VANISHED: A Chronicle of Loss and Discovery Across Half a Million Years

Byron Wolfe, Sheri Simons, Troy Jollimore, Heather Altfeld, Oliver Hutton, Dr. Rachel Teasdale

October 30 – December 15, 2017

Artist Panel:
Thursday, November 9, 5:30pm
Rowland Taylor Hall, PAC 134
Followed by a reception in the gallery

Walk & Talk:
with Kelly Lindner & Sheri Simons
Tuesday, November 28, 5:30pm
Jacki Headley University Art Gallery

Heather Altfeld & Troy Jollimore
Thursday, December 7, 5:30 pm
Jacki Headley University Art Gallery

Vanished: A Chronicle of Loss and Discovery Across Half a Million Years
is a cross-disciplinary project involving two visual artists, a philosopher, writer, volcanologist, and graphic designer. Collectively, the six collaborators explore four lost icons and consider how we assemble the past through fact, fiction, and myth. The results are an interconnected collection of new and historic photographs, illustrations, sculpture, sound, and writing.

Vanished will be on display in three different locations on the Chico State campus: The Jacki Headley University Art Gallery, Special Collections in Meriam Library and the lobby of the Valene L. Smith Museum of Anthropology.

This project focuses on four vanished icons:

The Missing Mount Tehama: A Vanished Stratovolcano (600,000 B.C.)
Mount Tehama is an eroded andesitic stratovolcano in the Cascade Volcanic Arc and the Cascade Range in Northern California. The combination of continued hydrothermal activity and glacial erosion have removed the central cone of the volcano.

A Return to Deer Creek for Ishi, “the last of the Yahi” (1911 – 1914)
Ishi was the last member of the Yahi, a group of the Yana of California. Widely acclaimed in his time as the “last wild Indian” in America, Ishi lived most of his life completely outside modern culture. In 1911, he emerged at a slaughterhouse in Oroville, CA.

Sudden Void: The Fall of the Hooker Oak (c. 1750 – 1977)
The Hooker Oak was an old large valley oak tree in Chico, CA, that fell in 1977. The tree was nearly 100 feet tall and the circumference of outside branches was nearly 500 feet. 

A Columbian Mammoth in Bidwell Park: Lost, Found, Then Lost Again (10,000 B.C. – 1999)
In 1999, a Columbian Mammoth tooth was found in Bidwell Park in Chico, CA, but later lost during a cleaning. 

About the collaborators

Heather Altfeld, writer. Altfeld is the author of The Disappearing Theater, a book of poems, and co-author of One Thousand and One Books: A Guide to Children’s Literature. Her work has been published in literary magazines such as ZYZZYVA, Pleiades, and The New Guard. She teaches in the English Department at California State University, Chico, and at Butte Community College.

Oliver Hutton, graphic designer / photographer. Hutton’s work focuses on the design disciplines of packaging and branding with additional expertise in web, environmental, and publication design. His award-winning designs have been featured in Communication Arts, GDUSA, Applied Arts, and other industry publications. He worked for five years at Hornall Anderson: Brand Experience Design Agency in Seattle, WA, before launching a freelance career in his hometown of Chico, CA.

Troy Jollimore, philosopher. Jollimore is a professor of philosophy at California State University, Chico. He is a Guggenheim Fellow and the author of two philosophical books: Love’s Vision (Princeton University Press, 2011) and Friendship and Agent-Relative Morality (Garland, 2001). His poetry has appeared in the New Yorker, Poetry Magazine, Ploughshares, and elsewhere. His first book of poetry, Tom Thomson in Purgatory, won the National Book Critics Circle award for poetry in 2006.

Sheri Simons, sculptor. Simons is a professor of sculpture in the Department of Art and Art History at California State University, Chico. Simons works with wood, sound, and movement. She recently completed artist residencies at Youkobo (Tokyo), and Zemtrum für Kunst und Urbanistik (Berlin) where she developed map-related work in drawing and sculpture.

Dr. Rachel Teasdale, volcanologist. Dr. Teasdale is a Lantis’ University Professor at California State University, Chico, where she teaches geology. Her current research examines lava flow emplacement mechanisms in a variety of settings, the development of the Tuscan Formation, and monitoring the hydrothermal systems at the Lassen Volcanic Center and volcanoes in Costa Rica.

Byron Wolfe, photographer / project director. Byron Wolfe collaborates on complex long-term research projects with students and colleagues in fields that range from Visual Arts to Humanities to the Natural Sciences. He uses photography and other visualization tools to tell stories that reflect upon broader notions of culture, and the constructions of landscape, perception, and time. To date, Wolfe has authored or co-authored five books and his work has appeared in Harpers Magazine, The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Orion magazine, and more. He is a Guggenheim Fellow and his work is numerous permanent collections including The George Eastman Museum, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston. In 2013, Byron Wolfe was appointed as Program Director for Photography at the Tyler School of Art, Temple University, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was formerly a David W. and Helen E. F. Lantis Professor at California State University, Chico.


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