The Burke Gallery is located in the Myers Fine Arts Building.
The Burke Gallery was dedicated on September 17, 1995 in honor of Dr. Joseph C. Burke, who served with distinction as president of SUNY Plattsburgh from 1974 to 1986, as provost of the State University of New York from 1986 to 1995, and as interim chancellor of SUNY in 1994, and his wife Joan T. Burke, who ably assisted Dr. Burke in representing SUNY Plattsburgh and the State University of New York. Their deep and abiding interest in the arts was well known and frequently manifested during their years at the college. The Burke Gallery is a permanent tribute to their outstanding campus and community leadership.
Rick Shaefer: The Refugee Trilogy
August 30 – December 10, 2021
How does one deal with the onslaught of horrific imagery and news of countless waves
of refugees coming from the Middle East and elsewhere? The vast scale of the humanity
involved and the agony and desperation of those afflicted feels both epic and almost
biblical. When the stories and photos first started appearing the visual vocabulary
that instantly came to mind was such paintings as Rubens’ The Last Judgment and Massacre of the Innocents, Gericault’s Raft of the Medusa, Picasso’s Guernica, and Goya’s Disasters of War series, as well as the multitude of imagery of vast throngs fleeing war and oppression
from Exodus to the partition of India to our own native American “Trail of Tears.”
“Refugee Trilogy” is a suite of large-scale charcoal drawings that is a reaction to this ongoing immigration crisis unfolding across the globe and reflects the three thematic scenes that began to distill the journeys taken by refugees everywhere. The three triptychs, each measuring 96” x 166”, are in a chronology suggested by news reports. "Land Crossing", the first of the three, addresses the hazardous journeys faced by refugees fleeing war, famine, drought, or other causes. The second work, “Water Crossing”, portrays the perilous journeys across open water. The third work, “Border Crossing”, addresses the conflicts and hostilities faced at borders. The three works employ the vernacular of the Baroque (primarily incorporating various figurative elements of a wide assortment of Rubens’ paintings) to express this contemporary debacle in a language both familiar and historical: reminding us of the tenacious persistence of this epic human tragedy.
Excerpt from Rick Shaefer’s website. Please visit RickShaefer.com for more information on The Refugee Trilogy or to see his other works.
Please Note: The Reception for Rick Shaefer: Refugee Trilogy has been canceled.
POP for the People
February 15 – March 12, 2021
POP for the People celebrates pop as our most civic art, mapping the surfaces we share, and the startling human depths we find there. Inspired by and interwoven with the lyrical text of SUNY Plattsburgh English professor M.I. Devine’s Warhol’s Mother’s Pantry, the exhibit offers an inclusive, redeeming and multi-generational vision of pop. Through startling juxtapositions and thematic rhymes with regional artists, Pop for the People shines a new light upon Warhol and others in the college’s extensive pop collection.
Curated by Devine and Amy Guglielmo (artist, author, teacher and co-founder of Outside Art: The Plattsburgh Public Art Project), the exhibit draws widely upon the work of SUNY Plattsburgh student artists and filmmakers past and present; Outside Art muralists; Saranac high school students; and the work of the Art Detectives (a N.Y.-based art collective fostering the talents of neurodivergent students). At once playful and profound, the exhibit details pop’s urgent pursuit to find new depths, new meaning in the surfaces of things. If pop is more superficial than we can take, POP for the People suggests that it’s also deeper than we might ever suspect. POP for the People: a reminder — in this moment of isolation — to look upon our world anew and see how each one of us is connected, no matter how far apart.
Pop Art Party
February 20, 2021
POP ART PARTY story time and craft activity for kids hosted by author and art educator Amy Guglielmo. Tune in on Zoom for a fun, colorful children’s event. Bring paper and crayons — make some patterned pop-art hearts. Saturday, February 20 at 10:30 a.m. All ages welcome.
Coney Island Fables: The Films of Vagabond
February 22, 2021
What is more pop than Coney Island? From Joseph Stella to Lawrence Ferlinghetti, artists have long found a pop muse in the amusements of Coney Island.
In this Zoom screening and discussion (with Pop for the People curator M.I. Devine), the indie filmmaker and artist Vagabond will speak about Coney Island, and its place in his series of short films Coney Island Fables.
Brooklyn born and borough raised, Vagabond began his career in film working on Spike Lee’s Do The Right Thing and has gone on to create works addressing topics such as the Puerto Rican Diaspora (Machetero) and the Nuyorican poets (All Roads Lead to the Fire Escape). A multidisciplinary pop artist, Vagabond has created murals, posters, pamphlets and political art in conjunction with the Ricanstruction Netwerk.
POP for the People: Meet the Artists!
March 3, 2021
A chance to meet the artists behind POP for the People! Join muralist Brendon Palmer-Angell (Michael Anderson/Jean Arthur murals), Adam Kritzer of the Art Detectives (a neurodiverse art collective), and many more of the PEOPLE behind the exhibit for a conversation on civic art, their work with and for people and the future of the arts in Plattsburgh. Hosted by curators M.I. Devine and Amy Guglielmo, the conversation is Wednesday, March 3 from 7 – 8 p.m. via Zoom.
