‘You Had to Be There’ | Comedic art gallery opens in Todd


Nick DeFord's needle work contrasts reality and imagination through various images. (Sidelines/ Yoanna-Mariya Kirkova)

Yoanna Kirkova // Contributing writer

An art exhibit titled “You Had to Be There” opened in MTSU’s Todd Art Gallery on Thursday.

The exhibit includes artists from around the country and features a comedic theme, curated by Thomas Sturgill and Melissa Newman, professors at MTSU’s Art Department.

“I think for Thomas and Melissa, art can have a sense of humor that doesn’t have to always be very formal,” gallery director Eric Snyder said. “Art has different levels just like everything else in life, and to do it with a comedic interpretation is just as valid.”

Through their pieces, the artists prove the importance of art in all perspectives including the nuances of humor. They use different methods of representation such as video, sculpting, painting, sewing and graphite drawing.

Cliff Tierney humorizes American politics in his graphite drawings by interpreting the mouths of all American presidents in pseudo-sexual forms. (MTSU Sidelines/ Yoanna-Mariya Kirkova)
Cliff Tierney humorizes American politics in his graphite drawings by interpreting the mouths of all American presidents in pseudo-sexual forms. (MTSU Sidelines/ Yoanna-Mariya Kirkova)

 

Three of the artists, Jerstin Crosby, Ben Kinsley and Jessica Langley, created a particular art form called “Janks Archive,” a video in which they explore humor through insults. The video includes people from around the world, old and young.

“While the intention appears, at first, to be cruel and negative, janks are in fact an integral aspect of human interaction, used as much to establish dominance as to strengthen camaraderie,” said the artists in their artist statement.

“You Had to Be There” will be on display until Oct. 8. The gallery is open on weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

For a full list of upcoming events and galleries at the Todd Art Gallery, click here.

For more Lifestyles articles, follow us at www.mtsusidelines.com, on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines and on Twitter/Instagram at @Sidelines_Life.

To contact Lifestyles editor Rhiannon Gilbert, email lifestyles@mtsusidelines.com

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