COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
UMBC campuses are closed, but courses are now online and employees are working remotely.
Skip to Main Content

Timely News: Airi Yoshioka wins MSAC IAA AwardAiri Yoshioko

Music Professor Airi Yoshioka was a top-ranked recipient of a 2020 Independent Arts Award from the Maryland State Arts Council. Airi Yoshioka has concertized throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, and Canada as a recitalist, soloist and chamber musician. Independent Artist Awards recognize achievement by Maryland artists making work independent of an institution or organization. The awards are accompanied by unrestricted grants that encourage artistic growth and sustained practice.

CIRCA responses to COVID 19

Event updates may be found at the UMBC Arts and Culture Calendar:

Major UMBC Awards Announced in the Arts:

Please join Dean Scott Casper in congratulating our colleagues on their remarkable accomplishments and funded projects. The CIRCA Director and Dean wish to thank all of those reviewers who so carefully vetted and ranked our highly competitive applications.

CAHSS Faculty Awards:

Early Career Faculty Excellence Award, for a tenure-track Assistant Professor: Jules Rosskam, Visual Arts.

CAHSS Staff Awards:

Non-Exempt Staff Excellence Award: Laurie Newton, Theatre

Exempt Staff Excellence Award: Rachel Brubaker, Dresher Center for the Humanities

CAHSS Dean’s Research Fund Awards, Spring 2020:

Susan McCully, Theatre: New Play Development Readings of Lady MacBeth Meets Lady MacDuff Tuesday Mornings at Weight Watchers at Florida Repertory Theatre

Joseph Chi-Sing Siu, Music: Contributions of Absolute Pitch Possession and Tone Languages to the Perception of the Tritone Paradox

Center for Research, Innovation, and Creativity in the Arts (CIRCA)

Pedagogy Fellowship:

Lindsay Johnson, Music: Creating Multimedia Curricular Videos for Music History

Faculty Research Fellowship:

Lisa Moren, Visual Arts: Under the Bay

Summer Fellowships:

Sarah Sharp, Visual Arts: Mutual Futures Solo Exhibition.

Nyalls Hartman, Theatre: Documenting the Amish Project in Munich, Germany

Office of the Vice President for Research

Summer Faculty Research Fellowship (SURFF):

Shaness Kemp, Dance: Movement Memoirs: The Dancing Body

Daniel Pesca, Music: Piano Concertizing and Composition Time


Lynn Watson Wins 2019 Dudley Knight Award

Lynn Watson, Theatre, has won the 2019 Dudley Knight Award for Outstanding Vocal Scholarship for her article, “Fitzmaurice Voicework Pilot Study with fMRI.” This is the highest honor for peer-reviewed research within the voice and speech community.

Saul Zaentz Fellowship: Visual Arts Professors Lynn Cazabon and Lisa Moren

The Saul Zaentz Innovation Fund in Film and Media has been awarded to Lynn Cazabon for Losing Winter; and Lisa Moren for Stories Under the Bay. Founded in 2016 to address under-represented communities in the film, television and XR industries, the Saul Zaentz Innovation Fund recognizes significant and innovative works. By providing funding for emerging regional voices and connecting Baltimore creatives to prestigious artists, veteran executives, and successful entrepreneurs in the entertainment industry, the funds aim is to give voice to those who have been excluded.

Chelsea Pace in the New York Times Magazine

Great long form piece by Lizzie Feidelson in the New York Times that follows UMBC Theatre professor Chelsea Pace as she works on location as an intimacy coordinator on a film. Feidelson observes: “Until recently, intimacy coordination was virtually nonexistent. But in the space of about two years, alongside the evolution of the #MeToo movement, the profession has become highly sought across parts of the entertainment industry newly made answerable for the vulnerability of their actors and the exploitability of their hierarchies.”

Assistant Professor Pace is an expert, and her book Staging Sex, Routledge, will debut March 17th. The book lays out a comprehensive, practical solution for staging intimacy, nudity, and sexual violence. This book takes theatre practitioners step-by-step through the best practices, tools, and techniques for effective theatrical intimacy.

Cinematic Arts alumnus Jovan James ’13 featured in UMBC Magazine
Jovan James ’13 Visual Arts Department Cinematic Arts alumnus got his close up with an interview by Catherine Borg in UMBC Magazine. The piece focuses on his experience making his Sundance celebrated short film Buck, and what he learned about “grit” at UMBC.
Kelley Bell Opens Retrospective Solo Exhibition

Farmingdale State College Memorial Gallery of New York has invited Visual Arts Design professor Kelley Bell to present her solo exhibition EUREKA! Eureka? eureka… Concept, Design and Ambiguity. The exhibit was curated by Beth Giacummo and serves as a retrospective of two decades of Bell’s design, animation and research. Now open and on view through April 8.

