Year in review: Top 16 SCAD moments of 2016

December
29
2016
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Before we say goodbye to 2016, let’s take a look at some of the year's most outstanding moments. From incredible exhibitions to prestigious awards to one-of-a-kind events, we tally up the year's most memorable moments.

1. President Wallace published her memoir
SCAD President and Founder Paula Wallace released her memoir, “The Bee and The Acorn,” a touching account of the history of the university, from the purchase of SCAD's first building to its global expansion.

2. Legendary fashion designer Carolina Herrera’s inaugural museum exhibition
SCAD honored the 35-year reign of the House of Herrera with the designer's first-ever museum retrospective: “Refined Irreverence.” The exhibition featured 99 garments in an expansive dual museum presentation — another first of its kind. In December, SCAD traveled part of the exhibition to Lincoln Center in New York, where Herrera was honored with the Women's Leadership Award.

3. First virtual reality musical premiered at 19th Savannah Film Festival
At this year’s festival, “Say It With Music,” the first-ever virtual reality musical, made its debut. Created entirely by SCAD students, the short film enjoyed a rapturous reception.

4. Daniel Lismore’s sartorial collection exhibited twice
SCAD FASH opened the year with “Be Yourself; Everyone Else is Already Taken,” the first U.S. museum exhibition featuring the work of artist, stylist and designer Daniel Lismore. Daniel and SCAD joined at year's end for “Theater of Self,” a joint exhibition with Bin Feng (M.F.A. photography candidate) at SCAD at Miami, which opened during Art Basel.

5. Savannah Women of Vision honored on Georgia Day
SCAD celebrated of Georgia Day with the investiture of the Savannah Women of Vision in Arnold Hall, unveiling 10 relief sculptures commissioned in tribute to the remarkable ideas and insightful leadership of Savannah’s most distinguished women were installed at Arnold Hall.

6. Men’s and women’s fishing teams launched
SCAD introduced fishing to its roster of competitive athletic teams, making history as the first university to offer a women’s varsity fishing team.

7. SCAD Museum of Art celebrates 5th anniversary
Rising from the ruins of the nation's oldest antebellum railroad depot, SCAD MOA celebrated its five-year anniversary this fall. Since its opening in 2011, the museum has garnered honors including the American Institute of Architects Institute Honor Award for Architecture; Congress for the New Urbanism, Charter Award; and Historic Savannah Foundation, Preservation Award.

8. Alumnus Jeffrey Taylor won 9th Annual Supima Design Competition
Jeffrey Taylor (B.F.A. fashion, 2016) and his award-winning collection, “Tibet Garden,” appeared on the Paris runway in September at the Supima Design Competition Presentation. The young designer made his official runway debut at the 2016 SCAD Fashion Show in May. This is the second consecutive Supima win for SCAD students, on the heels of Kate McKenna’s win last year.

9. 2016 SCAD catalog is the first to feature augmented reality experience
SCAD pioneered the use of augmented reality (AR) technology to create the first AR-driven university catalog produced and designed entirely by a university. With over 100 AR features on 85 trackable pages, users can view student media reels, tour residence halls, live chat with admission representatives, and more.

10. aTVfest live streamed “The Mindy Project” panel for Savannah
For the first time in the annual television festival’s history, students in Savannah were able to join Atlanta audiences for a live-streamed episode of “The Mindy Project,” as well as a Q&A session with show writers, including Mindy Kaling herself.

11. SCAD FASH debuts first historical retrospectives
Threads of History: 200 Years of Fashion” and “Embellished: Adornment Through the Ages” presented a rare chronology of European and American garments and accessories from the 18th through 20th centuries. Both exhibitions are on display through March 19, 2017.

12. Equestrian team named champions
Once again, SCAD’s elite equestrian team won the American National Riding Commission (ANRC) National Championship, Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) National Championship and Tournament of Champions (TOC) series. No other university can claim this “triple crown” achievement, let alone for two consecutive years.

