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Culture notes: New university museum leaders at Oglethorpe, Piedmont; ASO honors late singer Kopleff; ex-Atlantan’s DVD out

By Howard Pousner

New directors at university museums

  • Elizabeth H. Peterson will begin work as Oglethorpe University Museum of Art’s director on Aug. 15. Peterson is the former director of the Julian Akus Art Gallery at Eastern Connecticut State University. She succeeds Lloyd Nick, who founded the OU museum and retired this summer after directing it for 28 years.

“Paper Chase,” an exhibit from the Atlanta Collage Society, runs through Saturday at the Oglethorpe museum. 4484 Peachtree Road N.E., Atlanta. 404-364-8555,

  • Daniel White has been named director of the Mason-Scharfenstein Museum of Art at Piedmont College in northeast Georgia. A ceramics artist who worked since 2005 as a preparator at the Birmingham (Ala.) Museum of Art, White started in July at the Piedmont museum, which opened last fall in a removed 1916 storefront in downtown Demorest.

The museum was founded with a permanent collection of more than 120 American and European paintings and sculpture donated by Piedmont alum Dr. Bill Mason and Bob Scharfenstein of Birmingham. It is hosting an exhibit of animal sculptures by Sheryl Haler, an installation artist who teaches at the Ringling School of Art in Sarasota, Fla., through Sept. 14. “The Heart of Echizen,” featuring works by 20 master Japan ceramicists, opens Sept. 20. 567 Georgia St., Demorest. 706-778-8500, ext. 1011, (click Fine Arts).

ASO honors late singer Kopleff

Days after the July 24 death of Florence Kopleff, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra announced the creation of the Florence Kopleff Choral Administrator Chair as a tribute to the revered contralto.

Kopleff, 88, was a frequent guest soloist with the ASO, a mainstay of the Robert Shaw Chorale, a voice coach for its choruses and an artist-in-residence and teacher at Georgia State University.

“Florence Kopleff was a supreme artist, a gifted educator, and a remarkable human being,” ASO director of choruses Norman Mackenzie said in a statement. “She gave so much of herself and her talent to others. Her singing and teaching changed lives.”

Jeffrey Baxter, the ASO’s choral administrator, long-time ASO Chorus member and a friend of Kopleff, was appointed the first holder of the chair.

To read the AJC’s obituary:

Former Atlantan’s drama out on DVD

“Mary Marie,” an independent film by Alexandra Roxo, who grew up in Marietta, was released on DVD (TLA Releasing, $24.99) this month.

The drama, about two sisters who return to their childhood home after their mother’s death and become entangled in a romantic triangle over the course of a summer, was called “a beautifully shot reverie about forbidden intimacies and childhood’s end” by the Wall Street Journal. It won a best cinematography prize (for the work of Magela Crosignani) at the 2011 Brooklyn Film Festival.

Brooklynite Roxo, who attended Marietta High School and graduated in 2006 from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, also is a photographer and fashion video creator. She co-wrote “Mary Marie” with her co-star, Alana Kearns-Green. More information:

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