Campus as Canvas: Mizzou Launches Artist in Residence Program
The first of several large-scale murals has appeared on the Mizzou campus—a large-scale tiger in front of Jesse Hall—marking the official launch of Mizzou’s new Artist in Residence (AIR) program. Chancellor Alexander Cartwright proposed the program last year to bring established and emerging artists to MU to celebrate the arts and to cultivate creativity across disciplines. The AIR program is a campus-wide event, organized by the College of Arts and Science.
“The AIR program is all about access: here at MU, art belongs to everyone, and access to art is a central part of our land-grant mission,” says College of Arts and Science Dean Pat Okker.
Video by Michael Cali, Visual Production Services at the Academic Support Center.
Marie Nau Hunter, coordinator of the AIR program, says she asked the chancellor about his inspiration for the program.
“We talked about the importance of creativity—that he believes everyone can benefit from and should experience the arts,” she says.
A local high schooll student, Quinn Bryan, jumps the second "trompe l'oeil" in front of the Bond Life Sciences Center. Photo by Michael Cali, Visual Production Services at the Academic Support Center.
Two professional artists, Chris Carlson and Nate Baranowski, began work on the first installation Sunday on the sidewalk at the south entrance to Jesse Hall. The pair also will create site-specific murals on the plaza area on the south side of the Bond Life Sciences Center starting Sept. 17 and on the plaza area on the east side of the Fine Arts Building beginning Sept. 19. Each of the installations are trompe l’oeil murals, which create a visual illusion to “trick the eye” into perceiving a painted detail as a three-dimensional object. Both artists have been specializing in this type of work for years.
Professional artists Chris Carlson (left) and Nate Baranowski pause to inspect their work on the tiger mural at the south entrance to Jesse Hall. Photo by Michael Cali, Visual Production Services at the Academic Support Center.
“In the arts, we must find ways to connect to other audiences—that’s our future—and one of the best ways to do that is with public art, like the murals we are working on this week,” Hunter says. “It’s this idea of putting art out into the everyday experience, so people who are walking by on their way to class stop and look and have an art experience.”
— NicoleMonnier (@Monnier_MUCOAS) September 17, 2019
“Footprints” are being placed at each installation to show viewers where to stand to get the full effect of the trompe l’oiel murals, and security details will be assigned each night to ensure the works are not damaged. People are encouraged to talk to the artists and visit the spots as the art is being created. The works are intended as temporary and will be removed Sept. 22 or 23.
Nate Baranowski watches as Chris Carlson begins filling in details on the tiger mural near the south entrance to Jesse Hall. Photo by Michael Cali, Visual Production Services at the Academic Support Center.
Hunter says the AIR program builds on the strengths of the School of Visual Studies, the School of Music, the Department of Theatre, and the Museum of Art and Archaeology. AIR also has established partnerships with the MU Center for Health Ethics, the State Historical Society of Missouri, and with the University Concert Series. Hunter says these partnerships are just the beginning, and other collaborations are being planned to link the arts with other disciplines on campus.
Part of the final display: an homage to music, theater, and art. Photo by Michael Cali, Visual Production Services at the Academic Support Center.
The first AIR events are planned for the spring semester 2020:
• The School of Visual Studies will host documentary filmmaker, writer, and artist Alix Lambert, who will teach a semester-long course;
• The Department of Theatre will welcome Broadway and film actor Taye Digges to campus twice to work with students studying musical theatre;
• The Chancellor’s Art Showcase will feature MU alumni working in the performing-arts fields who will also interact with students via guest lectures;
• A partnership with MU’s Center for Health Ethics and its Carlos Perez-Mesa, MD Medical Lectureship in the Humanities will bring concert pianist and psychiatrist Dr. Richard Kogan to Columbia to deliver remarks to the general public and meet with School of Music students and medical students;
• A partnership with the State Historical Society of Missouri (SHSMO) will explore opportunities for visiting scholars and artists to connect with their collections and corresponding university departments and populations;
• A partnership with the University Concert Series will bring the Cab Calloway Orchestra to Columbia to present a concert to the general public and also to work with students taking non-major classes in the School of Music.
Artist Nate Baranowski, AIR coordinator Marie Nau Hunter, former SVS director Jo Stealey, artist Chris Carlson, and AIR staff member Katie Harris pose by the tiger mural near Jesse Hall. Photo by Michael Cali, Visual Production Services at the Academic Support Center.
Hunter says the campus murals are an opportunity to expose more people to the value of the arts.
“The more people who pay attention to the arts and who learn about the arts and who care about the arts and who recognize the arts as essential to our everyday existence, the better the arts are for the future,” she says. “I hope this helps to continue MU’s reputation as a place that supports the study of and the presentation of the arts.”
Students take photos of the tiger mural near the south entrance to Jesse Hall. Photo by Michael Cali, Visual Production Services at the Academic Support Center.
Members of the campus community and the community at-large are invited to visit campus to celebrate art and take photos at the mural sites, tagging #mizzouAIR.
As our visiting artists left a final collection of trompe l'oleil near the Fine Arts Building at #Mizzou. @chriscarlsonart and Nate Baranowki also spoke to students in Catherine Armbrust's Context and Culture in the Visual Arts Journalism class. #mizzouAIR https://t.co/GLYXb4xlOL pic.twitter.com/ZT4gRZe7pY
— Mizzou (@Mizzou) September 20, 2019