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Ozlem and her Work

Ozlem displaying her work at the “Mark on the Wall” exhibition

It has been almost one month since the 25th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf, but I am still thinking about all of the great events and presentations from the conference.

One of the highlights from this year’s conference was the “Mark on the Wall” exhibition, which presented art work that was inspired by Virginia Woolf and her female contemporaries. Artists from around the world were represented, and I had the lucky opportunity to interview one of the artists whose work was selected for this exhibition.

Ozlem Habibe Mutaf Buyukarman is an assistant professor of graphic design at Yeditepe University in Turkey. After seeing her piece, “Do Not Call Me Anything IV” displayed at the “Mark on the Wall” exhibition, I asked her a few questions about her work:

In what ways do you think this piece connects with Virginia Woolf and/or the Modernist movement?

Ozlem: In my artwork “Do Not Call Me Anything IV”, you can see knee high stockings worn with trousers by a woman (who probably has a room of her own). The knee-high women’s stockings are a metaphorical expression of stepping forward. This is what modernist women writers and artists do I believe. Along with the stockings I placed labels/tags which stand for the prejudice against women. Thus, the name of the series is “Do Not Call Me Anything.” Also, in terms of style, this is not a decorative piece or an oil on canvas; it is based on experimental, instantaneous involvements of objects and textures presenting the drama of modern life with its consuming, exhausting and unstable condition. This differentiates it and makes it modern, I suppose.

“Do Not Call Me Anything IV”

Much of your work, including “Do Not Call Me Anything IV,” seems to put a focus on women’s clothing. In what ways does your work speak to and for women?

Ozlem: The clothing items are somehow the witnesses of our lives, our passions, our emotional commitments, the violence we faced to both physical and psychological in a modern, demanding world. They may symbolise the abandoned self or the avant-gardist… I present the aesthetics of personal items while documenting them, a moment of confrontation.

As a female artist, what kinds of struggles do you think that women artists face today?

Ozlem: Still many… women have to wear many hats at a time. And women writers or artists around the world are facing many struggles such as censorship, visibility and representational issues. Virginia Woolf inspired many women all around the world.

You can view Ozlem’s work and all of the exhibition selections in the “Mark on the Wall Online Catalogue”.

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art exhibit

Conference goers at The Mark on the Wall exhibit in Bloomsburg, Pa.

Artwork and the catalogue for the juried exhibition The Mark on the Wall, which was part of the the 25th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf, is now available for sale.

The catalogue, which is available at cost through Blurb as a print-on-demand item, presents the work of 47 artists from as far away as Dubai. The price is $37.49, plus shipping. The art work available for sale is unframed and will be shipped directly to buyers on June 30, when the show closes.

Eighty percent of the proceeds from the sale of the artwork will go to the artist, with 20 percent going to the Bloomsburg University scholarship fund.

If you are interested in purchasing a piece of art, contact conference organizers at woolf2015@bloomu.edu before June 30. After that, all unsold work will be returned to the artists.

The artists’ work, inspired by Woolf and her female contemporaries, was chosen from among more than 400. Four awards were given at the juried exhibition. Co-Best of Show Awards went to Erika Lizée and Carolyn Sheehan. Honorable mentions went to Mischa Brown, Chieko Murasugiand Jacqueline Dee Parker. See the full list of exhibitors.

Mark on the Wall catalogue screenshot

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woolf_callforentriesNow is the time to get creative with paper, paint, scissors and ephemera. This year, a juried exhibition of small works on paper will be part of the 25th Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf, and the deadline for entries is April 20.

Works on paper (15” x 11” or smaller) in all traditional and experimental visual arts media, including photography, will be considered for the international exhibition, titled “Mark on the Wall,” which announces the opening of the Greenly Art Gallery at Bloomsburg University. Awards will be presented at the opening reception for the conference, which will be held June 4-7 at Bloomsburg University in Bloomsburg, Pa.

Details are available online, along with the exhibition Call for Entries as a PDF.

 

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Installation of the "Virginia" series in the Mythopoesis exhibit

Installation of the “Virginia” series in the Mythopoesis exhibit

In “Virginia,” one of six photo series in Mythopoesis, the MA degree show at the University of Brighton, Annalaura Palma displays photos retracing Virginia Woolf’s steps from Monk’s House in Rodmell, Sussex, to the River Ouse where she drowned herself March 28, 1941.

Palma explains that since no one knows the exact path Woolf took to the river or the precise spot she entered, the walk embodied an imaginary element.

Between spring and summer, Palma went on foot from Monk’s House to the River Ouse many times. In the process, she noticed swamps and bogs hidden by weeds that evoked a ghostly body shape.

