UT College of Communication and the Arts Blog (cvpa)

Art Faculty Member to Exhibit at The Secor

Dan Hernandez at his exhibit in Madhouse Gallery

Dan Hernandez at his exhibit in Madhouse Gallery

The University of Toledo Department of Art is pleased to announce the upcoming exhibition of one of its faculty. DAN HERNANDEZ: Recent Work will be on view from September 3 to October 1 at the Secor Gallery (425 Jefferson Ave, Toledo) and will include a selection of new and recent artwork from Hernandez’s “Genesis” body of work. Much of the work on view at this exhibition was produced this summer with the support of a University URAF research grant and an Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award. The work in this exhibition will also travel to New York City in November for a solo exhibition at Kim Foster Gallery, where Dan is professionally represented.

Nocturne by artist Dan Hernandez

Nocturne by artist Dan Hernandez

Dan Hernandez is an assistant professor of art at the University of Toledo. His work has recently been presented in solo exhibitions at the University of Kentucky and the University of Michigan. It has also been included in group-shows in Tel-Aviv (Israel), London (UK), Brooklyn, New York, Miami, Los Angeles, Las Vegas and numerous other cities. Hernandez’s work has been written about and reproduced in publications in France, Germany, Israel, England and the United States including a review of his 2014 exhibition at Kim Foster in ARTnews.

An opening reception for this exhibition will be held on September 3 from 6-8pm. The artist will also be in the gallery for a Meet and Greet during the “Third Thursday Art Walk” on September 17. Both events are free and open to the public. The Secor Gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday, 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. or by appointment.

Dan Hernandez
Office: 419-530-8321

Faculty Film Accepted to British Short Film Festival

Holly Hey, Associate Professor of Film, The University of Toledo

Holly Hey, Associate Professor of Film, The University of Toledo

Holly Hey, a filmmaker and faculty member of The University of Toledo Department of Theatre & Film, will screen one of her films in the internationally recognized Aesthetica Short Film Festival in November. The Aesthetica Film Festival, accredited by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA), is a celebration of independent film, and an outlet for championing and supporting short filmmaking. The festival includes a rich selection of films from across the world, in genres including advertising, artists’ film, music video, drama and documentary. Her film emerged successfully after two highly competitive rounds of selection review.
Ms. Hey says that “the dum dum capitol of the world” is a first person experimental documentary and a moving image meditation that contemplates landscape, home, recollection, queerness, and time.

From Holly Hey's short film "dum dum capitol of the world"

From Holly Hey’s short film “dum dum capitol of the world”

The project uses personal history to reflect on universal themes about home, life, love, parenting, memory, and death. Professor Hey began the project in 2005 when she received major funding from LEF Moving Image Foundation. She later received major funding from the University of Toledo in 2012 and completed the film in 2014.

To date, “the dum dum capitol of the world” has also screened in several U.S. festivals including The Ann Arbor Film Festival (the largest and longest running annual celebration of independent and experimental film and video in North America), the Athens Film Festival in Athens, Ohio, The Queens World Film Festival in New York, as well as The Moon Rise Film Festival in British Columbia.

Ms. Hey is currently an Associate Professor and Head of the Film Program within the Department of Theatre and Film. She holds a MFA in filmmaking from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She makes a broad range of work that can be seen in galleries, film festivals, live performances, and on television. Her works have screened both nationally and internationally, and The National Educational Telecommunications Association (N.E.T.A.) distributes her last major release “Rat Stories” that has been aired on PBS affiliates within the United States, British Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

The Aesthetica Short Film Festival – 2015 http://www.asff.co.uk/

Classic Films on Film – What a Concept!

Scene from "The Lady Vanishes" directed by Alfred Hitchcock

Scene from “The Lady Vanishes” directed by Alfred Hitchcock

The University of Toledo Department of Theatre & Film will present a series of classic movies projected from 16mm film. Commercial films across the U.S. and shown locally are digitally projected in today’s world. These classic films will be shown as they were intended—on actual film. Please join us. The films will be shown at 7:30 p.m. in the UT Center for Performing Arts, Room 1039.

Below is a list of the films in the series.

