The Practical Working Group (PWG) was formed in the fall of 2008 at Cornell University by Fine Arts majors Maggie Prendergast, Rachel Simkover, Lauren Valchuis, and Jackie Zdrojeski. Together PWG organized several shows meant to investigate the utilization of gallery space in an academic art program. Two of PWG’s most notable shows occupied Tjaden Gallery during the 2007-2008 academic year.
The first show, The Second Week of November 2008, occupied the gallery for the duration of the week. The gallery was transformed into a sort of all-purpose room that succeeded on various levels in activating the Tjaden community by bringing its members together through breakfasts, music performances, lectures, film screenings, photo shoots, meals, and various other activities.
In another project called PSEUDIO, the PWG explored alternative uses of the gallery once again. During this show the PWG responded to the lack of studio space for non-thesis art students. Through PSEUDIO the PWG took advantage of the allotted space and transformed Tjaden Gallery into a personal studio for the four members. Individual areas were established for each student, taking on their individual personalities through personal effects and work generated throughout the week.
During the fall Semester of 2009 the PWG wishes to elaborate on the concept of the pseudio by extending this available space to other fine arts students. During PSEUDIO Revisited, the PWG hopes that its participants take advantage of this opportunity to fit their individual needs. By holding the show in Sibley Hall's John Hartell Gallery PSEUDIO Revisited participants will extend the art program’s visibility beyond Tjaden.
PSEUDIO Revisited will increase the project's scope by including an exhibition space and an art trade for its participants. These additions will further a communal investigation of space through the simultaneity of production and exhibition.
Participation in PSEUDIO Revisited is not limited to a singular motivation. Some view this opportunity as a convenience, some as a venue to showcase their work, some as a way to bridge the gaps between the AAP departments, some as protest against the lack of space, and some as a way to encourage collaboration within our community.