Each year’s award will be a work of art created by a woman from the NIU faculty or staff. The following individuals have been commissioned to create works for the award:
Rollman, a Professor of Art, has paintings in several local collections including the Resource Bank, Nestle Corporation, and the Kane County Judicial Center. In the Fall of 1995 she was a representative from NIU and delegate from the National Women's Caucus of Art to the NGO Forum, held in Beijing, China. While in Beijing, she also participated in the UN Fourth World Conference on Women.
Jenny Knavel served as a Visiting Assistant Professor at NIU from 1998-1999. She has exhibited in national and regional shows. Her works are held in public and private collections.
The individual design elements in Sober’s piece were simple -- a matte black box with a design of squares, circles, and bright colors -- yet these simple elements interacted in an exciting way, resulting in a dynamic and vibrant whole. Sober compared the box to the way an enhanced climate for women on campus gives women the opportunity to contribute their part to a much greater whole. The resulting atmosphere is dazzling with possibilities for women, allowing them to shine in the workplace just as brilliantly the colors and shapes dancing around this box. This piece was designed and fabricated by the artist using polymer clay, original colored pencil drawings, silver leaf, and mica powders.
The artist of this series, Aubrey Purdy, earned her bachelors degree from Augustana College, where she began working in clay. Purdy was a research associate at the NIU Center for Child Welfare and Education. She began working towards her MFA from NIU in spring 2005. Purdy’s works-- Femme 1, Femme 2, Jezebel, and Anadevu—are ceramic vessels that focus on the relationship between wheel thrown pottery and the human form. Certain terms are used both to describe the human body and parts of a ceramic form. Moreover, these wheel-thrown ceramic forms lend themselves to soft, round, and voluptuous shapes, resembling the female form. The shape was used in this piece to explore and exaggerate the linguistic overlap of ceramic forms and the human body.
Karen E. Murphy
Karen E. Murphy is a sculptor born and raised in Oak Park. She earned her B.S. in Business from Indiana University and received her M.F.A. in Ceramics from Northern Illinois University in Spring 2014.