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Student-Curated Exhibit at USU

Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013

USU art students who curated the 'Ideas' exhibit

Students from Rachel Middleman's art history class worked during fall semester to survey conceptual art in the collection of USU’s Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art to assemble the exhibit "Ideas, an Exhibition" opening Jan. 22 at the museum.

The Caine College of the Arts at Utah State University presents a collaborative project “Ideas, an Exhibition” opening Tuesday, Jan. 22 at the Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art in the Chase Fine Arts Center complex.

The exhibition resulted from a fall semester collaboration between assistant professor Rachel Middleman’s art history class and museum curator Deb Banerjee. Twelve students explored the history and ideas of conceptual art while learning about specific pieces in the museum’s collection, including those in the vaults. The project resulted in a student-researched and curated exhibition that can be seen in the West Gallery of the museum.

“The idea for this course was to use the Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art as a laboratory for learning about conceptual art,” said Middleman. “It was gratifying to see students so excited about and engaged in art historical research. They participated in every aspect of creating the ‘Ideas’ exhibition from selecting the artworks to researching the artists to installing the work in the gallery.”

Artwork in the exhibition includes pieces created by conceptual artists and includes the work of John Baldessari and Allan Kaprow. Paul Kos’s piece Mar Mar March, a kinetic experience for all of the viewer’s senses, is also part of the exhibit. The viewer walks through the art, stepping over evenly-spaced boards to reach a TV.

“Conceptual art rarely resembles traditional art objects,” said Banerjee. “Conceptual artists often felt the idea would come first and then the form or media would follow that best fit the idea.”

Ideas, an Exhibition” is open now through the end of May at the museum.

An opening reception is Tuesday, Jan. 22, 5 p.m., in the West Gallery and is free and open to the public.

The museum is open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday 11 a.m.-4 p.m. For more information on the exhibition, call the Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art at 435-797-0163 or check the museum’s website.

Related links:

Writer: Kara Rindlisbacher, 435-797-9203,

Contact: Denise Albiston, 435-797-1500,

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