Reorienting the Art Gallery: Service Labor and Community Care

What are the purposes, possibilities, and limitations of the traditional gallery space? Through understanding who has been excluded from the gallery, we aim to rethink what an exhibition space can and should be. Through our research, we will stage our own space on campus that subverts gallery conventions. We will present an alternative functionality, proposing that the gallery space should offer tangible assets to its community. Our work is a collaborative art project situated in the history of service labor, endurance art performances, gallery culture, and the history of subversive art spaces. The summer research will culminate as an artist booklet to accompany our thesis exhibition in Fall 2022: we will stage an alternative gallery on and around the UC campus in service of the local community. Our installation will center the act of cleaning community members dirty laundry, using the exhibition as a form of service to the local […]

...Read More about Lauren Anastasia
L&S Arts & Humanities

Ameliorating Alzheimer's Disease Effects via Novel Light Stimulation

Synchronous gamma wave brain oscillations, which oscillate at a frequency of 40 Hz, underlie healthy cognitive functioning and are disrupted in Alzheimer’s Disease, leading researchers to explore sensory stimuli delivered at 40 Hz as a potential therapy to resynchronize neuronal firing and thus slow cognitive decline. However, the stroboscopic nature of 40 Hz lighting makes it an unlikely treatment for humans. This project hopes to overcome the challenges posed by stroboscopic 40 Hz white-light by testing the efficacy of a novel invisible spectral flicker (ISF) light system, which masks the visible flicker of 40 Hz light by fusing two light waves together in antiphase. By examining the effects of ISF on cognition and microglia clearance of Aβ plaques, I hypothesize that ISF treatment will lead to synchrony of gamma oscillations in the brain, increased microglia activation, and a resulting decrease in Aβ concentration in our rodent models. Results from this […]

...Read More about Stephanie Ancheta
L&S Arts & Humanities

Silver Screen Sex Work: Depictions of Prostitution in 1960s Cinema

Films are cultural timestamps constructed to reflect the interests and beliefs of their audiences. The 1960s revolutionized the United States in more ways than one, and movies were not exempt from these changing tides. Over the course of the decade, sex work became a normalized narrative convention of several films, including Butterfield 8, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and Walk on the Wild Side. This research project will seek to contextualize and explain this change in the cultural zeitgeist by examining the sociopolitical policy surrounding sex work at that time, in tandem with shifting understandings of gender and power in American society during this iconoclastic era. By understanding the changing social and legal realities of women and sex workers, these films can be understood as not only works of art, but as devices in a specific moment of cultural production that make larger arguments about women and labor. This project will draw […]

...Read More about Cassandra Branch
L&S Arts & Humanities

Baba Canm (Daddy Dearest)

This project explores the transfer of knowledge within familial systems. In 2014, a traditionalist administration took power in Turkey. This marked a change in the socio-cultural environment and created an opportunity for stories to be altered and values to shift. What stories are shifted or lost in the transfer of knowledge across generations? Queerness has always been present, but how has its existence been impacted by the dominant culture in Turkey? What were queer stories like in Turkey before the political push to an Islamic state, and how have they changed today? The goal of this project is to examine these questions by immersing myself in the stories of my Turkish relatives and identifying how these stories shift when the perspectives of women and queer individuals are centered. The final aspect of the project will be a Super 8mm documentary film, which I hope will add a unique perspective to […]

...Read More about Alina Çelik
L&S Arts & Humanities

John Clare and the Poetics of Attention

This project analyzes the origins, uses, and effects of attention in the work of 19th-century poet John Clare in order to illuminate the nature of the relationship between poet and place. I will analyze his poetry for habits of attention not only in his acts of observation, but in the poetic techniques he uses to describe what he sees, and thus translate his heightened sense of attention. By approaching his body of work through the lens of the poetics of attention and his focus on his immediate surroundings, I aim to explore the complex relationship between the poet’s groundedness and the simultaneous sense of unsettledness or imprisonment that comes as a result of the intensely familiar connection to it. I seek to tease out how Clare’s habit of noticing and, importantly, his ability to continue to notice the minute and generally unnoticeable in nature contributes to an almost instinctual, reactionary […]

...Read More about Helen Halliwell
L&S Arts & Humanities

The Land Story

The Doctrine of Discovery precluded any non-Christian individual from having a legal claim to land under European colonial law. In the Spanish occupation of California, this Doctrine led to the establishment of the Mission system intended to indoctrinate the native people of California into becoming “responsible Christian landowners.” But, after the Mexican and then American occupation of California, these religious doctrines were largely abandoned. Yet, after each successive change in governance, control over land was redistributed. I will spend the summer examining documents housed at the Bancroft and State Library Archives and related to land claim disputes during early American occupation (1850–1870) in order to understand the causes, justifications, and circumstances by which native people were continually dispossessed, and by which land ownership was so radically altered between successive governmental regimes.

