School of Arts and Humanities News

Work by Arts & Humanities Faculty, Alums Featured in New Journal Issue


Art by Jessica Fuentes (BA 2004) illustrates the front cover.

The summer 2020 issue of Athenaeum Review includes new work from several faculty members and alumnae of the School of Arts and Humanities. Find out more at athenaeumreview.org, and hear from the contributors at a virtual event on Tuesday, June 16th.

Artist and former UT Dallas professor Kazuya Sakai (1927-2001) is the subject of a detailed study by Lillian Michel, who explores “how an Argentine artist, critic, translator, jazz expert, radio host, graphic designer, professor, and pioneer of geometric abstraction in Mexico” came to the university. While Sakai’s artwork was shown here as early as the 1959 exhibition, South American Art Today, at the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts, he only joined the School of Arts and Humanities faculty in 1980, teaching courses in studio art and aesthetics studies until his retirement in 1997.

A. Kendra Greene, Visiting Assistant Professor of Creative Writing, engages in a dialogue with the new novel Seven Samurai Swept Away in a River by Jung Young Moon (Deep Vellum Publishing), set in a Texas arts residency. Responding to the novel, Greene writes, “Moon is saying it’s really important for you to decide what kind of writing to pursue; there are entertainers and there are writers of literature.”

Visual artists have also contributed several stunning works to the new issue. Aluminum RRGG #2, a work by Marilyn Waligore, Professor of Visual and Performing Arts, leads off the ‘Folio’ section of the issue, which also features notable works by alumnae Ciara Bryant (BA 2016), and Lauren Christlieb (BA 2013). The front cover is a detail of 2012 NYC, by Jessica Fuentes (BA 2004).

The life of Lord Byron, the Romantic poet, is explored by Kenneth L. Brewer, Clinical Associate Professor of Arts and Humanities. Brewer writes: “It is tempting to claim that we live in a golden age of Byron biography, but it has pretty much always been a golden age of Byron biography since his death.” In a new biography of the poet which emphasizes Byron’s private life, including his concerns with dieting and body image, the author writes that “Dieting for Byron represented a heroic endeavour, to free the spirit from the body, a battle for independence that paralleled (if it did not also reflect) his enthusiasm for other struggles for independence.”

Robert J. Stern, Professor of Geosciences, writes about the first motto to have appeared on U.S. coinage: “Liberty—Parent of Science and Industry.” First used by Thomas Jefferson in a 1789 letter, Stern writes, “The phrase was a blessing and a premonition. U.S. science and industry rose together all through the 19th and 20th centuries, leading to the invention of the telegraph, accelerated by the U.S. Civil War and the growth of the railroads; blossoming into electricity, the telephone, the internal combustion engine…”

Athenaeum Review is published twice yearly by the School of Arts and Humanities and the Edith O’Donnell Institute of Art History. Featuring essays, reviews and podcasts by leading scholars in the arts and humanities, all issues of the journal may be freely read online, or ordered in print from the UT Dallas Marketplace.