Visual Studies Senior Exhibition

Welcome from the Director

Gary Hatfield

Welcome to the online exhibition of the class of 2021 in Visual Studies. As is usual, the projects reflect the intellectual and creative diversity of the Visual Studies Program itself. Penn Visual Studies combines philosophy, psychology, history of art, fine arts, architecture, and other relevant perspectives. In pursuing the major, students complete course work in these various disciplines and choose an area of concentration within them. Each senior works with two faculty advisors from different areas; the VLST program greatly appreciates the work of these advisors, who come from across the University. The seniors themselves meet as a group throughout the year and provide criticism and feed back to one another. Their meetings have been led by three co-instructors, Gregory Vershbow (an artist), Ian Verstegen (Associate Director), and Matt Freedman (an artist). Matt Freedman passed away on October 24, 2020, and the students lost an inspired teacher and source of critical ideas, as did the program. In these otherwise troubling and troubled times, the seniors continued their creative work. Each project is distinctive and represents the interests of the student, whether in the form of a research question concerning vision and action, the psychology of visual media, the visual history of social phenomena, or as works of art that are theorized in a distinctive manner from within the framework of Penn Visual Studies. Congratulations to our seniors. Enjoy their show.

Welcome from the Instructors

Gregory Vershbow and Ian Verstegen

The class of 2021’s fifteen seniors have prepared projects completely remotely, with our yearlong seminar meeting virtually from the beginning. They have built their community from Philadelphia to Italy, India and Malaysia. Not surprisingly, many projects challenge us to face our anxieties and questions of identity. From food, to media representation, to zoom appearances, collective experience, and beauty, our seniors have asked questions about the role of the image in mediating our thoughts and perceptions. Join us as they address their research questions through the media of web and VR!



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