...Read More about Joshua Kay
L&S Arts & Humanities

Media as a Mother: Representations of Queerness in Children's Media

While many know the wicked sea witch Ursula from Disney’s The Little Mermaid, few understand that she was based on the drag queen Divine. Ursula is only one of a myriad of representations of queerness in children’s media. My project explores the evolution of queer representation in children’s media and the role it plays in transforming mainstream cultural norms, working as a tool to socialize children. From the demonization of queer characteristics resulting in queer-coded villains to same-sex kisses on animated television shows of the 21st century, queer representation in children’s media has evolved significantly since the mid 1900s. By critically engaging with representations of queerness in children’s media, my research will uncover the mechanisms by which media can more inclusively portray the complexities of sexual orientation and gender identity. Positive and explicit depictions of queerness can normalize gender fluidity and same-sex attraction, leading to identity affirmation in children. My […]

...Read More about Caitlin Keller
L&S Arts & Humanities

Blindness and Brilliance: Homer's Disability, Landscapes, and Language

Working from the traditional canon of Homeric work and analysis, this project will explore the implications of disability, particularly blindness, and its relationships to the landscapes and language of Homer. After broadly defining the classical interpretations of disability, the project will explore how blindness is linguistically represented in Homer’s work and analyze, through research, his life and the landscapes he occupied and illustrated. The project will employ the concept of enargeia, a Homeric idea translated by Alice Oswald as “bright unbearable reality,” to contextualize the representation of blindness as divinely manifested, physically mapped, and linguistically metaphorized in Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey, keeping in mind the likely apocryphal tradition of Homer as a blind poet. As the project analyzes Homeric simile and its relationship to physical landscapes and environments, it will attempt to edify the intersectionality of landscape, language, disability, and the navigation between them, both metaphorically and literally.

...Read More about Eva Kerins
L&S Arts & Humanities

Digital Analysis of How Linear Perspective Views Transform Real Space

From the 15th century onward, painters and architects produced views of real urban spaces like city squares using linear perspective. While it is universally accepted that linear perspective allowed these artists to imitate reality to a high degree, scholarship has largely overlooked the fact that these views artificially rectified the often irregular layout of the urban spaces they depict. My project seeks to discover whether there is a systematic difference between real urban spaces and the way in which they were depicted in the age of linear perspective drawing. With digital image processing, any drawing or painting may be compared to a photographic image of the actual space from the same viewpoint; but replicating these arbitrary viewpoints would require a 3D model of the space. Using the Capitoline Square in Rome as a case study, I plan to travel there to obtain a 3D model of the space using photogrammetry […]

...Read More about Yassin Oulad Daoud
L&S Arts & Humanities

Reorienting the Art Gallery: Service Labor and Community Care

What are the purposes, possibilities, and limitations of the traditional gallery space? Through understanding who has been excluded from the gallery, we aim to rethink what an exhibition space can and should be. Through our research, we will stage our own space on campus that subverts gallery conventions. We will present an alternative functionality, proposing that the gallery space should offer tangible assets to its community. Our work is a collaborative art project situated in the history of service labor, endurance art performances, gallery culture, and the history of subversive art spaces. The summer research will culminate as an artist booklet to accompany our thesis exhibition in Fall 2022: we will stage an alternative gallery on and around the UC campus in service of the local community. Our installation will center the act of cleaning community members’ dirty laundry, using the exhibition as a form of service to the local […]

...Read More about Jacob Li Rosenberg
L&S Arts & Humanities

Ana Castillos Black Dove: A Re-interpretation of Paloma Negra

This project interrogates narratology’s semiotic scope by decolonizing the various theories from a colonial perspective and exploring historical and cultural dynamics in Chicanx narratives. Through a close reading of Ana Castillo’s memoir Black Dove, I will contribute to existing literature concerning Chicanx narratives and Mexican ballads by deconstructing narrative theory and introducing a historically and culturally relevant perspective that offers an informed understanding of time and place into an analysis of how Chicanx narratives may work out the dynamics of Chicanx identity. I will conduct a comparative analysis of Castillo’s Black Dove with Mexico’s classic song “Paloma Negra” (Black Dove) to demonstrate how race and gender may continue to shape and reshape symbolic figures in narratives. This study exposes the urgency of research in Chicanx literature as narratology’s limited scope contributes to the erasure of Chicanx voices in literary conversation. My project will demonstrate to contemporary readers how Chicanx narrative […]

...Read More about Elizabeth Vergara
L&S Arts & Humanities