2013–2014 ORVIETO FACULTY
Courses are taught by members of the literature, history, writing, and arts faculty at Gordon College and other Christian liberal arts colleges, as well as by professional artists selected for the relevance of their own work to the guiding themes of the program.
Jeremy Botts [Text & Image] (MFA, Maryland Institute College of Art) teaches Graphic Design courses in the Art department at Wheaton College (IL). He has taught at Messiah College and Maryland Institute College of Art. Botts’s own freelance practice is called Flammascura Press and is available at www.fiammascura.com/. He has collaborated with Ellen Lupton on two new textbooks: Graphic Design: The New Basics, and Indie Publishing: How to Design and Produce Your Own Book, both from Princeton Architectural Press. As Botts writes himself, his passion for the alphabet and design began at the dining room table, where his calligrapher father (Timothy Botts) sat his children down on Sunday afternoons with ink and metal nibbed pens to practice the just formation of letters. Later, a year in Rome and letter carving in stone gave him great respect for the trueness of natural materials and the challenges of design that would live and breathe years beyond him. Now, for pleasure he makes collaborative drawings with his daughter, harvests backyard vegetables with his wife, and enjoys forays into the lesser piano works of Chopin and Scriabin. As he stokes the wood stove, Botts often imagines his renovated chicken house studio sprouting scaly legs and running through the alfalfa fields.
Shelly Bradbury [Sculpture] (MFA Boston University in Sculpture) has served as an adjunct professor at Boston University and Gordon College, and has twice taught for the Gordon IN Orvieto program. Her work has been exhibited throughout Massachusetts and in New York City, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C. Her prestigious awards include the Helen Foster Barnett Award in Sculpture from the National Academy of Design in New York City, the Audubon Artists Gold Medal of Honor from the Salmagundi Club, and the Anna Hyatt Huntington Award from the Catherine Lorillard Wolfe Art Club. Shelly works from her studio in Ipswich, Massachusetts. Bradbury’s commissioned work includes a large-scale fountain at Endicott College (Beverly, MA), a relief panel of the Creation & Fall in the Barrington Center for the Fine Arts at Gordon College (Wenham, MA), a bronze sea-creature bench in Gloucester, MA, a work for New England Baptist Hospital (Boston). An enormous work still in progress is her competition-winning project of replacing the collapsed Old Man of the Mountain rock formation in the White Mountains of New Hampshire with a new environmental sculpture complex.
Matthew Doll [Drawing] is a painter and graphic designer, and the director of the Gordon IN Orvieto semester program, where his Disegno/Drawing course serves as the cornerstone of the curriculum. Previously Doll taught drawing at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem for six years. Doll is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, where he studied on RISD's European Honors Program in Rome. He studied in Jerusalem on a Fulbright Fellowship and earned an MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art. He taught drawing, painting, and design at Gordon College from 2001–2002. During his years in Jerusalem, Doll worked as a graphic designer for many of the international organizations and ministries that serve the diverse population of Israel and the West Bank. His current position in Orvieto allows him to reconnect the points of contact between Jerusalem and Rome, themes which echo in the pursuits of his studio practice.
Philippe Fretz [Painting] Is a French-Swiss painter presently living and working in Geneva. His artistic training in Geneva was supported by a “Stravinsky Prize” and other fellowships while studying at the “atelier du Grütli." Fretz’s work has been exhibited in many solo and group shows in Switzerland and France, including the Galerie Athanor, Marseille; Ancienne Abbatiale, Bellelay; Galerie ESF, Lausanne; Konsumbäckerei, Soleure; Barrington Center for the Arts at Gordon College; Galerie Aparté, Lausanne; Galerie Alain Paire, Aix-en-Provence; Galerie du Tableau, Marseille; Palais de Beaulieu, Lausanne; Espace d’art Contemporain, Lausanne. Fretz is also a founder, editor, and contributor to a series of limited edition artist books titled Art&Fiction which creatively integrate text and image, often combined with exhibitions, lectures, concerts, and conferences presented from its base in Lausanne.
