Department of Art and Art History

  • 3 walking trails show off UAB’s outdoor public art collection

    UAB’s campus is home to more than 35 statues or sculptures, and each trail takes about 30 minutes or fewer to walk. The trails can be viewed on a specialized Google Map, created by the UAB Reporter to provide additional details about the art and artists.

    Read more...
  • Explore UAB’s off-grid Sustainable Community, Oct. 1

    During the event, visitors can take tours of the Solar House and Solar Community, plus shop a vintage market, purchase plants from local shops and more.

    Read more...
  • Doug Barrett is ready for something new

    Doug Barrett, associate professor in the Department of Art and Art History, is not afraid to try something new and different. It’s been a recurring theme throughout both his academic and professional journeys, and, so far, it has served him well.

    Doug Barrett, associate professor in the Department of Art and Art History, is not afraid to try something new and different. It’s been a recurring theme throughout both his academic and professional journeys, and, so far, it has served him well.

    “I was in advertising for 20 years in Orlando, Florida. During the dot-com bubble, when that burst, the company I was working with went out of business,” said Barrett. “I was 42 years old ... and I thought, ‘I probably need to go back to school.’”

    It was a pivot that required a certain level of risk-tolerance—and it paid off. Barrett was accepted into the University of Florida’s Design and Visual Communications MFA program, and he quickly found his rhythm within it. While in the program, Barrett sought (and identified) plenty of opportunities to try new things, mostly because he brought 20 years of experience and talent to the program.

    “I could pretty much do anything that I wanted to do there. [As a graduate student] I got a lot of experience teaching [at UF], and I co-created this ‘UF in Tokyo’ program where we spent several weeks in Tokyo,” said Barrett. “All of those things built a really powerful portfolio for me.”

    After completing his MFA, Barrett accepted a position with UAB’s Department of Art and Art History in 2008. Soon after arriving in Birmingham, Barrett continued to take chances. A strong and impactful example is BLOOM Studio, “a student-run, design studio that focuses on ‘Design for Good’ projects for local non-profits and under-served communities.”

    According to Barrett, BLOOM gives students a chance to create deliverables for real clients with real needs. Projects range from creating tourism branding for Bibb County to designing license plates in partnership with the Cahaba River Society and Alabama Audubon.

    Regardless of the project, Barrett wants to show his students that their work can make an impact. He also wants them to get outside of their comfort zones.

    “If you’re uncomfortable, you’re growing—that’s the thing that I think BLOOM Studio forces students to understand,” said Barrett. “There’s a bigger world out there, and, as a graphic designer, you can help generate economic development or make people’s lives better through design.”

    And growing is a major part of Barrett’s evolving career as both a professor and an artist. In 2021, he applied for and received a Mid-Career Pivot Grant through the College of Arts and Sciences. His goal? Purchase and create art with a Risograph (“RISO”) commercial-quality printer.

    “I feel like I’ve refreshed my practice. RISO is a hybrid between digital arts and the real world,” said Barrett. “I’m using a RISO process called Grain Touch; it creates a pencil texture. I’m really interested in that sharpness and fuzziness—it creates a lot of atmosphere.”

    After receiving the Pivot Grant, Barrett applied for and received a design fellowship from the Alabama State Council on the Arts to further support his new work with the RISO. He’s now exploring a series of pieces that highlight the ways in which both urban and rural cultures intersect in seemingly remote places, such as gas stations and post offices.

    “I’m interested in this duality between rural and urban—I think art has a really powerful way of using vernacular imagery to get people to talk about societal issues and to get people to come to terms with what they’re thinking or feeling,” said Barrett.

    The results are stunning and dream-like. When viewing his new work, it is difficult to offer any comparisons, which harkens back to his ability to try new things and prompt surprising (and powerful) outcomes.[widgetkit id="82" name="Doug Barrett is ready for something new"]

    Read more...
  • UAB student’s work recognized by Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival

    Amanda Grace Waller, 22, was named a national finalist for the KCACTF’s Barbizon Award for Excellence in Lighting Design and was one of two students nationally given a special achievement award.

