This past summer I lived and breathed the Escalette Collection of Art. But, if I’m being honest, I have been fixated since registration day of my first year at Chapman University. I had Fiona Shen’s Freshman Focus Class (FFC) “ Exploring the Escalette Permanent Art Collection: An Experiential Journey” on my list the second I began hunting for classes. Getting into that class felt like a silver lining in an anxious start to my first year of college. Over the Fall semester, I fell in love with all the work the Escalette Collection was doing. Once I met Jean Park, the student worker at the time, I realized that my journey with the Escalette did not have to end.
Suddenly, there I was, driving back to Chapman, ready to immerse myself in the art once again. My short few months with the Escalette taught me so much about collections management and marketing. Although I could go on for days, bear with me while I walk through the highlights of the internship.
In the early weeks of the internship, I focused on collections management. My highlight regarding this aspect was accessioning the artworks of Jane Sinclair, a professor emeritus at Chapman University. Sinclair’s artwork, specifically her use of shape and color pulled me out of the depths of my art block. Condition-reporting her work led me to incorporate vibrant color into my own art pieces. After I created a painting inspired by Sinclair, I worked on a video for the Escalette Instagram, teaching our viewers about different elements of her style.
My second focus for the internship was marketing and social media. I wanted to spread awareness about the collection by showing students they could recreate Escalette artists’ processes with their own spin. I made tutorial videos on cyanotype prints and, in the process, learned that I loved printmaking. Making videos for the Instagram pushed my boundaries as both a content creator and an artist.
The highpoint of my internship began when my co-intern, Abigail, and I began to curate a display case in Moulton Hall. Settling on the theme of “Home”, we thrifted old postcards and photographs to fill the backdrop. As a part of the exhibition, I designed a postcard titled “Greetings from Home” with visuals of the city of Orange. The idea was for Chapman students to find a little corner of Chapman that reminds them of where they came from.
It’s hard to express how valuable my time with the collection has been. In many ways, the Escalette is my found home at Chapman. And the thing about home is that you’re always there for a while.