Agnes R. Howard [History] (B.A. Cornell, Ph.D. University of Virginia) teaches history at Gordon College and is a veteran teacher in the Gordon IN Orvieto program, focusing especially on women’s social and cultural roles in and contributions to medieval and Renaissance Europe. Her articles have appeared in Commonweal, First Things, The Weekly Standard, Books & Culture, The Cresset, and include “Hating the teens we indulge,” “In moral labor,” “What else to expect when you’re expecting”–-all in First Things. Her essay on the history of the monastery of San Paolo in Orvieto can be found here.
Julia Spicher Kasdorf [Poetry] (B.A.Goshen College, MFA New York University) directs the MFA program in Creative Writing at Penn State University. Previously she taught at Messiah College, the University of Pittsburgh, and New York University. Kasdorf's poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Paris Review, and Poetry, as well as numerous anthologies, including the 2003 Pushcart collection. Her books of poetry include Eve's Striptease (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1998) and Sleeping Preacher (1992), which received the 1991 Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize and the Great Lakes Colleges Award for New Writing in 1993. She is also the author of the biography Fixing Tradition: Joseph W. Yoder, Amish American (2003) and The Body and the Book: Writing from a Mennonite Life, 1991-1999 (2001), which won the Book of the Year Award from the Modern Language Association's Conference on Christianity and Literature. With Michael Tyrell, she edited the anthology Broken Land: Poems of Brooklyn (2007). She is the poetry editor of the journal Christianity and Literature.
Marie-Dominique Miserez [Painting] was born in Saignelégier, Switzerland and educated in the visual arts at the Collège de Saussure, Geneva and the Fine Art School of Geneva. She has done specialized study in medieval illumination, fresco painting and restoration, and Byzantine iconography. For ten years from 1990-2000 she lived in the Dominican community at the monastery of Notre Dame of Escayrac, France. Her spiritual discipline as a pilgrim has inspired many pilgrimages on foot, including ones from Switzerland the whole way to Jerusalem (2007), from Florence to Assisi and onto Rome (2005), from Switzerland to Chartres and to Le Puy en Velays, France (2004, 2003), and from Switzerland to Santiago de Compostella in northwestern Spain (1990). Her paintings have been commissioned by and exhibited in churches throughout Switzerland, including the basilica of Notre Dame in Geneva. Her work has been used for a number of liturgical calendars as well as in “Joy, Passion, Glory,” three booklets published in collaboration with the Dominican sisters of Estavayer le Lac.
Greg Schreck [Photography, Design] (B.A. Rochester Institute of Technology, M.A. New York University International Center of Photography) joined the Art faculty at Wheaton College (IL) in 1989 after ten years working in New York City as a commercial photographer. His photography is connected to the land, environmental concerns, and human rights issues. Recently, Greg has involved his students in an ongoing collaborative project, helping international torture survivors make self-portrait photographs that are then woven together into a quilt. Schreck spent much of his time in the last decade exploring to the epistemological shift from analog to digital photography. At the end of 2011, Greg unveiled wooden Lambertian portrait photographs; the result of a long collaboration with physicist Mark Woodworth. This work is represented by Schneider Gallery in Chicago. See his work at http://gregschreck.com
Karen Halvorsen Schreck [Creative writing] (B.A. Wheaton College, Ph.D. English & Creative Writing, University of Illinois, Chicago) is a freelance writer and editor, and teaches writing and literature. Her most recent Young Adult novel is While He Was Away (published by Sourcebooks in 2012). Her novel Dream Journal (Hyperion) was a 2006 Young Adult BookSense Pick, and her children’s book Lucy’s Family Tree (Tilbury House) won several awards. Her short stories and articles have appeared in Literal Latté, Other Voices, Image, as well as other literary journals and magazines, and have received various awards, including a Pushcart Prize, an Illinois State Arts Council Grant, and in 2008, first prize awards for memoir and devotional magazine writing from the Evangelical Press Association. Karen lives with her husband, photographer Greg Halvorsen Schreck, and their two children in Wheaton, Illinois. Click here for Karen's website.
