Submitted by Holly R. Saltrelli

April 24, 2008
Contact: Caroline Jenkins Hanna
Director of Media Relations


AMHERST, Mass.—On Sunday, April 27, from 12 to 1 p.m. in Stirn Auditorium, the Mead Art Museum at Amherst College will present “Portrait of a Young Man Trying to Draw,” a conversation with the artist William Schaff, organized by Christian Desrosiers ’10. The talk, an interactive discussion between the artist and audience members, is free and open to the public and will be followed by a light reception in the museum’s Rotherwas Room.

Since graduating from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 1996, Schaff, like many artists, has been doing menial jobs while trying to create his art. Throughout all the pizza-delivering, parking lot-attending and doorman work, he has used the studio to try to keep himself mentally balanced as he explores topics not often or easily discussed in common social settings. His art, he says, “…is as influenced by my relationship with my dog as it is by the violent atrocities occurring around the world.” Published in journals in the United States and abroad, his work has also been regularly used by bands such as Godspeed You Black Emperor in conjunction with their own artistic endeavors and was most recently featured in a section of Dead in Disemboque, a graphic novel written by Robert Arellano in the style of Mexican contemporary comics.

Instead of giving a traditional lecture, Schaff hopes to inspire and entertain with an exciting interactive discussion where audience members are encouraged to engage both with the artist and with each other. The talk precedes the Mead Art Museum’s Spring Into Art party, a celebration of art, music and student-organized shows on Wednesday, April 30.

The Mead Art Museum is open Tuesdays through Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Thursday evenings until 9 p.m. To learn more, please visit or call 413/542-2335.