Kayla Barrett

The Keene State art department, in collaboration with the Thorne Art Gallery, hopes to bring new artistic ideas to campus through exhibits, projects, events and trips. 

The Thorne is set to have a barbecue on Thursday, Sept. 22 from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. This event will serve as a reception for two exhibits going on display that day: “Works from the Roger Kingson’s Vernacular Photo Collection” and “RoBOTany.”. 

“It’s gonna be like an art opening slash barbecue slash screen printing t-shirts… it’s a nice way to start off the semester,” said Paul McMullan, director of the Thorne Art Gallery. 

“Works from the Roger Kingston’s Vernacular Photo Collection” is curated by Heather Diack, professor of Contemporary Art and Art History at the University of Miami. 

Kingston is a documentary photographer from Boston, M.A. who has been collecting photographs since the 1970’s of everyday events such as weddings, advertisements, family pictures and travel albums. This collection will be displayed in the exhibition at the Thorne.

“The Kingston collection we have is pretty phenomenal,” McMullan said. “It’s historical photographs and it’s vernacular so they don’t really know who is who… but they’re beyond amazing.”

The other exhibit opening on Sept. 22 is “RoBOTany” curated by Wendy DesChene and Jeff Schmuki, husband and wife who collaborate on their craft. The pair founded PlantBot Genetics which focuses on media activism and public space to bring awareness to environmental issues. 

“I think it’s gonna be a fun, interactive show,” McMullan said. “They’re gonna be building robots and have robotics with our students and I can’t wait to see that.” 

Both of these exhibits will be available to view until Friday, Dec. 16. 

An alumni showcase will also be opening at the Thorne Art Gallery on October 1 titled “Owls Fly Home.”

“The artists are already registered and we’re gonna put all their artwork up in [The Thorne] for a week and [everyone] can come and look at their stuff,” McMullan said. 

Given the new exhibits this semester, McMullan is looking forward to curating the Thorne again following his sabbatical last semester. 

“I went to Sweden and did a show over there,” McMullan said. “Sabbaticals are great because you kinda get a little break and you get rejuvenated and you go see all this wonderful stuff and then you come back and you’re excited to be home.”

On top of exhibits, the Art department is planning trips to various locations within the northeast. 

“We’re in the process of booking a bus to do a trip to New York and right now it’s on October 28,” Art department chair Jonathan Gitelson said. “[We will] spend the whole day going to museums, walking around, checking out galleries.”

The trip, costing $40 per student, is open to students of all majors, Gitelson said.

“You don’t have to be an art major or anything [to attend]… We’ll also try Mass Moca [Museum of Contemporary Art] in the fall and Boston and Brattleboro, V.T. in the spring,” he said.

Gitelson mentioned that The Carroll House Gallery on Main Street will also be open for student exhibitions throughout the semester as well. 

“Lynn Richardson is doing a lot of work with the Carroll House Gallery and that’s where we do a lot of shows,” Gitelson said. 

Lynn Richardson directed The Equinox to other sources. 

For more information about upcoming galleries and events, visit the gallery’s website.


Nicole Dumont can be contacted at


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