During the Fall 2015 semester, the Hurford Center’s Student Arts Fund supported a variety of projects, ranging from stage performances to artwork pieces. Students described the overall concept of their project in a proposal, with which the Hurford Center’s staff, in conjunction with the Hurford Student Advisory Board, worked through the requested logistics to make the projects become realities.
One noticeable outcome came as a result of Katy Frank applying to the fund to bring burlesque performer Una Aya Osato, the “exHOTic other” to Haverford. On November 21st, a large crowd gathered in Stokes Auditorium to watch a performance that proved to be both provocative and political. Here, Katy Frank reflects on the experience:
“This past semester (Fall 2015) I was thrilled to receive the support of the HCAH Student Arts Fund through the Women*s Center in bringing burlesque performer and actress Una Aya Osato, whose stage name is “exHOTic other,” to Haverford. She performed an incredible one-woman show (with some support from her sister, playing a zombie) that discussed topics including gentrification, zionism, dating, and education. The show was generally structured around individual skits, with Una providing monologues that brought the skits together in a larger storytelling structure. She was absolutely dynamic, and with an audience of 50+ people at the show and Q&A, brought an energetic and incredible story to Haverford.”
Una & her sister Michi with some of the Women*s Center staff. Left to right: Patrick, Amelia, Una, Maddy, Michi, Katy
After the semester’s week-long Fall Break, Houhou Wang submitted a proposal to the Hurford Center Student’s Arts Fund, requesting financial support in order to further pursue her painting endeavors. Already an author of several books and a popular fashion blog, Houhou sought an opportunity to use her art experiences this past summer as one of many options to keep her cross-sectional blog operating and functional, including other art and culture forms such as singing, poetry, and illustration. The Arts Fund was able to provide Houhou with the necessary money for the supplies, tools, and transportation she needed to continue her independent work at the Philadelphia Museum of Art for the rest of the academic year.
Here, Houhou explains how she used the fund to develop her craft:
“Initially, I just wanted to learn more oil-painting techniques by copying the Greats at the PMA. However, after I copied a few paintings, I started to incorporate what I saw there into my own artwork. I painted “Bacon’s dogs” as a parody to Francis Bacon’s portraits of Lucien Freud this January (above), followed with this collage “What he likes” (below). I think this collage is one of my more mature and original work that’s made out of an old portrait of my black friend, Courtney, and photos of an innocent Barbie doll and dainty children’s hands, both cut out from US Weekly.”
With a total of $5,000 available each semester, the Students Arts Fund is looking forward to supporting more projects! The application deadline for the Spring semester is February 28th. More information, as well as the application itself, can be found here: www.haverford.edu/hcah/center/programs-and-grants/student-funding/student-arts-fund.
-Matthew Ridley & Amanda Friedman