Current Artists 2018-2020
Future exhibitions and programs will be listed here.
Joeun Aatchim Kim | Kenseth Armstead | Bahar Behbahani | Keren Benbenisty | Katarina Burin | Esteban Cabeza de Baca | Alexis Callender | Crystal Z Campbell | Ludovica Carbotta | Jesse Chun | Liz Collins | Mike Crane | Dennis RedMoon Darkeem | Theodore Darst | Billy and Steven Dufala | Jonathan Ehrenberg | Carolina Fusilier | Rachel Granofsky | LaMont Hamilton | Kunlin He | Victoria Keddie | Young Joo Lee | Lux Lindner | Sharon Madanes | Guadalupe Maravilla | Zatara McIntyre | Ester Partegàs | Omid Shekari | Tariku Shiferaw | Johanna Unzueta | Cosmo Whyte
Joeun Aatchim’s art brings together historical coincidences through a mixed media approach, combining traditional art making processes including printmaking, mosaics, ceramics, and drawing. Her projects combine her writing with fragmented texts and translations, specifically the essays of Robert Musil and fragments of Sappho. Aatchim transforms her writing into visual literature, drawing with objects in space as punctuations and voice-performances for authorial intrusions. Avoiding linear narratives, her installations resemble unfinished drafts to denounce their inevitable entropy and the future.
Kenseth Amstead (b. New York) is a multimedia artist. "Farther Land" is an ongoing project that addresses the legacy of the ideas of the Founders of the United States of America and the American Revolution. Each site-specific work asks a new question about the results of the Founders’ stated goal, equality for all, with immersive abstractions. The project borrows the revolution’s symbols: geometric models, torture devices, architecture and graphic elements (banners, flags and insignia). "Farther Land" looks at the battle for American liberty, includes a full range of the diverse cast of characters, and reveals a more complex picture to consider as we move forward.
Bahar Behbahani (b. 1973 Tehran) is a New York based artist. Behbahani’s art looks at historical and contemporary cultural landscapes, posing questions that consider the ways people negotiate space and place. Her research-based practice, excavates historiography and archival materials to shift the inevitably violent interactions between knowledge and power. Through a range of media, such as painting, video, installation and performative talks—Behbahani layers Western archival matters, cartography and horticultural history into a new hybrid narrative. Her personal history informs her investigation of authority and philosophical systems of inquiry.
Keren Benbenisty is a multi-disiplinary process-based artist, living and working in New York. Benbenisty's art examines our relationship to contemporaneity by revealing both the ancient and modern constructs beneath its surface. Her project-oriented practice merges an investigative approach and subject based research along with traditional and technologically communicative visual means. These include but are not limited to drawing, sculpture, photography, film and video. At the core of Benbenity's work lies a conception of time that is not linear but one that is cyclical in nature. Repetition, re-contextualizing, erasuring, indexing, and cataloging alters her subjects into temporal and translated events. Her practice enacts the social politics inherent to biology, archeology, identity, myth and language.
Katarina Burin was born in Bratislava, Slovakia and currently lives and works in Cambridge, MA and New York. Burin’s work takes variable forms and is profoundly informed by the history of architecture, with a particular emphasis on female architects and historical documentation. Through sculpture, drawing, publication and installation, Burin’s work addresses and undermines misrepresented historical narratives while playing with notions of authorship, authenticity and collective memory.
Esteban Cabeza de Baca
Esteban Cabeza de Baca (b.1985) is from the border town of San Ysidro, CA (USA). Esteban Cabeza de Baca envisions earthbound narratives in tangled relationships to capitalism and colonialism. He translates lost indigenous knowledge and beliefs in his paintings and sculpture to imagine past the nihilism of global warming. He juxtaposes imagery and abstraction to challenge the loss of natural resources and to reanimate pre Columbian mythologies in the Americas. Esteban lives and works between Amsterdam and New York
I interrupt and reconstruct historical texts to explore representations of gender and racial hierarchies in colonial imagery, and the cultural use of surface design and textiles to mediate these embedded relationships to the viewer, often expressing consumer buying power as a primary marker of identity. My process uses some variation of paint media, cut paper, layered drawing techniques, and distilling images through mapping software. I combine these practices to create spatial constructions in which idealized notions of the past, must exist next to the consequences that were produced as the present. I am interested in how hybridity is both a literal and metaphoric gesture to create complex narratives and spaces. My research focuses on looking at the lineages of tourism culture, speculative economies and image circulation, and the use of Sci-Fi as a transitive tool to deconstruct the colonial project, which still exists in many forms.
