The Janet Flanner Visiting Artist Series
The Janet Flanner Visiting Artist Series, a vital component of Connecting Classroom, Campus and Community, is designed to provide students with opportunities to have direct and meaningful contact with working artists. Always insightful, these discussions provide an opportunity to meet the artists and learn firsthand about their ideations, inspirations, and techniques.
Admission to the Visiting Artist Series is free and open to the public.
Past Events & Speakers
- Dale Bernstein, March 15, 2019
- Courtland Blade, November 8, 2018
- Heartland Film Festival, October 12, 2018
- Andy J. Miller, February 21, 2018
- Bruce Armstrong, November 20, 2017
- Ted Green, September 19, 2017
- Dr. Terry Rhodes & Susannah Rhodes Stewart, January 8, 2017
- Heartland Film Festival, October 26, 2016
- Forrest Formsma, February 24, 2016
- Cathy Robohm Watkins, October 19, 2015
- The Public Collection: Panel Discussion, October 13, 2015
- Melissa Parrott Quimby, March 16, 2015
- Gautam Rao, February 27, 2015
- Steve Nyktas, November 13, 2014
- Dr. Freddie Kelvin, October 14, 2014
- J.B. Rogers, September 26, 2014
- William Snyder, January 10, 2014
- Tasha Lewis, November 8, 2013
- Rachel Bleil, September 20, 2013
- Cassie Jones, January 14, 2013
- Anila Quayyum Agha, November 16, 2012
- Lesley Baker, January 13, 2012
- Emily Clark, October 10, 2011
- Casey Roberts, August 26, 2011
Mr. Dale Bernstein is an experienced photographer specializing in commercial photography and the historic Wet-Collodion process (pronounced ke-lo-de-en). Wet-collodion process is an early photographic technique said to be invented by Englishman Frederick Scott Archer in 1851. The early techniques involved adding a soluble iodide to a solution of collodion (cellulose nitrate) and coating a glass plate with the mixture. Each image is handcrafted and is a one-of-a-kind, making each portrait unique for its individual qualities. Bernstein is known to be one of the leaders in the Wet Plate Collodion process today.
Courtland Blade received his MFA from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston in affiliation with Tufts University in 2011. Blade is a painter that works primarily with oil on canvas. His paintings are in various public and private collections, including the University of Indianapolis, Indiana State University, DePauw University, the Eskenazi Health Collection and others.
Blade's work deals with public spaces and places of transience around Indianapolis. His series of paintings captures specific moments of isolation within various areas around the city. Blade incorporates crisp, high-definition, contrasting color and the strong presence of light, using these cinematic elements to embody ideas of stark, impersonal space. His paintings demonstrate how our spaces for the masses are constructed to instill order and control large groups of people.
Filmmaker/Producer Annie O'Neil
Presented by Park Tudor and Heartland Film Festival
As part of our Visiting Artist Series and partnership with Heartland Film Festival, grades 9-11 attended a screening of the documentary film, "Phil's Camino." Filmmaker and producer Annie O'Neil spoke to students after the screening and answered questions.
"Phil's Camino" tells the story of free spirit Phil, a man living with stage 4 cancer and dreaming of walking the 500-mile spiritual pilgrimage Camino de Santiago across Spain. Unable to make the trip, he does the next best thing: he builds a camino in the forest behind his house on Vashon Island, starts to walk, and traces his progress on a map. This remarkable journey is one of hope, acceptance, and freedom, and is sure to inspire anyone who has ever dreamed of doing something that sounded impossible. The film has won 20 out of 25 Festivals.
Seniors traveled to the AMC Castleton Theater to screen the Teen Shorts.
Andy J. Miller, aka Andy Pizza, is a full-time freelance illustrator with a background in graphic design, currently living and working in Columbus, OH. He is the creator of the podcast and book, "Creative Pep Talk." He has illustrated for clients like Nickelodeon, Google, Converse, Sony, Smart Car, Oreo, The Boston Globe, and Nutella.
