Check out this new video of the Temple Repertory Theater company.

Read more about the new Temple Repertory Theater here.

A missing bust of Richard Allen, founder of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, was recovered with the help of Temple University art history professor Susanna Gold

Susanna Gold, assistant professor of art history at Temple University’s Tyler School of Art, helped to track down the long lost bust of Richard Allen, abolitionist and founder of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Originally on display at the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Fairmount Park the bust, which stands about two feet high, is believed to be the first work of public art completely conceived and sponsored by African Americans.

Gold was able to track down the work of art by following small mentions in the press over the years. She finally located the sculpture at Wilberforce University, where it has been on display since 1887.

“It’s rare,” Gold told the Philadelphia Inquirer.  “This is the first time the African American community sponsored and erected a public monument to an African American person that I’ve found in my research.”
Read more about this historic discovery here.

– Jazmyn Burton

The 20 years following World War II witnessed the transformation of Temple into a modern university, but the university remained committed to its mission of service and diversity. Above, students leave the subway in front of South Hall, circa 1970.

Temple University, now the 28th largest university in the nation and the fifth largest provider of professional education in the U.S., started in 1884 as a neighborhood school of higher education housed in a Baptist temple on North Broad Street.

Temple’s  growth and role in the evolution of higher education and Philadelphia is chronicled by Temple history professor James Hilty in his new book, Temple University: 125 Years of Service to Philadelphia, the Nation and the World (Temple University Press, 2010).

“As I was doing my research for the book, I was looking for themes, and it goes back to Temple’s founder and to the democratization of higher education and the accessibility that Temple offers—those are Temple’s major contributions, not only to Philadelphia, but really to the world at large,” Hilty said.

To read more:

History book chronicles Temple’s unconventional journey to major university

–Kim Fischer

Temple University Opera Theater's 'The Cunning Little Vixen.' Valerie Gay (Jay), Grant Uhle (Woodpecker) and Chad Summers (Badger) Joseph Labolito, Temple University Photography

Little-noticed Temple University company performs stellar shows

Philadelphia Daily News

EVER SINCE the Academy of Music opened in 1857 with Verdi’s “Il Trovatore,” Philadelphia has been a mecca for opera lovers. Within just a few blocks of the academy, the home of the Opera Company of Philadelphia and the oldest opera house still in use, are two of the world’s great conservatories, the Academy of Vocal Arts and Curtis Institute. Both not only stage operas but train future stars in the operatic constellation.

Yet, less than two miles north on Broad Street, the Temple University Opera Theater has been consistently presenting two superb shows each season, with little fanfare and not much attention.

In recent years, their “Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Candide,” “Falstaff,” and brilliant double bill of “L’Enfant et les Sortileges” and “Le Rossignol” still register strongly in the memory. But opera mavens who regularly travel to the Met in New York and Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., never head five subway stops up Broad Street for Temple’s performances.

That’s their loss.

Read the full story on

Tyler student exhibits

April 2, 2010

It’s that time of year. Mid-term and end of semester projects are beginning to fill the hallways of Tyler School of Art.  Next time you’re in the area visit the creative enclave and browse interesting exhibits like the ones below.

Professor Samuel R. Delany talks to Locus; the magazine of the science fiction and fantasy field, about the comforts of capitalism, High Modernism and the future of fiction.

Samuel Delany, English professor and Director of the Graduate Creative Writing Program at Temple University, is featured in March edition of Locus.

“When I talk to people with MFAs who are now working as editors for literary publishers, they say, ‘What we learned in college is a kind of writing that our current bosses do not want to let in the door.’ They want nothing to do with ‘good writing.’ These are places like Random House; Harcourt Brace; Knopf; and Farrar, Straus & Giroux, who are the epitomes of literary publishing in this country, yet they’re willing to say, ‘I’m sorry. That’s not what we’re interested in anymore. We have a couple of slots a year for novels like that.’

“This is not a healthy situation for writing in general. It’s not healthy for science fiction, not healthy for anyone. I think we have five publishers left in New York, and 25 years ago there were 79! So when we’re talking about ‘commercial’ versus ‘art’ publishing, we’re using a leftover vocabulary. We’re still looking at the world through 1955-colored glasses.”

For more excerpts from the article visit Locust Online

-Jazmyn Burton

Peter d’Agostino's experiment in film and media art turned into a 40-year record of the changes that the planet

For School of Communications and Theater professor Peter d’Agostino, what started as an experiment in film and media art turned into a 40-year record of the changes that the planet has undergone due to climate change and erosion.

More than 40 years ago, after watching the Apollo 11 astronauts take their first steps on the moon, the filmmaker and media installation artist was inspired to use his camera to record city environments in San Francisco.

