Revisionist History Inspires Sculpture at SJU Gallery

Friday, December 22, 2017

PHILADELPHIA (December 22, 2017) — History can sometimes be like a game of telephone. As stories are passed from generation to generation, details and meanings can shift, sometimes due to faulty memory and sometimes in an intentional obfuscation.

This interplay between narrative and symbols is at the heart of “Wishful Thinking,” a new series of mixed media sculptures by Andrew Cornell Robinson. The exhibit will be on display at the Saint Joseph’s University Gallery through Thursday, Feb. 8. A reception and an artist talk will be held that day at 11:30 a.m.

Robinson’s work in the collection is inspired by secular shrines and reliquaries, or vessels used to store holy relics. By intentionally reinterpreting and abstracting the intended meaning of the vessels, Robinson forces viewers to think about the way that historical narratives are constructed. He also draws inspiration from coded languages and the way people use specialized words and phrasing to identify themselves in a group.

Born in Camden, New Jersey, Robinson studied ceramics and sculpture prior to completing his M.F.A. at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. He received an Edward F. Albee Fellowship residency and was a visiting artist in Port Au Prince, Haiti, and at the Agastya Foundation in Bangalore, India. His work has been presented throughout the world at the Baltimore Contemporary Museum; the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, Connecticut; the Ross Art Museum on the campus of Ohio Wesleyan University; and the United Kingdom Crafts Council. He lives and works in New York City and is a member of the faculty at Greenwich House Pottery and Parsons School of Design.

Saint Joseph’s University Gallery is located on the second floor of Merion Hall on the James J. Maguire ’58 Campus at 355 N. Latches Lane in Merion Station, Pennsylvania. A campus map may be viewed online at Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.-7 p.m., and Saturdays, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. The gallery will be closed for the holidays Dec. 24 — Jan 1.  For more information, call 610-660-1845 or visit the gallery website at

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Founded in 1851 in the Jesuit tradition of academic excellence, Saint Joseph’s University is a top-ranked Catholic University that provides a rigorous, student-centered education. With a total enrollment of 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students, SJU offers a wide array of academic programs designed so that each graduate enters the world with a competitive resume and global perspective. This is achieved through intense academic study led by thought-leading faculty scholars, a comprehensive campus experience and robust study abroad, service-learning, internship and co-op programs. Upon graduation, nearly 100 percent of students are employed, pursuing advanced degrees or volunteering in prestigious service programs. A member of the Atlantic 10 Conference, SJU offers 20 Division I intercollegiate men’s and women’s sports. SJU alumni — over 68,000 strong — provide a powerful network that spans the globe.

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