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Howard Risatti is emeritus professor of contemporary art and critical theory in the Department of Art History at Virginia Commonwealth University where he was chair of the Department of Craft/Material Studies from 2001–2005. He is the author of five books: A Theory of Craft: Function and Aesthetic Expression (University of North Carolina Press, 2007); Skilled Work: American Craft in the Renwick Gallery (Smithsonian Institution Press, 1998), co-authored with Kenneth Trapp; The Mountain Lake Workshops: Artists in Locale (Anderson Gallery, Virginia Commonwealth University, 1996), which accompanied the exhibition he curated of the same title; Postmodern Perspectives: Issues in Contemporary Art(Prentice Hall, 1990); and New Music Vocabulary (University of Illinois Press, 1975). His work has appeared in Art Journal, Latin American Art, Woman’s Art Journal, The Studio Potter, Sculpture Magazine, Ceramics Monthly, Ceramics: Art and Perception, Korean Monthly Ceramic Art, Winterthur Portfolio, and Britain’s Crafts Magazine, among others. He has lectured at many conferences, including the Cheongju International Craft Biennale 2003 Academic Symposium and “CRITICAL Santa Fe: Developing Criticism in Ceramics,” a conference organized by the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts.
Paul Ryan is a painter and art critic living and working in Staunton, Virginia. Since 1983 he has shown his work in numerous solo and group exhibitions in a variety of venues, including Reynolds Gallery (Richmond, VA), Marion Gallery, Rockefeller Arts Center at SUNY Fredonia (Fredonia, New York), 1708 Gallery (Richmond, VA), Hartell Gallery at Cornell University (Ithaca, NY), The McLean Project for the Arts (McLean, VA), The University Gallery at The University of South Carolina (Spartanburg, SC), Fine Arts Building Gallery at Virginia Commonwealth University (Richmond, VA), The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (Richmond, VA), Leeds Gallery at Earlham College (Richmond, Indiana), the Armory Gallery at Virginia Tech (Blacksburg, VA), Space 301 (Mobile, Alabama), and the Taubman Museum of Art (Roanoke, VA), among others. He teaches drawing, painting, and courses on contemporary art and art criticism in the Department of Art and Art History at Mary Baldwin College. He also teaches critical theory in the MFA program of the Department of Painting and Printmaking in the School of the Arts at Virginia Commonwealth University. He has been a contributing editor for Art Papers Magazine since 1990. Since 1989 his writing has appeared in publications such as Art Papers Magazine, Sculpture Magazine, ArtLies, and Art in America. He is represented by Reynolds Gallery in Richmond, Virginia, and his paintings are in numerous public, corporate, and private collections.
Painting + Printmaking Faculty member Paul Ryan received one of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Professional Awards in their Visual Arts Fellowship Program. Read more about it here.
With amazing dexterity, artists juggle many roles to maintain creativity and to make innovative things happen. With projects driven by desire, but limited by resources and a changed economy, DIY strategies have become an essential norm. However, artists who take control are not unique to the 21st Century. A rich history of artist advocacy can be traced from the Dadaist through Happenings to Alternative Art spaces and many of today’s highly respectable galleries and cooperatives had humble beginnings as artist founded DIY initiatives. This session brings together artists/arbiters to share their projects and hybrid practices. Topics include curatorial/new exhibition platforms, artists’ communities, collaborations, and social practice. Presentations will offer blueprints for success and serve as models for future happenings.