An event titled “RESPONSES” was hosted in the gallery by members of our Interpretation team on Saturday, December 3rd. The event was open to members of the community and a small but varied audience attended, including fellow Pitt students, art enthusiasts, family members and children.
The Interpretation team created a wonderful event that hybridized tour and open response; they guided guests through each of the galleries, prefacing each with basic information on the art in each room and encouraging guests to use visual aids and handheld examples while engaging with the art in each gallery. Throughout each room, questions were posed for the audience to take into consideration while getting to know the artwork on their own.
Upon entering the final room, in which the responses of local Pittsburgh artists are featured, guests and class members alike sat down for an open group discussion. Though small, the following talk entered very meaningful territory. Each participant was asked to share a way in which war has impacted them, ranging from spectatorship through media, to watching the effects of war on relatives and friends that have served in the military, to firsthand experiences abroad.
As a closing, each guest of the event was invited to leave a message on the gallery’s response wall. It proved to be a poignant end to a very powerful afternoon.
Much to the Museum Studies Seminar’s dismay, deinstallation of the imprint of war: responses in print took place on Monday, December 5th. The process ran incredibly smoothly as the class broke up into groups in order to deinstall each room in a “divide and conquer” effort.
Members of the class donned white gloves as we meticulously removed the works of art from the walls and packed them up with care. The evening was truly bittersweet—we have collectively invested so much dedication into the exhibition over the past few months and it was strange to see the bare white walls of the gallery emerge after we had so proudly filled them with such exquisite works of art. It seems like almost an understatement to say that we have come so far as a team since our first few class sessions but we are truly proud of having put forth such a cohesive and meaningful finished product.
The class owes a big thank you to our instructor, Janet McCall, for devoting so much time to creating such a tremendous and enriching experience for all of us, to Isabelle Chartier, for her vast knowledge of Jacques Callot and her incredible support in the University Art Gallery, and to Nicole Pollentier, for her indispensable guidance and support throughout the entire process.
COMING SOON: Check back to see images of all the amazing responses visitors left on our response wall over the duration of the exhibition!