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2016-17 Cole Studio Projects

Jewett gallery with paintings and photos on the walls, neon fabric panels hanging in the center of the room

Gallery view of the Alice C. Cole Studio Projects 2016-17 Exhibition, showing work by Margo Sulmont (left), Alia Ali (center), and Courtney Richter (right). All photos by Samara Pearlstein.

This exhibition brought together three emerging artists-- Alia Ali '09, Courtney Richter '09, and Margo Sulmont '13-- who were awarded the Alice C. Cole '42 Studio Project Grant in the 2016-17 academic year.
The Alice C. Cole '42 Studio Project Grant provides project-based support to recent Wellesley College graduates for the development, production, and exhibition of new work in painting and sculpture, whatever those disciplines may mean to the artist. The fund enables promising recent graduates to set aside time for artistic development as well as to purchase materials, rent studio space, or access facilities for the creation of new projects.
photographs of blue, magenta, and green gathered fabric on white wall with yellow, magenta, blue sheer fabric panels hanging in front
Photos and installation detail by Alia Ali.
Alia Ali '09 creates work that reflects on the politics and poetics of contested ideas of identity, physical borders, mental and physical spaces of confinement, and the line between truth and interpretation. The characters in her portraits, called --cludes, are wrapped in layers of fabric that both shield and obscure. The figures occupy a space between inclusion and exclusion, between active choice of the subject and decisions made by the viewer. A fabric installation in the Gallery space invites viewers to inhabit the same world as the --cludes, where they can move into and out of clear visibility and inclusion or exclusion.
installation of prints and colored post-its on wall with purple swirl-shaped painting below
Detail of installation by Courtney Richter.
Courtney Richter '09 often wonders if she is having enough "fun," or whether others view her as a "fun person." When she encountered an old copy of the book Miss Manners' Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior, the phrase "excruciatingly correct behavior" struck a haunting chord as she considered the ways that society constructs and constrains ideas about how a woman should behave. Made after the 2016 presidential election, the repetitive processes used to create the work in this exhibition provided a straightforward and comforting task at odds with the impossibility of reconciling how to be both correct and fun.
view looking down Jewett hallway with large paintings on both walls
Part of Margo Sulmont's installation extended beyond the main gallery space and into the Jewett Hallway Galleries.
Building on perspectives derived from her professional life as an urban planner, Margo Sulmont '13 uses sound and mapping as tools to investigate a city. For this installation, she sat down for dinner with a wide variety of households in the city of Cambridge, MA. Tracing the table settings at each meal, she embroidered the result directly onto the tablecloths, creating a kind of informational map of each dinner. Audio recordings of each dinner were edited down into sound pieces that accompany each piece in the Galleries. 
The Alice C. Cole '42 Studio Project Grant 2016-17 Exhibition was on display from August 28 - September 22, 2017 in the Jewett Art Gallery and Jewett Hallway Gallery.
people in gallery for exhibition closing reception