13. SCAD FASH celebrates first birthday
October 2016 saw the first anniversary of SCAD FASH Museum of Fashion + Film — the only museum of its kind. In its first year, SCAD FASH welcomed 25,000 guests and hosted five unique exhibitions, including the inaugural exhibit “Oscar de la Renta.”

14. SCAD Atlanta sheltered Savannah students during Hurricane Matthew
In an unprecedented move, SCAD evacuated 1,300 students from Savannah to SCAD Atlanta as Hurricane Matthew approached the Atlantic coast. SCAD students channeled this change into creative pursuits and community service. Together with President Wallace, the students presented Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta with a painted mural to be used as a theater backdrop, as well as storytelling props.

15. Visionary Voices of the Civil Rights Movement honored
In September, a historical marker was placed at the entrance of SCAD’s Jen Library in dedication to the courage of Savannah students during the 1960s Civil Rights Movement. SCAD held a ceremony featuring performances by SCAD alumni and Masud Olufani and Brittany Bosco.

16. SCAD hosted its first Thanksgiving feast
More than 1,000 students celebrated Thanksgiving on campus in Savannah this year. In addition to the festive feast and grand dessert, the SCAD Museum of Art hosted workshops, games, film screenings and more.

The Gift of Giving: SCAD and Union Mission

December
16
2016
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For the 22nd consecutive year, SCAD is partnering with Union Mission to provide gifts for area children and their families during the holiday season. A social services organization, Union Mission has worked to prevent homelessness in greater Savannah for eight decades, exemplifying a community-minded spirit intrinsic to SCAD.

"Savannah's Union Mission embodies the generosity that has always defined this big-hearted city,” said SCAD president and founder Paula Wallace, who joined SCAD volunteers at this year’s Union Mission toy shop on Friday, Dec. 16. “SCAD is honored to support the work of Union Mission: to give and serve and love!”

For the 22nd anniversary of the partnership, 22 SCAD faculty, staff and students helped parents pick out wish-listed gifts for their children at Union Mission. This year’s SCAD volunteers included majors in painting, film and television, interactive design, and advertising, representing the diversity of talent and unity of purpose amongst the student body.

The gifts will bring seasonal cheer to over 100 children of all ages throughout Savannah. Additionally, donations and gifts will go to women in residence at Union Mission’s Ben and Bettye Barnes Center, which provides permanent supportive housing for homeless women with disabilities, and to the Magdalene Project, an emergency shelter for women and children.

Union Mission’s SCAD partnership is one of the key charitable events connecting the university to the Savannah community, including SCAD’s annual Buzz Bus art supply donations. SCAD students, faculty and staff engage in over 20,000 hours of community service annually throughout the university’s locations in Savannah, Atlanta, Hong Kong and Lacoste, France. These opportunities provide life-changing experiences for students, cultivating meaningful social and communal bonds.

As President Wallace stated: “The university continues our treasured, decades-old tradition of spreading and sharing SCAD cheer with our friends and neighbors.”

SCADATMIAMI presents “Theater of Self,” featuring Daniel Lismore and Bin Feng

December
1
2016
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Last night, SCAD joined VisionaireWORLD in celebrating the opening of “Theater of Self,” with an exclusive film created by VisionaireFILM featuring Lismore, directed by Alice Rosati. The film debuted with a private screening at SCADATMIAMI followed by a dinner. Notable guests in attendance included actress Rose McGowan, stylist June Ambrose, model Shaun Ross, UK DJ Chelsea Leyland, and interior designer Celerie Kemble.

“Creativity has become an essential currency in the world today, and Miami is one of the world’s greatest exchanges, where contemporary masters and fearless upstarts share their grand visions,” said SCAD President and Founder Paula Wallace. “I’m proud to see SCAD artists represented here every year.”

