Category: Exhibits

Magpie in the Mirror: Patty B. Driscoll

The University of Alabama Gallery is proud to A picture containing flowers and vegetables in a ceramic bowl.present the exhibition, Magpie in the Mirror: Patty B. Driscoll. The show will open on First Friday, October 7 and run through December 2, 2022. There will be a reception for the artist on First Friday, November 4, from 5:00 to 7:00 p

As art historian Tanja L. Jones writes in the catalog essay, “Patty B. Driscoll’s complex works of art engage questions of identity, self-awareness and equity. In this exhibition, the artist ranges across media to address belonging, acknowledgement, tradition, violence, and rebellion through painstakingly detailed objects. Some are designed to endure while others beguilingly convey that permanence is elusive and that all is not what it seems.”

Driscoll utilizes traditional genres and processes such as the still life, water gilding, metalwork, and textiles, layering her work with subtle narratives and subject matter that investigate the context of feminine and feminist identity. The artist writes that her work “is a dialogue with historical pathways, iconography and the symbolism of women, and challenges implicit societal representations and inculcated cultural values.”

Daniel White, director of the UA Gallery, writes, “Her work takes place in the role she deftly inhabits as a studio artist bridging both art history and contemporary art: the role of the connector. In this creative capacity, she connects meaning and beauty for beauty’s sake into her work, allowing a visual conversation between the two and with the viewer. Driscoll upsets traditional interpretations of what is a painting and what is a well-crafted object.”

Birmingham native Patty B. Driscoll holds an MFA from the California College of the Arts and a Bachelor of Science in studio art and art history from Skidmore College. In addition to her formal degree training, Driscoll has studied at the Florence Academy of Art, the Studio Arts College International in Florence, and the Instituto Allende in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. She has been awarded a residency at Hambidge Center in Rabun Gap, Georgia. Her paintings have been exhibited at the Abroms-Engels Institute for the Visual Arts, Ground Floor Contemporary, and the Birmingham Museum of Art in Birmingham, Alabama; Alexandria Museum of Art, Louisiana; Masur Museum of Art, Monroe, Louisiana; Wiregrass Museum of Art, Dothan, Alabama; and the Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, Saratoga Springs, New York. For the past 20 years, Driscoll has lived and worked in her hometown of Birmingham. Her website is here.

Click here to read this press release online.

Image credit: Patty B. Driscoll, “Garzoni and Gluck,” oil on panel, 18 x 24 x 1 inches. Image courtesy of the artist.

The University of Alabama Gallery is an essential part of the education and development of UA students and our community. Admission to the gallery is free. The gallery is located in the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center at 620 Greensboro Avenue in Tuscaloosa. It is open Monday through Friday, 9 am-4 pm and First Fridays 12 noon-7 pm. Have questions or need assistance? Call (205) 345-3038. 

For more information about The University of Alabama’s programs in art history and studio art, visit our Degree Programs page.


Jude Anogwih- The Wall Is a Given Master of Fine Arts Thesis Exhibition

While UA operates in a limited capacity in order to stem the spread of COVID-19, the UA Gallery will be closed to the public. Please call the UA Gallery at (205) 345-3038 for more information. This MFA thesis exhibition is documented and presented in an online exhibition on Flickr and on Facebook.   

The University of Alabama Department of Art and Art History is proud to announce The Wall is a Given, a final thesis exhibition presented by Jude Anogwih to fulfill the requirements of the MFA degree. The exhibition will run April 3- May 22, 2020, in The University of Alabama Gallery at the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center in Tuscaloosa.

Jude Anogwih’s mixed media works, while grounded in the vibrant, gesture of color, have an inescapable three-dimensional component. He makes marks on unstretched, gessoed canvases and on found objects with duct tape, graphite, charcoal, pastel and acrylic. Anogwih explains, “I am concerned with painting as a structure of accumulation…of metaphors, forms, marks, and found objects. This is not dissimilar to memories, embedded on walls of old building or family photo albums, and constructed spectacles such as the favelas in Brazil.”

“With varied media, including duct tape,” Anogwih said, “I spin around an amalgam of dreams, intentions and experiences in sequences that are structurally layered in unpredictable new stories. I strive on a constant basis in my artistic research to conceive ideas that merge lived experiences, my imaginations and the realities of general life to a point of convergence.”

