Members of the 360° "Mirroring the Self, Exhibiting the Self" discuss plans for their exhibition
The 360° course cluster Mirroring the Self, Exhibiting the Self is wrapping up with a student-curated exhibition of art and artifacts from the College’s collections.
The exhibition, Mirrors and Masks: Reflections and Constructions of the Self, will be located in the Class of 1912 Rare Book Room in Canaday Library and will run from March 23-June 4 from 11a.m.-4:30 p.m. daily.
Organized by the eleven students in the course cluster with the guidance of Professor of History of Art Steven Z. Levine and Curator for Art and Artifacts Carrie Robbins, the exhibition considers the role of mirrors, masks, makeup, and masquerade in explorations of the self across the centuries and cultures represented in Bryn Mawr’s Special Collections.
“To be able to physically handle a work you've read so much about is so thrilling and special,” says Alexa Chabora ’18, a History of Art major in the course cluster, who is considering a career in curation.
Mirroring the Self, Exhibiting the Self is a two-semester cluster.
Levine led the fall course “Topics in Modern Art: Mirroring the Self” in which the students studied self-portraiture, self-representation, and self-fashioning in cultures around the globe from antiquity to the present.
Robbins has led the spring course, “Topics in Exhibition Strategies: Exhibiting the Self.” In this course, “students become curators, using what they learned during the previous semester to interpret objects in the College’s Collections for a public audience,” says Robbins.
Students in the program were involved in every step of the process of developing the exhibition, including planning and advertising the event, preparing the exhibition catalog, and creating a website for an online exhibition.
“There are frustrations along the process, but what I found rewarding is that I was able to push myself out of the comfort zone and learn to use on-campus resources, such as LILAC, Alumnae Association, and our Special Collections,” says Lizhu Duanmu ’17
Alex Wilson ’17 says that she was energized by the collaborative process of curating an exhibition.
“This exhibition is an embodiment of the creativity that collaboration can accomplish,” says Wilson.
In addition to curating , Mirrors and Masks: Reflections and Constructions of the Self, students have maintained a course cluster blog. In the fall, the 360° traveled to the National Portrait Gallery in Washington D.C.
The exhibition opens March 23 with a Masked Party from 5-7 p.m. There will be artist lectures and curator tours throughout its run. The schedule is on the website.