Indianapolis-based artist Bruce Armstrong began his study of art as a student at Crispus Attucks High School, and continued at what was then the IU Extension. Working in mediums including charcoal, oil, acrylic, wood, found objects, and photography, he creates pieces that reflect his personal life experiences, current and historical events, and the influence of abstract, figurative, commercial, and outsider art. He has presented his work in gallery exhibitions, fairs and festivals, and public installations, and is a member of the “We Are (the Reality We Create)” artists’ group. Armstrong allows process to guide his practice, saying, “For me the formula for my art is best when there is no formula at all. Therefore, I am free of restraints [and] the work itself directs me rather than me directing it.”
Filmmaker Ted Green + Screening of "Attucks: The School that Opened a City"
In 2010, Ted switched to filmmaking after 20 years as a newspaper journalist. Since then he has produced six documentaries, most recently "Attucks: The School that Opened a City," about a long-segregated high school in Indianapolis built while the Ku Klux Klan ran the state.
Ted's honors include:
- 14 regional Emmys, including Best Documentary for his past three films.
- First place in the national Associated Press Sports Editors contest.
- The Fourth Estate Award from the national American Legion.
- The Dick Schaap Award of Excellence from the Center for the Study of Sports in Society at Northeastern University.
- The Servant Leadership Legacy Award from the Indianapolis Urban League.
Ted's documentaries, all co-produced by WFYI, have screened in film festivals worldwide and at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, and have been featured in the New York Times and Forbes.com. He and WFYI are currently working on a new documentary about Holocaust survivor Eva Kor.
Ted holds a BA from Princeton University and a Masters from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. He and his wife, Jenny, the sports editor at the Indianapolis Star, have twin 16-year-old girls, Anna and Dylan.
Attucks: The School that Opened a City
A Film by WFYI Public Media and Ted Green Films
Built during the ugliest decade in state history, built to isolate, denigrate, ultimately to fail, Crispus Attucks High School instead produced generals and surgeons, scholars and scientists, world-class musicians and athletes. Most important, it helped trigger a sea change in race relations in Indianapolis.
This documentary is made possible by The Efroymson Family Fund; Lilly Endowment; CNO Financial Group; The Indianapolis Foundation, an affiliate of the Central Indiana Community Foundation; the Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation; Impact 100 Greater Indianapolis; the family of Samuel and Alexis Odle; Thomas Sharpe; Donald Moffitt; and the Indianapolis Urban League; plus many other generous companies and individuals.
Dr. Terry Rhodes
Soprano is Senior Associate Dean for Fine Arts and the Humanities in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Previously as Professor of Music she taught voice, directed UNC Opera and served as chair of the Department of Music. As a soprano, Dr. Rhodes has performed in more than 20 countries in Europe, Central and South America, and as a Fulbright Artist-in-Residence throughout the Balkan and Eastern European region. She has been a faculty member at Spoleto Study Abroad since 2003.
Susannah Rhodes Stewart
A soprano, Susannah is a sophomore at UNC-Chapel Hill, holding the prestigious full-tuition Kenan Music Scholarship. This past summer, Susannah performed the role of Zerlina in Mozart’s Don Giovanni with the International Young Artist’s Project in Castiglion Fiorentino and Castiglione del Lago in Tuscany, Italy. During her freshman year, Susannah was the soprano soloist in Carolina Choir’s performance of Haydn’s heresienmesse, performed in Memorial Hall with a professional orchestra. Susannah has performed as the soloist with the Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle, conducted by Lorenzo Muti in both Edvard Grieg's Peer Gynt Suite, and Franz Schubert's Rosamunde.
Filmmaker Tim Taylor
Presented by Park Tudor and Heartland Film Festival
Filmmaker Tim Taylor spoke about Exodus Refugee Immigration, Inc. and we screened "Citizen Teklit," which explores Teklit Guzay's quest for U.S. citizenship. When Teklit turned 15 he faced a horrifying choice: join the Eritrean army or risk being shot while fleeing his country. He fled. His destination? A fabled land he had heard of but never seen: America.
