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News / August 27, 2014

Robert Frank Show a First for New NSCAD Gallery Leader

Melanie Colosimo at the Anna Leonowens Gallery, where she will become director on September 1. Melanie Colosimo at the Anna Leonowens Gallery, where she will become director on September 1.

Melanie Colosimo, an artist who has worked as exhibitions coordinator at NSCAD University since 2011, has been named director of its Anna Leonowens Gallery as of September 1.

Colosimo takes over from Eleanor King as director. King, an artist who has been nominated in the past for the Sobey Art Award, is heading to the State University of New York on a Fulbright Scholarship this fall to conduct research on the topic of “Planned Obsolescence: Examining Disposable Culture and The Consumer through Visual Art.”

Though the Anna Leonowens Gallery usually focuses on student exhibitions, the first show to take place under Colosimo’s directorship features a world-renowned photographer and publisher.

“Robert Frank: Books, Films, 1947-2014,” organized by Frank’s German publisher Steidl, opens at the gallery on September 5 and runs until September 12.

Though best known for his iconic 1950s photo project The Americans, Frank has since generated work in other media, and his exhibition in Halifax promises to be ephemeral in nature—images and texts will be printed on continuous newspaper rolls pinned to the gallery walls and then destroyed at the end of the show.

Born in Switzerland in 1924, Frank has a special connection to NSCAD. He lives in Nova Scotia and New York, and he taught a filmmaking class at the college in the 1970s. His work This Film is About…, filmed at NSCAD in 1972 and 1973, will be screened September 10 at NSCAD as well.

In a release, Colosimo noted that for her early on, as an artist from a small town, she “hadn’t been exposed to a body of work that showed a very true and uncensored view of western culture. The Americans altered the way the western world would look at themselves, at the way I looked at my world.” She believes that Frank’s work offers “an influence and honesty that are still relevant to today’s generation.”