Exhibitions Talking About Museums

By Stephanie Gibson

The John and Geraldine Lilley Museum of Art at the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR) had its grand opening on January 25, 2019, in Reno. With the advent of this new space in the middle of campus at UNR, it is fitting that the museum’s inaugural exhibition is one that contends with the authority of these exhibition spaces, while interrogating the mission and legacy of institutional collection and display practices. Artists Sameer Farooq and Jared Stanley challenge notions of authenticity, attribution, and provenance in museum work, while poking fun at exhibition display practices. Why put a label next to a work of art if it can go behind it? How about on its side instead? Terma, Images from the Ear or Groin or Somewhere is up until March 7, installed in the temporary exhibition space of the museum. This playful show proposes an imaginative conception of what a museum can really be, and in turn, suggests we can come ideas and conceptions of ourselves and others in a variety of radical new ways.


The exhibition space is disrupted in many ways. An inexplicable poem/exhibition title. Smoothness where text should be. Stories told in the shadows, and pedestals tipped on their sides. Even this curator, a role that historically has been one of content and object specialist, perched on the sidelines of an extended conversation between two artists who worked in the intangible and the esoteric. 

Terma invites us to imagine a world where objects speak with us and one another, where stories are told not on labels, but in the shadows. The visitor is invited to slip into a conversation with objects, to interrogate our relationship to them, and to respond with compassion and care. The exhibition becomes an inventive excavation of two artists’ imaginations, imploring us to consider how we might imagine the world otherwise differently. 


Terma, Images from the Ear or Groin or Somewhere has been on display since January, but the School of the Arts will have its grand opening on Friday, February 22, 2019, beginning at 5 p.m. While you are there, visit To Have and To Hold, The Lilley's first exhibition of the permanent collection installed in the upstairs gallery. It features just a selection of objects – paintings, photographs, beaded work, and more – from the museum’s large permanent collection of over 5,500 works of art. Read more about the exhibition here.

Reception on Friday, February 22, 2019 at 5:00 p.m.
University Arts Building
University of Nevada, Reno

Catch the exhibition before it’s gone: 
Sameer Farooq & Jared Stanley: Terma, Images from the Ear or Groin or Somewhere 

January 25 - March 7, 2019

Tuesday-Wednesday 12- 4 p.m., Thursday-Friday, 12- 8 p.m., and Saturdays 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. Closed Sunday and Mondays

Stephanie Gibson.jpg

Stephanie Gibson has been the Program Manager for Nevada Humanities for the past two years. She holds an MA in Art History from Concordia University in Montreal. She has worked in varying capacities of exhibition management at institutions including the Art Gallery of Ontario, the National Gallery of Canada, and the Aga Khan Museum in Toronto. She has written reviews and essays for publications including Muse, Ciel Variable, Magenta Magazine, and the Churchill Arts Council. She is the curator of Terma, Images from the Ear or Groin or Somewhere at The John and Geraldine Lilley Museum of Art at the University of Nevada, Reno, and is currently working on another curatorial project with the Nevada Arts Council.


Exhibition photos credit: Ann Ploeger

Blogger image credit: Nevada Humanities/Jessi LeMay

Cheyanne TreadwayThomas