Immediately following the artist talk, guests were invited to attend a selection of short films either made by Hoosier directors/producers and/or filmed in Indiana, at AMC Traders Point Theater (5920 W. 86th St.), including Tim Taylor's film, "Go Get Your Horn."
Forrest has been passionate about creating art his entire life. After completing his BFA and MA at Miami University, he taught all genres of art at the high school level. Now dedicated as a full-time artist, Forrest's style ranges from varying degress of realism to abstraction. Relying on intuition and emotion, he uses rich color and texture to capture energy in his oil paintings.
Forrest has been incredibly honored to receive the prestigious 2010 American Impressionist Society's "Best of Show" of their national juried exhibition. He has also been honored to receive the 2015 Indiana Heritage Arts Best of Show, their 2014 Ada Shulz Memorial Award, and in 2009 their "Award of Excellence." He has received recognition from the Hoosier Salon - 2015's "Outstanding Oil Painting," the 2014 "Outstanding Contemporary" award, 2013 "Jury Prize of Distinction for Impressionistic Landscape," "Outstanding Traditional Oil Painting" in 2009, after winning their "Best of Work, First Time Artist" award in 2008.
Catherine Robohm Watkins has been a resident artist and teacher at the Peddie School since 1989. At Peddie she teaches a range of studio courses, including Painting, AP Studio Art and AP Art History. Among her other roles, she served as department chair for 10 years, curated the Mariboe Gallery, coached volleyball, and now teaches yoga and runs the Peddie Culture Bus, taking students to nearby plays, lectures, exhibits, and concerts.
Watkins received her B.A. in art at Yale University and has a M.A. in journalism from Syracuse University. She did graduate work in painting at the Maryland Institute, College of Art and the Vermont Studio School. She exhibits her artwork in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.
The Public Collection is a public art and literacy project developed by Rachel M. Simon to improve literacy, foster a deeper appreciation of the arts, and raise awareness for educational justice in our community.
Through a curated process, Indiana-based artists were commissioned to design unique book share stations or lending libraries that are installed in public spaces around Indianapolis. Each book share station holds a varied selection of books for diverse audiences and age groups. The Public Collection stations are free and available to everyone. Passersby can borrow and return books at their leisure. Books are supplied and stocked by the Indianapolis Public Library.
Rachel M. Simon is an artist, community leader, and investor. A graduate of Herron School of Art and Design, she is a dedicated advocate for the arts, education, and social justice.
The panelists and moderator will be:
- Rachel Simon, The Public Collection & Herbert Simon Family Foundation
- Mindy Taylor Ross, Art Strategies LLC
- Josh Coggeshall, S+CA architecture studio, and member of the collaborative design team on Table of Contents at Horizon House
- Teresa Wessel, Executive Director, Horizon House
- Brian McCutcheon, artist who designed Monument on Monument Circle and co-owner of Indianapolis Fabrications
- Laura Johnson, Director of Public Services, Indianapolis Public Library
- Moderator: Scott Stulen, Curator of Audience Experiences and Performance, Indianapolis Museum of Art
Melissa Parrott Quimby is a contemporary visual artist from Indianapolis. She graduated from Herron School of Art & Design, IUPUI in 1995 with a BFA in ceramics and 2003 from the University of Delaware where she received her MFA. She has been actively creating and exhibiting her work both regionally and nationally.
She uses a wide range of media including clay, paper, canvas and wood to express her ideas intuitively as a response to her environment. She is inspired by pattern, color, line, shape, texture and form and is motivated by the nature of the material. Through an instinctual impulse of combining these concepts she creates abstract images and objects.
While pursuing a career as a professional artist she has taught numerous workshops and received a variety of awards including a Creative Renewal Arts Fellowship from the Arts Council of Indianapolis in 2007. In addition to pursuing her own work, she teaches at Herron School of Art and Design, IUPUI, and maintains a studio at the Stutz Business Center downtown.
