Works by artists Lucas Blalock, Shona McAndrew on exhibition by UAB’s AEIVA

AEIVA will host two virtual Inside the Arts LIVE Gallery Talks: with Blalock on Tuesday, Jan. 19, and with McAndrew on Tuesday, Feb. 16. Both events are free with registration.

Blalock918 033Lucas Blalock, "The House Guest," 2018. Archival Inkjet Print. Collection of Ellen and Fred Elsas ©️Lucas BlalockExhibitions of works by artists Lucas Blalock and Shona McAndrew will be presented by the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Abroms-Engel Institute for the Visual Arts.   

“Lucas Blalock in T-E-L-E-P-H-O-N-E” and “Shona McAndrew: Wednesday Night” will be exhibited in the AEIVA galleries from Jan. 18-April 3. All AEIVA exhibition programming will be virtual. AEIVA’s galleries are currently closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic and will reopen when it is safe to do so. A self-guided virtual tour of these exhibitions will soon be available on the AEIVA website at

A virtual Inside the Arts LIVE Gallery Talk with Blalock hosted by AEIVA via Zoom will be from 6-7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 19. Lucas will share an overview of his artistic practices and discuss his current exhibition. Register online and receive a link the day of the event. 

AEIVA will host an Inside the Arts LIVE Gallery Talk with McAndrew via Zoom from 6-7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 16. Register online. Links to the events will be sent to those registered; it will be recorded and posted to AEIVA on YouTube.

“Lucas Blalock in T-E-L-E-P-H-O-N-E”

Blalock uses both traditional and modern photographic processes to exploit the inherent artificiality of photography to present “constructed representations” that reveal deeper truths about our own existence. Referencing the history of photography, visual art, avant-garde theater and surrealist filmmaking, Blalock’s work is an evolving conversation with itself about humanity’s current “culture of imagery,” and the simultaneous dilution and strengthening of modern photographic imagery. 

The title of this AEIVA exhibition, “Lucas Blalock in T-E-L-E-P-H-O-N-E,” humorously breaks the metaphorical “fourth wall” by announcing the artist’s own starring role. In its naming, Blalock draws conceptual inspiration from the classic children’s game “Telephone” in which a group of children pass along information to each other through a series of one-on-one whispers until the message has evolved into something unrecognizable when compared to the original message. This concept evolves into a visual deconstruction of our culture’s desensitized and convoluted relationship with photographic imagery as well as the way we consume and digest visual information in the 21st century.

Blalock received his MFA from UCLA in 2013, and currently lives and works in New York City. His work has been featured in exhibitions all over the world, and resides in public and private collections, including The Whitney Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Hammer Museum and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, to name a few. Blalock was recently featured in the Whitney Biennial 2019 at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. 

house guest3Shona McAndrew, "Still There," 2018. Acrylic on canvas. Courtesy of Shona McAndrew and CHART©️Shona McAndrew“Shona McAndrew: Wednesday Night”

Does anything important happen on a Wednesday night in your home? What did you, or your girlfriend, daughter, spouse or any female in your life do last Wednesday night? Utilizing sculptures and paintings, “Wednesday Night” presents a representation of women not often experienced in visual art or popular media — moments of private, personal banality not intended to be viewed by strangers.

McAndrew’s multi-disciplined artistic practice draws on her personal experiences as a plus-size woman and her own struggles with society’s expectations of womanhood. The slightly larger-than-life figures are modeled after the artist herself or her friends and are presented partially or fully nude — unembarrassed by their exposed bodies and carefree from the viewer’s gaze (even the female gaze). They challenge or even dare the viewer to acknowledge and accept the intrinsic beauty of every woman’s body. 

McAndrew holds an MFA in painting from the Rhode Island School of Design and a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology and painting from Brandeis University. Her solo exhibitions include shows at the Moore College of Art and Design, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (2020); CHART, New York City (2019); and Spring/Break Art Show, New York City (2019). She has also exhibited in group shows at Stems Gallery, Brussels, Belgium; Mindy Solomon Gallery, Miami, Florida; Allouche Benias Gallery, Athens, Greece; and Museum of Sex, New York.