HASS To Celebrate
Reunion & Homecoming
The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences (HASS) will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Department of the Arts and the 30th anniversary of the Department of Science and Technology Studies (STS) with a series of events as part of Reunion & Homecoming on Friday and Saturday, October 5 and 6.
The Department of the Arts will host a faculty concert on Saturday as well as an art opening and exhibition Friday and Saturday, both of which speak to the full spectrum of talent hosted within the department, said Michael Century, a professor of new media and music, and a member of the committee that organized the events.
“Rensselaer has a tremendously well-qualified and eclectic faculty within the visual, digital, and musical arts,” Century said. “With reference to the concert, for example, you can hear acoustic and electronic, contemporary and world music in one evening; that broad a range is very unusual.”
The anniversary celebration of the arts department also will include a faculty panel on “Arts & Liberal Arts Education at Rensselaer Today” on Friday. A Saturday open house of the Design, Innovation, and Society program will mark the 30th anniversary of the STS Department. And the HASS dean will host a reception on Saturday in Evelyn’s Café in the Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center.
Century said the concert—which includes HASS Dean Mary Simoni—is a rare chance for Rensselaer students, faculty, and alumni to experience an array of genres in one setting.
“We have people doing pieces using live electronic processing—such as those being performed by Curtis Bahn, Neil Rolnick, and myself—and we also have Pauline Oliveros’ beautiful ‘Tree/Peace,’ an acoustic piano trio, and Ensemble Congeros, directed by Eddie Ade Knowles,” Century said. Similarly, he said “the visual exhibit will include traditional media of painting and sculpture, with works by faculty like Caren Canier and Larry Kagan, side by side with colleagues who are exploring virtual environments, interactive installations, and game design like Ben Chang, Silvia Ruzanka, Shawn Lawson, and Kathleen Ruiz. Not to be missed is the department’s penchant for humor and social commentary, in works by Nao Bustamante and Igor Vamos.”
STS activities planned for the weekend include panel discussions with alumni, a keynote presentation, senior faculty retrospectives, program overviews, and a series of posters highlighting the department’s impact across numerous dimensions.