On September 9, 2020, from 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Indiana State University hosted a Zoom meeting that gave students the opportunity to talk with current exhibiting artist Michelle Burdine.
This was the first virtual artist meet and greet of the semester. Michelle Burdine is a visiting assistant professor of photography. She started her education in photography with portrait photographs and one of her first jobs was a wedding photographer.
Michelle Burdine’s exhibited work is currently being shown in The Turman Gallery, which is located on the first floor of the Fine Arts Building. The show started on August 24, 2020 and will end on September 25, 2020.
Michelle Burdine’s philosophy for art is, “Thinking about an idea, trying it then hating it, and throwing it to the side.”
Some of the pieces of art that Michelle Burdine has on display are from her collections called “The Body Reclaimed”, “In sickness and In Death”, and “Medicare For All.” The pieces from “The Body Reclaimed” are based on her personal life. It is photography and her own body. Michelle Burdine quoted this piece as, “lost in terms of her own body.” This is an ongoing collection that started in 2017.
Some of the collection of “In sickness and In Death” that she has on display is from the journey of her parents. The collection was started in 2016 and ended in 2020. This work was inspired by her time taking care of her parents as they both fell ill. Her mother was diagnosed with a condition that caused her liver to harden. About a year later, Burdine and her mother were in a car accident that caused her mother’s back to break. In 2018, her dad was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. Burdine’s dad passed away nine weeks after being diagnosed. Her mother passed 10 weeks after Burdine lost her dad. Her parents were physically photographed in the collection and can be seen in some of the work on display. Her mom and dad were very supportive of her work.
Another piece of her art that can be seen on display is called “Medicare For All”, which was also inspired by her parents. “Medicare For All” is the newest piece. This is also Michelle Burdine’s favorite piece. This piece is one of her favorite pieces because it includes more people, and it is a collection that was done after the passing of her parents. This artwork is done in Cyanotype (photography with blue), which is her favorite style of photography to complete.
There are still collections that are unfinished and some that she is currently working on. Some of these unfinished works are “Suspended” which was started in 2017, and is about objects that she had has a child and heirlooms that have been passed down to her. She considers them as “pieces of her family history.” The other piece that she is still working on is “The Body Reclaimed”, which is a previously mentioned piece of art that is on display.
This event was a great opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to learn about artists right here on campus.