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Scholarly Interest Report
         
John Sparagana
Professor
Grace Christian Vietti Chair in Visual Arts
 
e-mail:sparaga@rice.edu
 
  • B.G.S., 1980, University of Michigan
  • M.F.A., 1987, Stanford University
 
Primary Department
   Department of Visual and Dramatic Arts
Picture
 
 
Research Areas
 Studio Arts
 
The "Sleeping Beauty" Series - a Critically Driven Practice.
 My work has evolved in recent years from a traditional painting practice to a critically driven practice in which my means of visual articulation have been the appropriation and manipulation of images from mass culture. I use the appropriated material as a vehicle for self-reflexive exploration, and to infer content that is intrinsic to our culture, but is typically repressed or made covert in popular imagery. In the "Sleeping Beauty" series, in which I break down magazine pages through excessive handling, the change in the material status of the page is accompanied by a shift in its temporal condition. In its altered state the page that once exemplified the ever-optimistic moment now memorializes that moment. I am interested in taking something familiar and through a simple direct act, make it strange and metaphorically productive. The "beat" image, generally figurative and prior to distressing conventionally glamorous, begs associations, of an action arrested, of host infected by virus, of a drugged state of mind or numbed out society. In recent pieces I have taken one side of the image and shifted it to the opposite side, creating a visual loop that initiates another temporal alteration and reinvents the narrative. In all of the work I've done with popular media images over the last few years the narrative is transformed; the fatigued magazine series accomplishes this in the most elemental and integrated way. The intervention is purely subtractive; ink, clay coating, and cotton fiber rubbed away. The fatigued page attains a critical, metaphorical state, yet retains its status materially, as a page from a magazine, produced by the culture the fatigued page is investigating and memeorializing.
 
New Work
 Over the past few months I have been making large collage constructions in which I physically mix, or stretch popular media images through cutting eighth inch strips of magazine pages, and then gluing them down in sequence, altering what the index image(s) mean and allude to, as well as how they look.
 
Teaching Areas
 Studio Arts
 
Selected Publications
 Articles
 

Alan Artner "Small Prts, Big Picture."  (November 3, 2006)

 
 Books
 

John Sparagana and Mieke Bal "Sleeping Beauty: A One-Artist Dictionary."  (2008)

 
 

Bettina Matthes "Das Kreuz mit dem Kopftuch. Geschichte und Wirkungen eines Symbols." In Press

 
 

Bettina Matthes "Under Cover, Das Geschlecht in den Medien."  (2006)

 
 

John Sparagana and Mieke Bal "Sleeping Beauty, A One Artist Dictionary." In Press

 
 

Susan Bielstein "Permissions, A Survival Guide: Blunt Talk About Art As Intellectual Property."  (2006)

 
 

"New American Paintings." 

 
 

John Sparagana "Solo Exhibition." 

 
 

John Sparagana (Group Exhibition) "Blurred Boundaries." 

 
 

John Sparagana (Group Exhibition) "Chicago International Art Exposition." 

 
 

John Sparagana (Group Exhibition) "It's Still Live." 

 
 Other
 

Julie Charmelo "Collectible." Collectible Exhibition (March 2003)

 
 

Lisa Stein "Chicago Tribune."  (March 2003) : Section 7c, page 24.

 
 

Margaret Hawkins "Chicago Sun Times." Chicago Sun Times (March 2003) : 8N.

 
 

"What Have You Done for Me Lately." Atopia Journal, 1.99 (May 2003)

 
 

"No Title." 

 
Creative Works
  Exhibitions - Group - Art Basel
 International Art Fair, John Sparagana and others, Art Basel, Miami, Corbett vs Dempsey booth, Miami Beach, FL (December 1 -5, 2016)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Expo Chicago
 International Art Fair, John Sparagana and others, Navy Pier, Corbett vs Dempsey booth, Chicago, IL (September 13-17, 2016)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - MoCP at 40
 John Sparagana and others, Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, IL (January 25 - April 10, 2016)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Terms of Use: Reproducing the Photographic Image
 John Sparagana and others, Columbia College Glass Curtain Gallery, Chicago, IL (February 25 - April 16, 2016)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - Themesong Variations
 John Sparagana and others, Corbett vs Dempsey Gallery, Chicago, IL (March 18 - April 23, 2016)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Tunnel of Silence
 group exhibition, John Sparagana and others, James Harris Gallery, Seattle, WA (February 18 - April 2, s016)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Cargo Space
 experimental group exhibition in which the installation of artwork evolved over the course of the exhibition. , John Sparagana and others, A&D Gallery, Columbia College, Chicago, IL (August 27 - September 20, 2014)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Cargo Space
 experimental group exhibition in which the installation of artwork evolved over the course of the exhibition. ,
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Cargo Space
 experimental group exhibition in which the installation of artwork evolved over the course of the exhibition. , John Sparagana and others, Inova, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wisconsin (August 14 - September 20, 2014)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Cargo Space
 experimental group exhibition in which the installation of artwork evolved over the course of the exhibition. ,
 