“Theater of Self” takes viewers on an expedition into identity through a joint exhibition of fashion and photography. Lismore, who was named “London’s Most Outrageous Dresser” by Vogue for his imaginative and flamboyant wardrobe, transforms outfits into an expression of eccentric, creative energy. Lismore combines the luxurious and the unusual — everything from charity-shop finds, vintage custom fabrics, feathers, chainmail, discarded theatrical props and more — to express his unique sartorial vision.

Twenty of his most theatric creations are staged on mannequins exactly as Lismore once wore them. Each look is completed with recreations of the artist’s face, including full lashes and brightly lacquered lips. With mirrors lining the walls, the room turns into a glittering, kaleidoscopic reflection of Lismore’s multidimensional identity.

Complementing Lismore’s work with another dimension of theatric self-expression are the stylized self-portraits of Bin Feng (M.F.A. photography candidate). Feng casts himself in each cinematic tableau, creating dramatically lit scenes of everyday life. His look at the “American Dream” is based on his own experiences coming to the U.S. and presents an Eastern perspective on Western society. Together, the exhibitions create a glamorous exploration of how identity is constructed through fantasy and materiality.

“Theater of Self” opens tonight with a reception 7-9 p.m., followed by an InstaMeet 9-10 p.m. Both events are free and open to the public. SCAD alumnus Roberto Carlos Lange (B.F.A. computer art, 2003), better known as Helado Negro, will DJ and set the mood for the evening with inviting electro-pop music.

Also on view in Miami and in partnership with the Rolls-Royce Art Programme is “Roots,” a site-specific installation by SCAD painting alumnus José Parlá. This immersive installation at the Jewel Box of the National YoungArts building offers a contemplative space to consider connections between history and one’s past, present and future through the juxtaposition of Parlá’s contemporary work, family background and the historical framework of the building.

Where to go:

  • Theater of Self” (Dec. 1-13) – 1601 N. Miami Ave., Miami, Florida
  • “Roots” (through Dec. 15) – The Jewel Box of the National YoungArts Foundation, 2100 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, Florida

'Tis the season for #BEEGiving

November
22
2016
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SCAD recognizes that unexpected financial emergencies can affect a student’s ability to fully realize his or her creative endeavors. In response, the university created the SCAD Student Relief Fund, offering monetary assistance to SCAD students with extenuating circumstances and demonstrated financial need.

Starting this Friday, SCAD presents multiple opportunities to contribute to the SCAD Student Relief Fund. Special tie-ins include:

  • Nov. 25, “Black Friday”: SCAD will contribute a portion of SCAD Museum of Art (SCADMOA) and SCAD FASH Museum of Fashion + Film membership and merchandise sales to the Student Relief Fund. ShopSCAD will host a Black Friday sale in-store, with a portion of each sale benefiting the fund.
  • Nov. 28, “Cyber Monday”: SCAD will contribute a portion of SCAD Museum of Art (SCADMOA) and SCAD FASH Museum of Fashion + Film membership sales to the Student Relief Fund. ShopSCAD will sell SCAD FASH 300 items on shopscad.com, with SCAD contributing a portion of sales to the Student Relief Fund. In addition, those shopping on Amazon can select SCAD through AmazonSmile to donate a portion of their purchase to the fund.
  • Nov. 29, “Giving Tuesday”: Take the opportunity to contribute directly to the Student Relief Fund by visiting scad.edu/giving.

Throughout the campaign, those shopping Amazon online can select SCAD through AmazonSmile to donate a portion of their purchase to the fund.

Each donation to the Student Relief Fund provides direct assistance to deserving students, and every gift to SCAD supports the university’s mission of preparing talented students for creative careers.

Happy #BEEGiving, and thanks in advance for supporting SCAD students during this season of giving!

Celebrate 5 years with the SCAD Museum of Art!

November
9
2016
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SCAD is proud to invite you to the SCAD Museum of Art’s five-year anniversary celebration! Join the festivities during the opening reception for six new exhibitions Thursday, Nov. 10, starting at 4:30 p.m.