Fall 2015
1. Friday September 4th
The Lady Vanishes directed by Alfred Hitchcock, 1938, 96 minutes, starring Margaret Lockwood and Michael Redgrave

2. Friday October 2nd
Seven Samurai directed by Akira Kurosawa, 1954, 207 minutes, starring Toshiro Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Keiko Tsushima

3. Friday November 6th
His Girl Friday directed by Howard Hawks, 1940, 92 minutes, starring Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell

Spring 2016
4. Friday February 5th
Breathless directed by Jean Luc Goddard, 1961, 90 minutes, starring Jean-Paul Beimondo, Jean Seberg, Daniel Boulanger

5. Saturday, March 19
Student Filmmaker’s Showcase
The best of student films chosen in juried competition

6. Friday April 1st
Stagecoach directed by John Ford, 1939, 96 minutes, starring John Wayne, Claire Trevor, Andy Devine

Tickets are $10 general admission and $5 for students, faculty, staff, alumni, seniors and members of the U.S. military. Tickets include complimentary soft drink and popcorn. Advance tickets are available through the UT Center for Performing Arts Box Office (M-F 12-5 p.m.) and one hour prior to show time. The Center for Performing Arts is located on UT’s main campus at Towerview West and West Rocket Drive.

Checking in with Alumna Alyssa Brown and her Fellowship with Challenge Detroit

Hey Barry,

Alyssa Brown, 2013 BFA graduate University of Toledo Department of Art

Alyssa Brown, 2013 BFA graduate University of Toledo Department of Art

It has been a year since I’ve last touched based…I’m wrapping up my fellowship with Challenge Detroit. It has been a fun year full of exposure and leadership development and most importantly great work with 6 non-profits in Detroit related to transportation, urban farming, education, health disparities and neighborhood development. I will be staying full time with my host company, Edw. C. Levy Co., as their eLearning Designer and I’m looking forward to it! At Levy I support the LMS, design graphics, and create how to job aids for our 1500 employees using InDesign (lots and lots of job aids). I’ve most enjoyed getting out to our steel mill and aggregate sites throughout Michigan to photograph. I’m hoping they will send me to Thailand or Brazil soon to do some work there! 😉

A vector drawing by artist Alyssa Brown that was submitted and appeared on local electronic billboards

A vector drawing by artist Alyssa Brown that was submitted and appeared on local electronic billboards, 2012

Two big wins:
I can honestly say, I wouldn’t have this job here if it wasn’t for your support in college. The work I did for the USRCAP (Undergraduate Summer Research and Creative Activity Program) and the Irish of Toledo book was exactly the experience I needed for this eLearning job. I’m very grateful for that.
I also often think about your push for me to subscribe to Lynda.com (I can remember being resistant at the time because it was costly and I was busy) but I now have a subscription as a benefit through my company and I use it ALL THE TIME.
Lastly, have you been to Grand Rapids, MI yet? They have a new Japanese Garden there that I’ve heard great things about and thought you might be interested to know.

Best Wishes!
Alyssa Brown

Follow Alyssa’s Challenge Detroit blog: http://challengedetroit.org/blog/alyssabrown/

Film Alumnus Work Accepted to Cannes 2015

Nathan Elias, filmmaker.  BA in Film from the University of Toledo, 2011.

CONGRATS to FILM Alumnus Nathan Elias (VPA ’11)! His short film “The Chest” was accepted into the 2015 Cannes International Film Festival, located in Cannes, France. Elias directed, co-wrote and co-starred in the film. The dramatic short is about three dysfunctional siblings battling over their father’s possessions after his death. The Cannes Film Festival is invitation-only and being accepted is one of the most prestigious honors for filmmakers.



Photo: Nathan Elias, filmmaker. BA in Film from the University of Toledo, 2011.


2014-2015 Outstanding Students Departmental and College Honors Awarded

Sarah Emsch, BA in Art History & BFA in 2D Studies, Kristen Guerra, BE in Art Education, and Nathan Perez, BFA in 2D Studies were recognized for their hardwork throughout their time at The University of Toledo.

Sarah Emch is graduating cum laude in both her degrees – a BFA in 2D Art and a BA in Art History – and is receiving departmental honors with her BFA. She has been on the Dean’s list 5 of her semesters, and exhibits her work regularly. In addition to her BFA Thesis Exhibition and the Juried Student Exhibition, both at the Center for Visual Arts Gallery, Sarah’s work has been shown at Imagination Station, LeSo Gallery, The Main Event: Pop-Up Gallery, and the Toledo Museum of Aft Community Gallery. She will be pursuing her MFA in Studio at Maine College of Art next year.

Nominator: For Sarah, art history is a means to understanding more about the world and her place in it, and the more insight she gains the more generously she shares it.