States of Incarceration
January 27 – March 13, 2020
Location: Burke Gallery, Myers Fine Arts Building — Second Floor
Opening Public Reception: January 30 at 4 – 7 p.m. in Burke Gallery
The States of Incarceration (https://statesofincarceration.org/) exhibit is created by over 800 people in 18 states, and growing. The goal is to explore the roots of mass incarceration in our own communities and to open a national dialogue on what should happen next. Currently the United States incarcerates more of its people than any country in the world — and at any point in its history.
In early 2018, SUNY Plattsburgh was named one of 10 new partners to receive Mellon Foundation help to create SUNY Plattsburgh’s addition to the national “States of Incarceration” traveling exhibit, led by Dr. Breea Willingham. Willingham, assistant professor in the Criminal Justice Department, is an expert in the impact of incarceration on families, higher education in prison, and women in the criminal justice system. Education and incarceration was the focus of student research in Dr. Breea Willingham’s special-topics criminal justice course during the Fall 2018 semester. The student findings are included in this national project. Calling their contribution to the States of Incarceration project “Cuffs to Classroom: College in Prison,” Willingham said it’s her hope that the panel will help show the campus and community how a prison education can redefine incarceration in New York. Here’s a link with more information on Dr. Willingham’s class: https://www.plattsburgh.edu/news/news-archive/special-project-enables-students-to-support-education-in-prisons.html
“States of Incarceration” is a project of the Humanities Action Lab, a coalition of universities led by Rutgers University-Newark’s work with issue organization and public spaces, to create traveling public projects on the past, present, and future of pressing social issues. The exhibit is generously supported by SUNY Plattsburgh College Foundation.
Cuffs to Classroom: How Higher Education in Prison Can Redefine Mass Incarceration in New York State
- February 5, 2020
- 5 – 6:30 p.m.
- Cardinal Lounge, Angell College Center (ACC)
- SUNY Plattsburgh
In early 2018, SUNY Plattsburgh was named one of 10 new partners to receive Mellon Foundation help to create SUNY Plattsburgh’s addition to the national “States of Incarceration” traveling exhibit, led by Dr. Breea Willingham. Willingham, assistant professor in the criminal justice department, is an expert in the impact of incarceration on families, higher education in prison, and women in the criminal justice system. Education and incarceration was the focus of student research in Dr. Breea Willingham’s special-topics criminal justice course during the Fall 2018 semester. The student findings are included in this national project.
- Dr. Erin S. Corbett, Director of Policy at the Katal Center for Health, Equity, and Justice and founder of the Second Chance Educational Alliance
- Klarisse Torriente, Prison Education Coordinator at State University of New York
- Tyrrell Muhammad, Project Associate at The Correctional Association of New York
- Gabrielle Elsbree, SUNY Plattsburgh Class of 2018
- Dr. Breea Willingham, Associate Professor of Criminal Justice at SUNY Plattsburgh
College Behind Bars
PBS Film Screening & Talk Back with Breea Willingham & Thom Hallock
- February 20, 2020
- 6 – 7:30 p.m.
- 208 Yokum Hall
- SUNY Plattsburgh
“College Behind Bars”, directed by award-winning filmmaker Lynn Novick, produced by Sarah Botstein, and executive produced by Ken Burns, tells the story of a small group of incarcerated men and women struggling to earn college degrees and turn their lives around in one of the most rigorous and effective prison education programs in the United States — the Bard Prison Initiative.
Through the personal stories of the students and their families, the film reveals the transformative power of higher education and puts a human face on America’s criminal justice crisis. It raises questions we urgently need to address: What is prison for? Who has access to educational opportunity? Who among us is capable of academic excellence? How can we have justice without redemption?
The series originally aired on PBS on November 25th and 26th.
Prison in the Woods: Environment & Incarceration in New York’s North Country
Clarence Jefferson Hall Jr., Ph.D
Assistant Professor in the Department of History at Queensborough Community College/CUNY
- March 5, 2020
- 7 – 8 p.m.
- Alumni Conference Room, Angell College Center (ACC)
- SUNY Plattsburgh
Clarence Jefferson (Jeff) Hall Jr. is an assistant professor in the Department of History at Queensborough Community College/CUNY, located in Bayside, Queens, New York. Hall’s research focuses on the intersection of environmental politics and the carceral state in nineteenth- and twentieth-century New York.
Beginning in the 1840s and accelerating in the 1970s, prisons became a prominent feature of the North Country landscape. However, correctional facilities built in the Adirondack Park in the last quarter of the twentieth century were as much a product of modern environmental regulation as they were the result of wars on drugs and crime waged at the state and federal levels. In his talk, Clarence Hall will focus on how environmental law and environmentalism helped shape the carceral state in New York’s North Country.
