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Art Department Releases Book Featuring Alumni

Designed by Actual Source and curated by Executive Director of UMOCA Laura Hurtado, “A 15-Year Expanse” was created to help build connections between generations of alumni

In partnership with the design studio and publisher Actual Source, the Department of Art has released the first volume in a series of books featuring alumni. The book, titled “A 15-Year Expanse,” is now available through Actual Source for $32.

“A 15-Year Expanse” is a 200-page, image-centric book, featuring 10 alumni that graduated between 2000 and 2015. Thirteen pages are dedicated to each artist, with full-color reproductions of their art and an index with additional information about the artists and their work. Laura Hurtado, executive director at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, selected the artists and curated images for the book, together with Associate Chair of the Art Department Peter Everett and Davis Ngarupe and JP Haynie from Actual Source. An introductory essay by Hurtado — “Rippling Aesthetics” — provides context for the featured artwork and particular grouping. Hurtado highlights the role of “A 15-Year Expanse” in telling the story of a specific place at a specific time, writing, “The artists’ artwork rises parallel to one another, bumping each other, communicating, but not congealing into a single formation.”Everett, who spearheaded the production of “A 15-Year Expanse” and dedicated many hours to its realization, said he is pleased with how everything came together in the end.

“’A 15-Year Expanse’ is a beautiful hard-covered book with scrupulous attention to type, materials, aesthetics and pacing,” Everett said. “Laura’s essay is insightful and engaging, and we are really proud of the whole project.”

The idea for an alumni book grew out of a desire to celebrate graduates and to connect alumni across cohorts. Initially, the department developed content around graduates, including alumni features for the website and social media.

“One of the great things about the Art Department is that we have really amazing and ambitious students,” Everett said. “They come from all over the world and build strong bonds with their cohorts and faculty, working hard to develop as artists and people. They leave the program strong and so many continue to develop as artists in impressive ways.” Everett hopes that “A 15-Year Expanse” will be followed by additional alumni books and exhibitions. Currently, the Art Department and alumni services are working together to build an extensive list of graduates for possible inclusion in future publications and exhibitions.

Originally, “A 15-Year Expanse” was on schedule to be featured at the Los Angeles Art Book Fair in early April. However, the fair was cancelled due to concerns about the coronavirus. Actual Source plans to take the book instead to the New York Art Book Fair in September, and the Art Department and Actual Source are working to place the book in museum and art bookstores around the country. In the meantime, copies of the alumni book are available for purchase through the Actual Source website. Alumni featured in “A 15-Year Expanse”