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Inspiration Found in Manhattan (art) Project
From: University Currents
Date: April 26, 2000
By: Eric Lose
Phone: (513) 556-1805
Photo By: Lisa Venture
Archive: Campus News, Research News

Unusual influences make for unusual results. Sometimes horrific settings can be inspirational. Jeffrey Jones grew up next door to a powerful muse - adjacent to what was almost and still could be the end of the world. He has used it to fuel his art that will be on display May 15 to 26 in the Tangeman Fine Arts Gallery during the MFA thesis exhibits of College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning students. The student exhibits will run May 1-June 9.

image of jones

Jones lived in Oak Ridge, Tenn., a place central to the Manhattan Project, a group of facilities constructed to research and build the bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Growing up in the birthplace of mass destruction would probably have a profound influence on most anyone. Jones has used it for inspiration. In his artist's statement accompanying his thesis work Jones wrote, "My work is engaged in the politics of identity and in the questions of reflection. The work acts as my personal witness to growing up behind barbed wire fences that surrounded Oak Ridge, Tenn."

Jones works in mixed mediums -"a lot of spray paint, industrial materials... smoke, fire, a burned painting." "The paintings are about everything that happened in that town during the making of the atomic bomb," he said.

Before starting the MFA program at DAAP, Jones did his undergraduate work at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Two of his instructors were DAAP graduates and recommended he apply to UC. Jones said he came to UC to study with Frank Herrmann and Tarrence Corbin, and that after graduation, he would like to teach art at the college level.

Other exhibits in the MFA thesis show schedule are: Tangeman Gallery - May 8- 12, Ken Henson, Joe Saunders; May 15-26, Jeffrey Jones, Ivan Fortushniak; May 30-June 2, Andrew Wu, Kirk Mayhew; June 5-9, Greg Penner, Sarah Lahti. 840 Gallery - May 1-5, Heidi Endres; May 8-12, Tae Earl; May 15-19, Gloria Wachtel; May 22-26, Joell Angel-Chumbley; June 5-9, Cheryl Wassenaar.