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VAC exhibition features artist from Wabash College

Tidewater Community College’s Visual Arts Center (VAC) will host the solo exhibition “Over and Over: Sculpture & Photographs by Doug Calisch” from May 5 through June 20.

Detail of “Rock, Scissors, Paper”

Galleries are free and open to the public.

In this program, the Crawfordsville, Indiana, artist presents a striking collection of assemblages and photographs using a range of visual resources, including architecture, tools, games, natural artifacts, refuse, the human figure and the environment.

The Wabash College professor uses a three-part sculptural process involving collecting, modifying and assembling found materials, something he calls “creative scavenging.” He then creates layers of association whereby motifs emerge and narratives are created. In essence, Calisch preserves the identity of these rescued objects then invents new ways of presenting them. In their new context, the shrine-like assemblages reveal various themes and the materials find new life.

Depicting many of the abandoned sites where the artist did his scavenging, his digital photographs reveal the unusual beauty and ghostly qualities in and around these areas. Deserted outdoor attractions, home interiors, dumpsters, classrooms and signs exhibit unusual narrative qualities and question our historical understanding of the reality within the image.

The VAC is located at 340 High St.

For information, call Shelley Brooks at 757-822-1878.

Student Art and Design Exhibition opens March 24 at TCC’s Visual Arts Center

Tidewater Community College’s Visual Arts Center (VAC) will host the 47th Annual Student Art and Design Exhibition from March 24 through April 19. The event features more than 150 works, including studio arts, photography, graphic design, ceramics and glassblowing, created by students for art classes since last March.

“Fine Tuned with Patience” by Alexandra Brannon

The exhibition’s awards presentation is March 31 at 11 a.m. at the Commodore Theatre, 421 High St., in Portsmouth. The opening reception will follow at noon at the VAC at 340 High St.

Events are free and open to the public.

Robert Sites, artist and painting instructor at the Governor’s School for the Arts, is this year’s judge. During the event, Sites will present $3,285 in awards recognizing artistic excellence.

“Space Fabric” by Taylor Harvey-Thornton

Programming for the exhibition includes illustrated lectures by a visiting artist and a visiting art historian. On April 3, Alison Stinely, assistant professor of painting at Old Dominion University, will present “Gilded Splinters and Other Works.”

On April 11, Kimberli Gant, McKinnon curator of modern and contemporary art at the Chrysler Museum, will present “Legacy of a Curator.” Both programs begin at 12:30 p.m. at the VAC in room 208.

For information, call Shelley Brooks at 757-822-1878.

Want to take better pictures? Consider new TCC career studies certificate

Whether you want to be the best photographer on your block or plan to go into business, Tidewater Community College’s new career studies certificate provides an ideal foundation.

The Career Studies Certificate in Photographic Media Arts will be introduced this fall. The 27-credit program combines photographic imaging and digital media along with technical camera skills. Students will be able to access industry-current equipment, studio facilities and computer labs at the college’s Visual Arts Center in Olde Town Portsmouth.

“Today’s budding photographers are already fairly sophisticated when it comes to the use of digital media,” said Tom Siegmund, program head. “This certificate is ideal for them and for those interested in upgrading their existing photographic skill set.”

The certificate prepares students for jobs in the photography industry, such as agency photographer, art center educator, photographer’s assistant, freelance photographer and fine art photographer.

Students interested in continuing to develop their skills will be able to apply all their credits to TCC’s Associate of Applied Arts in Studio Arts: Specialization in Photographic Media Arts.

Many of the classes that fall under the new certificate are only eight weeks in length. Evening, online and hybrid classes are available.

For information, contact Siegmund at or 757-822-1819.