Former UCR Graduate Student Receives CAA Fellowship

By Briana Van Havermaat, Student Intern of CHASS College Computing

 Erin Aldana, who received her MA in art history from UCR in 1999, was one of the CAA 2005 Fellows. The CAA or College Art Association, founded in 1911, provides opportunities for publication of scholarship, criticism, and artists' writings. Aldana received the CAA Professional Development Fellowship for Art Historians, funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Aldana has been interested in alternative approaches to art history since reading John Berger’s Ways of Seeing. However, she discovered during the past decade that the work of many well known Brazilian artists has been assimilated into international art circuits to the point where it loses historical significance. As a result, Aldana wants to focus more on less popular Brazilian artists in an attempt to keep the historical and geographical context in tact.

Aldana examines a group of artists called 3Nós3 (“three we three” in Portuguese). The artistic actions they performed on the streets of São Paulo in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s were referred to as “Urban Interventions.” The actions portrayed by the artists were often misinterpreted as pranks, but in actuality evoked deeper meanings among the historical and social levels of the city. The group also assessed the role of artistic institutions in São Paulo and their irrelevance to young artists.

Aldana has also received the 2000–2001 Foreign Language and Area Studies fellowship for Portuguese/Latin American Studies. She is now a doctoral candidate in art history at the University of Texas at Austin.

For more information on the CAA please visit their website at College Art Association.

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