Jila Nikpay, Visual Lecture Series

Fall 2009 Visual Lecture Series

Jila Nikpay, photographer and filmmaker

6PM Monday, November 2, 2009

Location: Bohannon Lecture Hall (room 90)


Jila Nikpay is an Iranian artist who lives in the U.S. She is a filmmaker and a photographer, working exclusively in black and white. Her still photography is staged, and marked by dramatic lighting. The films are poetic tableaus, comprised of short vignettes with no dialogue.

Post your comments about the lecture to this entry


Luis Gonzáles Palma > 6pm Tues Photo lecture


Lecture by photographer Luis Gonzáles Palma

Tuesday, October 27th, 6:00 p.m.

in Montague Hall 70.

Over the past decade, Luis González Palma has become recognized as one of the most influential photographers in

Latin America. The artist employs photo-collage and hand painted warm toned photographic images that are easily identified for their color and mysterious, sometimes theatrical scenes. His innovative visual language is rich in the symbolism of indigenous myth and culture, Catholicism and humanity. González Palma’s photographs are marked by visual texture

and symbolism reflective of Latin America’s legacy of colonialism, the subjugation of the native cultures of his home country Guatemala and, more recently, the vague complexities of interpersonal relationships…

more info


post your extra credit reflection to the comments here.

Shepard Fairey > master of plagiarism ?


A critique by artist Mark Vallen

Most well known for his “Obey Giant” street posters, Shepard Fairey has carefully nurtured a reputation as a heroic guerilla street artist waging a one man campaign against the corporate powers-that-be. Infantile posturing aside, Fairey’s art is problematic for another, more troubling reason – that of plagiarism.

Utopian Campus

Students have completed the digital compositing project. Here are some visions of a campus utopia…

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In my Utopian campus I would integrate more “art” into everyday areas where students would walk past or even walk on. I would also want to build a channel for a river that would flow through campus where students could swim or canoe. There would also be many unique bridges over it for access to other buildings on campus. I would also change the sidewalks and boring concrete walls around UMD and fill them with student designs so that our school would be customizable to our time. And the architecture would be more unique for each building so that It would be easy to navigate and be pleasant to look at as you walk though school. Overall I would just want the atmosphere to feel less like a business building and have a more creative feel that could inspire students as they travel and learn on campus. ~Garrett Danielson

As you walk through the bright hallways you will find a large wooden door. This leads to the courtyard. As you enter there is a boardwalk that leads you down the center and along side the reflecting pool. After that, feel free to walk on the grass or along the granite walkways on either side. It is recommended to take your shoes off to enjoy this place of tranquil delight. Spend time walking around the art pieces as well as the gardens and trees. As the seasons change the courtyard changes. In the fall, enjoy the rich colored trees and crisp, cool air. Once the snow falls, a large, clear dome will protect the courtyard from snow and ice. It will turn into an indoor courtyard. The natural order of trees may change but the grass will stay green all year and the flowers will be at constant care. The courtyard’s maintenance will provide students with jobs as well as class projects and volunteer work. There are more windows and sky-walks around campus as well. This allows everyone to see the beautiful place on his or her way to and from class.

~Amara Barthelemy


For my design I decided to do the theme of super human abilities. It is a fun project to ask my friends what super power they would want to have and then try to create what they want. I decided to try and make it look realistic yet also have qualities of a fantasy. The composition of a panorama opens up the picture and allows the characters to interact with their location in space and their environment. Having the whole background consist of an actual pieced together wide view of a real part of the campus gives it part of the realistic feel. Heightened contrast and slightly unsaturated colors in the background make the characters pop more and also a more fantasy, cartoon feel. Recreating the sky digitally makes it a little more dreamlike and less realistic feeling. My aim is to create a unique wide angle view of the UMD campus with a few make-believe twists. ~Beau Walsh


The kind of Utopia I envision in a university setting is one that brings together all students and faculty of diverse areas of study, as one educational unit. The centrally planned architecture and sustainable nature of the university encourages congregation and intermingling, as well as the educational structure itself. From the first day of class to graduation day, students collaborate with other areas of study on group projects. The campus relies on on-campus agricultural land as its source of food, as well as solar power and rain water collection systems. The university acts like communal society, but with advanced technology on their side making every day living safe and convenient..~David Roberts