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Family History Inspires Gallery Installations

October 07, 2013

“My hope is that people who see the show will examine their lives in relation to what they’re seeing. They will receive a new way of seeing the world and the way they fit in it.” — Daniel Connolly, gallery director.

The works of Michigan artists Ginger Owen and Vicki VanAmeyden are inspired by the acquisition of family photo albums and represent a communal conversation on the influence of family history.

The Flora Kirsch Beck Gallery at Alma College showcases their installations from Monday, Sept. 30 through Thursday, Oct. 31. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. A gallery reception takes place from 7 to 9 p.m. Oct. 31.

Owen and VanAmeyden have cooperated as a team on projects for the last five years. Their mixed media works are presented in large-scale installations.

“My hope is that people who see the show will examine their lives in relation to what they’re seeing,” says Daniel Connolly, gallery director. “They will receive a new way of seeing the world and the way they fit in it.”

Owen, an associate professor of photography at the Gwen Frostic School of Art at Western Michigan University, focuses her artwork on themes of family, history, race, gender and culture. Her interdisciplinary practices include installation, sculpture and digital, traditional and non-silver photographic processes.

She has lectured, worked and exhibited internationally. She also has won several awards and grants, including a fellowship from the Tisch School of Arts. Her works have been exhibited at the Living Design Center OZONE in Tokyo and the Houston Museum of Art. She are also is featured in many collections, including one at the Conservation Institute in Los Angeles.

VanAmeyden, who teaches painting, drawing and printmaking for the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, uses image as a metaphor for the human condition, deciphering what it means to be a person. She takes a diverse and interdisciplinary approach to art and often uses text and non-traditional materials in her work.

She has won many awards at both the regional and national levels. These include the Lila Acheson Wallace Award for Illustration and the Kalamazoo Artist Development Initiative Grant. She also is adjunct faculty member in the arts and communications department at Kellogg Community College.

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