Anogwih’s work has been shown internationally and nationally in many exhibitions including Videonale (Lagos, Nigeria); Biennale Jogja XII (Yogyakarta, Indonesia); “Shifting Africa,”Mediation Biennale (Poznan, Poland); Urban Cadence: Street Scenes from Lagos to Johannesburg, Gund Gallery (Kenyon College, Gambier, Ohio); Analogue Eye-Video Art AfricaNational Arts Festival (Grahamstown, South Africa); Jardim Canadá Centro de Arte (Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil); 5th International Festival of Video Art, FIVAC 2013 (Camagüey, Cuba); Imagined Communities, Golden Thread Gallery (Northern Ireland). He was selected as a Goethe-Institut Moving Africa Participant at Salon Urbain de Douala and he won a Goethe-Institut Fellowship to dOCUMENTA (13) in Kassel, Germany, among other awards. He is a founding member and co-coordinator of Video Art Network Lagos.

The University of Alabama Gallery is located in the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center, 620 Greensboro Avenue, Tuscaloosa, Ala., 35401.  For more information about this exhibition and all our programs, call (205) 345-3038.

For more information about The University of Alabama’s programs in studio art and art history, visit our Degree Programs page. 

Unframed Images : Photography from the P.H. Polk

Tuskegee Airwomen

The University of Alabama Gallery presents the exhibition, Unframed Images – Photography from the Collection of P.H. Polk, January 24-February 28, 2020. The public is invited to a First Friday Reception, February 7, 5-8 p.m.

Digitally enlarged and reproduced from his original works, the photographs in this exhibit display the qualities for which Prentice Herman “P.H.” Polk (1898-1984) was known, for example, presenting his subjects in sharp detail with strong lighting without idealizing them. Polk’s subjects ranged from famous African Americans such as George Washington Carver, Paul Robeson, Langston Hughes and Martin Luther King, Jr., to working-class and poor Alabamians. One of Polk’s most influential photos featured First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt in 1941 with pilot C.A. Anderson, an African American and Tuskegee Institute’s first chief flight instructor, which helped promote the newly established pilot training program that produced the Tuskegee Airmen.

Born and raised in Bessemer, Alabama, P.H. Polk (1898-1984) came to study art at the then-Tuskegee Institute in 1916 and opened his first photography studio there in 1927. The next year, he joined the faculty of Tuskegee’s photography department and taught until 1938, including five years as department head. From 1940, Polk served as the college’s official photographer while continuing to run his own studio.

The P.H. Polk Photography Collection, which contains more than 3,800 photographs, is housed in Tuskegee University’s archives. Tuskegee University archivist Dana Chandler said, “This collection represents some of the finest black and white images ever produced — by arguably the nation’s greatest African American photographer.” The works have been exhibited at leading institutions around the country, including the Corcoran Gallery, Washington, D.C.; the Museum of Natural History and the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, N.Y.

The exhibition is made possible through a partnership with Tuskegee University, Mississippi State University Libraries and the Southern Literary Trail.

The University of Alabama Gallery is located in the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center, 620 Greensboro Avenue, Tuscaloosa, Ala., 35401. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and 12 noon until 8:00 p.m. on the First Friday of each month. For more information about this exhibition and all our programs, call (205) 345-3038.

Stompin’ Grounds- Photography by Jerry Siegel

We are very proud to present the photographs of acclaimed photographer Jerry Siegel. Please join us November 1st as we celebrate the photographer and the region that has left a distinctive imprint on his life and work, the Black Belt region of Alabama. This show will run November 1st through January 17th 2020.

Born in Selma, AL, Jerry Siegel is a photographer living in Atlanta, GA, and working throughout the Southeast. Siegel focuses his work on traditions of portrait and documentary photography.
His first monograph, Facing South, Portraits of Southern Artists, was published by the University of Alabama Press, and features portraits of 100 Southern artists.

His work is in many public, private and corporate collections including the High Museum of Art, GA Museum of Art, Birmingham Museum of Art, MOCA GA, Ogden Museum of Southern Art, The Do Good Fund, The Telfair Museum, Jepson Center for the Arts in Savannah, GA, The Morris Museum in Augusta, GA, and numerous other museums.

We are closed major holidays and school holidays.

