Steven Holl Architects in collaboration with BNIM Architects, has won the commission for the new art studio facility for the University of Iowa Arts campus, according to DesignTaxi. The new building is to replace an original arts building from 1936, which was heavily damaged during a flood of the University of Iowa campus in June 2008. The proposed site is directly adjacent to and northwest of the Art Building West, designed by Steven Holl Architects, which since its opening in 2006 has received numerous awards, including the AIA 2007 Institute Honor Award for Architecture.
- 19 The University of Edinburgh has agreed to enter into talks with Edinburgh College of Art over a possible merger, reports the BBC. The governing bodies of the two institutions have given their principals permission to explore the issue of integration. However, both establishments have agreed that a merger would not go ahead without consulting staff fully. There are examples dating back to the nineteenth century of the university and the art college collaborating. For some years, the two institutions have been partners in an academic federation which has encouraged working together across a broad range of research areas. In 2003 the university became the accrediting body for the college's degree qualifications. A Scottish Funding Council backed project has also led to the development of a joint initiative—the Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (ESALA). However, this is the first time that merger will be officially discussed.
- 18 Robert Knott, a longtime professor of art at Wake Forest University, was remembered yesterday as a teacher, artist and mentor to students. Knott died yesterday after an illness. He was 68. When Knott arrived at Wake Forest in 1975, the fledgling art department had just a few faculty members and did not offer a major. Edwin Wilson, then the school's provost, credited Knott and his colleague, Margaret Supplee Smith, with shaping the department. Today, the department has about seventeen faculty members and offers two majors. "He was especially strong as a faculty member because, first of all, he was a superb teacher, and I heard that comment from many students," Wilson said. "He was also himself a gifted artist." Knott served as the chairman of the department from 1978 to 1980 and from 1995 to 1997. Besides teaching, he took students to New York every few years to buy modern art for the school's collection, Wilson said. Knott retired in 2008 and rented a studio on Trade Street.
- 17 If the Chinese artist Ko Siu Lan had expected more democracy by studying in France, that expectation has been gravely disappointed by an incident of censorship which raises questions about the country’s dedication to freedom of expression. As Le Monde and Agence France-Presse report, the thirty-two-year-old student at Paris’s art academy Ecole des beaux-arts hung a set of banners on the academy’s facade which play on a 2007 election slogan from president Nicolas Sarkozy: “Travailler plus pour gagner plus" (Work more to earn more). By contrast, Ko’s black banners feature the words EARN, LESS, MORE, and WORK. But her installation was dismantled after hanging only “a few hours” on the Beaux-Arts building located in the city’s sixth arrondissement. The reason? The academy judged that the work could be viewed as making an “attack on the neutrality of the public service” while instrumentalizing “the establishment.” The artist denounced a “brutal censorship, without discussion.” The school has proposed to reinstall the work inside the building—a solution that Ko does not find satisfactory. The artist is not alone. The mayor of Paris Bertrand Delanoë also denounced a “targeted censorship” which is “particularly frightening, since it calls into question the role and legitimate expression of artists in the city and our collective life.” While calling upon Parisians and artists to show their solidarity with Ko, Delanoë offered to exhibit the work at the 104 space in the city. The French socialist party—Parti socialiste (PS)—also denounced the act as censorship but demanded that the work be reinstalled on the Beaux-arts facade. “It’s clearly an act of censorship for political reasons towards a work of art,” said the PS party. While expressing its “total condemnation” of the dismantlement, the party expressed its “complete solidarity” with both the artist and the curator of the exhibition.
- 11 A Brock University benefactor hailed the creation of a new fine and performing arts academic chair as a significant step for the institution's future downtown St. Catharines arts school. Marilyn Walker, who donated $15 million to the school in 2008, announced Wednesday morning that art professor Derek Knight will be the first to hold the research-focused honorific in her name: The Marilyn I. Walker chair in creativity, imagination and innovation. But for Walker, the announcement also signaled a milestone for the university's future downtown arts school, to be built in the Canada Hair Cloth building. The university has partnered with the City of St. Catharines to create an arts complex in the core. The city intends to build the Niagara Centre for the Arts, to be erected next to the hair cloth building, by 2012, and has secured all government funding. But Brock's new school is on hold until the institution secures $26 million in provincial funding. "Although the provincial funding for this school has not been received as of yet, Brock does have the endowed funds in place to install the chair of creativity, imagination and innovation in order to get the process of moving forward with the programs and faculty that will make this department of humanities into a world-class facility," Walker, a local fiber artist and philanthropist, told a crowd gathered at Brock. The new chair was created thanks to Walker's endowment, meaning the donation was put in the bank to gather interest to benefit the school in perpetuity. Walker's donation will pay for several more new Canada arts research chairs in the future and contribute toward the cost of the new centre downtown and student awards. Brock president Jack Lightstone called the new endowed academic chair, which will be funded indefinitely, "a long-term commitment to excellence in a specific area of inquiry."The German star photographer Andreas Gursky will soon be enjoying the title of professor at the Staatliche Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. As the Süddeutsche Zeitung reports, the art academy made the announcement about the new addition to its teaching staff last week. The new routine should be familiar to Gursky, who himself studied at the academy under the supervision of Bernd Becher, the founder with Hella Becher of the Becher school.
- 03 More than 550 students from the Art Institute of Philadelphia remain out of their dorm rooms in an old Center City building today while its owners and city inspectors meet to go over alleged safety-code violations, some serious, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. The city’s Department of Licenses and Inspections ordered owners of the seventeen-story Avenue of the Arts building to fix, among other problems, an inoperable fire-alarm system and an improperly maintained emergency/ standby-power system. Some 250 students from the Art Institute were evacuated from the building, at Broad and Chestnut streets, about 4:30 AM Monday when a student’s carbon-monoxide detector went off. Fire Department personnel later took carbon monoxide readings and found a “relatively high” carbon monoxide reading of three hundred parts per million in the building’s basement, according to Fire Capt. Richard Davison. More than thirty-five parts per million is considered dangerous, he said. An investigation of the source of the leak was being conducted. The evacuees, along with three hundred other Art Institute students who were not in the building when the evacuation took place, are being housed in local hotels, said Carise Mitch, communications director for the institute.