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Art Around the Clock

By Carol Brévart-Demm

13a_painter.jpgArtists are notorious for working at odd times of the day and night, allowing their creative juices to flow as their muses move them. Still, the sight of 38 art students producing individual impressions of a giant fish sculpture suspended from the ceiling of the large studio in Old Tarble at 2:30 a.m. was quite a surprise for the few who actually witnessed it. What’s more, the artists had been working since noon the previous day. Many of us might shake our heads and murmur, “Ahhh, those artists.…”

Not so Logan Grider, a popular new assistant professor of studio art and organizer of the College’s first art marathon. The October event lasted 20 hours and produced some interesting sculptures, drawings, and paintings—as well as a group of students who were physically tired but tirelessly enthusiastic about the project.

The marathon began with the collaborative construction of a large installation, for which the students chose the theme “sea life.” For five hours, they manipulated, shaped, and combined copious amounts of cardboard, fabric, rope, wire, and duct tape to construct the enormous fish and a figure resembling a diver. Both were hung from the ceiling at a height from which they could be seen comfortably.

13b_head.jpgAfter taking a break to dine together in Sharples, the students began a studio session—producing artistic renderings of their “models” in drawing, collage, painting, and combinations of other media.

“Having students physically construct a space and form allows them to translate that information to a 2-D surface more successfully,” Grider says. “Some students worked on one project the whole time, while others worked on multiple pieces and experimented with tools and materials that were new to them,” Grider says.

He was delighted with the 2:30 a.m. count of 38 stalwart souls, and although that number had diminished by daybreak, “We ended with a respectable 14,” he adds.

13c_jumble.jpgGrider says his aim by organizing an art marathon was to “bring together a community of students to work outside of the structured curriculum. I set up a loose framework for how long the event should last, and the students decided on the rest.”

Grider hopes to make the art marathon a regular event, once each semester.

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