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2021 SPE Annual Conference: Imagining Legacy: Archives, Collections, and Memoria

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Jacinda Russell

SPE Member since 2005
Member Chapter: Midwest

Art Department

I was born into an Art Department and have spent all but two years of my life there. My father was a painting and drawing professor at Boise State University where, as a child, I watched him grade, helped him rearrange drawing chairs to face the modeling stand, and stared out the windows while he completed administrative tasks. Later, I would attend the same school, switch my major from creative writing to studio art, and enroll in the courses of the professors who had known me since birth. I moved to Tucson for a graduate degree and after seven years as an adjunct instructor, obtained a full time university job teaching photography.

It was not long before I noticed history repeating itself in the stories my father told and those that I witnessed first hand. In 2013, I began documenting six decades in an Art Department from the perspectives of the student and the professor. The series is divided into several categories including: an installation of photographs and objects entitled "An Anonymous Inventory of Items Stolen from Art Departments," a visual reinterpretation of a letter outlining nine outlandish behaviors witnessed while working in this field (and its corresponding typed text), conversations written on the blackboards in the rooms where those activities took place, and straightforward photographs of the pedagogical environment.

A Chair Recognized 18 Years Later, Boise State University

Anatomy Man and Skeleton, Boise State University

Room 14, University of Arizona Photography Department

Once an Art Gallery, Now a Drawing Studio

Room 200, Ball State University, IN, 2015

University of Arizona Finishing Room

Room 251, Boise State University

Freight Elevator, Ball State University

Room 121, Ball State University

Confetti in the Office Drawer

Confetti in the Office Drawer

An Anonymous Inventory of Items Stolen from Art Departments

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