IMDA MFA alumna Mina Cheon to exhibit at the inaugural  Asia Society Triennial 2020

Ethan Cohen Gallery announces Mina Cheon’s participation in the inaugural Asia Society Triennial 2020, opening June 5, that will take place in New York across multiple venues. For the Triennial presentation, hosted by the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, and sponsored by the Orion Co. of Korea, Mina Cheon’s signature art piece, Eat Choco·Pie Together, will be featured at the David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center as a special performative installation event. The work is also a satellite event that thematically connects to the artist’s installation The House of Unification: The Pavilion of the Koreas exhibited at Governors Island which will feature her video artworks shared in notel media players that directly relate to North Korea’s state of isolation and its internal catalyst for change through media consumption and dissemination.

Dr. Linda Dusman named Bearman Foundation Chair

Linda Dusman, professor and chair of music, has been named the Bearman Foundation Chair in Entrepreneurship for 2020 – 2023. This role is designed to recognize and support a faculty member with an interest in entrepreneurship, outstanding teaching skills, and a strong record of scholarship in entrepreneurial studies or a field related to entrepreneurship.The three-year appointment will enable Dusman to further her work with EnCue, an audience engagement app she co-designed for use during classical music performance.

Credit: David Guralnick, The Detroit News via AP

Girls on a Dirt Pile invited to perform at American College Theatre Festival

Congratulations to the UMBC Theater Department. Girls on a Dirt Pile has been invited to perform at the Region 2 Festival of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. There will be two performances on Saturday, January, 18th. The myth of Demeter and Persephone is a frame on which Susan McCully hangs the tough questions: what happens to all the girls violated by #metoo villains? Can they rise up against their oppressors? Are we doomed to repeat the sins of misogyny, or is liberation and parity possible? Equal parts low comedy and dystopian drama, McCully sends-up patriarchy with her trademark irony and wit. Directed by Associate Professor Eve Muson.

Cinematic Arts alumnus Jovan James screening at Sundance

“Buck” by Visual Arts Department Cinematic Arts alumnus Jovan James will screen in the 2020 edition of Sundance. Directors and screenwriters Elegance Bratton and Jovan James will present their work in the U.S. Narrative Shorts program. Scenario: caught in the throes of a depressive fugue, young Lynn resorts to debauchery to find joy – only to discover that happiness is a much more complicated proposition.

IMDA MFA Alumnus Victor FM Torres at Whitney Museum

Victor FM Torres presented in a panel titled: STILL BEGINNING: The 30th Annual Day With(out) Art facilitated by Visual Aids at the Whitney Museum. The program included seven newly commissioned videos responding to the ongoing HIV/AIDS epidemic by Shanti Avirgan, Nguyen Tan Hoang, Carl George, Viva Ruiz, Iman Shervington, Jack Waters/Victor F.M. Torres, and Derrick Woods-Morrow.

Chelsea Pace in the New York Times Magazine
Great long form piece by Lizzie Feidelson in the New York Times that follows
UMBC Theatre professor Chelsea Pace as she works on location as an intimacy coordinator on a film. Assistant Professor Pace is an expert, and her book Staging Sex, Routledge, will debut March 17th.

Interrobang Theater

UMBCA Theater alumni run Interrobang Theater profiled

“Interrobang and Baltimore: A Love Story” extensively profiled the UMBC alumni founded theater company, which is based in Baltimore. “We like telling the story that’s never been told before. We like working with writers to craft and hone new stories in a collaborative environment. We want the stories we tell to feel intimate, urgent, relevant, potent, and above all, new.” 

IMDA ’21 Safiyah Cheatam presents OBSIDIAN at Media Democracy Fund

Earlier this week, IMDA student Safiyah Cheatam, ’21 presented on her collaborative podcast OBSIDIAN with co-creator Adetola Abdulkadir at the Media Democracy Fund’s Annual Conference, “From Disordered to Deadly” (maybe include: hosted by the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation). OBSIDIAN is a speculative fiction anthology podcast based in Afrofuturism.  The conference gathered a lot of great change-making organizers/activists and popular funding orgs to talk about the current role of/weaponization of tech and identity via a social justice lens. Follow and listen to the podcast here: 

Visual Arts alumni Markele Cullins and Linehan Emily Eaglin at BMA

Markele Cullins and Emily Eaglin are featured with videos in the Mickalene Thomas installation in the East Lobby of the Baltimore Museum of Art. The installation was featured in a Baltimore Fishbowl article by Ed Gunts.

