Penn Fine Arts Abroad

Thanks to a generous gift by Howard A. Silverstein, W’69, and his wife, Patricia Belznak Silverstein, C’81, PennDesign students have been able to participate in the Howard A. Silverstein and Patricia Belznak Silverstein Studios Abroad. Offered every two years, these studios allow a number of undergraduates and graduates from Penn Design the rare opportunity to travel to an exciting, developing city and immerse themselves in its sights and culture.

In 2009, several friends of mine were able to go to Beijing, China where they lived and created work (and blogged). When they returned from the trip, jet-lagged and dazed, I was amazed by the stories, videos and images they shared as they unpacked all their equipment and files–it took every ounce of self-control I could muster not to feel terribly jealous. Several weeks later, I was equally floored at how quickly they were able to turn around work for the gallery show.

PennDesign in the Forbidden City, Beijing

East West South North - show card

The work was surprising, beautiful and inspiring.  The show received a review from the Philadelphia Inquirer, and Penn’s President Amy Gutmann viewed the show with commentary by the artists. Click here to view more photos from her visit to the gallery.

Student describing work to Penn President Amy Gutmann

This year, fourteen undergraduate and graduate students traveled to Mumbai, India to create work for Populous Flows. Again, I was floored by the beauty, color and life in the images and videos. Again, I could really only act like I wasn’t completely and utterly jealous that these students, faculty members and staff were able to experience Mumbai so closely.

Penn Design in Agra, India

The following images were created by a faculty member and a staff member–both of whom I truly admire and respect. The first image was taken with and iPhone and does the piece absolutely no justice. I apologize…

Image from Populous Flows

And amid the hustle and bustle of life and color in the students’ work–to me, this image rounded out the experience, and made it all seem just a bit more human:

Sam Belkowitz - from Populous Flows

Populous Flows is on view at Charles Addams gallery until July 12, 2011. Anyone can view the show 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. If you have any interest in photography, art or India, I strongly encourage you to visit!

Populous Flows - Mumbai trip show


Filed under Academics, Fine Art, Memories of Penn, The Arts at Penn, Travel

2 responses to “Penn Fine Arts Abroad

  1. '81

    Lovely article, but the 4th photo was taken in Agra, not Mumbai.

  2. thank you! and thanks for the correction– it should be changed now. 🙂

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