Kristen Guerra graduated with a BE in Multi-Age Ed, concentration: Visual Arts. She was on either the Dean’s List or the President’s List every semester during her time at UT. Her own work has been seen in exhibitions including the Student Juried Show in the Center for Visual Arts Gallery, The Arts Commission’s Art Walk Exhibition, and the Showcase of Arts in conjunction with the Toledo Symphony in 2014. Kristen is already teaching Visual Art at The L. Hollingsworth School for the Talented and Gifted in Toledo.

Nominator: Of particular note is her remarkable understanding of technology and her ability to implement many advanced features in the classes she taught.

Nathan Perez, a magna cum laude graduate, is pursuing a BFA in 2D Art, and will also be receiving departmental honors. He has been on either the Dean’s list or the President’s List for the majority of his time at UT. In addition to this BFA Thesis Exhibition, the Nexus Exhibition, and the Juried Student Exhibition at the Center for Visual Arts Gallery, Nathan’s work has appeared in exhibitions locally and nationally, including at the Secor Gallery in Toledo, and as part of group exhibitions at the SCOPE art show in Miami, and at Artists Take Time Square in New York. He was a finalist in the category of “College Black & White Photographer” for Photographer’s Forum, and his work appeared in the accompanying exhibition and catalog. He has also devoted hundreds of hours of community service to Project Vote, the Boys and Girls Club, Tent City, and other organizations. He is planning to pursue an MFA, and to work as a multi-disciplinary artist in tandem with young adults in order to help transform inner city communities.

Nominator: We applaud Nate’s work and look forward to seeing his work in the future publications and exhibitions.

Eleven Outstanding Students from across the College of Communication and The Arts were recognized for their achievements. Of those eleven students, our very own Nathan Perez was named The Outstanding Student of the entire college of the academic year!

Congratulations Sarah, Kristen, and Nate along with all the 2015 graduating class!

Aaron Brandt recieves palmer scholarship and will attend BGSU for MFA



Aaron graduated in Spring 2015 with his BA in Visual Arts with a concentration in New Media and Photography

Aaron Brandt was awarded the prestigous Palmer Scholarship from the Toledo Museum of Art to embark on a month-long, cross-country trip to document landscapes, small towns and wildlife in photographs and illustrations that will inform a future artwork.

On top of receiving the Palmer Scholarship this summer, Aaron will be attending Bowling Green State University to pursue his MFA in Digital Art Fall 2015!

Congratulations, Aaron! We are very proud of your accomplishments and look forward to seeing what’s next!

Kayla dopfer works part-time for pencheff photography



Kayla graduated in Spring 2015 with her BFA in Digital & Photographic Art, her primary medium being photography.

Kayla Dopfer will be working part time for Mary Pencheff Photography of Toledo, OH as a second shooter. Congrats, Kayla!



Shelly is a New Media Design Practices BFA student that will graduate in Spring of 2016.

Our own AMAZING Shelly Trivisonno has been awarded the prestigious Clement Internship with the Toledo Museum of Art. This summer, she will be working with the Director of Communications on special projects.

Sarah Emch will attend Maine College of Art for her MFA



Sarah graduated in Spring 2015 with her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 2D studies

Sarah Emch will be attending the Maine College of Art to pursue her Master of Fine Arts Degree this Fall. We will be very sad to see another wonderful student leave but we are confident she will take Portland, Maine by storm!

Good luck, Sarah; we are very proud!

Jared Robinson Attends Teen Vogue Fashion University!


Jared is a Communications Student with a Minor in Studio Art

Every year Vogue and Teen Vogue host “Fashion University” in which important people from the fashion world speak with students about their careers. They hold one-on-one classes and sessions with students who aspire to work in the fashion industry. According to Jared, “[I]t’s like college and classes for fashion.” They have different departments that students apply to: fashion design, photography, styling, editorial writing, and business. Their selection process is highly competitive.  Applicants submit 10 pictures of their best work. 20-30 candidates from thousands of applicants are selected to participate. Once accepted, participants choose the classes they want to take; all are taught by professionals in the fashion world. Participants get personalized mentoring during one-on-one sessions. All of the photography classes/ sessions are taught by famous fashion photographers. This year Nigel Barker, Patrick Demarchelier were there, along with Jessica Simpson, Anna Wintour, and other famous people from the fashion world. The 3 day program is held at Conde Nast (where Vogue and Teen Vogue are housed). Jared participated in the program during Spring break.

 Jared is a Communications major who has been taking classes with Professor Deborah Orloff over the last 2 years including a summer internship at a fashion magazine in NYC. When asked about his experience at Teen Vogue he said:  “Overall it was a great experience to actually get to hear how established fashion photographers, editors, designers, etc. broke into the industry. It put everything into perspective and reaffirmed that I definitely want to be a fashion photographer in the fashion industry. We got to ask them personal questions and hear what it’s like to work in the fashion industry. We also learned how they go about making work and what the “do and don’ts” are for making it.”
Congratulations Jared! We are very proud of your achievements!

