In Visible Light 

Hampden Gallery Collaborative Outreach Program

April 1, 2021 – May 30, 2021

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In Visible Light is a large-scale illuminated sculptural work of art (40’ circumference) on view at Hampden Gallery’s Sculpture Garden. The work is supported by Hampden Gallery’s Collaborative Outreach Program. This new program facilitates collaborations between MFA Students and other members of the UMass community. These collaborations entail various aspects of conceiving, designing, and constructing a work for exhibition at Hampden Gallery.

For this year, the project, In Visible Light, was conceived by Sally Curcio, Hampden Gallery’s Interim Director, who engaged first year MFA student Jacob Peters, to collaborate with her in the design and construction of the sculpture. The sculpture was created during the coronavirus pandemic.

The sculpture hangs at Hampden Gallery and consists of two suspended, illuminated metal semi-circles that appear whole as a completed circle. The completed circle connects the exterior of the outdoor Sculpture Garden with the interior of the gallery. The circle creates the illusion of breaking through the barrier of glass and inhabiting both the interior and exterior of the gallery.

The barriers that we encounter during the coronavirus pandemic are temporary. We have all experienced unexpected isolation with new limitations and boundaries.

While the gallery doors are closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, the sculpture safely, and creatively, reaches out to re-connect. In Visible Light acts as a beacon of optimism to the campus community while acknowledging the constraints and challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. By using light as a medium and subject matter, In Visible Light seeks to illuminate the physical darkness of the shorter days of the year, as well as the emotional darkness brought out by the coronavirus pandemic.

Jacob Peters is a first year MFA in the studio arts program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He received his BFA in Writing from Ithaca College. Peters is a maker and a musician currently studying sound and sculpture.

Sally Curcio is Interim Gallery Director at Hampden Gallery at the University of Massachusetts. She has exhibited her work in galleries, museums, and for public installations throughout the United States and internationally.

She has shown at numerous museums including the Children's Museum of the Arts in New York City; the Fleming Museum at the University of Vermont, Burlington; the Newport Art Museum in Rhode Island and the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, Connecticut. In Massachusetts she has exhibited at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem; the Fitchburg Art Museum in Fitchburg; the Emily Dickinson Museum in Amherst; and the Historic Northampton Museum.

Curcio’s work is in the permanent collections of Smith College Museum of Art, Northampton, Massachusetts; the Fitchburg Art Museum, Fitchburg, Massachusetts; and the University Museum of Contemporary Art at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Her work has been commissioned for numerous private and public collections, notably the Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at New York University’s Langone Hospital in New York City in 2018.

In 2019, She was selected as Lead Artist by the Sheikha Manal Little Artists Program at Art Dubai, United Arab Emirates.