“The water creates crevices in the land that evokes a ghostly body shape. I looked for Virginia Woolf ’s presence in her beloved landscape and  I found her in the water. In my photographs, she became water: I imagined her like a water spirit who inhabits the landscape of the Ouse Valley which once she described ‘an inland sea’. – Palma

virginia07low

“Virginia” exhibit photo from the catalogue, as provided by the artist

In an email, Palma said the photos in her “Virginia” series, which are handmade C-type photos, are just the start of a longer photographic project about Woolf and the English landscape. She is based in the UK and considers an investigation around the relationship between text and the photographic image is central to her work, according to her website.

Show dates for Mythopoesis are Sept. 12-19, with an opening reception Sept. 12, 5:30 to 9 p.m. at the Faculty of Arts Grand Parade. Palma’s photographs will also be published in a magazine.

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NPG Tumblr screenshotSee Virginia Woolf biographer Alexandra Harris in Woolf’s Monk’s House writing lodge, bathrobe-wearing Nicole fresh from the shower at her Washington, D.C., kitchen table, and Giselle on a bench in a quiet, tree-lined spot in Kensington Palace Gardens.

Then share photo portraits of you or friends in the rooms and spaces that are meaningful to you in the National Portrait Gallery’s “A Room of One’s Own” competition on Tumblr. Winner of  Woolf-related prizes will be selected at random. Submit them here.

On a related note, The Telegraph includes a reference to Woolf in a story about rooms of her own, which it dubs she-caves, as spaces where women can read, relax, and do crafts or yoga.

Virginia Woolf: Art, Life and Vision,” the exhibit of Woolf portraits at the National Portrait Gallery in London, opened July 10 and runs through Oct. 26. Read more about the exhibit.

 

 

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Virginia Woolf: Art, Life and Vision,” the exhibit of Woolf portraits at the National Portrait Gallery in London, opened July 10 and runs through Oct. 26. Formal reviews are appearing online. But informal ones are popping up on the VWoolf Listserv as well.

Below are some comments from lucky visitors to the exhibit who posted their thoughts to the list this week:

“I saw the show last week and was captivated. I particularly enjoyed the section on Woolf and public transport! That said, there was a glaring, dismaying mistake in one of the captions. Under a first edition of Ulysses, Harriet Shaw Weaver is identified as the “owner of the Shakespeare & Company bookshop in Paris” who approached the Hogarth Press about publishing the full book. Of course Weaver was the editor of The Egoist, who serialized Ulysses and yes approached the Woolfs. Sylvia Beach was the owner of Shakespeare & Company, who finally published the book herself, at great personal expense, and as far as I know had no dealings with the Woolfs or Hogarth.” – Laura

“I was lucky enough to have my trip to London coincide with the exhibit. I wish it had not been so crowded, as it was hard to pace myself, but I was so glad to get the chance! The book that Spalding has compiled for the exhibit NPG bookwould be worth the while, I think, and is likely available online through the NPG. It’s very well curated, with some rare pieces, including candid shots from Ottoline Morrell’s photo album. I think the impromptu snaps of Virginia are often so much more interesting than those she posed for.”  – Andrea Adolph

“Frances Spalding has done a wonderful job of creating a narrative through visual artefacts.  Those photos by Ott can actually be seen on the NPG website, I believe.  I was surprised by Mark Gertler’s painting of Koteliansky (?Kot?): quite irrationally I had always imagined Kot as an ascetic and tiny man, but in this portrait he looks like a big burly businessman!  There are some real rarities in the show?the bound volumes of letters that Violet Dickinson returned to VW late in life; I had not ever known Violet annotated these (of course, under glass one can only see a page, but the prospect is tantalizing); also the actual Gestapo list on which L & VW’s names appear.  And yes, the catalog is very rich and interesting.  I am in London doing research for a biography of Clive Bell, so was lucky to be able to see this wonderful exhibition.” – Mark Hussey

NPG twitter feed“I think we should all vacate our posts and head to London! :-)” – Kimberly Coates

If you’re visiting the exhibit, tweet your thoughts using the hashtag #NPGWoolf. By searching tweets with that hasthtag, I found this review on another WordPress blog in which the writer says the exhibit left her “inspired to firstly read everything she’s ever written (starting with Orlando) and secondly, to journal in a more dedicated way.”

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The Virginia Woolf Society of Great Britain, in association with the National Portrait Gallery NPG catalogueexhibition,  “Virginia Woolf: Art, Life and Vision,” will hold a one-day conference on Thursday, July 17.

The event will feature Professor Frances Spalding CBE, curator of the exhibition and professor of art history at Newcastle University, and Professor Maggie Humm, School of Arts and Digital Industries, University of East London.

The location is the Ondaatje Lecture Theatre, National Portrait Gallery, London WC2H 0HE, and the schedule is as follows:

2:30 p.m.: Registration
3 p.m.: Frances Spalding
4 p.m.: Tea
4.30 p.m.: Maggie Humm
5.30 p.m.: Panel discussion

COST: £25 for non-members of the Virginia Woolf Society of Great Britain. For bookings: contact Lindsay Martin at lindsay@lindsaycmartin.co.uk

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