|Fine art showcased in Crounse Hall
RELEASED: June 30, 2005
DANVILLE, KYThanks to some impressive art displays, Centre College's Crounse Hall offers visitors a pleasant visual experience even after they enter the building and lose sight of its magnificent façade.
Currently, the Grace Dougherty Library (contained in Crounse Hall) houses two major exhibits. The reading room galleries, located to the left and right of Crounse's front entrance, contain installations of two glass sculptures. One work, titled "Manic Praying Chaos," was donated by Stodghill Professor of Art Stephen Powell. The other, an untitled piece, was donated by glass master Lino Tagliapietra. Tagliapetra's sculpture, part of his Dinosaur series, was created while he was Humana Visiting Professor at Centre in 2000. (He received an honorary degree from the College in 2004.)
"What these pieces create in these rooms is really quite extraordinary. They create a tone and effect that really brings these rooms to life," says library director Stan Campbell.
The backgrounds and mantelpieces for the works were designed and installed by Powell himself. Each piece is mounted so that it extends a few feet into the room, stunning library visitors with brilliant color, as well as with the contrast between delicacy and looming size.
The Ralph and Nancy Amos Glass Collection consists of more than 250 pieces that rotate on Crounse's second floor. It is prized for both its aesthetic and its instructive qualities.
"We're really lucky to have this collection," Powell says. "It's a great teaching tool to see lots of different techniques, some of which are rare."
The array of Early American glass objects fills cases on opposite sides of a window overlooking the library. Works in the collection are production glass pieces, noted for their high quality. The collection includes glass from some of the most famous glass producers including Louis Comfort Tiffany, Steuben, Quezal, Stevens and Williams, and Durand. Often the pieces demonstrate handcrafted detail or a Venetian influence.
A multimillion-dollar renovation and expansion was recently completed in Crounse, which houses the Grace Dougherty Library, classrooms, and faculty offices. The result is a 75,000-square-foot facility that blends 25,000 new square feet and 50,000 square feet of renovated space.
Art in the library also includes an ever-increasing collection of student artwork, purchased from the annual senior shows. Many student works were stored during construction, but soon this art will reappear over the library's shelves and newly constructed walls.
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Founded in 1819, Centre College is ranked among the U.S. News top 50 national liberal arts colleges. Centre alumni, known for their nation-leading loyalty in annual financial support, include two U.S. vice presidents and two Supreme Court justices. For more, visit http://www.centre.edu/web/elevatorspeech/
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