High Impact Learner: The Arts

Molly Reynolds '14 builds on art experience, will curate upcoming exhibit

A lot goes into curating a Gettysburg College art exhibition—Molly Reynolds ’14 would know.

Reynolds, a senior art history major, was selected by gallery director Prof. Shannon Egan to curate Field and Factory: Chinese Revolutionary Posters, which runs in the Schmucker Art Gallery from Nov. 1 to Dec. 6. The exhibition will showcase posters purchased by Special Collections that provide a unique perspective into Chinese culture in the 1950s, 60s, and 70s.

“The process has involved choosing the posters for view, researching and crafting a curatorial essay for the show’s catalog, making decisions about framing, writing a press release, and ultimately arranging and hanging the works,” Reynolds said. “This project has been a challenge, and is really a culmination of skills I’ve been learning and honing through my work at the College.”

As a first-year student, Reynolds arrived at Gettysburg with a desire to study the works of her favorite artists. Throughout her coursework, however, she also discovered how and why these works were made, and why they continue to play a significant role in our society.

In the fall of 2012, her general passion for the arts became more focused through learning opportunities offered by her favorite professor.

“All of the academic and social experiences I’ve had at Gettysburg have contributed to how I think and what I would like to pursue, however, I think academically, Egan’s art and public policy class really fueled my interest in art-making as it intersects with the political environment,” Reynolds said.

“The class curated a show in the gallery’s project space, and the whole experience really interested me, particularly the combination of research and hands-on gallery skills. For that show, my curated piece was a World War II-era ad for young women to become army nurses—I guess I really got a thing for poster propaganda at that point.”

Once the Field and Factory exhibition concludes this winter, Reynolds will set her sights on utilizing her Gettysburg College degree, as well as her campus experiences working with Special Collections, Schmucker Art Gallery, Art History Department, and the Center for Public Service, to land a professional position at an art museum or other cultural institution—at least until she decides on whether to attend graduate school.

“My interests lie in museum studies and arts education—work which mixes creativity with a strong educational focus,” she said. “Also, having caught the travel bug during a semester abroad, I hope to make my way back across the Atlantic sooner rather than later.”

Reynolds will present on the poster exhibit during a gallery reception on Nov. 1, beginning at 4 p.m. A question and answer session will immediately follow.

Learn more about the opportunities Gettysburg College provides in the arts, including majors and minors in art and art history, theatre, and music. Be sure to also check out more than a dozen clubs and organizations dedicated to the arts right here on campus.

Read about other high impact learners at Gettysburg College: Aleksandra Petkova '14, social justice and service; Helena Yang '14, student/faculty research; and Julia Freed '16, active pursuits.

Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences with a strong academic tradition. Alumni include Rhodes Scholars, a Nobel laureate, and other distinguished scholars. The college enrolls 2,600 undergraduate students and is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.

Contact: Mike Baker, assistant director of communications, 717.337.6521.

Posted: Mon, 21 Oct 2013

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