  Exhibitions - Group - El Cuerpo Sutil: Miguel Angel Rojas and John Sparagana
 two person exhibition, John Sparagana and Miguel Angel Rojas, Sicardi Gallery, Houston, TX (January 17 - February 22, 2014)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Without you I am nothing, Heldart
 An exhibition with the theme of collage, in which the combined elements are not materially adhered., John Sparagana and others, Heldart, Berlin, Germany (September 4 - October 1, 2014)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Albert Oehlen, Markus Oehlen, Joyce Pensato, Mattias Schaufler, John Sparagana, Rebecca Warren
 five new large scale constructed artworks, John Sparagana and others, Galerie Max Hetzler, Berlin, Germany (September 7-October 27)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Albert Oehlen/John Sparagana
 seven large constructed artworks, John Sparagana and Albert Oehlen, Studiolo, Zürich, Switzerland (May 25-August 8, 2013)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Anological
 museum exhibition featuring artwork that evokes the digital through analog means, John Sparagana and others, Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Salt Lake City, Utah (January - March 2013)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Art Basel Miami
 International Art Fair, Corbett vs Dempsey booth, John Sparagana and others, Miami Convention Hall, Miami, Florida (December 4-7, 2013)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - Crowds and Powder
 solo exhibition of eleven new large scale constructed artworks, John Sparagana and others, Corbett vs Dempsey, Chicago, IL (12-13-13 to 1-25-14)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - To Open Eyes: Art and Textile from Bauhaus to the Present
 museum exhibition focusing on textiles as art or artwork that references textile in contemporary art, John Sparagana and others, Kunsthalle Bielefeld, Bielefeld, Germany (November 2013 to January 2014)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Domino Effect
 International group of artists in curated exhibition, John Sparagana and others, Galerie Catherine Bastide, Brussels, Belgium (September 7-October 27)
 