Gautum Rao (Associate Professor of Art at Butler University), is an artist and designer based in Indianapolis. Born in Washington D.C. in 1977, he lived in Bangalore, India for five years. He earned a BFA at Boston University in 1999 and an MFA from the University of Pennsylvania in 2002.
He is particularly interested in the intersection between art and design and exhibits his artwork both nationally and internationally. His distinctions include a Susan Coslett Cromwell Traveling Fellowship, and awards from the Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation and the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts. He founded Indy Type: The Indianapolis Typography Society. As an avid Sherlock Holmes fan, he is a member of the Illustrious Clients of Indianapolis.
His most recent solo exhibit was “Unblocked” at Gallery 924 in Indianapolis in September, 2013. His painting, Color Sentences, was selected for the High Art Billboard Project which displays works by 10 artists on billboards throughout central Indiana. His next solo exhibit entitled Graphing Rainbows will be at the Stutz Gallery in Indianapolis in the fall of 2014. Also in 2014, his design work will be featured in Typeforce 5 in Chicago.
Steve Nyktas (Assistant Professor of Art, Butler University), is an artist whose work begins conceptually and culminates in a wide range of media including photography, sculpture, installation and video. Preoccupied with opportunities to better understand the everyday world, his art reveals places that were never meant to be seen, and encourages viewers to see things in new ways.
Nyktas earned his MFA from Northwestern University in 2007, an MA from Purdue University in 2004, and his BFA from Albion College in 2002. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally at galleries, museums, and alternative spaces including Dorsky Gallery (New York, NY), Gallery Four (Baltimore, MD), Rowland Contemporary Gallery (Chicago, IL), FLAT (Chicago, IL) and The 22nd International Festival Sarajevo (Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina).
Dr. Freddie Kelvin (Park Tudor Artist-in-Residence), is a freelance photographer for the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and Dance Kaleidoscope, has exhibited in many Indianapolis galleries and is currently represented by Kuaba Gallery.
Dr. Kelvin grew up in England, where he attended medical school and was a resident in radiology before coming to the United States in 1975. From 1975 to 1985, he was Assistant and then Associate Professor of Radiology at Duke University Medical Center. During this time, he was involved in teaching and research as well as patient care. In 1985, Dr. Kelvin came to Indianapolis where he was on staff at Methodist Hospital of Indiana as well as Clinical Professor of Radiology at Indiana University School of Medicine. He retired from active practice in 2008.
Dr. Kelvin attended numerous photography workshops in the American West and has a particular interest in landscape and abstract work, as well as the photography of dance and musical performance. During the fall semester, Dr. Kelvin is currently working with intermediate photography students as the Artist-in-Residence in the Fine Arts Department.
J.B. Rogers (Assistant Director, Producer, Director, Screenwriter), a Park Tudor Alum, J.B. attended Emory University, and then moved to Los Angeles and honed his skills as a first assistant director working with the filmmakers The Farrelly Brothers on such comedy classics as Dumb and Dumber, Kingpin, There's Something About Mary and Me, Myself & Irene (he also served as a co-producer on all but Dumb and Dumber).
He made his directorial debut with Say It Isn't So, the 2001 comedy starring Chris Kline and Heather Graham. J.B. directed the enormously popular American Pie sequel, and was Assistant Director on Hall Pass, The Three Stooges, Dumb and Dumber To and My All American.
William Snyder, a four-time Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist, is from Henderson, KY, attended Evansville Day School and graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology with highest honors and a BS in Photography. Snyder is currently the Chair of the Rochester Institute of Technology Photojournalism program. In the 15 years he was a photographer at The Dallas Morning News, he covered the first democratic elections in Haiti and Romania, the explosion of the Shuttle Challenger, the ’91 coup attempt in the Soviet Union, the re-unification of Germany, healthcare in the US federal prison system, AIDS orphans in Romania, AIDS in Uganda and Thailand, illegal immigration in Russia and the Czech Republic, cotton farmers in Nicaragua, seal hunting in Newfoundland, Summer Olympics in Barcelona and Atlanta, Winter Olympics in Calgary, Albertville and Nagano, two NCAA Final Fours, two Super Bowls, two Republican Conventions and the re-emergence of religion across Russia while traveling on the Trans-Siberian Railroad.
