The Parkland College Blog

"Draped and Bundled: Paintings by Leeah Joo" at Giertz Gallery

Connecticut-based artist Leeah Joo explores cross-cultural themes in her works

"Draped and Bundled," a solo exhibition of paintings and drawings by Connecticut-based artist Leeah Joo, will open Feb. 11 at Giertz Gallery at Parkland College. 

This exhibit runs through March 26 and includes an artist reception Thursday, Feb. 14 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The reception features a gallery talk by Joo at 6:30 p.m. and music by the Cobra Lounge Trio. Joo will provide an additional lecture earlier that day, at 1:15 p.m. in Room U140. She will also provide an Axonometric Projection Workshop at 2 p.m. in Room U140.

Leeah Joo is a Korean American painter who explores themes of cross-cultural experiences. Joo’s body of complex, realistic paintings on exhibit explores different connotations of drapery as a still-life subject, filtered through the lens of an Asian American immigrant. The fabric folds and bundles lend themselves to being read as more than just simple still lifes, while their designs conflate mythological creatures found in Asian art with contemporary figures. 

"In one sense, [my work] celebrates the simple beauty and the tradition of Korean brocades saved for special occasions, birthdays, or New Year," Joo explains. "Then the drapes and folds transform into mountains and oceans informed by recent events, such as the image of the victorious smile on an infamous dictator on top of Paektu Mountain in North Korea."

Joo will provide a workshop exploring "Axonometric Projection," on Thursday, Feb. 14 at 2 p.m. Space is limited and registration is required by calling the gallery at 217/351-2485. Axonometric projection (also called parallel perspective) is typically found in East Asian scroll paintings, which inspired her work. Unlike the linear perspective refined in the Renaissance, the parallel perspective has no vanishing point, creating a bird’s eye point of view that continues without an end. These scrolls therefore convey expansive space and time, which allows the possibility of an endless timeline for a narrative, as in “The Tale of Genji," a 12th-century scroll which took decades to create and is 450 feet long. The workshop will explore this alternate way of depicting space, which goes against the fundamental teachings of perspective drawing.

Born in Seoul, South Korea, Joo moved as a child with her family to Indianapolis, where she spent her youth. Joo studied painting at Indiana University in Bloomington (BFA ’94) and Yale School of Art (MFA ‘96). She is the recipient of numerous awards and distinctions including grants from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation. Joo lives and works in Connecticut where she teaches drawing and painting at Southern CT State University. She is represented by Andrew Bae Gallery in Chicago. 

Spring gallery hours are Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday, noon to 2 p.m. Gallery will be closed March 16–24 for spring break.
To find the gallery we suggest using the M6 parking lot on the north corner of campus. Walk past the gym and the fountain area, enter through door X7, turn left, and follow the ramps up to the highest point of the first floor, where the gallery is located. The gallery windows overlook the outdoor fountain area.
Programs at the gallery are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency. All events in the accessible gallery are free and open to the public. Parkland College is a section 504/ADA-compliant institution. For accommodation, call 217/353-2337 or email

For more information on gallery exhibits, please call the gallery office at 217/351-2485 or visit
[ImagePojagi Hope, oil on canvas, 48” x 48”, 2017]

High school and home school students and their families can learn more about an early college program that could reduce the time it takes to earn an associate's degree or bachelor's degree after high school. 

An informational session on the Early Transfer Academy (ETA) has been set for Monday, Jan. 28 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in Room U140 of Parkland College's Student Union. Early Transfer AcademyCollege faculty and administrators will be on hand to discuss the academy, its benefits to students, and the eligibility requirements for participation. 

As participants in the ETA, high school juniors and seniors will enroll in early-morning classes at Parkland College that meet the State of Illinois' General Education Core Curriculum. The GECC "package" of courses will then transfer as lower-division, general education requirements at public colleges and universities across the state. This could mean a significant savings in college costs as well as a greater chance at college success because of experiences gained on Parkland's campus. 
"I was really excited about getting my college credit done as soon as possible," said one current ETA student. "I just really want to get on with my career."

All families are welcome to attend the information session; however, parents of current sophomore- and junior-level students will have particular interest in attending, as these students will be the participants in the ETA.

Register to attend the information session at

For more information on Parkland College's Early Transfer Academy, please visit For questions, contact the Parkland College Early College Services office at 217/353-2663.

Ready for a bachelor's or master's degree? Use your Parkland credits! The following colleges will have representatives on hand this spring in the Student Union (unless otherwise noted) to discuss four-year degrees and transfer options.

Eastern Illinois University
College Center, X wing lounge
Thursday, March 14
Monday, April 8
10 am–1 pm
Representative: Ryan Howard

School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Wednesday, March 27
10 am–1 pm
Representative: Sioban Lombardi

Private Illinois Colleges, Universities Fair
Wednesday, April 10
10:30 am–1:30 pm

University of Missouri-St. Louis
Monday, April 15
10 am–1 pm
Representative: Zakery Tierney

University of Illinois Springfield
Monday, April 15
10 am–1 pm
Representative: Miranda Swope

Aurora University
Tuesday, April 16
10 am–1 pm
Representative: Barbara McCarthy

Concert Band, Orchestra to Perform Joint Winter Concert

"Home Again for the Holidays" to feature classic winter favorites, Dec. 9, theatre

Parkland College's concert band and orchestra will perform a joint winter concert titled "Home Again for the Holidays." 
Their concert will be held Sunday, Dec. 9 at 3 p.m. in Parkland’s Harold and Jean Miner Theatre; this event is free and open to the public. 
The Parkland Concert Band, directed by Larry Stoner, will perform "Alleluia! Laudamus Te" by Alfred Reed, "Sleigh Ride" by Leroy Anderson, "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" by JS Bach/transcribed by Mark Hindsley, "And Heaven and Nature Ring!" arranged by Patrick Roszell, and "Christmas Legends" by Gary Gilroy.
Rodney Mueller directs the orchestra, which will perform the 4th movement of Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 2 in C Minor, Op 17, "Little Russian;" Wassail Dances based on the traditional wassail songs of, respectively, Somerset, Yorkshire, and Gloucestershire by Philip Lane; and "Cantique de Noel (O Holy Night)" by Adolphe Adam.

For more information on Parkland College music performances, visit

Open Auditions for Two Spring Theatre Productions Dec. 1

Prepare to audition for classic plays "Come Blow Your Horn", "Young Frankenstein"

Parkland Theatre will hold auditions for spring productions Saturday, Dec. 1 at the theatre.
"Come Blow Your Horn" by Neil Simon

Auditions for the play "Come Blow Your Horn" by Neil Simon will take place 9 a.m. to noon. Auditionees should register for an audition slot at Callbacks will be Sunday, Dec. 2; time to be determined.
Director Melissa Goldman is casting 7 actors ages 16 and over.

Performances will run in Parkland Theatre’s Second Stage February 7–17.
"Young Frankenstein" by Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan

Director Chelsea Collier Zych  is casting a diverse group of 25+ actors, ages 12 and older for Mel Brooks' "Young Frankenstein." Auditionees should register for an audition slot at
Actors will perform a 32-bar cut from a song in the style of Young Frankenstein (but please, no songs from the show.) Actors will also read from sides which can be found at; this includes ensemble roles in the musical.
Performances for "Young Frankenstein" will be held in the Harold and Jean Miner Theatre April 4–21.

All members of the community as well as Parkland and U of I students are invited to audition; Parkland Theatre encourages diversity. Those with additional questions should email