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    OCTOBER 20, 2006
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'Empathetic' exhibit opens Temple Gallery in its new location in Olde City Nov. 4, 2006-Feb. 17, 2007

Empathetic, an exhibition of multimedia works by 10 international artists, explores themes of communication, empathy and understanding, and features drawings, installations, performances, video and sound.  “Empathy” — the ability to share the experience of another, to perceive and relate to another’s feelings and intentions — is the underlying concept of each project in this wide-ranging exhibit, opening Saturday, Nov. 4, 2006, at the newly relocated Temple Gallery of the Tyler School of Art, 259 N. Third St., Philadelphia.

Empathetic exhibit
(Image courtesy Rachel Owens)

The works do not always directly present or depict empathetic situations, but offer visitors a means of exploring their own responses to engaging narratives, iconic images and emotional situations. 


“The artists explore the ways in which personal identification and emotional understanding are provoked, and reveal aesthetics, social constructions and politics to be both the settings for and products of complex human relations,” said independent curator Elizabeth Thomas, who organized the exhibit.


Empathetic features the work of the following artists:


Jennifer Allora (American, b. 1974) and Guillermo Calzadilla (Puerto Rican, b. 1971), who work between the United States and Puerto Rico, creating sculpture, photography and  video that link distant sites in poetic address of political and social divides.


CarianaCarianne (American, b. 1971), whose ongoing work recognizes the existence of two selves sharing and negotiating the use of the same physical body.


Paul Chan (American, b. Hong Kong 1973), whose cycle of charcoal drawings depicting  Judas’ betraying kiss of Christ complicate the motivations and consequences of empathetic intimacy.


Trisha Donnelly (American, b. 1974), who uses text, images and sound to suggest the transposition of people, places and time into the physical experiences of viewers.


Jesper Just (Danish, b. 1974), who produces lush, film-like videos in which isolated, mostly male protagonists telegraph intense emotion.


Pedro Lasch (Mexican, b. 1975), whose public projects and interventions address the potential of social interaction to change perceptions rooted in social, linguistic and cultural constructs.


Pia Lindman (Finnish, b. 1965), whose New York Times project studies human responses to terror and trauma through external study and intense internal reenactments of emotional states depicted in news photographs.


Kalup Linzy (American, b. 1977), who creates and portrays stereotyped characters in overheated and melodramatic soap-opera-based narratives.


Rachel Owens (American, b. 1972), who used the trapping of a wild coyote in Central Park as the basis of a metaphoric work about the human conditions of fear, powerlessness and resilience.

Empathetic exhibit
(Image courtesy Pedro Lasch)


Collateral projects will accompany the Empathetic show, including a gallery talk by the exhibition’s curator (2 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 4, 2006); an online event allowing visitors to query the artists, the curator and the lecturers about the show and its content; an off-site participatory performance led by artist Pedro Lasch; and a lecture by art historian James Elkins (Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2007).


Elizabeth Thomas is an independent curator based in Pittsburgh who recently organized “The ‘F’ Word” for the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh. Thomas was previously associate curator at Carnegie Museum of Art, where she organized the Forum exhibition series, and was the assisting curator for the Carnegie International in 2004. Thomas also has been a curatorial fellow at the Walker Art Center and was a co-founder of the Chicago-based magazine TenbyTen.


The Temple Gallery of Temple University’s Tyler School of Art, 259 N. Third St., Philadelphia, is open Wednesday-Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and until 9 p.m. on First Fridays.  Telephone:  215-925-7379.


The Department of Exhibitions & Public Programs at Temple University’s Tyler School of Art is supported in part by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the Friends of Temple Gallery.



Contact Harriet Goodheart,







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