Previous Festivals

articulture 2013Blasphemy and Devotion: Redefining the Spiritual in Art

March 26–April 26, 2013
Curated by: Jeanne Brody and Emily Hage

At a time when religion and spirituality are at the center of American politics and culture, artists continue to engage the many intersections between art and faith. Unprecedented globalization has helped spur dialogues among a wide range of creeds, calling attention to artists’ sometimes controversial visual responses to religion worldwide. Through a selection of artworks, “Blasphemy & Devotion: Redefining the Spiritual in Art” brings together works in a variety of media – sculpture, paintings, installation, and video – to examine such topics as iconography, censorship, blasphemy, visual interpretations of sacred texts, and the sublime. It aims to broaden viewers’ understanding of the practice and reception of art and the many beliefs and world views that inform artists working today. It addresses such questions as: In what ways have today’s artists embraced or critiqued organized religion? How have artists reinterpreted “sacred,” “spirituality,” and other ideas traditionally defined in terms of religion? How do mundane objects become fetishes/totems/sacred in the hands of some artists? 

There is a long tradition of art used to reinforce doctrine for organized religion: magnificent images of Madonnas, Bodhisattvas, and the Hindu deities. Today a broad range of artists continue to wrestle with issues related to religion and spirituality in their works, and this exhibition seeks to explore the various ways in which they do so.

Participating Artists

  • Rita Bernstein
  • Martin Brief
  • Moe Brooker
  • Lesley Dill
  • Ellen Frank
  • Taehee Kim
  • Nicholas Kripal
  • Dennis McNally
  • Paul Swenbeck

Opening Reception
Tuesday, March 26

Artist Panel Discussion
With Lesley Dill, Nicholas Kripal, Dennis McNally, Paul Swenbeck
Thursday, March 28

The Art of Illumination with Ellen Frank
Film and Workshop
Thursday, April 4

Student Theatre Production

By Stephen Schwartz and John-Michael Tebelak
April 10 - 13 and 17 - 20

New Music Concert Series

Dolce Suono Ensemble
Presents the World Premiere of Fang Man's Earth
Sunday, April 14

SpectiCast Series Presents

W.A. Mozart's "The Great Mass"
A Ballet by Uwe Scholz
Sunday, April 21

Terminal Jest: Dark Humor in Recent Art

March 30–April 27, 2011
Curated by: Stamatina Gregory & Michael Hall
Keynote Speaker: Christian Viveros-Fauné

Terminal Jest brought together a selection of a much larger field of emerging and established artists working across various media (painting, sculpture, video, and performance), all of whom exploit the slippages between horror and laughter, between vulnerability and megalomania. Their work operates as a critique of contemporary culture through mimesis, skewering and subverting a range of paradigms: the machinations of geopolitics, the twisted hierarchies of the art market, the simultaneous connection and alienation of social media, and the ideologies perpetuated through popular culture, from Hollywood to B-movie horror. Provocative without being gratuitous, illuminating without being moralistic, and simultaneously serious and hilarious, these works and practices posit questions without easy answers on our relationship to life, death, our society, and ourselves.

Participating Artists

  • Julien Bismuth
  • Ethan Breckenridge
  • Steven & Billy Blaise Dufala
  • Erica Eyres
  • John Giorno
  • George Horner
  • Kysa Johnson
  • Liz Magic Laser & Dafna Maimon
  • Jillian McDonald
  • Guy Richards Smit
  • Deb Sokolow

Opening Reception and Keynote Speaker Discussion
with a Performance by Guy Richards Smit (Johnathan Grossmalerman)

Student Theatre Productions

Black Comedy
By Peter Shaffer | Directed by Santina Moran-Seaborne

Arsenic & Old Lace
By Joseph Kesselring | Directed by Stephen Smith


New Media in the Performing & Visual Arts and their influence on Contemporary Practice (inaugural festival)

April 1–17, 2009

The artists in this exhibition work in and around digital cultures. They harness the tools of programming, networking, and instant communication to realize projects—or make works that engage with the issues these technologies engender. All of them engage with the particular aspects of what theorist Lev Manovich calls a wider "media ecology." They move between the specific and the general in their consideration of the technical, economic, and social dimensions of contemporary technology: vast amounts of shared, accessible information, increased connectivity, and medical and genetic breakthroughs. At the same time, they address social spheres that technology cannot or has not been mobilized to address, the present and future consequences of both—and their effects on individual subjectivity. Keynote speaker Ben Rubin and presentations by Eduardo Kac and Paul Rutkovsky.

Participating Artists

  • Tiong Ang
  • Jeffrey Aronson
  • Steve Bradley
  • Bonnie Crawford
  • Carlo Ferraris
  • Eduardo Kac
  • Jaimes Mayhew
  • Aaron Oldenburg
  • Paul Rutkovsky
  • Hadieh M. Shafie
  • Kathryn Williamson

The Good Woman of Setzuan by Bertolt Brecht
directed by Stephen Smith

Numinous II Sound Performance
by Steve Bradley

Debris Art Workshop
with Paul Rutkovskylogo