John Skillen [Renaissance Narrative] was the medieval and Renaissance specialist in the English department of Gordon College (Ph.D., Duke University) before serving as the inaugural director of the Orvieto program since its inception in 1998. He has served as chairman for both the English and Communication and Theatre Arts Departments, and is a veteran leader of summer seminars in Italy and the British Isles and a number of study-tours and retreats in Italy. Professor Skillen's interests are broadly in the arts and cultural history, and—as the program vision indicates—he is interested in the renewed relevance of moments in early European culture for the conditions of our present "post-culture." He is the director of the Studio for Art, Faith & History, edits the Studio’s e-journal, Letters from Europe, and is the founder and co-director with his Orvieto colleague Alessandro Lardani of the annual Festival of Art & Faith held in June each year.
Rebekah Smick [History] (Ph.D University of Toronto) teaches Philosophy of Arts and Culture at the Institute for Christian Studies in the Toronto School of Theology. She specializes in the relation of early modern visual arts theory to poetics and rhetoric in the Western tradition. Her research and teaching investigate the aesthetic values of beauty and grace in the early modern period, the link between knowledge and imagination, and the aesthetic function of metaphor. She is especially interested in delineating the connections made during the early modern period between aesthetics, metaphysics, ethics, and theology. She is the editor of Antiquity and Its Interpreters (Cambridge UP, 2000) and is currently working on a book manuscript entitled Michelangelo’s Vatican Pietà as Image in the Theology and Aesthetics of Compassion.
Faculty have included:
Scott Anderson (painting, Westmont College)
Jeremy Botts (design, Wheaton College)
Shelly Bradbury (sculptor, Massachusetts)
Tanja Butler (painter and printmaker, Gordon College)
Scott Cairns (poet, Univ. of Missouri)
Susanna Caroselli (art historian, Messiah College)
Robert Clark (novelist)
Tyrus Clutter (painter and printmaker, Idaho)
Karin Coonrod (theater director, New York)
Matthew Doll (artist, Gordon College)
Tim Ferguson-Sauder (design, Gordon College)
Christi Forsythe (textile, paper and book artist, Messiah College)
Don Forsythe (mixed media artist, Messiah College)
Wayne Forte (painter, southern California)
Brett Foster (literature and poetry, Wheaton College)
Andrea Frankwitz (literature professor, Gordon College)
Philippe Fretz (painter, Geneva, Switzerland)
Andrew Frisardi (poet, Orvieto, Italy)
Nicora Gangi (painter, Syracuse)
Bruce Herman (painter, Gordon College)
Jennifer Hevelone-Harper (historian, Gordon College)
Agnes Howard (historian, Gordon College)
Albert (Tal) Howard (historian, Gordon College)
Julia Spicher Kasdorf (poet, Penn State University)
Edward Knippers (painter, Washington D.C.)
Paul Mariani (poet and biographer, Boston College)
Marilyn Chandler McEntyre (poet, Westmont College)
Jeff Miller (theater director, Gordon College)
Marie-Dominique Miserez (painter, Geneva, Switzerland)
Marino Moretti (ceramicist, Orvieto, Italy)
Wendy Murray (writer, Massachusetts)
Michelle Arnold Paine (painter, Massachusetts)
Peggy Adams Parker (sculptor and printmaker, Virginia)
Christine Perrin (poet, Messiah College)
Greg Peters (Biola University)
Catherine Prescott (painter, Harrisburg, PA)
Ted Prescott (Messiah College)
Truitt Seitz (painter)
Joel Sheesley (painter, Wheaton College)
Duncan Simcoe (painter, southern California)
John Skillen (literature professor, Gordon College)
Liesl Smith (medieval historian, Gordon College)
Rachel Hostetter Smith (art historian, Taylor University)
Mark Stevick (poet, Gordon College)
William Swetcharnik (painter, Maryland)
Lisa Wade (painter, Perugia, Italy)
George Wingate (painter, Massachusetts)
Jim Zingarelli (sculptor, Gordon College)