Hall has presented his research at academic conferences and colloquia hosted by the New York State Historical Association, Organization of American Historians, American Society for Environmental History, Binghamton University Department of History, Stony Brook University Department of History, and at venues large and small across New York state.
His work has also been featured in major national media outlets, including The New York Times, the Associated Press, National Public Radio, NBC Nightly News, Canadian Television (CTV), CNN, and MSNBC, among others.
Visions of Place: Complex Geographies in Contemporary Israeli Art
Dynamic Exhibition of Contemporary Israeli Art Addresses Complexities of Geography, Culture, Identity, History
September 3, 2019 – December 3, 2019
Location: Burke Gallery & Slatkin Study Room, Myers Fine Arts Building — Second Floor
Opening Public Reception: September 3, 2019, at 4 – 5:30 p.m. in Burke Gallery
Dr. Martin Rosenberg and Dr. J. Susan Isaacs, curators of Visions of Place: Complex Geographies in Contemporary Israeli Art, will give a lecture on their work on Thursday, Sept. 5, at 7:30 p.m. in 110 Ward Hall.
The exhibit explores the poignant impact of place in Israeli life, as seen through the penetrating eyes of some of the country’s most prominent contemporary artists. Featuring approximately 50 photographic, video, painted, and mixed media works by 34 Israeli artists (including Sigalit Landau, Miki Kratsman, Pavel Wolberg, Asad Azi, Adi Nes, and Guy Ben-Ner, among others), the exhibition illuminates intertwining views of history, place, and identity in Israeli culture. While the majority of the artists are Jewish, others are Muslim, Christian, and Druze, reflecting the diverse mosaic of peoples that populate the country.
Artists as Innovators:
Celebrating Three Decades of New York State Council on the Arts/New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowships
April 15 – August 9, 2019
Location: Burke & Slatkin Gallery, Myers Fine Arts Building — Second Floor
The New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) is commemorating three decades of NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellowships with the landmark traveling exhibition Artists as Innovators: Celebrating Three Decades of New York State Council on the Arts/New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowships. The fellowship program has supported more than 4,000 artists in various fields in the visual arts, literature, and performing arts at critical stages throughout their careers.
The artists in the exhibition are acclaimed and respected around the world, but what is less known is that they all received support from NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellowships at crucial points in their careers. Curated by Judith K. Brodsky and David C. Terry with the assistance of Madeline Scholl, Artists as Innovators: Celebrating Three Decades of New York State Council on the Arts/New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowships will feature work by more than 20 NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellows who have gone on to record significant achievements in their artistic careers. The works on display will show how the fellows have addressed pressing and often controversial issues through their art, including racism, gender equality, sexual orientation, immigration, and globalization.
Participating artists include: Elia Alba, Ida Applebroog, Dawoud Bey, Sanford Biggers, Ross Bleckner, Wendell Castle, Tara Donovan, Carroll Dunham, Chitra Ganesh, The Guerrilla Girls, Barbara Kruger, Christian Marclay, Marilyn Minter, Lori Nix, Tony Oursler, Faith Ringgold, Martha Rosler, Dread Scott, Andres Serrano, Shinique Smith, Carmelita Tropicana, and Fred Wilson.
Patrice Charbonneau: Headquarters
January 28 – March 15, 2019
Location: Burke Gallery, Myers Fine Arts Building
Public Reception to meet the artist, Thursday, February 28, 2019 from 5 – 7p.m.
A Trip Takes Us: Photography by Theron Humphrey
November 15, 2018 – January 6, 2019
Location: Burke Gallery
“What Was He Thinking?” Jan Balet: Watercolors & Lithographs
February 13, 2018 – March 16, 2018
Lithographs and watercolor renderings by German-born artist Jan Balet were shown for the first time in the United States at the Burke Gallery in Myers Fine Arts Building from Feb. 12 to March 16.
The collection, titled “What Was He Thinking?” highlighted Balet’s lithography and featured his often-humorous personal perceptions of human relationships and situations.
Balet is known for his widely collected paintings and prints in Europe and for his work as an illustrator and art director in New York.
“Visual Sway: Political Art From the Collection”
September 19, 2017 – November 3, 2017
The Plattsburgh State Art Museum and guest curator Dr. Jason Miller presented a lecture on “Visual Sway.” Miller is a professor of philosophy at Warren Wilson College, a researcher of aesthetics and social and political philosophy, and a writer of several essays, including “Politics of the Apolitical: Art and Politics at the Bauhaus and Black Mountain College.”
This exhibition from the museum’s collection explores intersections of art and politics and the multiple dimensions of “visual sway” in art. The artwork encompasses portraiture, commemorative images, overt propaganda posters, government sponsored projects and apolitical visual content produced by politicized artists.
Rockwell Kent, Dorothea Lange, Andy Warhol, Kathe Kollwitz and Leon Golub are some of the many artists that were featured in “Visual Sway.”
Love Letters: Wood Type & Printing History
(Diane Fine and Tracy Honn)
Sept. 17 – Nov. 2, 2017
Opening Event: Thurs., Sept. 20, 2018
Location: Burke Gallery