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Curators Alpesh Kantilal Patel and Yasmeen Siddiqui to Speak on Art History and Collaboration

Alpesh Kantilal Patel

In their upcoming lecture, “Art History as Storytelling,” School of Art curators-in-residence Alpesh Kantilal Patel and Yasmeen Siddiqui will speak on the importance of collaboration. As the co-editors of an upcoming art history anthology — featuring 35 historians, curators, archivists and museum directors — collaboration is something they know a thing or two about.

“One thing we want to impress upon the students we work with is that they need to engage with, not only other artists, but writers (and) curators,” Patel said. “They need to create a network of people.”

Patel and Siddiqui will speak at 7 p.m. Friday, June 28 in the Hultquist Center as part of the Visual Arts Lecture Series.

They will spend the summer compiling submissions for their anthology, Living and Sustaining a Creative Life: Art History, which will be one of a nine-book anthology series overseen by Sharon Louden, Chautauqua Institution’s Sydelle Sonkin and Herb Siegel Artistic Director of the Visual Arts.

At their lecture, Patel and Siddiqui will discuss perceptions around art history they hope to change.

“We feel that art history is often presented as a fixed narrative that is very Euro-American, very heteronormative,” Patel said. “We want to sort of implode that.”

They said that viewing art history as a process of continually evolving storytelling is essential when bringing attention to the contributions of historically underrepresented artists.

“I think it’s a very Chautauquan idea,” Siddiqui said. “Honoring tradition but looking forward into the future; having a vision for a future … while not forgetting the incredible work that has been underway for a millennium.”

Yasmeen Siddiqui

Starting next week, Patel and Siddiqui will be available from 2 to 5 p.m. every Friday at the Chautauqua School of Art Students and Emerging Artists Exhibition on the second floor of the Fowler-Kellogg Art Center for open gallery talks. Besides lecturing on art movements and global exhibition histories, they will provide visitors with an opportunity to connect with the students and emerging artists at the School of Art, who will be present in the gallery to discuss their own pieces through different personal and theoretical contexts.

They hope their work will encourage more diverse perspectives within the art history community.

“We want (students) to think of their artwork as having multiple stories within them, and through the process of creating these multiple stories they’re going to see that they’re in conversation with a lot of different artists, theorists or curators,” Patel said.
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The author Eleanor Bishop

Eleanor Bishop covers visual arts for the Daily. She is a Cincinnati native and rising junior studying journalism at Ohio University’s Honors Tutorial College. Next year she will serve as web editor for Backdrop Magazine, a student-run lifestyle magazine. You can also find her work in Cincinnati Magazine. When she’s not writing, Eleanor enjoys comedy, folk music and reading the menus of restaurants she can’t afford.