June 16, 2000 Geneva, NY – The photography of Hobart alum and Genevan Neil Sjoblom and quilts created by William Smith alum Leanne Raney Jackson of Fishers, Indiana, will be on display in the Houghton House Gallery this weekend during HWS Reunion 2000. Both Sjoblom and Jackson are from the Classes of 1975. Each year, the Colleges host an exhibit highlighting the artistic talents of members of the classes celebrating their reunion. This year the classes ending in 0 or 5 are celebrating, with nearly 500 alums expected to return for the weekend. The gallery will be open from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. throughout the weekend closing at about noon on Sunday. The public is invited to visit the exhibits.
Sjoblom, who has operated a studio in downtown Geneva since he graduated in 1975, was awarded the master of photography degree by the Professional Photographers of America in 1998. His civic interests include The Geneva Scholarship Associates, the Geneva Business Improvement District, and the Geneva Kiwanis Club. Sjoblom also serves on the Board of Trustees of the Professional Photographers Society of New York Workshop–a summer program which for 10 years has brought photographers from around the world to the campus of HWS for a week-long “hands on” workshop in photography and digital imaging.
Sjoblom's interest in photography began at age 13 when his grandmother gave him an old folding camera. He developed his first images in a basement darkroom with the help of his father, Walfrid Sjoblom (the College's Director of Security from 1970 until 1984). During his high school years, he assisted the photo editor of the Geneva Times. One of his first assignments was carrying equipment for Times photographer Bill Ahlstrom at the inauguration of HWS President Albert Holland. As a student at Hobart, he worked part-time for Carlo Frappolli, photographing college events for what was known as the Colleges' News Bureau. Many of his photographs wound up in the award-winning publication, The Pulteney St. Survey.
The quiltwork of Leanne Raney Jackson in the Houghton House display also has a local connection. Jackson is married to David Jackson, who is a graduate of Geneva High School as well as Hobart College. Eight quilted wallhangings crafted by Jackson are included in the display. She said she crafted her first quilt during her years at William Smith. Jackson was a chemistry major who went on to become a lab technician, nurse, wife, and mother. She has made more than 100 quilts.
Sjoblom's exhibit will remain hanging in the Houghton House Gallery through Sunday, June 25. Those interested in viewing the exhibit during the week should call Erica Cooney-Connor at 781-3103.