Kathy O’Dell, Ashley Minner and Rahne Alexander in BMoreArt

“What follows here is a collection of responses, reflections, critiques, and inquiries from women working as artists, curators, arts administrators, and writers in the Baltimore/DC area. Several responses bring up sexism, racism, and classism within the art world and cultural institutions generally rather than directing it at the BMA specifically-these problems are not simply local.” UMBC Visual Arts professor Kathy O’Dell, American Studies professor Ashley Minner and IMDA MFA artist Rahne Alexander each contributed to the discourse around this subject.

strikeWare preview for The Peale at The Charles

An Augmented Reality (AR) preview of The Peale’s forthcoming exhibition, RENOVATIONS, by the strikeWare collective: Christopher Kojzar, Mollye Bendell, and Jeffrey Gangswich will presented at Strive, Baltimore: A fundraiser for the museum’s renovation. The event takes place December 2, 5:30 pm, VIP reception at 7:30pm at the Charles Theater. strikeWare won a 2018 Rubys award in the Visual Arts to support the RENOVATIONS project at The Peale.

Visual Arts Alumnus Zachary Z. Handler in BMoreArt

Handler’s exhibition Zevel was reviewed in BMoreArt by Laurence Ross, November 18. Zachary Z. Handler: “The night I called my grandfather to tell him I finally got my Hebrew name, ‘Zevel,’ I used the landline phone in my father’s jewelry studio where he sat next to me while making this ring. My grandfather, an Orthodox Jew and president of his shul, was so upset that my Hebrew schoolteacher had given me a name that means ‘trash’ that he called the school himself to complain.”

Ann Sofie Clemmenssen’s Kennedy Center video

The second evening of performances of Ann Sofie Clemmensen’s In To and Out Of is now available via The Kennedy Center’s YouTube channel. The work was met with SRO crowds and an electric reception for the three movement passages responding to The REACH.

CIRCA Director Timothy Nohe shows at IMPAKT Festival

Tim Nohe’s video work “Bell Labs Mosh” will be shown October 31 at Het Huis Utrecht Studio 2 in the Netherlands. Bell Labs Mosh is part of a video series that examines the early information age. The underlying industrial film was produced at Bell Labs and represents early experiments in rendering human speech and the “Poem Fields” collaborative computer animation work of artist Stan Vanderbeek and engineer Kenneth Knowlton. Many of the inventions predicted within this video are now a reality and commonplace, as accessible as our mobile phone. The artist has tugged at the matrix of pixels of the movie file, recomposing the digital matter of the image to question the promise and power of computers in our culture.

Visual Arts Professor Vin Grabill to showcase video work at New Media: Poetry in Motion

The gallery becomes a screening room to showcase recent video works by Vin Grabill, Brandon Morse, and Joon Sung. These artists experiment with time-based media to create unique works of art that double as visual poems.
Exhibit runs November 1 – December 13 at HoCo Center for the Arts, with a free public reception on November 8 from 6-8pm. Gallery hours: Mon-Fri 10am-8pm, Sat 10am-4pm, Sun 12-4pm. Closed November 28 & 29.

Visual Arts Professor Sarah Sharp to release magazine “Tool Book Project Volume III: Work Book”

The beautiful risograph print magazine features 18 artists and collaborative teams, along with a series of artist features on the Tool Book website, whose work addresses labor, leisure and art production. Sales of “Work Book” benefit Make the Road New York, a non-profit that builds the power of immigrant and working class communities to achieve dignity and justice, and House of Ruth Maryland, a non-profit organization providing prevention, intervention and advocacy for victims of domestic violence and their children. There will be a launch party and panel discussion on Thursday, October 24th, 6-8pm at the Bronx Museum of Art’s Block Gallery located in TriBeca in NYC. Later this year Artist Talks will be held Sunday, December 15th, 5-7pm at Arete Gallery for Tool Book Project’s Brooklyn Artists.

Chelsea Pace’s Scholarly Activities

The Department of Theater’s Chelsea Pace presented “Making Contact: Considerations for Touch in Voice Training” at the Voice and Speech Trainers Association with UMBC Theater Professor Lynn Watson and Adriano Cabral of the University of Nevada, Reno.

Assistant Professor Pace also presented at the Association of Theatre in Higher Education Conference, Orlando in the Acting and Directing Pre-Conference on consent. Building on her international reputation she offered trainings on intimacy and consent: Culture Change or Choreography: How to Bring Appropriate Intimacy Protocol into All Aspects of the Work and The Changing Nature of Consent in Actor Training Today. She also referenced the work that she did in Spring 2019 with Eve Muson at UMBC:Four Physical Approaches to Poetically Staging Transitions in Naomi Izuka’s Anonymous.

