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Transforming Spaces

September 21, 2018
shiny geometric sculpture
Louden’s new work will be featured in the lobby for two years. (Courtesy Photo)

A new installation at the UW Art Museum features artist Sharon Louden.

By Nicole M. Crawford

In early August, the lobby of the University of Wyoming Art Museum in the Centennial Complex was transformed by a site-specific installation using bright, highly reflective, curved aluminum sheets created by renowned artist Sharon Louden. The composition acts as a “drawing in space,” transforming the entrance and spilling out into the sun-drenched windowed area. The installation changes significantly depending on the vantage point, outside light and weather conditions and creates new forms and tensions of seemingly infinite combinations.

This work was created in close consultation with the UW Art Museum staff specifically for the museum lobby. Two paid student interns assisted Louden, learning the professional practices of an installation artist and applying them to their own art and museology practice. During the two weeks of installation, the public was able to view the unfolding of the artwork and the artistic process. This project not only engages the museum space but also invites participation from the students and faculty at UW, the local community and the broader regional audience.

Louden is an artist, educator and advocate for artists, as well as editor of the Living and Sustaining a Creative Life series of books. During her time at UW, she will also give lectures, participate in discussions and visit classes to discuss the professional practice of a successful artist. Events also include an artist talk, which is free and open to the public. In partnership with the Wyoming Arts Council, she will also provide artist professional development training that will be recorded and live-streamed across the state through community college networks. Additionally, Louden will conduct a tour across the state and region to visit several artists’ studios and other institutions, which is sponsored by the Wyoming Arts Council.

The installation was completed Aug. 18 and will be on view for two years. All aspects of the project has been funded through the Susan Moldenhauer FUNd for Contemporary Art, including the site-specific installation, Louden’s artist residency at UW and stipends for student assistants. This is the first major project funded by the endowment that was established by an anonymous donor to support major exhibitions by national and international artists who are advancing discussions about the issues of our time, evolving technologies, and the boundaries of concepts and materials.

Artist’s Calendar

Aug. 18: Installation complete and open to the public in the UW Art Museum Lobby

Sept. 13: Artist talk from 6–7 p.m. in Room 111 of the UW Visual Arts Building

Sept. 15: Artist professional development training from 10 a.m.–noon in
the UW Education Auditorium

Visit uwyo.edu/artmuseum for more information.


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