Next weekend, the Rose Art Museum will welcome a host of exhibitions as part of its Fall Exhibition featuring artists such as New York-based Sarah Sze and Scottish artist David Shirgley. The Rose Art Museum has been an integral part of the University since 1961 and has served as a permanent fixture on campus for artistic education and the exhibition and collection of contemporary art. In 2009, under President Jehuda Reinharz’s administration, the University attempted to sell the museum’s prized collection valued at $350 million in an attempt to respond to a substantial budget crisis. The sale was later prevented after Rose supporters sued the University, according to a July 1, 2011 Boston Globe article. 

Today, the Rose houses more than 8,000 pieces, including works from Willem de Kooning, Jasper Johns and Andy Warhol. This board applauds the Rose’s dedication to challenging the boundaries of creative expression and supporting the overall mission of the University rooted in free expression and social justice. 

Last semester’s Spring Exhibitions featured the work of Rosalyn Drexler, one of the only female Pop Artists in the world. Drexler’s work beats with a strong political consciousness honing in on issues of love and violence and organized crime. This semester’s exhibits, as well, will not fail to inspire the imagination. In fact, Shirgley’s exhibit “Life Model II” places the viewer in a drawing classroom in which the viewers are no longer viewers but rather participants. 

Those who visit the exhibit are allowed to observe and draw a cartoon-like sculpture of a nine-foot-tall woman. This board praises the efforts of the Rose’s mock classroom exhibit, as we believe it further encourages members of the Brandeis community to creatively express themselves outside the classroom setting. 

Never shy from international and national acclaim, the Rose grabbed Vogue magazine’s attention with Sze’s exhibit “Timekeeper,” and Vogue listed it as part of the “Fall Art Guide: 13 Shows to See This Season.” The Aug. 30 Vogue piece describes “Timekeeper” as “a monumental and eccentric sculpture of whirring and flickering images that tracks her [Sze’s] inventive way of keeping time, a kind of memoir of time.” Sze’s work serves as a reflection of the constant load of information that hounds us all. This board believes the Rose serves as a point of pride for the University community, and this recent recognition reaffirms this. 

In a school focused on academic excellence, this campus gem provides our liberal arts university with another look into the world of creative education and expression. This board applauds the work of the curatorial staff of the museum this semester and looks forward to future choices for the Rose.