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A group of St. Lawrence University students, faculty, and staff have organized a town hall meeting entitled “How do we talk about prisons in New York State?” for Thursday, April 3, at 7:00 p.m. in the Noble Center Room 109.

Savannah Crowley ’14 and Allison Paludi ’14, both global studies majors and members of Amnesty International, will introduce a panel comprised of Natasha Haverty, journalist and producer of North Country Public Radio’s Prison Time Media Project; Rev. David Van Epps, retired state chaplain at the Ogdensburg Correctional Facility; and Lauren Melodia, campaign organizer for Milk Not Jails.  Dr. Mary Jane Smith, associate professor of history, will moderate the discussion with time set aside for community members’ comments and questions.

Crowley and Paludi note that “the purpose of this event is to facilitate a community dialogue about prisons in New York State that are so economically, politically and socially important to the North Country.  In consideration of prisons’ role in our society and their effects on our communities, it is vital we add local voices to a larger political conversation.”

Visitors are also encouraged to view art and prison exhibitions at the Richard F. Brush Art Gallery that will be on display in the same building through April 12, 2014: Cellblock Visions: Set Free in the Penitentiary; Photo Requests from Solitary; Milk Not Jails, and drawings by former inmate turned prison reform activist Five Mualimm-ak.

For more information, contact Savannah Crowley at, Mary Jane Smith at, or Catherine Tedford at


On Tuesday morning, the Alexander String Quartet visited the gallery and played while students from Karen Gibson’s FYP (Children’s Literature and Its Life-Long Lessons) engaged in a drawing assignment. The members of the ASQ seem to enjoy interacting with students — especially Sandy Wilson (cello) and Paul Yarbrough (viola), who added historical context to the music that the group played.  I forget the individual pieces that were played, but they began with Mozart and followed that with Ravel and then Britten.

On Friday morning, NCPR aired a story on the ASQ as part of its Live Music Friday series.

Tzintzun Aguilar Izzo ’15 is presenting an exhibition of his photographs in the hallway gallery — the exhibition opens on Friday, April 26, as do three other student-driven exhibitions.  Tzintzun’s exhibition, The Pozos Art Project, is based on the work he did last summer as part of his Tanner Fellowship.

Tzintzun will present a screening of his video work on Tuesday, April 30, at 7:00 p.m. in Griffiths 123. One video gives background information about the Pozos Art Project, with interviews of Geoff Winningham and Janice Freeman, who founded the project.  Also included are interviews of students involved with the project and scenes from life in the town.

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The Pozos Art Project exhibition includes work done by students that he taught over the summer while working in Mineral de Pozos, Mexico.  There’s more information about the exhibition and the project that inspired it on the gallery’s web site.

But Tzintzun’s students also produced videos, learning editing and postproduction. One, Buena para Matar, a gangster micro-tale, can be seen here.

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On September 27th, a group of students from Ray Whalen’s art class at Parishville-Hopkinton Central School visited the gallery.  The Alexander String Quartet was in residence at SLU that week, and the students sketched as the quartet played works by Mozart, Shostakovich and Beethoven — not a lightweight program by any means!

Violist Paul Yarbrough spoke briefly between each of the three pieces, giving historical and social context for the music.  It was an amazing opportunity for students to hear a performance by world-class musicians in a small, informal setting.



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YouTube DirektAlex Duane


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YouTube DirektEvan Haynes


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YouTube DirektOlivia McManus

Special thanks to Tzintzun Aguilar Izzo for videotaping and editing the interviews. Additional information about the re:WORKS exhibition can be found on the Gallery’s Web site.

re:WORKS, our most recent exhibition, opened  on Friday, March 22, with a very well attended reception, complete with live music.  The exhibition includes works from St. Lawrence University’s permanent collection and “reworks” by students in Melissa Schulenberg’s art and art history spring 2012 senior-year experience (SYE) class.  Each student selected from two to six art objects from the collection and then created new works based on those selections.

Each of the students gave a short talk about his or her work and described how art work from the University’s collection provided inspiration for the final project.  The students in the exhibition are Mike Cianca, Alex Duane, Evan Haynes, Alli Howe, Courtney Kuno, Olivia McManus, and Lindsay Tarolli.  I hope to put up some installation shots soon.

Students from The Annex Performing Arts Theme House (just across the street) provided music, and added so much to the reception’s lively atmosphere.


Amy Hauber’s sculpture class has been creating oversized bird forms from the templates that Inga and Andy provided as part of the ELEMENTALS Birds project. Yesterday, the students presented their work on the SLU quad and around campus.  The snow only showed up later in the afternoon, thankfully!

More photos and information can be found on the SLU ELEMENTALS Birds page on Facebook.  Thanks to Peter Quigley for taking such great photographs.






This morning, I worked with about 10 students to bind journals using a simple Japanese stab binding.  The workshop was a benefit for  Literacy for Nepal, a group created by two SLU students to support education in rural Nepal.

We met in the Sullivan Student Center and finished our journals in just under an hour, which must be something of a record!

I forgot to bring my camera, so these photos are from my phone and not exactly the best quality.

Gallery monitor Ericka took a little cat nap this afternoon after a hectic week.  “I just put my head down for a second,” she said.  Tomorrow is the first day of fall break, and that should give her a chance to catch up on a little sleep.

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