Opening Reception for Student-curated Exhibition 'Masculine Identities' Set for March 23

The University Museum of Contemporary Art (UMCA) at UMass Amherst is pleased to present the exhibition “Masculine Identities: Filling in the Blanks,” from March 23 through May 14.

NEWS Art from "Masculine Identities"

The exhibition, curated by graduate students Lawrence Gianangeli and Samit Sinha, is the Spring 2023 iteration of The Eva Fierst Student Curatorial Exhibition, presented annually at the UMCA. An opening reception will be held on Thursday, March 23, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., with remarks from the museum director and the co-curators. The University Museum, located on the lower level of the Bromery Center for the Arts at UMass Amherst, is open Tuesday through Friday, from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, from to 4 p.m.; and until 8 P.M. on first Thursdays, when UMass is in session. The public is always welcome, and admission is free.

Expanding on the exhibit, UMCA shares:

“Traditional perceptions of masculinity are conflated with ideas of rigidity, roughness, apathy, brazenness, strength and control. This exhibition questions the visual articulation of traditional representations of maleness in dialogue with artworks that offer overlooked and divergent views of masculinity. When we view masculinity through a variety of contemporary artworks, a certain plurality takes shape that does not adhere to an established gendered formula. There is space for new concepts and interpretations, and a nuanced approach to how we read masculinity in art, all alongside versions of masculine identity that do indeed conform to an expected representation. Featuring artworks by Carlos Villa, Andy Warhol, Kehinde Wiley and Nicole Eisenman, among many others, the gaps of masculine representation will be — at least in part — positioned against the popular masculine pictorial narrative. This exhibition seeks to introduce an expanded vision of masculinity and show the diversity that exists beyond traditional perceptions of it.”

Masculine Identities is supported by The Eva Fierst Student Curatorial Exhibition Fund, an endowment to support the UMCA’s Annual Graduate Student Curatorial Exhibition, which the Museum initiated in 2006. The annual curatorial exhibition is the culmination of a yearlong independent project conducted by art history and/or studio arts graduate students. The curatorial exhibition features work selected primarily from the UMCA’s permanent collection of more than 3500 works of art on paper. Students select a thesis for their exhibition; research objects; write labels, text panels, a press release, an exhibition announcement and website information; write and submit a grant application; write and design a brochure; help design the exhibition layout and work on the installation; and assist with all other aspects of exhibition development. The goal of the program is to deepen students’ understanding of the intellectual and practical tasks of curating in a museum setting. Working together on an exhibition allows UMass graduate students to collaborate and explore many aspects of museum work. Students receive hands-on experience and highly valuable job skills.