    Read more...
  • Alabama State Council on the Arts awards fellowships to four UAB faculty and staff

    Doug Barrett, Halley Cotton, Ryan Meyer and Elisabeth Pellathy were awarded the fellowship grants, made possible by the Alabama Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts.

    Read more...
  • Artist Douglas Baulos uses Verdant Fund grant for project “Things shouldn’t be so hard”

    Baulos, an associate professor of drawing and bookmaking in the UAB Department of Art and Art History, will publish a book this fall, with exhibitions planned in Florida and Georgia.

    Read more...
  • Art students make wildlife habitats for UAB Gardens

    Bee condos, bat houses and an owl house will help wildlife populations thrive in local gardens and hopefully inspire members of the community to create their own gardens.

    Read more...
  • Employees recognized at 2021 UAB Service Awards

    Twenty-seven College of Arts and Sciences employees who have worked at UAB for 20 years or more were recognized at the UAB Service Awards reception on April 11, 2022.

    Dean Kecia M. Thomas with Kim Hazelwood at the UAB Service Awards reception.Twenty-seven College of Arts and Sciences employees who have worked at UAB for 20 years or more were recognized at the UAB Service Awards reception on April 11, 2022. These dedicated colleagues were honored for their number of years of employment at UAB as of December 31, 2021.

     

    The UAB Service Awards are given to active employees beginning at five years of employment and at each five-year milestone. Employees who reach 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, and 45 years of service are invited to a reception on behalf of UAB President Ray L. Watts and presented with a service award pin, certificate, and a gift of gratitude.

     

    This year, Dr. Vithal K. Ghanta, professor in the Department of Biology and co-director of the Undergraduate Immunology Program, was honored for 50 years of service to UAB. Dr. Gregory Pence, professor in the Department of Philosophy and director of the Early Medical School Acceptance Program, was honored for 45 years of service. Congratulations to all our colleagues for their dedication and commitment to the University’s mission and vision.

    50-Year Recipient: Dr. Vithal K. Ghanta, professor in the Department of Biology

    20-Year Recipients

    • Kimberly H. Hazelwood, College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Office
    • Erin Wright, Art and Art History
    • Tanja Matthews, Chemistry
    • Dr. Jacqueline Nikles, Chemistry
    • Daniel L. Butcher, English
    • Dr. Gale M. Temple, English
    • Dr. Lourdes M. Sanchez-Lopez, Foreign Languages and Literatures
    • Dr. Stephen J. Miller, History
    • Dr. John Heith Copes, Criminal Justice
    • Dr. Reinhard E. Fambrough, Music
    • Dr. Gitendra Uswatte, Psychology
    45-Year Recipient: Dr. Gregory E. Pence, professor in the Department of Philosophy

    25-Year Recipients

    • James R. Grimes, Advising
    • Margaret Amsler, Biology
    • Leslie C. Hendon, Biology
    • Adriana S. Addison, Psychology
    • Dr. Karlene K. Ball, Psychology
    • Wanda R. Fisher, Psychology
    • Pamela Y. Robinson, Psychology

    30-Year Recipients

    • Dr. Tracy P. Hamilton, Chemistry
    • Dr. Kathryn D. Morgan, Criminal Justice and African American Studies
    • Kimberly A. Schnormeier, Theatre

    35-Year Recipients

    • Dr. Edwin W. Cook III, Psychology
    • Dr. Edward Taub, Psychology

    40-Year Recipients

    • Dr. Howard L. Irving, Music
    • Dr. Franklin R. Amthor, Psychology

    45-Year Recipient

    • Dr. Gregory E. Pence, Philosophy

    50-Year Recipient

    • Dr. Vithal K. Ghanta, Biology

    Read more...
  • Art student focuses photo series on herself

    Harper Nichols is not able to grip with one hand. In her colorful photo series, “holding / self portrait,” she shows all the things she holds throughout the day with her arm.

    Read more...
  • Graduating UAB arts students to exhibit works at UAB’s AEIVA from April 4-30

    This exhibition is a highlight of the Bachelor of Fine Arts undergraduate career, and each of the six students will display what they have learned over the last four years.

    Read more...
  • Celebrate student creativity and fine arts April 11-20 with Arts Week 2022

    The College of Arts and Sciences will elevate a series of student performances, exhibitions and events for the new Arts Week celebration in April.