Although he didn’t realize it at the time, the resulting work would provide a springboard for his “World Wide Walks” series, an interactive installation of video digests recorded in cultural spaces and natural habitats on five continents since 1973. The series includes footage from d’Agostino’s recent travels through India and parts of Canada and Europe, where he visited the same environments over a period of years and visually documented how climate change has affected the landscape over time.

Now D’Agostino has received a Lovely Weather: Art and Climate Leonardo Project award to produce a new World Wide Walk video and web installation focused on global climate change. A collaboration with cultural researcher Deirdre Dowdakin and Muhlenberg College Media and Communication professor David Tafler, the project combines visual art with science to explore a range of natural, cultural and virtual issues regarding climate change.

A public art exhibition is scheduled to open at the Regional Cultural Center, Letterkenny, Ireland in November.

“Generally speaking, humans are very interested in the weather, but have less interest in the weather we make,” said d’Agostino. “We live in a close relationship with climate phenomena, but our intimate ‘weather report’ is not sufficiently developed to create the changes that may be necessary to avoid the potentially catastrophic effects of global warming.”

For more information on d’Agostino’s work visit

– Jazmyn Burton

Programming in the 36,000-square-foot performance venue will begin on April 17 with a performance by Broadway actress and singer Patti LuPone.

Credit: Elizabeth Manning/Temple University

Baptist Temple, originally built in 1891 for Temple University founder Russell Conwell’s congregation, and the source of the university’s name, is set to re-open on April 14 after standing dormant for 30 years. The 36,000-square-foot facility has undergone a $30 million renovation that preserved much of the building’s original character while transforming it into a state-of-the-art performance and event space.

“We are thrilled to breathe new life into The Baptist Temple, converting it to a fully equipped, state-of-the-art technical facility,” said Charles Bethea, the venue’s executive director. “The Temple serves as a monument to the growing vitality of our community, offering the university and our neighbors opportunities for deeper engagement with an exciting new mix of arts and ideas.”

Programming will commence on April 17 with a performance by Broadway actress and singer Patti LuPone. A full season of concerts, theatre and dance productions will follow, including bookings by Philadelphia Dance Company and Live Nation. Building managers also hope to attract special events such as film screenings, graduations, weddings and other occasions.

The Baptist Temple’s primary performance space is Lew Klein Hall, a 1,200-seat theater that features a large, protruding stage, superior acoustics, vaulted ceilings and much of the building’s restored original features. Among the unique attributes are custom wood and iron working, 140 stained-glass windows and the Temple’s hallmark Rose Window overlooking Broad Street.

– Kyle Bagenstose

For more of this story visit the Temple University Newsroom

March 2, 2010

A lunchtime chat with Carl Pope and Mari Hulick
Thursday, March 4th, 12 – 1 pm
Exhibitions seminar room, Temple Gallery
Tyler School of Art, 12th and Norris Streets
Space is limited; please RSVP at
Free and open to the public

In conjunction with Philagrafika 2010: The Graphic Unconscious at Temple Gallery, artist Carl Pope will present The Wall Remixed: The North Philadelphia Small Business Advertising Campaign along with collaborator and designer Mari Hulick.  Bring your lunches and learn about this major billboard installation on view through March 2010 in North Central Philadelphia.

Temple University English Professor Lawrence Venuti, a Temple alum and South Philadelphia native, finds himself at the center of a movement to rethink literary translation and its role in the academy.

Venuti, an internationally renowned translator and translation theorist, wants both translators and readers of translations to be more mindful and appreciative of the cultural differences they encounter in a foreign text. His latest project, a translation of Ernest Farrés’s Edward Hopper (Graywolf Press, November 2009), won the second annual Robert Fagles Translation Prize, sponsored by the National Poetry Series.

A leading theorist in his field, Venuti is at the forefront of what might be called a translation renaissance. Once invisible in their behind-the-scenes roles, translators are increasingly recognized in academic and publishing arenas for their contributions to the literary process.

The most prevalent translation strategy has been to adhere to the current standard dialect of the translating language, which is the most familiar and least noticeable to the reader. This kind of translation, according to Venuti, effaces the translator’s presence and erases cultural distinctions.

“Translation rewrites a foreign text in terms that are intelligible and interesting to readers in the receiving culture. Doing so is akin to committing an act of ethnocentric violence by uprooting the text from the language and culture that gave it life. Translating into current, standard English at once conceals that violence and homogenizes foreign cultures,” he said.

Venuti has translated everything from 19th-century prose by a neglected author of Gothic tales to canonical modern novelists to controversial contemporary best-sellers. Some of his translations are credited with improving the literary reputations of the original authors, in one case raising the author’s status to literary stardom.

Because of his national and international reputation, he has been invited to teach translation workshops at Princeton, the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia.

For more and to hear Venuti read from a translation, check out CLA professor at center of translation renaissance.

–Kim Fischer