The evening will start with gallery talks by artists Michael Joo, Jose Dávila and Radcliffe Bailey. Artist receptions will include a performance of “Astra Black, Afro Blue: An Extemporaneous Exploration of the Blues and its Diasporic Evolution” by Bailey and DJ Karl Injex in the museum’s courtyard. Injex is an award-winning DJ who has developed music for notable clients such as Puma, Red Bull, The Mercer Kitchen and The Standard Hotels.

The new exhibitions will be on view for the following dates:

SCAD invites shoelace donations for Nari Ward’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium artwork

November
9
2016
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Laces, please! Before Atlanta United and Atlanta Falcons players even hit the field, SCAD is inviting fans, students and community members to contribute to an epic work by artist Nari Ward that will be permanently installed at the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Utilizing an estimated 10,000 pairs of donated shoelaces, Ward’s artwork will spell out “ONE VOICE,” a motto of unity for the city the new stadium will serve. “ONE VOICE” is part of one of the largest and most dynamic collections of site-specific art ever housed in a major sporting complex, as curated by the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD).

Highly acclaimed, Jamaican-born Nari Ward often works with repurposed and found materials. His artwork “We The People” (displayed during his solo show at SCAD Museum of Art, part of deFINE ART 2015) utilized dyed and braided shoelaces to spell out the key words that begin the United States Constitution. 

Be a part of Mercedes-Benz Stadium with “ONE VOICE.” And stay tuned for more exciting updates on how SCAD is helping shape the character of Atlanta’s new stadium.

Donate your shoelaces now through December 2, 2016. Any and all adult shoelaces with aglets are welcome (a.k.a. those plastic bits at the end).

Drop your new or old shoelaces off at the following locations:

SCAD FASH Museum of Fashion + Film

1600 Peachtree St. NW
4th Floor
Atlanta, GA 30309
(Please note: SCAD FASH is closed on Mondays.)

PGA TOUR Superstores:

1005 Holcomb Woods Pkwy
Roswell, GA 30076

2255 Newpoint Pkwy
Lawrenceville, GA 30043

2911 George Busbee Pkwy
Kennesaw, GA 30144

The Bellwood Boys and Girls Club:

777 Donald Lee Hollowell Pkwy NW
Atlanta, GA 30318

Laces may also be mailed to:

Savannah College of Art and Design
Attn: Daniel Sanchez
SCAD Evans Hall
212 W. Hall Street
Savannah, GA 31401

Mini-comics, big event

November
4
2016
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On Saturday, November 5, from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m., Haymans Hall will be transformed into a bountiful bazaar of self-published mini-comics, zines and sketches as SCAD Sequential Art presents Mini-Comics Expo 2016. “It’s my favorite thing all year long,” says Prof. David Allan Duncan, SCAD sequential arts professor.

As the first university to offer both undergraduate and graduate degrees in sequential art, SCAD has the largest, most comprehensive sequential art department in the United States. “The Mini-Comics Expo is an ever-growing opportunity for SCAD students to show their work, sell and trade their hand-made comics, and celebrate small presses,” enthuses Duncan. Over 80 students, alumni and faculty will display their wares at the event.

This year’s Expo will also feature demonstrations led by faculty and graduate students, including drawing comics and creating and binding mini-comics. “We’ll demonstrate a template where you can build your own mini-comic of one 8 ½ by 11 piece of paper. It’s folded down and fits in your pocket. It’s easy to draw and easy to reproduce. We make the process of creating your own mini-comic very accessible.”

Attendees will have the opportunity to meet this year's special guest Robyn Chapman (B.F.A., sequential art, 2000), associate editor at First Second Books and proprietor of Paper Rocket Minicomics. “Robyn has a professional publishing career but still makes her own hand-made books,” says Duncan. “We love that, and are excited to have her here.”

A devotion to the “hand-made” ethos of mini-comics is the essence of the expo, as Duncan explains: “Mini-comics are all about making a personal connection. It’s nice to have a physical object, especially when the artist silkscreens the cover and hand-binds the book, and you’re meeting the artist who made it. It’s a love for an analog art form in spite of the digital revolution. It’s that same sort of excitement you get from sharing your work online, but it’s a much more tangible experience.”