 Commissioned Works - Geronimo
 Rice University Public Art Program, large public art project, John Sparagana, BRC Rice University, Houston, TX (March 15-November 1)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - New Contemporaries – Art Cologne, Corbett vs Dempsey
 International Art Fair, John Sparagana and others, Art Cologne, Cologne, Germany (April 18-21)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Rarely Seen Contemporary Works on Paper
 exhibition drawn from the collection of Art Institute of Chicago, John Sparagana and others, Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL (July 28, 2012–Sunday, January 13, 2013)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - The New Art Dealers Alliance Fair, Corbett vs Dempsey
 International Art Fair, John Sparagana and others, 548 W. 22nd Street, New York, New York (May 4-7)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Utopia/Dystopia: Construction and Destruction in Photography and Collage
 Historical survey of a certain attitude or content approached through collage and photography, John Sparagana and others, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Houston, TX (Mar 11, 2012 - Jun 10)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Art Platform, Los Angeles, Corbett vs Dempsey
 International fair based in Los Angeles, Corbett vs Dempsey booth. Corbett vs Dempsey exhibited a grid of nine of my pieces, John Sparagana and others, L.A. Mart, Los Angeles, California (September 27-30, 2011)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - Between The Eyes
 Solo exhibition including seven large scale and four small scale works , John Sparagana, Corbett Vs Dempsey Gallery, Chicago, IL (March 18-April 30, 2011)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - Geronimo
 Single exhibition including two large scale pieces, John Sparagana, Sox Space, Berlin, Germany (October 16-November 21, 2011)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - Going Down For The Third Time
 Solo exhibition including three large scale and six small scale works, John Sparagana, Bryan Miller Gallery, Houston, TX (September 9-October 29, 2011)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - I All Alone Beweep My Outcast State
 Group exhibition with work in response to the ethos of the title statement ,based on a Shakespere sonnet, John Sparagana and others, Kruger Gallery, Chicago, IL (May 14-June 18, 2011)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - New Art Dealers Alliance International Art Fair, Corbett vs Dempsey Booth
 International art fair with a select group of international galleries, each with a booth acting as a surrogate temporary exhibition space for their gallery, John Sparagana and others, The Deauville Beach Resort, Miami, Florida (December 1-4, 2011)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Remix: Selections from the International Collage Center
 group exhibition exploring the contemporary field of collage , John Sparagana and others, Samek Art Gallery, Bucknel University, Lewisburg, PA (October 14-December 4, 2011)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Synecdoche
 Survey of the medium of collage by an international group of contemporary artists, John Sparagana and others, Bourouina Gallery, Berlin, Germany (October 29, 2011-January 21, 2012)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - "Entre chien et loup"
 Group exhibition of 4 international artists, John Sparagana and others, Galerie Vidal Saint Phalle, Paris, France (November 20, 2010-January 5, 2011)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Ah Wilderness
 group exhibition following the collaborative development of an artist book by participating artists, john sparagana and others, ebersmoore, chicago, illinois (December 17, 2010-January 8, 2011)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Art Chicago, Corbett Vs Dempsey Gallery
 International art fair, Corbett Vs Dempsey Gallery booth, John Sparagana and others, The Merchandise Mart, Chicago, IL (April 28, 2010-May 2, 2010)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Eraserhead
 International group of artists that employ an act of subtraction as a means of drawing., John Sparagana and others, Fruehsorge Contemporary Drawing,, Berlin, Germany (September 10, 2010-October 16, 2010)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Hide and Seek
 Exhibition of international group of artists, John Sparagana and others, Aratia Beer, Berlin, Germany (june 19, 2010-july 30, 2010)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - NEXT art fair, Chicago, CTRL
 International art fair, CTRL gallery booth - 2 artist exhibition, John Sparagana and Anders Oinonen, Merchandise Mart, Chicago, IL (May 1, 2009-May 4, 2009)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Olio
 Group exhibition of work that engages collage in a new manner, John Sparagana and others, Tony Wight Gallery, Chicago, IL (April 17, 2009-June 2, 2009)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Signs of the Apocalypse/ Rapture
 Group exhibition of artworks addressing ideas of apocalypse and rapture, John Sparagana and others, Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago, IL (July 19, 2009-September 20, 2009)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - The Crisis Professionals
 Solo exhibition of a body of work completed in Berlin in 2009, John Sparagana, CTRL Gallery, Houston, TX (September 11, 2009 - October 31, 2009)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - Afternoon Hallucinogenic
 John Sparagana and others, Priska C Juschka Fine Art, New York, NY (March 8-April 7, 2007)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Antennae
 John Sparagana and others, Houston Center for Photography, Houston, TX (April 27-June 3)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Beynd a Gift of Time
 John Sparagana and others, Roswell Museum and Art Center, Roswell, NM (May 18, 2007 - January 13, 2008)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Bold Saboteurs, Collage and Construction in Chicago
 John Sparagana and others, Corbett Vs. Dempsey Gallery, Chicago, IL (April, 2007)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - CTRL Gallery, Next Art Fair, Chicago
 John Sparagana and others, Chicago Merchandise Mart, Chicago, IL (April 25-28, 2008)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - CTRL Gallery, Pulse Art Fair
 John Sparagana and others, Soho Studios, Miami, Florida (December 2-6, 2008)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - John Sparagana
 10 large scale collage pieces, John Sparagana, CTRL Gallery, Houston, TX (February 29-April 5)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - NADA
 John Sparagana and others, Rice University Media Center, Houston, TX (February 18-March 5, 2009)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Olio
 John Sparagana and others, Tony Wight Gallery, Chicago, IL (April 17-May 30, 2009)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Printed in Omaha: A Retrospective Exhibition of the UNO Print Workshop
 John Sparagana and others, University of Nebraska, Omaha Art Gallery, Omaha, NE (February 29 to April 5, 2008)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Sexy
 John Sparagana and others, Pleasant Street Studios, DeKalb, IL (March 2-21, 2009)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - The Exquisite Snake
 John Sparagana and others, Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL (April 13-June 17, 2007)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - The Exquisite Snake
 John Sparagana and others,
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Full Frontal
 Group exhibition exploring the theme of the erotic in contemporary art, John Sparagana and others, Corbett vs Dempsey Gallery, Chicago, IL (2006)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - GEEP
 Group exhibition exploring the theme of the hybrid in contemporary art, John Sparagana and others, Oresman Gallery at Smith College, Northampton, MA (2006)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - In Sight, Recent Additions to the Permanent Collection
 Group exhibition of works aquired for the collection, John Sparagana and others, Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, IL (2006)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - In This House That I Call Home
 Group exhibition exploring the theme of the domestic in contemporary art, John Sparagana and others, Western Project, Los Angeles, CA (2006)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Making/Breaking
 Two-person exhibition, John Sparagana and Anni Holm, Moser Performing Arts Center at University of St. Francis, Joliet, IL (2006)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - What the Child Saw, What the Lover Saw, What the Killer Saw.
 New large scale collages, John Sparagana, Monique Meloche Gallery, Chicago, IL (2006)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Dating Data
 Group exhibition, John Sparagana et al, Josee Bienvenu Gallery, New York, NY (February/March, 2005)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Kiss Me Long And Hard
 Group Exhibition, John Sparagana et al, Priska C Juschka Fine Arts, New York, NY (November/December, 2005)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - No Monument
 Group Exhibition, John Sparagana et al, The Guest Room Project, Chicago, IL (May/June, 2005)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Pages
 Group Exhibition, John Sparagana et al, I Space, Chicago, IL (November/December, 2005)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - People Everywhere Are Stoned
 Solo Exhibition, John Sparagana, Mixture Contemporary Art, Houston, TX (March/April, 2005)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Post-Photography
 Group Exhibition, John Sparagana et al, Changing Role Move Over Gallery, Naples, Italy (September/October, 2005)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - The Girls of Summer
 Three person exhibition, John Sparagana, Koichi Enomoto, Ruby Osario, Monique Meloche Gallery, Chicago, IL (August/September, 2005)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Chicago International Art Exposition
 Chicago, IL (May)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Editors Choice
 2 person exhibition, Monique Meloche Gallery, Chicago, IL (May)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - GEEP
 Cell77, Edinburgh, Scotland (November - December 2004)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - New Art Dealers' Alliance
 Miami, FL (December, 2004)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - People Everywhere are Tired
 Exhibition, John Sparagana, Modern Culture Gallery, New York , NY (October-November 2004)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Sketchbook: Collaboration
 an experimental collaboration involving art and theatre, Chopin Theatre, Chicago, IL (May, 2004)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - Sleeping Beauty
 Exhibition, John Sparagana, Mixture Contemporary Art, Houston, TX (March-April 2004)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - State of Affairs
 Salvage Art Resources, Portland, OR (May-June, 2004)
 