Theater’s Susan McCully, Chelsea Pace and alumna Katie Hileman at National Conference

Theater colleagues presented at the Association of Theatre in Higher Education Conference in Orlando. The panel featured presentations and discussion on “Devising Feminist Structures for Playwriting” featuring Chelsea Pace and Susan McCully, and alumna Katie Hileman. Professor Pace discussed her process for devising “Gwyneth” which will be presented at UMBC this spring. Professor McCully discussed the creation of her play “Girls on a Dirt Pile” which will be produced at UMBC this coming fall. Katie Hileman (BFA ’12) discussed her plays “Chlamydia” and “I Will Eat You”- the latter her thesis project as she pursues an MFA at Towson University.

Lisa Moren’s research featured in The Guardian

The augmented reality artwork of IMDA MFA Graduate Program Director Lisa Moren was prominently profiled in a new piece in The Guardian titled Left to rot: the new global effort to preserve lost monuments.

Seeing Science appears in The Guardian

Seeing Science by the CADVC’s Marvin Heiferman was prominently featured in an online story by Guy Lane in the Art and Design section of The Guardian. Seeing Science offers an insightful and reader-friendly collection of essays and pictures about photography’s role in visualizing science and building human knowledge-from micro to macro levels and everything in between. The book was published by the Aperture Foundation and the CADVC at UMBC.

IMDA Alumna Dilay Koçogullari ’19 admitted to PhD Program

Ms. Koçogullari has secured a position in the new Interdisciplinary PhD program at the Eugeniusz Geppert Academy of Art and Design, Wroclaw, Poland. Students in the three year program may study in the areas of Painting and Sculpture, Interior Architecture and Design, Ceramics and Glass, and Graphics and Media Art. Dilay Kocogullari’s thesis installation “Toward the Healing of Souls: Crocheting, Collaborating, and Commemorating” was presented as a memorial to the increasing number of women murdered in her home country, Turkey. Her work won the IMDA 2019 MFA Award. Dilay Kocogullari uses living organisms as art material to explore current health and social justice issues, ranging from nutrition to infant coronary disease and femicide. She was born in Turkey, where she received a B.A. in Biology from the University of Osmangazi a B.A. in Plastic Arts from Yeditepe University, and an M.A. in Painting from Onsekiz Mart University.

IMDA MFA alumnus Chris Kojzar – Culture Blast: Drawing Workshop at IA&A Hillyer

Chris Kojzar offered a drawing workshop and discussion about what it means to openly engage in artistic practice in a public space. He started with a presentation about his practice and the implications of surveillance in 21st century America, and participants walked together through the Dupont neighborhood to sketch outdoors and discuss the idea of drawing in the public space. This drawing workshop was produced in conjunction with Kojzar’s exhibition Plainclothes Agenda.

IMDA MFA alumna Mollye Bendell ’18 debuts new VR work at Harvestworks

Ms. Bendell has been working as an artist in residence at Harvestworks, a digital media arts organization founded as a not-for-profit organization by artists in 1977. The New York center has helped a generation of artists create new works using evolving technologies. Her forthcoming virtual reality work is called the language of the angels. This interactive artwork takes place in a single bedroom, and explores both the gamification of virtual spaces and changing conceptions of space and place within our own consciousness. Her exacting Virtual Reality model of her bedroom questions our increasingly strange passage through the uncanny valley of simulation & immersion. She presented her initial findings on July 27th at Nolan Park, on Governors Island.

Music’s Dr. Janice Macaulay releases new recording

Dr. Janice Macaulay released a new recording of her composition Three Pieces for String Quartet, on a compilation album on the Navona label called Quadrants, Vol. 3, by the Altius String Quartet. Macaulay’s Three Pieces for String Quartet creates dynamic, lyrical, and playful interactions among the players, including: Joshua Ulrich, violin; Andrew Giordano, violin; Andrew Krimm, viola; and Zachary Reaves, cello. For more information:

Visual Arts alumna and official UMBC photographer Marlayna Demond wins accolades

Proud that UMBC’s own Marlayna Demond ’11 was named “Best Photographer” by Baltimore Magazine in the Best of Baltimore Readers’ Poll. Ms. Demond works both as a freelance photographer, and for the UMBC Office of Institutional Advancement. As an undergraduate student Ms. Demond was a Linehan Artist Scholar and member of the Honors College.