    Read more...
  • College of Arts and Sciences offering two new minors

    The University of Alabama at Birmingham’s (UAB) College of Arts and Science is offering two new minors for undergraduate students.

    The University of Alabama at Birmingham’s (UAB) College of Arts and Science is offering two new minors for undergraduate students.

    The Department of Political Science and Public Administration recently launched the Public Management and Policy Minor. According to Rob Blanton, Ph.D., chair of the Department of Political Science and Public Administration (PSPA), “The department’s Master of Public Administration (MPA) program has a long history of providing graduate and professional students some of the necessary skills to succeed in the management of public and nonprofit organizations, two large and vibrant sectors within our economy.” PSPA faculty reflected on the MPA program’s successes and established a clear goal for the new minor: to build some of the same key skills and competencies for undergraduate students. The minor can thus provide a strong foundation for future graduate work in public management or give students valuable skills to help them in their career journeys.

    The College is also excited to announce the new Ancient, Medieval, and Renaissance Studies Minor. This minor is focused on material, intellectual, sociopolitical, literary, and linguistic approaches to the Ancient, Medieval, and Renaissance periods. According to Walter Ward, Ph.D., professor in the Department of History, “Students will learn current theories and methods for working with a range of source materials and objects, from archaeological finds and architecture to historical documents and poetry.” The interdisciplinary program combines the fields of history, literature, archaeology, anthropology, art history, philosophy, cultural studies, economics, and more to understand the premodern world. All courses are taught by faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences.

    You can learn more about both programs by visiting the Undergraduate Course Catalog Addenda. Also, for more information about the Public Management and Policy Minor, you can email Dr. Blanton at rgblanton@uab.edu. For more information about the Ancient, Medieval, and Renaissance Studies Minor, you can contact Dr. Ward (wdward@uab.edu) or Dr. Clements (jclements@uab.edu).

    Read more...
  • UAB art students paint professor’s truck for class

    Students in the Department of Art and Art History got a pinstriping tutorial from Michael Swann of Swann Graphics, then applied their talents to the black Ford Ranger, which will be donated to WBHM 90.3 FM.

    Read more...
  • This Women’s History Month, celebrate women in the arts with AEIVA

    Join AEIVA for two-in-one fun — honor women who have played a significant role in shaping art and history, and tour the facility while savoring spring exhibitions.

    Read more...
  • Johnny Bates honors his father with an endowed scholarship in mathematics

    When Johnny Edward “Rusty” Bates, M.D., was growing up in Sipsey, Alabama, he viewed his father, a draftsman and engineer, as one of the smartest people he knew.

    When Johnny Edward “Rusty” Bates, M.D., was growing up in Sipsey, Alabama, he viewed his father, a draftsman and engineer, as one of the smartest people he knew.

    “My father was an inspiration,” said Bates.

    Although his father, Henry E. Bates Jr., was both skillful and knowledgeable, he was limited in his ability to advance in his career due to his academic credentials. According to Bates, “He always felt that not having his degree impeded his ability to move up the ranks.”

    Johnny Edward “Rusty” Bates, M.D.For Bates, this observation about his father serves as an enduring source of inspiration, both in his academic journey and his professional career.

    While in middle and high school, Bates excelled in mathematics and learned from nurturing teachers who helped him establish a strong foundation in the discipline. As he looked to his future, he decided to pursue a degree in mathematics, while also working full-time. He briefly attended Birmingham-Southern College, then enrolled at Walker College to earn his associate degree.

    He envisioned attending the University of Alabama at Birmingham after Walker College, but he faced a financial barrier. “I didn’t come from a wealthy family,” said Bates. Thankfully, he received a generous scholarship, which helped him scale the barrier. That scholarship, which came from a wealthy businessman, set him on a new academic trajectory.

    He enrolled at UAB and earned a B.S. in Mathematics and a minor in art history. During his time as an undergraduate at UAB, he saw and appreciated the level of care and excellence his professors brought to the classroom each day.

    “I had a great experience with great educators,” said Bates. “They loved teaching. [My professors] took an interest in me as a student. They wrote letters for me when I applied to medical school.”