Voice Scholarship Winners

Devon Desmond, Vocal Performance Student, University of ToledoVoice students Devon Desmond, Nadia Oselsky and Meridian Prall placed first, second and third, respectively, in this year’s Barbara Rondelli Perry Scholarship Competition for Superior Achievement in Voice Performance.

Devon Desmond (baritone) is a senior at The University of Toledo, majoring in Vocal Performance. He has been in many UT opera productions, appearing in the title role in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi, as Toby in Menotti’s The Medium, Top in Copland’s The Tender Land, Bob in Menotti’s The Old Maid and the Thief, and Tom/John from Mollicone’s The Face on the Barroom Floor. Devon has also performed a junior recital and in many opera gala’s and choir concerts. Devon also performed at Bottom in the UT Theatre & Film Department production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, for which he was nominated to compete in the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) competition. Devon also competed at the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) Ohio competition last spring in which he won 3rd place. Devon has studied voice under Carolyn Seeman, Don Bernardini, Dr. Denise Ritter Bernardini, Kim Buhler, and Micah Graber.

Nadia Oselsky, Vocal Performance Student, University of Toledo

Nadia Oselsky (mezzo-soprano) is currently in her fourth year as a Vocal Performance major at The University of Toledo, studying under Dr. Denise Ritter Bernardini. For her junior recital, she performed songs that focused on Slavic Repertoire, as part of her degree requirement. Last summer Nadia studied in Sansepolcro, Italy for three weeks, where she performed the role of La Ciesca in Giacomo Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi as well as participating in voice coachings and taking Italian lessons. After Italy, she traveled to Czech Republic for the Moravian Master Class and spent almost two weeks there. She worked with three different coaches on a daily basis on Antonín Dvořák’s Gypsy Songs. Nadia also had the privilege of studying Czech diction with Mirka Zemanová, the founder of the program. Nadia’s most recent performance was with The University of Toledo Opera Ensemble in Gianni Schicchi as Ciesca. Last fall, she was in An American Triptych: A Salute to American Opera, in which she played the role of Sally in A Hand of Bridge by Samuel Barber, and 2nd Barista in Seymour Barab’s A Game of Chance. Nadia’s previous operatic roles include Zita in Gianni Schicchi, and Jane in Patience by Gilbert and Sullivan.

Meridian Prall, Vocal Performance Student, University of ToledoMeridian Prall (soprano) is currently a Freshman Vocal Performance major studying with Dr. Denise Ritter Bernardini at UT. She has previously been involved in different programs hosted at UT, including the Toledo Art Song Festival, and the Marilyn Horne Master Class which took place in October of 2013. Ms. Prall has been to Italy twice with different summer opera programs, including a program with The University of Toledo and North Carolina Young Artists Project over the summer of 2014 where she performed as Serpina in Cimarosa’s La Serva Padrona. In the fall of 2014, she played Knitter I in A Game of Chance by Seymour Barab with the UT Opera Ensemble, and most recently as Zita in its production of Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi. She is also active in classical singing competitions. In May of 2014, Ms. Prall placed third at the national Classical Singer Competition in San Antonio, Texas.

UT Music Student Wins Emerging Artist Award

Nnenne Edeh, Voice Student at The University of Toledo

Nnenne Edeh, Voice Student at The University of Toledo

Nnenne Edeh, a junior majoring in voice at The University of Toledo won first place in the local 2015 Vocal Arts Competition for Emerging Artists. She will go on to compete in Detroit this summer at the regional finals, and if successful, to the national competition in New York in July.

Contestants had to perform an opera Aria, foreign-language Art Song, an Art Song in English, a selection from oratorio, and a Spiritual or piece by a black composer. The competition is presented annually by the National Association of Negro Business and Professional Women’s Clubs, Inc.

Nnenne is a member of the UT Opera Ensemble and has performed roles in many of its productions. She was Zita in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi (Spring 2015), a role she also performed in the summer of 2014 in Italy during a study abroad experience. She was Mrs. Nolen in UT’s production of Menotti’s opera The Medium and Proserpina in its production of Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo.

Faculty work exhibited at Stranahan Theatre

March 11 marked the beginning of a new collaboration between the Department of Art and The Stranahan Theater. A show of photographs by Eric Ziegler, called “From the Middle of Nowhere” was unveiled as it was announced that faculty from the Department of Art will be displaying their work at the Stranahan, in rotating exhibitions. Ziegler is the Lecturer of Multidisciplinary Art and Foundations in the Department of Art.