Potential attendees concerned about getting caught up in Saturday morning’s Savannah Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon traffic need not fret, says Duncan: “We’ve had the marathon on the same day as the Mini-Comics Expo for the last three years. By the time the Expo starts swinging at 11 a.m., the marathon is over. We actually get a lot of foot traffic coming in. At the Expo you’ll see quite a few sweaty people with numbers taped to their shirts!”

Inspiring the perspiring, it’s the SCAD Mini-Comics Expo 2016.

Sound Advice: Erik Aadahl at Savannah Film Festival

November
2
2016
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What do a flying dumpling, an irate mob, and an asteroid striking Earth have in common?

The answer, of course, is Erik Aadahl.

As sound designer on “Kung Fu Panda,” “Argo,” and “Tree of Life,” Aadahl created the aural experiences for those on-screen events. On Friday, October 29, at the Savannah Film Festival, sound-savvy SCAD students and intrigued festivalgoers packed the SCAD Museum of Art theater as Aadahl discussed his work with host Michael Coleman (SoundWorks Collection).

SCAD, the first and only university to confer B.F.A., M.A. and M.F.A. degrees in sound design, provided the ideal venue for Aadahl’s insights.

“Think of sound like painting,” explained Aadahl. “If you use too many colors on your canvas and smear them together, it turns brown. A lot of times the trick is simplicity and imagining beforehand what you might be going for.”

Having worked with directors as diverse as Michael Bay (the “Transformers” series), Terrence Malick (“Tree of Life”), and Gareth Edwards (“Godzilla”), Aadahl pinpointed commonalities in his process: “It begins with the script. Read the script and start a discussion with the director. A lot of times filmmakers won’t even hear the sound until they get to the mixing stage, which is terrible. As soon as a scene starts to get cut together, do a pass on the sound and get it into the Avid. That allows sound to evolve with the picture. Sound affects the emotion of the scene, it affects the tempo. It helps inform the rest of the process.”

Aadahl enhanced his “Creating the Sound for Hollywood Movies” presentation with audio and film clips, emphasizing the interplay between sound and image. Running a serrated plastic knife down the tracks of a rubber tire, he revealed, led to one of his team’s most terrifying monster movie motifs.

“One thing we really enjoy doing is trying new things. A lot of experimentation went into creating the sounds for the characters from ‘Godzilla.’ We pulled in hundreds of props and played with them. One technique was using high-resolution microphones five times the range of human hearing. So there’s all this invisible sonic information in those recordings, but once it’s slowed down it becomes audible.”

Aadahl often records small things to massive effect, whereby “micro becomes macro.”

“In ‘Transformers’ we’ve got these enormous footsteps. One of my favorite ‘footsteps’ is made by slamming the door of my dryer at home. Slow it down and beef it up and it becomes huge.”   

A ripple of delight ran through the theater when Aadahl screened the “Kung Fu Panda” sequence where pupil and teacher grapple over the last steamed dumpling. Every chopstick click and slurping tongue sounded epic.

“When Po catches the dumpling and tosses it and says ‘I’m not hungry,’ then Shifu catches it and throws it off-screen,” Aadahl pointed out. “We were finishing the film and screened it for the Chinese distributors. They said, ‘That’s very disrespectful to throw away food.’ It was a big cultural issue. So we added the rrring! sound of a dumpling landing in a bowl off-screen.”

Sound decision, master. 

Barbara Kopple brings Miss Sharon Jones! to Savannah Film Festival

October
28
2016
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Exclamation marks the spot! On Monday, October 24, SCAD hosted the Savannah Film Festival screening of Miss Sharon Jones!, the new documentary about the tribulations and triumphs of the South Carolina-born soul singer, inspiring an ebullient, sustained ovation from the Trustees Theater crowd. The festival felt the funk.

