Special UMass Amherst Hillside Salon Will Feature Alumni Artists on May 20

AMHERST, Mass. - A special edition of the Hillside Salon, the last of the academic year, will showcase sculpture, architectural design, painting and site-specific installations by UMass Amherst alumni artists on Friday, May 20 at 5 p.m. at the University Museum of Contemporary Art as part of Alumni Weekend.

The salon format allows each artist 20 seconds per slide to show 20 views of his or her work, a total of about six and a half minutes per person. Registration to attend is at www.hillsidesalon.org. The salon will include the following artists:

Robeley Bell, whose indoor and outdoor projects examine ideas related to the built environment and explore the relationship between human-made and the natural landscape. Her garden projects such as the recent sculpture series, Flower Blobs, are both a play on and with nature. Bell has created site-specific landscape projects in Russia, Chicago’s Millennium Park and in Washington, D.C. Bell has received many grants and fellowships including two from the New York Foundation for the Arts, a Pollock Krasner and a Fulbright Fellowship.

Carolyn Webb, whose stone and wood sculptures and works on paper call to attention the terrible beauty of this life, this field of our existence, she says. "All of my artwork is an attempt to express a nascent sense of wonder. It is grounded in the earliest, nearly forgotten childhood awareness of life as a mysterious, spiritual situation." Webb has received numerous awards and has exhibited in India, New York City and across New England.

Christin Couture, a western Massachusetts native, who had her first important New York solo exhibition in 1978, featuring black-and-white drawings of children on themes of good and evil. In subsequent years she exhibited in New York, around the country and in Coyoacan, Mexico. In 1988, she began drawing for the New York Times Book Review and Magazine, as well as covers for books by such authors as Margaret Atwood and Francine Prose. Couture wrote and illustrated "The House on the Hill" and "A Walk in the Woods" for children.

Michael LeBlanc, principal of Utile, Inc. of Boston and lecturer in architecture at Northeastern University, who has worked as a project manager on residential and commercial projects and senior designer for projects such as the Allston Branch of the Boston Public Library and the Getty Villa Center for Antiquities. LeBlanc later served as associate in charge of the Rockefeller Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture, Arizona State University’s McAllister Academic Village and the Provincetown Art Association Museum.

Marcie Paper, born and raised in New England, is an artist currently living and working in Brooklyn, NY. She makes paintings and stop-animated films that investigate the track and significance of short-term memory. She has attended a number of residencies and has shown her work nationally.

Regular Hillside Salons are held on the third Tuesday of each month during the academic year. Space is limited; for more information or to register, visit www.hillsidesalon.org or e-mail: hillsidesalon@umass.edu