    After completing his undergraduate degree, Bates was accepted into the Heersink School of Medicine. He earned an M.D. in 1982, then completed his residency at University of Texas in Galveston.

    Through his studies and training, Bates became deeply interested taking care of populations of patients, rather than focusing on individual patients. He decided he wanted to become a leader in correctional care, so he started his own company, Quality Correctional Healthcare (QCHC).

    While Bates studied mathematics and medicine at UAB, he enjoyed solving problems and making decisions that would improve outcomes. Nowadays, he applies those same skills at QCHC. “I’m going to use those techniques to improve our overall services. We’re going to need to find smarter and better ways of doing things,” said Bates.

    He has continued his academic journey to support these goals too. He earned a Master of Medical Management for Physicians from Carnegie Mellon University, and, recently, he started taking courses in artificial intelligence and machine learning from the University of Texas at Austin and the Massachusetts Institute for Technology.

    Bates still looks back on the scholarship that helped him establish his academic foundation at UAB with gratitude, while also considering the obstacles his father faced. Moving forward, he wants to support future students as they pursue degrees in mathematics and honor his father at the same time. Given these priorities, Bates recently established the Henry E. Bates Jr. Endowed Scholarship in Mathematics, which will benefit undergraduate mathematics students who demonstrate strong academic promise.

    “I think everybody who desires an education should be able to get an education,” said Bates. “I want to be able to benefit someone who has that desire but may not have the resources to get the degree.”

    Clearly, Bates’s generosity and admiration for his father are reflected in this endowed scholarship in the Department of Mathematics.

    Read more...
  • Navigating life after prison is ‘nearly impossible.’ These faculty are challenging civilians to try.

    Humanities and social sciences unite to build an app that brings to life the struggles faced by former offenders in order to make the case for change. The project was made possible by funding from the College of Arts and Sciences’ Interdisciplinary Team Proposal program.

    Read more...
  • See “Rekindling,” an exhibition of Sloss Metal Arts sculpture, at UAB’s Art Lab

    Works by the artists from Sloss Metal Arts are on show through Feb. 23, culminating with a reception from 4:30-7 p.m.

    Read more...
  • New classes for all ages from UAB’s ArtPlay have arrived

    ArtPlay provides a wide array of arts classes, including writing, dance, visual arts, music, acting and sewing. Classes will begin in March.

    Read more...
  • AEIVA has you covered for art entertainment in early 2022

    Join AEIVA this winter to see unique representations of art that highlight societal themes of personal relationships, human experience and therapeutics.

    Read more...
  • Windgate Foundation makes donation to Department of Art and Art History

    The Department of Art and Art History is honored to announce a generous donation to the department’s Diversity and Inclusion Scholars Program.

    The University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Department of Art and Art History (DAAH) is honored to announce a generous donation to the department’s Diversity and Inclusion Scholars Program.

    The Windgate Foundation—a private, family foundation based in Little Rock, Arkansas that advances contemporary craft and strengthens visual arts education in the United States—donated the funds to remove financial barriers for underrepresented students studying art and art history at UAB. Specifically, through the donation to the Diversity and Inclusion Scholars Program, four in-state students will receive scholarships that will cover the full cost of their tuition and fees.

    Rich Gere, MFA, chair of the department, views the donation as a gamechanger for the students in his department. “As we look to the future with innovation and vision, students are still held back by one of our biggest challenges, funding in higher education. The ability for a student to successfully study in the arts often depends on their ability to secure scholarships and additional aid,” said Gere. “Windgate Foundation funding for scholarships to underrepresented groups will be a cornerstone of student retention and success.”

    The DAAH offers two undergraduate degrees: a Bachelor of Arts (with concentrations in Art Studio and Art History) and a Bachelor of Fine Arts. The department, along with the Department of Anthropology, also offers an interdisciplinary Master of Arts in Cultural Heritage Studies. Lastly, DAAH offers a Master of Arts in Art History in conjunction with the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa.

    The new scholarships will be offered to students in the 2022-2023 academic year. CAS looks forward to highlighting stories of the future scholarship recipients and continuing to elevate Inclusive Excellence across the College.

    Read more...