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Current Exhibit (beginning Oct. 23)

Sabbatical art


SABBATICAL - Christina McNearney and Hiro Tashima and invited artists Thomas Kerrigan, Ann Phong and Angie Zielinski
Oct. 23 - Dec. 8, 2017
Reception: Nov. 2, 5-7 p.m.
Gallery Talk: Nov. 2, 6 p.m.
Louis Carlos Bernal Gallery

The gallery and its programs are free and open to the public. Hours: Mon.-Thu. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Fri. 10 a.m.-3 p.m., and before select performing arts performances.

The Louis Carlos Bernal Gallery presents SABBATICAL featuring the art of PCC visual arts faculty Christina McNearney and Hiro Tashima and invited artists Thomas Kerrigan, Ann Phong and Angie Zielinski. A reception is scheduled for Nov. 2, 5-7 p.m. with a gallery talk beginning at 6 p.m. Select works from the artists in this exhibit will be on display at the Tucson International Airport gallery October 26 – January 26.

Bernal Gallery director David Andres explains the exhibit, “Every seven years full time visual arts faculty can apply for a sabbatical from teaching to pursue their personal artwork. Christina McNearney and Hiro Tashima each recently took a sabbatical. They traveled and worked at artist-in-residencies around the globe. Some of the artwork they produced is in this exhibit. I traditionally ask sabbatical artists if they would like to invite an artist to exhibit with them. McNearney invited two amazing artists who support her agenda of environmental causes—Angie Zielinski and Anne Phong. Tashima invited the acclaimed ceramic artist Thomas Kerrigan.”

McNearney, head of PCC Visual Arts Department, produced paintings during her sabbatical that were inspired by the Santa Rita Mountains south of Tucson. The mountain range caught her attention because of its natural beauty and the numerous endangered species that inhabit them. Her abstract paintings call to preserve the sky island environment by drawing attention to and opposing the efforts by a Toronto based mining giant to place a large, toxic, open pit mine in the Santa Rita Mountains.

Tashima, lead faculty for PCC ceramics, produced more of his signature self-portrait sculptures while on sabbatical, in addition to giving artist workshops in Quebec, Canada and Vallauris. He was born in Hiroshima, Japan. When he was in seventh grade, he listened to the Beatles to help him learn English. One of his sculptures in this exhibit, “Yellow Banana Kong—All You Need Is Love,” reflects the influence the Beatles had on his life. He eventually moved to Tucson. “When I was young, I had no clue that someday I would live in a foreign country and be offered a job in the same town mentioned in another Beatles’ song Get Back.”

Zielinksi, assistant professor at the University of Arizona, is a cross-disciplinary artist working with paintings, stitchery, drawings, and installation. Her work examines the paradoxical notions of delight and distress, projecting them simultaneously but not even-handedly. She achieves this through the focused study and abstraction of archetypal symbols of celebration, such as fireworks and piñatas.

Phong, art lecturer at California State Polytechnic University in Pomona, works with environmental issues using waste from human consumption. She takes bottles, cans and cups; and incorporates the waste into beautiful 3D paintings. She is also the president for the Vietnamese American Arts and Letters Association.

Kerrigan, an established Tucson ceramic artist, thinks of art as physical manifestations of vibrations of the soul. The desert is a source of spiritual sustenance for him and his work is a reflection on its essence. He assimilates the various phenomena of the desert into his sculptures.

Image ID:
Christina McNearney – Open Air, mixed media
Hiro Tashima – Yellow Banana Kong, ceramic
Angie Zielinksi – Hold Tight, mixed media
Ann Phong – Fighting For Space, mixed media
Thomas KerriganGolden Dove on Cholla, ceramic