Wednesday, August 31, 2005

"Displaced," the first exhibition in the Brooks Gallery of Fairmont State's Wallman Hall for the 2005-2006 season will feature the work of Jennifer Boggess, Associate Professor of Art.

An opening reception will be held from 7-9 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 8. The artist will speak about her images at 7:30 p.m.

The exhibition will run through Sept. 30. Regular gallery hours are Mondays through Fridays from 11 a.m.- 4 p.m. Special viewing arrangements outside the regular hours may be made by calling or e-mailing Curator Marian J. Hollinger at (304) 367-4300 or mhollinger@fairmontstate.edu. Admission is free and open to the public.

The paintings of Jennifer Boggess recall trips both real and imaginary through muted landscapes.

"Diagrams, charts, layered acetate fold-outs in encyclopedias and maps are my favorite images," Boggess says. "That they forthrightly posit an agenda while attempting to appear objective makes them fascinating. I like their earnestness. I am particularly drawn to maps and the translation of interpersonal relationships (neighbor to neighbor; outsider to insider, etc.) to an abstract form the readily takes on political, macrocosmic implications.

"Living in this region of Appalachia makes one particularly aware of land. It is ever present -- ahead, behind and underneath. One is keenly aware of paths as well. The paths of this region are so complex -- both vertical and horizontal, and frequently subterranean: a winding river is complemented by a twisting road on which one sees evidence of seams of coal and an above-ground natural gas line. Additionally one is aware of property lines delineated by fences and stakes and municipal boundaries or signs indicating borders of specified land use. The physical and proprietary boundaries of lands can be further divided by migratory paths of animals and tactical boundary-making by government agencies. The congestion of linear division leaves a trail of history in a map, and that is what I primarily think about when I am working on an image. I am thinking about the etching of natural forces and human industry. Recently I have become interested in the myopic view as well. I like to think of the small disks as glimpses of markers that hold specific memories."

Boggess teaches Art Structure and Applied Design and Art Education courses at Fairmont State. She received her bachelor's and Master of Arts degrees in Art Education and a Master of Fine Arts degree in Painting from West Virginia University.

Prior to her work at Fairmont State, she was Assistant Professor of Art at Alderson Broaddus College, where she developed and taught the Bachelor of Arts curriculum for Painting. She was also director of the college's Daywood Gallery.

While working on her Master of Fine Arts degree, Boggess was the director of the Innovation Gallery at the West Virginia High Technology Consortium in Fairmont. Additionally, she has served on the faculty of the West Virginia Governor's School for the Arts Academy for Teachers.

Boggess has an extensive exhibition record. Recent solo and collaborative shows include "Concrete Collaboration" at Salisbury University in Maryland; "Land Marks" at Concord College, Athens, W.Va.; and 'Personal Journeys' at the Parkersburg Art Center. Group invitational exhibits include 'The Best of West Virginia' traveling exhibit and "New Work in the Mountain State," at the Museum in the Community, Scott Depot, W.Va.