Crystal Z Campbell
Crystal Z Campbell (b. 1980 Prince Georges County, MD) is an interdisciplinary artist and writer of African-American, Filipino & Chinese descents. Campbell’s work and writings are a perpetual investigation of archives, cultural artifacts, and the politics of the witness. At the Drawing Center, Campbell will consider histories of drawing in relationship to present modes of capturing subjects, digital recognition, and image artifacts. With archives, data, text, sound, video, light, and live performances, Campbell will interrogate notions of the subject, figure drawing, the still-life, portraits, and the salon. Using drawing as a metaphor, Campbell will trace the historical lineage of bias, otherness, and the complex space between the subject and the witness.
My practice focuses on the physical exploration of the urban space and on how individuals establish connections with the environment they inhabit. Hovering on the boundaries between reality and fiction, my most recent works combine installations, texts and performances reflecting around the notion of site, identity, and participation. Specifically, I'm interested in exploring what I call ‘fictional site specificity’, a form of site-oriented practice that considers imaginary places or embodies real places with fictional contexts, recovering the role of imagination as a value to construct our knowledge. With imagination we can actually create a place to belong, but this will be inevitably affected by the reality of the language that constitutes it as an object. By combining installations, texts and performances, I produce body of works that take the form of medium-scale environments.
Jesse Chun is a multidisciplinary artist based in New York. Her practice attempts to translate and unlearn the ideological machinery of language generated by bureaucracy, linguistic hierarchy, and geopolitics. Chun's work takes form in research, redaction, abstraction and poetry. Drawing from a personal diasporic relationship to language, she re-interprets and edits found documents, books and online archives through a multilingual perspective. Chun re-authors navigations of language from a transcultural space in between, taking the pre-existing conditions of readability and power as a site of departure.
Liz Collins works at the intersection of art and design, utilizing different scales that often culminate in large immersive environments. These spaces go beyond the realm of the visual and are functional places to rest, convene, and connect. They are comfortable while still being optically stimulating, stirring up emotions and mental activity with an arresting, abstract language of shape, color and form. Duality is at the core of her aesthetic; pain/pleasure, light/ dark, open/closed; and exploring liquid material, electric currents, interconnectivity, energy exchange, and explosive phenomena both natural and human-made are all subjects of the work. Collins works primarily with fabric, yarn, and other materials and techniques in the textile realm including jacquard knitting and weaving, often collaborating with industrial textile mills and other artists and designers. Recent collaborations have been in lighting, furniture, video, and curation, which all feed into these multi-faceted, multi- sensory worlds.
Mike Crane is an artist based in New York. Crane uses a range of production techniques to represent the breakdown of materials as they pass through social, geographic and economic mediums of exchange. He reconstructs observed technical procedures that are restaged, documented and displayed in built structures or among assembled artifacts.
Dennis RedMoon Darkeem
Dennis RedMoon Darkeem (South Bronx, NY) is a multimedia artist who creates work based on the familiar objects that he views through his daily travels, discovering elements in existing architecture and among everyday items found within the home. Dennis ultimately sets out to express a meaningful story about events in his life and those found with the communities in which he works. His multimedia works allow for great versatility and a rich viewer experience as the eye uncovers the multiple layers that often characterize mixed media art.
Theodore Darst (b. 1986) is an artist living and working in Manhattan. Darst draws on a wide range of sources from illuminated manuscripts to the digital abstraction of CGI explosions — using easily accessible 3D modeled material, hand drawn animation, and rephotographed appropriated footage to create linear collages reflecting the 21st century cultural wasteland. Darst’s recent work has been about smart phones and the open road.
Billy and Steven Dufala
Brothers Steven and Billy Dufala are artists, musicians and designers based in Philadelphia PA, who have been working together forever, and have been making art as the Dufala Brothers since 2004. Moving freely between disciplines, Dufala Brothers’ works are absurd, pithy, and sometimes irreverent comments on consumer culture, waste, reuse, violence, humor and taboo. Distinctly focused on craft, the brothers’ practice is rooted in an ongoing conversation tempered by shared ambitions, available resources, and the opportunity to explore disparate media including but not limited to paper, wood, steel, large machinery, video, trash, and belly button lint.
I’m interested in how we experience reality as a construct, a seemingly coherent world we piece together from sensory information and images we see internally—memories, fantasies, dreams and associations. Because these constructs are fluid and disjointed, embodying them in visual modes of representation is bound to fail on some level, but I’m interested in that failure, in using incongruous combinations of analog and digital media to describe the gaps and idiosyncrasies of experience. Because my work is primarily experiential, I want to immerse viewers in it. I use a wide range of media: sets and sculptures made from rough materials to lend my work a tactile quality, theatrical scrims and lighting to evoke specific emotions, and digital effects to stitch together drawing, photographs, video, 3D-models, VR, motion-capture, performance, and animation. The confusion between the viscerally tactile and digital simulation continues to be central to my work.
