March 21, 2005
Exhibit of early years at Cowell College
includes photos, memorabilia
By Scott Rappaport
Cowell College opened in the fall of 1965 as a challenging
and imaginative experiment undertaken by 650 students
and 40 faculty members.
This photo of two students, both from San Francisco, is
among those displayed as part of the Cowell College exhibit.
Gil Null was a junior at the time, and Pam Cain, a freshman.
In celebration of its 40th anniversary, the college will present
an exhibition titled Reminiscing: Cowell College, The Early
Years, focusing on historical highlights from 1965 to 1975.
The exhibit runs from April 16 to May 29 at the Eloise Pickard
I think what most people dont realize is that the
history of Cowell and the early years of the university are
one and the same, noted Linda Pope, curator of the gallery
and the exhibit. Cowell was the only college in existence
when UCSC was founded in 1965.
Pope said the exhibit will feature long-forgotten and little-known
memorabilia and artwork--including a large flowered, psychedelic
Andy Warhol rug that graced the provosts house until as
late as the early 1990s. She added that the walls of the gallery
will be covered with black-and-white photographs, letters, documents,
and quotations illustrating the history of Cowell.
Im trying to come up with something differentthings
that havent been seen before, said Pope. I
hope to use some very unusual early shots by Ansel Adams, an
early protest poster, and some works by artists from the Cowell
Press. The exhibit will show the clothing of the period and
the feel of the times.
Adding to the historical atmosphere, a mix tape of music from
the era will play in the background. Visitors will also be able
to watch Super 8 films made by former students of the actual
construction of Cowell College in the 1960s. Additional footage
will include an interview with the late art history professor
Mary Holmes about the early days of Cowell, and founding provost
Page Smith being interviewed on CBSs 60 Minutes
about the subject of education.
The adjoining Annex Gallery will also feature a display of
watercolors by Cowell icon Jasper Rose, the innovative art professor
and second provost of the college who now resides in England.
I think its going to be a fun exhibition and a
great showcase of previously inaccessible items that Linda had
to dig up, said Tyrus Miller, newly appointed in January
as joint provost of Cowell with his wife, Deanna Shemek. Its
a chance for people to experience the strong sense of community,
personality, and tradition at Cowell that goes back many years.
Alumni visiting the campus during the Banana Slug Spring Fair
weekend will have an opportunity to meet the new provosts during
a special April 16 reception in the gallery between 4 and 6
p.m. The opening reception for the exhibit--featuring live music
and refreshments--begins earlier that same day at 2 p.m. For
more information, contact the Eloise Pickard Smith Gallery at
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