“The Stranahan Theater, widely known for its presentation of all forms of live performances, draws countless guests, both locally and regionally. As a result of this ability, our theater can, at any given event, have thousands of people within our four walls. What an opportunity to allow our blank walls to be a platform for visual arts, and, in the process, enhance our patrons’ experience! We recently contacted the University of Toledo about partnering with us for this very purpose and couldn’t have received a more willing and excited response. What a great venture for the two of us and for the public not only to see the great forms of art, but also to have the chance to purchase them!” – Stephen Hyman, Executive Director, Stranahan Theater & Great Hall

“I am excited to be partnering with the Stranahan Theater for this exhibition of three photographs, selected from my series “From the Middle of Nowhere.” This exhibition marks the start of what will certainly be a beneficial collaboration between two centers of creativity in Toledo. The theater will provide the University of Toledo’s College of Communication and Arts with a new platform to harness our creative power. I am looking forward to what may be possible in the future through this partnering.” – Eric Zeigler, Lecturer of Multidisciplinary Art and Foundations

“The Department of Art in the College of Communication and the Arts at UT is now partnering with the Stranahan Theater. We are bringing the visuals arts to this wonderful, landmark performing arts center. On a rotational basis, our faculty will be exhibiting their works in the halls of the Stanahan. We are excited that the exceptional work of our faculty will be highlighted at the Stranahan, giving audiences a chance to engage in our multi-sensory artistic offerings.” – Debra A. Davis, Dean – College of Communication and the Arts, School of Visual & Performing Arts, University of Toledo

Zeigler’s “From the Middle of Nowhere” photograph collection is currently on display in the upper balcony lobby of the Stranahan Theatre, located at 4645 Heatherdowns Blvd., in Toledo.

Midsummer Borrowings Festival

Midsummer Borrowings events on campus

The College of Communication and the Arts (CoCA) celebrated its annual Arts and Humanities Festival with a series of events in collaboration with the Toledo Symphony Orchestra (TSO) and its production of “Midsummer Night Mysteries,” March 27-28. UT students and faculty took part in the Symphony production at the Peristyle. Leading up to the performances, CoCA presented related lectures, a concert and a film screening on campus.

Friday film screening
On Friday, March 20 in the Haigh Auditorium of the Center for Visual Arts, a screening of the 1935 Max Reinhardt film A Midsummer Night’s Dream was introduced by Dr. Matt Yockey, Assistant Professor of Film in the UT Department of Theatre & Film.

Nominated for Best Picture, this film adaptation of Reinhardt’s successful Hollywood Bowl production of the Shakespeare play includes extensive use of Felix Mendelssohn’s music as re-orchestrated by Erich Wolfgang Korngold and ballet sequences choreographed by Bronislava Nijinska. The cast includes Mickey Rooney, Olivia DeHavilland and James Cagney, among many other familiar names and faces.

Sunday Great Gallery concert by Bezonian Trio
On Sunday, March 22, the Bezonian Trio featuring Antonina Chekhovskaya, soprano, performed in the Toledo Museum of Art’s Great Gallery. The concert featured pieces that recall two of Shakespeare’s most famous plays – Macbeth (Beethoven’s Piano Trio in D major, Op.70 #1 “Ghost”) and Hamlet (Ophelia’s Song by Dimitri Shostakovich). The Bezonian Trio is comprised of Merwin Siu (violin) and Damon Coleman (cello) of the Toledo Symphony, and Dr. Michael Boyd (piano), professor of piano at The University of Toledo.

Mendelssohn’s Music, Reinhardt’s Diaphanous Damsels, Shakespeare’s Fairies
On Wednesday March 25, Matthew Wikander, Distinguished University Professor Emeritus of the UT Department of English, presented a lecture about fairies in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

“We are spirits of another sort,” the fairy king Oberon reminds Puck as Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dreamers awaken into morning. Puck has just been describing the dawn as a time when “damned spirits” return to their “wormy beds”—a kind of reverse zombie apocalypse. Oberon’s and Puck’s disagreements do not begin or end here, but this interchange raises the question of what kind of fairies the fairies in Shakespeare’s plays are, and, by extension, the further question of how to represent them. This talk focused on the problem of representing fairies musically, in Mendelssohn’s incidental score, cinematically, in Max Reinhardt’s film version of his famous stage production, and poetically, as the fairies appear in Shakespeare’s text.