I am currently writing a script for a science fiction movie that will never become a film, but works as a platform for ideas. The plot tells the story of an android that begins to feel uncomfortable and suspicious of the world she lives in. Her solid environment begins to unravel and this new sense of estrangement leads her to look for vestiges of planet earth, which is now a lost and mysterious place. She finds some objects, like postcards of landscapes, seashells, palm leaves. And even though she doesn’t recognize them completely, she feels an uncomfortable and absurd melancholy. My work includes video, painting, sound, and installation, usually building habitable spaces that create immersive experiences or which suggest representation as a form of illusion. I seek to displace the familiar through the use of materials and mediums that address the tension between artificiality and natural, industrial and manual, the real and the imaginary.
I reshape environments for the fixed point of view of the camera lens. Using materials such as paint, charcoal, and tape, I draw directly onto the surfaces of architecture, furniture, and household objects. Marks are positioned to blur the foreground with the background, creating a sense that the final photograph has been painted over. However, it is the space itself that has been manipulated. No digital post-production tools are used in making my photographs. The work encourages viewers to linger over handmade imperfections and engage in a way of seeing that is antithetical to the everyday consumption of digital photography. The transformation to which the interiors of my photographs are subjected signals an attention to both the status quo, and to the shift in subjectivity required to disrupt habitual patterns of viewing and dwelling. The imperfect construction of pictorial space becomes a reminder of the deceptions endemic to photography, and of the fallibility of perception more generally.
My work is interdisciplinary using lens (photo/film), performance, drawing, writing, objects and sound to negotiate the material and the conceptual. My practice as an artist is considered “visual” but I strive for synesthetic engagements. I emphasize this. My project, lately, is to decentralizing the ableist assumption imbedded in the “visual” and consider other forms of engagement and other bodies engaging. Currently, I am developing three working principles from my practice–transrealistic poetics, black convivial space and plurality–for this undertaking.
Kunlin He (b. 1992 China) is an artist and writer based in San Fransisco. Kunlin’s drawings are rooted in China's history of the modern ink movement. Unlike traditional literati painters who focus on their internality and pure aesthetics, Kunlin wants to broaden the field of modern ink painting to express contemporary issues such as identity, immigration, and nationalism, using the tradition of social realism and the strategy of non-linear narrative to delineate the history and everyday life of different cultural communities. Kunlin is also conducting a personal research project on diaspora studies in the USA. He will examine the relationship between some diaspora Chinese artists who use traditional art to represent their transnational identity, such as Yun-fei Ji, and Martin Wong, who lived in early 90s New York City. Kunlin will focus on how they incorporated pop culture, street art, underground press and queer cultures into the motifs of some traditional Chinese art such as hand scrolls, seals, and ink paintings.
I am an artist working across disciplines of sound, video, installation, and performance. My interests lie in fluctuations of electromagnetic activity, broadcast and dimensional spaces, satellite debris and collision, image and sound synchronicity and collapse, time sensitivity, and the body in relation to the machine. To date, I've been building a language system of glyphs that need to be further explored and composed. I’m at the start of what I see as a lifelong project of building and choreographing compositions of movement, sound, live broadcast, and electronic machinery. In my work, technologies originally conceived as tools for observing the external world are turned in on themselves. The specificity of space is an integral component in understanding these technologies, electromagnetic energy, and in realizing what we cannot often perceive–-an underlying play of signal and frequency that shapes the aura of our environments.
Young Joo Lee
Young Joo Lee (b. 1987 Seoul, Korea) combines inspiration from her dreams with personal and political histories to create drawings, sculptures, performance and films. Animation became one of her primary tools because of its endless capacity to merge reality and fantasy. Charcoal scroll drawings, performance and digital puppetry mix to create an imagined journey into her dream, the Korean Demilitarized Zone and a Sushi restaurant. The subjects of the narratives of these works derive from her experiences as an immigrant living in Germany and USA, and her observations on how an individual’s perception of reality is shaped by the cultures, genders, nationalities and histories one identifies themselves with. Lee’s work is a glimpse into how our environments are not only outside of us, but how they truly alter our perception and inform our personal identities.
My work is a gamble between innocence and consciousness; an attempt to give some useful direction and meaning to an overextended array of interests, concerns and arguments. To give an example; keeping my soul unresponsive to football (soccer) has allowed me to discover my own customized way to communicate my messages-to-be. I think playful drawing is the backbone of my work.
