professor.

Contacts

Erica Totten, Intern
University Relations
479-575-5555, etotten@uark.edu

Headlines

School of Art Faculty and Graduate Students Receive Artists 360 Artist Awards

Faculty members Zora Murff and Loring Taoka and graduate students Ashley Gardner and Ziba Rajabi received grants from Artists 360, a program that supports the regional arts community.

Jessica Abughattas Named Winner of 2020 Etel Adnan Poetry Prize

Abughattas, a Kundiman Fellow who lives in Los Angeles, earns a $1,000 prize for her poetry collection.

Spring 2020 Honors College Retro Readings to Explore Secret Rituals and the Logistics of Science

In Honors College Retro Readings courses, students from all colleges tackle classic texts from a contemporary, multidisciplinary point of view.

Meteorites Topic of Discussion at Upcoming Museum Events

The U of A Museum will host Caitlin Ahrens, a doctoral student who will talk about meteorites in Arkansas and around the world at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 24, at the Archeological Survey Building.

Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace Panel on Campus

A panel of business people will discuss diversity and inclusion in the workplace from 4-5 p.m. Wednesday in the auditorium of the Reynolds Center for Enterprise Development.

Newswire Daily