The University Gallery is open weekdays 9am-4pm
620 Greensboro Avenue
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35401

Five Decades of Art by Al Sella Featured at The University of Alabama Gallery

The University of Alabama Gallery will present For the Record: The Art of Al Sella, August 2-September 27, 2019. The Alvin C. Sella, "Untitled," 1964, oil on canvas, Collection of the Birmingham Museum of Art; Gift of Alvin C. Sella through the Museum Art Education Council.public is invited to a reception on Friday, September 6 (First Friday in downtown Tuscaloosa), from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Works from the Sella Estate, the Birmingham Museum of Art, the Sarah Moody Gallery of Art and private collections, will be on display.

Noted Guatemalan artist and arts educator Carlos Mérida wrote, “Sella has fertile imagination, variety, and is a colorist of first quality,” in Mérida’s introduction to the catalog for Sella’s solo exhibition at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City in 1946.

“The rumors are indeed true,” beamed UA Gallery director Daniel White. “We have been working hard behind the scenes for many months for this show, and we are proud to announce that we will have a solo survey of Al Sella’s work at the UA Gallery in August! Paul Barrett, the guest curator for this exhibition, has brought together a great group of collectors and institutions as we celebrate the work of Professor Sella as it stands on its own.”

“The exhibition includes paintings, assemblages and prints from 1960 through the 2000s,” notes Barrett. “After experiencing so much of Al Sella’s work over the course of organizing this show, it’s no surprise Alabama State Council on the Arts Executive Director Elliot Knight included Sella in his recent book, Alabama Creates: 200 Years of Art and Artists, published by University of Alabama Press.”

Al Sella in his studio, probably taken in 1965, Courtesy of the Sella Estate.Alvin C. Sella, who died in 2013, taught at The University of Alabama for 50 years, first as a tenured professor of art, hired in 1960, and later after his retirement in 1996, as professor emeritus, until 2010. Born in West Hoboken, New Jersey, Sella studied art at the Yale School of Fine Arts, Art Students League of New York, Columbia University School of Arts, Syracuse University College of Fine Arts, University of New Mexico department of art and, independently, in Mexico.

Sella spent his early career studying and painting in Mexico, before accepting a position as artist-in-residence at Sullins College in Bristol, Va., where he later served as head of the department of art before coming to Tuscaloosa.

Sella had numerous solo exhibitions throughout his career. His work appeared in the Contemporary Art Gallery in New York City; Collectors of American Art in New York City; the Carroll Knight Gallery in St. Louis, Mo.; and over 20 other galleries. His work also appeared in over 200 group shows. Sella’s paintings are held in numerous private collections as well as the corporate collections of Hinton Properties and Kovach Industries International. Sella was affiliated with the Frank Fedele Gallery in New York City.

He was the recipient of numerous awards, including the Distinguished Artist Award from Magic City Art Connection in Birmingham. In 1999, The University of Alabama Society for the Fine Arts awarded Sella its Distinguished Arts Career Award. In 2009, the Alabama State Council on the Arts awarded him the Governor’s Arts Award.

Image credit (top right): Alvin C. Sella, Untitled, 1964, oil on canvas, Collection of the Birmingham Museum of Art; Gift of Alvin C. Sella through the Museum Art Education Council.

Image credit (above left and featured): Alvin C. Sella in his studio, probably taken in 1965 during a photo shoot for the Crimson White for a story about his painting “The X Game” at the Southeastern Annual Exhibition in Atlanta (see Crimson White, Oct. 28, 1965). Courtesy of the Sella Estate.

The University of Alabama Gallery is located in the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center, 620 Greensboro Avenue, Tuscaloosa, Ala., 35401. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and 12 noon until 8:00 p.m. on the First Friday of each month. For more information about this exhibition and all our programs, call (205) 345-3038.

Daniel Livingston -Playing with Fire

Daniel Livingston ceramic art

For the month of May, the University Gallery at the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center presents Daniel Livingston: Playing with Fire.
Daniel is a studio ceramic artist whose studio is based in Northport at Kentuck Art Center. In addition to displaying the raku ceramics he is well known for, he will also be showing some two dimensional work as well.

The opening reception will take place on May 3rd from 5-8 pm and will run through May 31st.

