2013 FALL EXHIBITIONS
How have ever cared for someone you loved who was very sick? Have you fed them? Washed them? Sang to them? Held their hands and cried with them? After a very long illness, my grandmother Mildred died in her bedroom. In just an hour, her body was slid into a big zippered bag and driven to a suburban funeral home with a dozen "parlors" and limited "viewing hours." A few years later, when my grandfather died, I wanted to be more involved in his departure from our family life. With the help of my sisters, I organized funeral services at his home. As my grandfather laid in his coffin - in his living room - his grandchildren sat in his kitchen playing his cards, drinking his bourbon and talking about him all night. Because of these two very different funeral experiences, I've become a kind of funeral activist, encouraging friends and family to plan "goodbyes" that are meaningful and appropriate.
about the lecturer
Dead bodies used to be everywhere. Less than a hundred years ago America families were responsible for the death and dying process of their own loved ones, including disposal of the corpse itself. In many parts of the world the dead still are everywhere, part of daily life, not a source of fear and revulsion. So what happened in the West? Where have all the dead bodies gone? It can seem like no one dies at all, so secretive are the medical and funeral industries about what happens to your mortal remains.
(un)Shrouded will address where you can expect your body to go post mortem, what really happens during embalming, burial, and cremation. If you don't like your options, we'll discuss alternative methods of disposition and just how much control you have over your body's life after death.
A native of O'ahu, HI, and currently undertaker in Los Angeles, CA, Caitlin Doughty, received a Bachelors in Medieval History from the University of Chicago and a degree in Mortuary Science from Cypress College. Doughty expressed an uncanny interest in death and mortality from an early age. Prior to becoming a licensed funeral director, Doughty worked in multiple positions in the death industry including funeral arranger, crematory operator, and body van transport driver. Doughty is known today thanks to press from outlets like Salon, Huffington Post, and NPR, as well as for her "Ask a Mortician" web videos. She is the founder of The Order of the Good Death, a group of artists, writers, and creative thinkers with the mission of addressing the anxiety and terror surrounding death in modern culture and replacing that fear with the acceptance of death as a natural event.
Prof. Gertsman, of Case Western Reserve University's Department of Art History, specializes in Gothic and late medieval art. Her research interests include issues of memory and perception, uncanny animation of inanimate objects, medieval image theory, performance/performativity, multi-sensory reception processes, late medieval macabre, materiality and somaticism, and medieval concepts of emotion and affectivity. She is the author of The Dance of Death in the Middle Ages: Image, Text, Performance (2010), the editor of Visualizing Medieval Performance: Perspectives, Histories, Contexts (2008) and Crying in the Middle Ages: Tears of History (2011) and co-editor of Thresholds of Medieval Visual Culture: Liminal Spaces (2012). Her new book project on the late medieval Shrine Madonna imagery, tentatively titled Fragments, Ruptures, Imprints, Play, is under contract with Penn State Press.
Jack Santino is currently Professor of Popular Culture at Bowling Green State University, OH. Author of five books, Santino is also the creative mind behind two documentary films, one of which, Miles of Smiles, Years of Struggle, was awarded four Emmy awards. Jack Santino will share his knowledge of roadside memorials and public grieving collected while editing a collection of essays titled Spontaneous Shrines and the Public Memorialization of Death. Jack Santino has a Ph.D in Folklore from University of Pennsylvania.
about the Guest Curator Nicholas Fenell
Read more about guest curator Nicholas Fenell in the Cleveland Institute of Art's News Online.
Nicholas Fenell is an artist/ curator with a BFA in painting from the Cleveland Institute of Art (2011). Fenell is a multi-disciplinary artist with performance and interaction of the public critical to his practice. He has exhibited work at The Wasmer Gallery of Ursuline College in Pepper Pike, OH (2010) and hosted a performance work responding to Decoration Day at Orange Cemetery in Pepper Pike, OH. Nicholas is a 2013 Jewish Arts and Culture Lab Fellow, with work to included in a group exhibition at the Mandel Jewish Community Center in Beachwood, OH, in May 2013. The Jewish Arts and Culture Lab's mission is to enable the Arts to be a Jewish source of inspiration and expression. The fellowship is made possible by generous support from the Jewish Federation of Cleveland and the Mandel Jewish Community Center.
Fenell has been interning with The Sculpture Center since May 2011. As an intern his responsibilities included writing and sending emails for The Sculpture Center infused with wit, updating the Facebook page and aiding in the installation of the artwork. He volunteered his efforts for SculptureX Symposium #2: The State of the MFA. Most recently, Fenell has been heavily involved in the grant writing and financial aspects of funding exhibitions.
The development of this exhibition by an artist-curator supports The Sculpture Center's mission of the promotion of the goals of early career artists of our region.
The Sculpture Center is a not-for-profit arts institution dedicated to the advancement of the careers of emerging Ohio sculptors and the preservation of Ohio outdoor sculpture as a means to provide support for artists and to effect the enrichment, education, enjoyment, and visual enhancement of the Cleveland community and greater region.
The Sculpture Center receives generous support from The Callahan Foundation, the Kulas Foundation, The John P. Murphy Foundation, the Bernice and David E. Davis Art Foundation, The George Gund Foundation, studioTECHNE|architects, Sculpture Center board members, and many individual donors to Friends of The Sculpture Center. Additional generous public funding comes from the citizens of Cuyahoga County and the state of Ohio through:
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