With the support of the Penelope Mason Dissertation Research Award, doctoral candidate Amy Bowman-McElhone traveled to Los Angeles in July and August to conduct dissertation research. Her project, “‘Muck, Slime, and Ignorance:’ Mike Kelley’s Institutional Critique and Los Angeles’s Post-Sunshine Scene (1976-1996),” is developed under the supervision of Dr. Adam Jolles. The dissertation focuses on L.A. based contemporary artist Mike Kelley (1954-2012) from the period of 1976 through 1996. Bowman-McElhone aims to situate Kelley’s work within the discourse of institutional critique through an examination of his preoccupation with the role, purpose, education, and institutionalization of the artist. During the course of her trip, Amy conducted research at the Getty Research Institute, the Mike Kelley Foundation housed in Kelley’s former studio, the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, and Art Center College.
In fall 2016, Amy is presenting a chapter from her dissertation at SECAC and co-authoring a review of the exhibition Vacio Museal: Medio Siglo De Museotopias Peruanas (1966-2016) with fellow FSU art history doctoral student Gabriela Germana. The review will be published in the Journal of Curatorial Studies, and Amy and Gabriela will be presenting related research at the College Art Association conference in New York in the spring of 2017. Amy will teach at FSU in the 2016-2017 academic year while making progress towards her dissertation and working on independent curatorial projects.