 Other - Ten by Ten Magazine cover
 Quarterly Magazine, (December)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Untitled
 2 person exhibition, Bright Design Group, Chicago, IL (September - November 2004)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - You're No Photographer
 Bad Dog Gallery, DeKalb, IL (April)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Chicago International Art Exposition
 international art fair, John Sparagana et al, Navy Pier, Chicago, IL (May, 2003)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - Collectible
 curated exhibition, John Sparagana et al, Northern Illinois University, Chicago, IL (January-March 2003)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - NADA Art Fair, Mixture Contemporary Art
 International Art Fair, John Sparagana et al, Miami, Florida (December, 2003)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - reLAX
 curated exhibition, John Sparagana et al, DCKT Gallery, New York, NY (July-August, 2003)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - "Cut and Paste"
 Collage Exhibition, John Sparagana, Etherington Gallery, Vineyard Haven, MA (Feb., 2002)
 
 Exhibitions - Solo - "I Wait For You Every Night"
 Exhibition of 40 large scale photographs, John Sparagana, Rice University Media Center, Rice University (March, 2002)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - "Pasted On'
 Collage exhibition, John Sparagana, Carl Hammer Gallery, Chicago, IL (March, 2002)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - "Re-Action"
 Photography exhibition, John Sparagana, Jan Weiner Gallery, Kansas City, MO (Feb., 2002)
 
  Exhibitions - Group - John Sparagana, Ann Stautberg, Dornith Doherty
 3 person photo exhibition, John Sparagana, James Gallery, Houston, TX (March, 2002)
 
 Exhibitions - Eros
 John Sparagana, et. al, Municipal Exhibition Hall, LaRoque Thimbault, France, (2000)
 
 Exhibitions - Shake the Coat
 John Sparagana, et. al, Northpark University Gallery, Chicago, IL, (2000)
 