Sharon Madanes’ work explores the rituals, aesthetics, and ethics of medicine, as contextualized within the banal and peripheral institutional surroundings in which doctors treat patients, and in which patients wait. Her drawing practice encompasses both what is traditionally thought of as drawing—pencil and gouache on paper—and a metaphorical type of drawing using cell phone images collected while working in the hospital as a medical student. This latter mode of drawing is itinerant, anecdotal, research-driven and diagrammatic, and manifests as written essays linking images and text. One of her aims is to better understand the process of meaning-making by relocating an art discourse to a hospital context.
In my multidisciplinary work, I create and choreograph fictionalized rituals that incorporate my pre-colonial ancestry, fiction, and autobiography. My work traces the history of my displacement and cultural exchange and explores the parallels between ancient cultures and current events and how they get transformed into another version of themselves through the process of hybridization. As a result, my research has to lead me to create a series of drawings, performances, and videos that portray the “undocumented” as the protagonist of my work. My work is often a hybrid of border politics and fictional practices that create new visual memories for the entangled genealogy of the border crossing stories.
Zatara McIntyre’s works on paper originate from an impulse to examine the ways in which hybridity and the interweaving of culture manifests itself through black womanhood. Her interest in the art rituals of the Caribbean, Southern African American communities, and Africa are at the center of these series of paintings and sculptures. She utilizes at times contradictory symbols of deified mythological figures to subvert patriarchal systems of power. Through a variety of artistic methods, her work calls attention to notions of ownership, agency, and displacement. Her recent works examine the extent to which evocations of female power can perform an imagined space.
Ester Partegàs’ recent project, Invisible Forces consists of an ongoing series of flyers that present an image of an object or situation found on the street with accompanying short texts printed on tear-off tabs for the passerby to take. Similar to anthropological field notes, the texts offer personal impressions and associations to the things and places presented in the images. The flyers hang on bulletin boards in publically accessible spaces such as coffee shops, Laundromats, supermarkets and public libraries. This work is camouflaged among the many messages and signs encountered daily, presenting an alternative form of direct communication outside mainstream forms of exchange. They hail from the street and return there. They are slow and hidden, public and free. The flyers examine the most unassuming details of everyday life as a record of shared affective, social, political and metaphysical connections between people and things. Invisible Forces manifests a vitality found in mundane material and ordinary phenomena.
I make my art in the hope of capturing stories which speak universally about how force and violence still determine the rhythms and laws of power within the human experience. Over the years, I have sought to explore different narratives and scenarios with images. As an artist who has lived through a range of shifting political winds in the Middle East and who has observed the cultural phenomena following the religious revolution in Iran, I am moved to make art about these events, their hidden stories, and the feelings that they provoke. Although the source for my imagery is specific, I compose the scenes to feel vaguely familiar, almost dreamlike, at times nightmarish, something that could be taking place anywhere and anytime.
In Tariku Shiferaw’s current body of work, “One Of These Black Boys,” every piece is titled using Hip-Hop, R&B, Blues, Jazz, and Reggae music. In appropriating song titles as painting titles, the work automatically inherits the references, identities, and history portrayed through the songs. Shiferaw explores mark-making in order to address the physical and metaphysical spaces of painting and societal structures. The work interrogates the act of mark-making and the identity of the mark-maker using geometric forms, which are intrinsically ambiguous. Placing these forms against the atavistic painterly-gestures of art history’s abstract movements results in marking oneself into a history that has overlooked a vast variety of “Others.” These marks ultimately become redactions that deny a portion of history. When perceived contextually, each work becomes a placeholder that occupies the walls of the white cube introducing cultures outside of the discourse of painting.
My intention is to bring into discussion the notion of labor. On a first layer, its technological, historical, and social impact on the human condition, and on a second, its relationship to nature. For a long period of time, I have used felt and other natural materials such as fabric and wood. How I manipulate these materials is as important to me as what is being represented. In this sense the notion of labor does not only exist in a social and historical context, it is present in the fabrication of each artwork. The pieces I construct are based on architecture and on industrial elements and objects. My interest in architecture is focused on its symbolic condition, its representation of progress and human development.
My experimentation with drawing started in 2013, I was thinking about the elemental mathematical exercises of set and subset, and also how this is somehow visually related to the idea of collaboration and community as scheme. Here, a new set of references took shape in the form of biological observations of life, plants and the sciences, textile and architecture, trace, and vibrational fields that are more metaphysical than material.
Cosmo’s work employs drawing, performance, and sculpture to question and critique identity construction in representations of migrant peoples. His process begins with an interrogation of his own body: racialized as black, gendered as a man. Cosmo uses his personal experiences of migration and immigration to question colonialist constructions of masculinity, race, and belonging. His work also explores notions of identity as disrupted by migration, which he addresses as an unfinished arc of motion. Its final resting point remains an open-ended question.