As frontwoman of Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, Jones imbues rough, retro R&B workouts with a James Brown-inspired work ethic, earning a fervent fan base. In 2014, Jones received a cancer diagnosis. Barbara Kopple’s documentary follows her treatment, leavened by a number of astonishing musical performances.

Like Jones, Kopple doesn’t quit. A two-time Academy Award-winning filmmaker for 1976’s Harlan County, USA, and 1991’s American Dream (both documentary accounts of the plights of striking workers), Kopple has amassed credits encompassing a fearless range of subjects and formats.

Following the screening, Kopple conducted a Q&A with journalist Susan Wloszczyna. “I’d never heard of Sharon until I saw this movie,” Wloszczyna said. “Thank you, because now I’m a fan!” Here are selections from their exchange, including a query from esteemed critic Leonard Maltin.

WLOSZCYNA: How did this documentary come about?

KOPPLE: Sharon’s manager decided that even thought people had heard her music, she wasn’t a household name, so he went to VH1 with a proposal. They said, “We’ve got just the person,” called me up and said, “How’d you like to direct a film about Sharon Jones?” I said, “Are you kidding? I would love it!” Sharon was doing chemo when I came into the picture, but I never thought this was a film about cancer. I never thought for a moment she wouldn’t make it. Really what I was looking at was, “Who is this phenomenal woman?” Sharon worked as a guard on Rikers Island, she’s tough as nails even though she’s tiny. There is no quitting in her.

MALTIN: One of the things about the film that struck me is that we were never aware of the presence of a camera crew at all. Was this a conscious decision?

KOPPLE: Yes. I asked questions and did things behind the scenes but the audience isn’t supposed to know that. Sharon didn’t always love us coming to film. She’d roll her eyes like, oh, they’re here again. But once we were there was very gracious and giving. She’ll tell all. She wants you to know exactly how she’s feeling and what she’s going through. The church scene was spontaneous and came from her soul. The DP, Gary Griffin, captured it all in one shot.

WLOSZCYNA: You’ve made many important documentaries. Do younger documentary makers come to you for advice?

KOPPLE: Sure. I tell people to persevere. Don’t keep your project a secret. Tell everybody about your project, and people will help you. Documentarians are a great community. We hang out and give our opinions on each other’s rough cuts. And I’d also say, love your subjects: give anything they’re willing to give, so that people will understand them.

Ready on set: The 2016 Savannah Film Festival is here!

October
21
2016
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It’s finally here! The 2016 Savannah Film Festival starts tonight at Trustees Theater with a Gala Screening of “Jackie,” an intimate portrait of first lady Jackie Kennedy (Natalie Portman) during the days immediately following her husband’s assassination. From the joyful and whimsical “Trolls” to the deeply compassionate “Moonlight,” this year’s selection of silver screenings promises to be one of the best yet.

Every year, the Festival’s guests and honorees bring industry insight to the Savannah community. This year, Mahershala Ali will receive the Discovery Award; Sam Claflin and Molly Shannon will receive Spotlight Awards; and Miles Teller will receive the Vanguard award. Additional guests include Demián Bichir, Damien Chazelle, Avan Jogia, Rodrigo Santoro, and Shane West.

In addition to the honorees, Vinny Pazienza — famous boxer and subject of “Bleed for This” — will be in attendance as a special guest.

This year’s Gala Screenings:

Also debuting this year is the first virtual reality (VR) musical. The short film, “Say it With Music,” was created entirely by SCAD students and is the first musical treatment produced for a virtual reality experience. “Say it With Music” will be part of a VR Showcase happening at Pei Ling Chan Gallery form Oct. 25-27. A total of eight VR films will be shown on a loop for visitors to get the full VR experience.

For the complete schedule of screenings and events, visit filmfest.scad.edu. Additional details, tickets and passes are available online, by telephone at 912.525.5050 or in person at the Trustees Theater, located at 216 E. Broughton St., Savannah, Georgia.

See you on the red carpet!