 Exhibitions - Teenie Weenie
 John Sparagana, et. al, Lawndale Art Center, Houston, TX, (2000)
 
 Exhibitions - John Sparagana, Various Paintings from the Last Five Years
 Bloomington, IL, Merwin Gallery, Illinois Wesleyan University, (1999)
 
 Exhibitions - John Sparagana: Paintings 1995-98
 Odessa, TX, The University of Texas of the Permian Basin, (1999)
 
Presentations
 Conference Committee Member
 

"Lecture, Graduate Critiques." American University Department of Visual Art, Washington, D.C.. (March, 2005) With John Sparagana

 
 Invited Talks
 

"John Sparagana's Current Research." Waubonsee Community College, Sugar Grove, IL. (February, 2007)

 
 

"John Sparagana's Current Research." Columbia College, Chicago, Chicago, IL. (November, 2007)

 
 

"John Sparagana's Current Research." Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL. (March, 2007)

 
 

""Plasticity and Emergence"." Society for Science, Literature, and Art, Chicago, IL. (November, 2005) With John Sparagana

 
 

"Gallery Lecture and Discussion." School of the Art Institute of Chicago Department of Fashion, Monique Meloche Gallery. (October, 2005) With John Sparagana and Margaret Hawkins

 
 

"Lecture, Graduate Critiques." School of the Art Institute of Chicago Department of Fiber and Material Studies, Chicago, IL. (November, 2005) With John Sparagana

 
 

"slide lecture on my work, from 2000 to the present." Brown University Dept. of Visual Arts, Providence, RI. (October 16, 2003) With John Sparagana

 
 

"slide lecture on my work, from 2000 to the present." Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston, TX. (April 8, 2003) With John Sparagana

 
 

"Slide Lecture On My Work." School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL. (November, 2002)

 
 

"Slide lecture, undergraduate studio critiques." Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, MO. (Feb., 2002)

 
 

"Slide talk on my work." Society For Contemporary Photography, Kansas City, MO. (Feb., 2002)

 
 Lectures
 

Lecturer.  "John Sparagana's Current Research." A&D Lecture Series, Collumbia College, Chicago, IL. (October 25, 2008)

 
 Other
 

""Cracks In The Firewall"." Scholar's Forum, Department of Art and Art History, Rice University, Houston, TX, 2001.

 
 

"Graduate Critique Panel." Northern Illinois University School of Art, DeKalb, IL, 2001.

 
 

"Slide Presentation On My Recent Work." School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL, 2001.

 
 

"Slide Presentation on my Recent Work." University of Chicago Committee on the Arts, Chicago, IL, 2001.

 
 

"Representational Painting: Responding to Contemporary Issues and Timeless Themes." Northpark University, Chicago, IL. (2000)

 
 

"Artist Talk." University of Texas at San Antonio. (1999)

 
 

"Artist Talk." Glassell School, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. (1999)

 
 

"Artist Talk." Illinois Weslyan University, Bloomington, IL. (1999)

 
 

"Artist Talk." University of Texas of the Permian Basin, Odessa, TX. (1999)

 
 

"Artist Talk." Illinois State University, Normal IL. (1999)

 
 Panelist
 

"Graduate Critiques." School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL. (May, 2007)

 
 

"Materiality to Hyperreality: Appropriated Media in Contemporary Art." The Mitchell Center, University of Houston. (April, 2007) With John Sparagana and others

 
 

""Collectibles" gallery talk with a panel of exhibiting artsists." Northern Illinois University Gallery, Chicago, IL. (March, 2003) With John Sparagna et al

 
 

""Vision and Art: the Biology of Seeing"." Rice University, Kyle Morrow Room. (November 8, 2003)

 
 

"Graduate critique panel." Northern Illinois University School of Art, DeKalb, IL. (April 27, 2003) With John Sparagana et al

 
 Workshops
 

"Graduate critiques, University of Chicago Department of Visual Arts, Chicago, IL." (June 5, 2009)

 
 

"Graduate studio critiques." Northern Illinois University, School of Art, DeKalb, IL. (October, 2002)

 
Editorial Positions
 Art Editor, Gulf Coast Magazine. (1999 - 1999)

Awards, Prizes, & Fellowships
 The Hunting Art Prize - Nomination, Hunting PLC (Nominated November, 2005)

 Residency Fellowship, UCross Foundation (May/June,)