Friday, February 21, 2020

Anita Jung, assistant professor in the School of Art and Art History, poses for a photo in the University of Iowa Visual Arts Building 

The University of Iowa is thrilled to announce that Anita Jung, assistant professor in the School of Art and Art History at the University of Iowa, has been selected as a Fulbright Scholar to India for the 2020-21 academic year.

Jung is one of more than 800 U.S. citizens who will teach, conduct research, or provide expertise abroad for the 2020-2021 academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program. Recipients of Fulbright awards are selected based on academic and professional achievement as well as a record of service and demonstrated leadership in their respective fields.

“Since 2006, I have taken short trips to India, four times with students on the winter program to Delhi, Jaipur, Agra, and Tamil Nadu, and two independent trips to Baroda, Delhi, Kolkata, and Santiniketan,” said Jung. “India has been a tremendous influence on my thinking and it has deeply affected my creative practice.”

“India has been a tremendous influence on my thinking and it has deeply affected my creative practice.”

During her nine-month Fulbright fellowship to India, Jung will study fine art and craft print traditions, and teach during the fall term at Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda in the city of Vadodara, in Gujarat state.

“MSU-Baroda is a prestigious institution, especially for fine art printmaking. This experience will provide the platform for meaningful cultural exchange and immersion with artist students and colleagues in the field of printmaking and support a documentary video that I will be creating about fine art printmaking in India. My research is in printmaking. Philosophically, I am interested in contemplative approaches in making art to understand today’s world; our histories and ideologies as individuals, as nations, as a global entity. Reflections upon the environment and climate change; immigration practices and acts of war. Longtime interests within my work have focused upon what it means to be an artist, the responsibility and ecological impact of making, aspects of the ephemeral, the erased, the covered, the overlooked, the in-between, the discarded, the disappeared, and most of all, the complex complicity of being alive during this particular time and place."

After she returns, Jung will use her research to augment her existing courses at the University of Iowa, and hopes to create the potential for new curriculum, as well as more faculty-led study abroad opportunities for students.

“I enjoy developing new courses and revising course content to be more inclusive as art supports the ability to understand the cultural, historical, political, socio-economic, and international dynamics of a complex country such as India,” said Jung.

While the ultimate goal of her documentary is to deepen viewers' understanding of contemporary Indian printmaking, Jung’s video project will also expose international audiences to the excellence of the University of Iowa Stanley Museum of Art’s Waswo Collection, a remarkable and unique holding of contemporary fine art graphics from India, comprised of over 300 works by more than a hundred artists of the Indian subcontinent.

“The Fulbright provides the opportunity for me to study this collection and share it well beyond India and Iowa through a documentary. Dr. Joyce Tsai, the current chief curator of the University of Iowa Stanley Museum of Art, is organizing an exhibition that focuses on the Waswo X. Waswo Collection of Indian Printmaking to open in 2023/24. As part of the planning for the exhibition, Dr. Tsai and I will organize a symposium on the art, culture, and contemporary history of India.” 

In preparing her Fulbright application, Jung credits her fellow colleagues for their support and the university's extensive resources and services.

“I relied heavily on International Programs staff members. Both UI Fulbright Advisor Karen Wachsmuth and International Programs Grants Administrator Ann Knudson read, edited, and advised me extensively in developing my application. My colleagues in the South Asian Studies Program, as well as former Fulbright-Nehru Fellows, further assisted me in preparing my proposal and asking thought-provoking questions. Marc Armstrong and Cristina Getz, associate deans in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, were also supportive in my pursuing this endeavor.”

University faculty members at all stages of their careers can apply to become Fulbright Scholars. Grant recipients can teach, do research abroad, or a combination of both for time periods ranging from 2-6 weeks up to a semester or entire year.