University Art Gallery presents “Flat Earth Unfolded”

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The University Art Gallery presents Flat Earth Unfolded, an installation by sculpture and new media artist Greg Pond, artist and musician Jesse Thompson, and ceramicist Archie Stapleton. Flat Earth Unfolded brings together disparate media to explore the materiality of sound—sound as sculpture, treated and experienced as a tactile, spatial medium. Ceramic vessels and stainless steel plates become acoustic structures that resonate with music composed for the exhibition and tuned to the materials. The installation will be on view from October 17 through December 12.

A conversation about the work between Greg Pond, Archie Stapleton, and Stephen Miller, chair of the Music Department at the University of the South, will be held at 4:30 p.m. October 24 in Convocation Hall. The public is invited; a reception will follow.

Greg Pond’s multimedia practice combines sculpture, sound, electronic media and documentary filmmaking. With unexpected combinations of media, collisions of natural and technological materials, and recombined myths, histories and forms, Pond explores cultural attitudes towards landscape and the built environment, and the pursuit and loss of utopia. Pond is associate professor of art and chair of the Art Department at Sewanee. He was recently featured in the Hunter Invitational III at the Hunter Museum of American Art as one of the most compelling artists working in the region, and has received international attention with sound installations, exhibitions and screenings in Ireland, Canada, Egypt and Switzerland.

Jesse Thompson is a musician, composer and sound artist who experiments with pattern, vertical sonority, consonance and dissonance, and textural perception. He uses digital technology to investigate the unseen world and the role sound plays in shaping perceived reality. He currently lives in Los Angeles, where he is working on a global peace initiative with David Lynch. He has worked and collaborated with a variety of labels and media outlets ranging from Paw Tracks Records to Vogue Paris, and has been an active participant in the pioneering digital DIY movement. His sound work has been hosted by spaces such as the Knoxville Museum of Art, Queens Museum Biennial, and the Hunter Museum of American Art. Thompson holds an MFA in poetry from the University of the South, and his BA in English from Rollins College.

Flat Earth Unfolded is the third collaborative sound installation between Thompson and Pond.

Archie Stapleton is a master potter who lives and works in Sewanee. He is largely self-taught, and his thorough knowledge of pottery has been acquired from a self-directed course of study and experimentation. He is fascinated by the firing process, as a human manipulation of the geological processes that turn dirt and clay into stone. Inspired by Chinese pottery of the Song Dynasty, he pursues simple classical forms in his work. A craftsman, he has painstakingly experimented with all the stages of creating pottery, from identifying and testing local clay deposits, to throwing forms, to building kilns, to firing, to recreating ancient glazes. Stapleton has exhibited in Tennessee, Georgia, the Philippines, and New Jersey.

Sewanee’s University Art Gallery is located on Georgia Avenue on the campus of the University of the South. The gallery is free, accessible, and open to the public. Hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and noon-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 

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