Iranian Artist Explores Her Cultural Identity Through Ceramic Art

sculpture by artist Nasrin IravaniTuscaloosa. — The University of Alabama’s Department of Art and Art History is proud to present the master of arts thesis exhibition of Nasrin Iravani, titled, “I’m a Woman Here Standing in the Mist.” The exhibition will be held April 3-30, 2019, at The University of Alabama Gallery in the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center, in downtown Tuscaloosa. A First Friday reception will be held Friday, April 5 from 5:00-8:00 p.m. in the gallery.

Nasrin Iravani is a graduate student in ceramics and serves as a graduate teaching assistant in ceramics. Iravani received the MA in Handicrafts (ceramics) from Tehran University of Art. Her work is inspired by Persian art and she is particularly interested in figurative forms. She presents a critical view of ethical, social and cultural issues in her art work and is currently working on a collection of pieces titled Femininity, which refers to women’s rights and concerns.

She writes, “The history and culture of Iran, my home country, gives me a sense of identity, tranquility, and confidence. I use symbols and signs of traditional Iranian art to showcase some of that history and culture. In my work, I explore feminine narratives in aesthetics, politics, history and personal experiences, and I use the concept of art as a tool to address contemporary women’s rights and concerns.”

Iravani uses elements such as asymmetry, color contrast and the simultaneous presentation of the inside and the outside of some of her pieces to convey her own conflicts with Iran’s traditional ways, especially regarding women. The title of her exhibition is taken from a poem, written by her husband the Iranian poet Saeid Ranjbar, which she feels expresses her relationship to the culture she loves but struggles with. “While incorporating signs of traditional and contemporary art, I strive to reflect the view that the relationship between tradition and modernity needs to be continuously reconsidered.”

Nasrin Iravani’s selected international, national and juried exhibitions include L’artigiano in Fiera 2016, Milan; Fitur 2016, Feria de Madrid, Spain; International Handicraft Exhibition; Tehran; 46th International Art Show, Brownsville Museum of Fine Art (Texas); The Millennial Show (juried), TEJAS Gallery, Dayton, OH; Clay: A Southern Census (juried), New Orleans; 33rd Annual Alabama Clay Conference, Montgomery, AL; The Ritual Table: A Place of Memory, A State of Mind, Corning, NY; and Vitreous (juried), Clay Center of New Orleans.

Image credit: Nasrin Iravani, Aspire, 2019, 30 x 25 x 20 cm., porcelain. Image courtesy of the artist.

A thesis exhibition is one of the requirements for the successful completion of the Master of Arts program in the UA Department of Art and Art History. For more information about The University of Alabama’s Department of Art and Art History degree programs, visit our website

The Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center is located at 620 Greensboro Avenue in downtown Tuscaloosa. The DWCAC is the home of The University of Alabama Gallery and The Arts Council Gallery. The hours of the UA Gallery are Monday through Friday, 9 am to 5 pm, and First Fridays of the month, 12 noon to 8 pm. For more information call (205) 342-2060 or visit the website:

View original press release on the Department of Art and Art History website.

(un)Wrapt: New Arts Research by Creative Campus Fellows

Map of campus with paths drawn on itThe University of Alabama’s Creative Campus presents a gallery installation, “(un)Wrapt: New Arts Research by Creative Campus Fellows.” The installation will open at the University of Alabama Gallery located in the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center in downtown Tuscaloosa Friday, May 4 from 5 to 8 p.m. and will remain at the gallery through May 15.

“(un)Wrapt” will feature representations and results of the wide-ranging art projects and research explored by Creative Campus fellows throughout the year.

The research projects on display include:

  • “Internal,” a project by senior music composition major Jared Tubbs that sonifies the human body through the use of biofeedback devices
  • “Mixed Reality,” a collaboration between dancer/choreographers Alex Mannings, a senior majoring in dance and physics, and Alexia Acebo, a senior majoring in dance and psychology, that explores the process of choreographing dance for 360-degree video
  • “C(art)ographic Conjunctions,” a study of individuals’ place on campus by doctoral student Maureen Flint
  • “Artifacts of Social Cohesion,” a sculpture, created by senior interdisciplinary studies major Nick Jackson, that creates an immersive experience with both the physical structure of the piece and the inscriptions carved into its surface

Blanket Series: Beyond the Surface

The UA Gallery presents works from artist Kevin Cole. Kevin’s exhibition titled Blanket Series: Beyond the Surface, will be on display at the UA gallery from February 1-26. The First Friday reception will be on February 2, 5:30-7:30pm.