Tasha Lewis attended the International School of Indiana and graduated from Swarthmore College with High Honors in English and Studio Arts. Lewis’ current work is focused on re-imagining taxidermy and other methods of preserving life. Tasha explains the work by saying, “my process centers around a cyanotype coated fabric. The cyanotype process dates from the 1870s and is one of the earliest forms of photography. The blue of these pieces represents a mineral lens on nature. The cyan blue of these pieces feels like life in a way, but it also feels frozen. I am attempting to catch life, to preserve it in motion, and to allow it to transcend the usual forms of human conservation.”
Rachel Bleil discovered ceramics at Community College of Allegheny County in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and decided to follow her bliss. She received a BFA in ceramics from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania and her MFA in ceramics from Indiana University, Bloomington. She was the recipient of the Roger Lang Award for Student Excellence at NCECA’s Regional Student Juried Exhibition in 2008. In the same year she received a Kiln God award for a summer residency at Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts in Maine. For the last two years Rachel has taught courses in the Ceramic and Foundations departments at Herron School of Art & Design in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Cassie Jones received her MFA in painting from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2008 and her BA from Bowdoin College. Her art has been shown in solo exhibitions at Space Gallery in Portland, Maine and Coleman Burke Gallery in New York, as well as group exhibitions at Art Chicago, Gallery 808 in Boston, the Portland Museum of Art, Fountain NY, the Center for Maine Contemporary Art, and others.
About Janet Flanner
In a school of many famous alumni, Janet Flanner (Tudor Hall 1909), continues to hold a prominent place. From 1925-1975, she wrote a regular column for the New Yorker Magazine. Her beloved Letters from Paris chronicled the social, cultural and political climate of Paris and beyond.
The daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Flanner, founder of Flanner and Buchanan Mortuary, Janet was the first of many members of the Flanner, Buchanan and Keller families to attend Park Tudor. At Tudor Hall she played basketball, was freshman class president, and editor of the Chronicle, for which she wrote a number of creative pieces. Following graduation in 1909, she travelled with her family before enrolling in 1912 at the University of Chicago, leaving two years later. Miss Flanner moved back to Indianapolis and took a job in 1916 as a cinema critic with the Indianapolis Star - becoming the first film critic in the United States. Janet then made her way to Paris, where her letters to her friend Jane Grant, wife of The New Yorker founder Harold Ross, earned her a job as a regular reporter of Paris life for the new magazine.
A member of the "Lost Generation" of writers, Janet was friends with the likes of Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott & Zelda Fitzgerald, and Gertrude Stein. She wrote about Picasso, Sir Winston Churchill and, in perhaps her most acclaimed column, a three-part expose in 1936 revealing Adolf Hitler's sinister character.
Even from her writing in the Tudor Hall Chronicle, one can see a resolute, well-spoken, and witty woman who became known as Genet to her readers. As William Shaw, editor of The New Yorker wrote,
Beneath the elegance of her style was the plain speech that went back to her Quaker upbringing in Indiana. Embedded in her enormously sophisticated manner was a Hoosier common sense."
In addition to being a sophisticated writer who captured some of the most iconic personalities of the early 20th century, Janet Flanner also played a crucial role in introducing her contemporaries to new artists in Paris, including Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Henri Matisse, André Gide, Jean Cocteau, and the Ballets Russes. Her early work as a film critic, and art commentator and her lifelong association with creative minds of all artistic disciplines makes the Park Tudor Visiting Artist Series a fitting way to commemorate and celebrate Janet's legacy.
We extend a heartfelt thank you to our donor, Bruce Buchanan '73, for his support in elevating the Visiting Artist Series in honor of his Great Aunt, Janet Flanner. His gift will expand the reach of the series to include performance artists, actors, musicians, dancers, filmmakers, playwrights, poets, art & film critics and other creative minds engaged in the intersection of arts and culture.