MFA Photo, Video, and Related Media Faculty and Alumni Named NYFA Fellows

New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) has announced the recipients and finalists of the NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellowship Program. Among this year's honorees were many MFA Photo, Video, and Related Media faculty and alumni. Congratulations to all!

Fellows: Jiatong Lu, Rehan Miskci, Lucas Blalock

for architecture and environmental studies: Ming Jer Kuo, Shimon Attie

Finalists: Julianne Nash, Dana Stirling

Photography Panelists: Penelope Umbrico, Sinan Tuncay

Used Electrical Cords for Sale (eBay), 2009 – 2018 and Bad Display (eBay), 2017-2018, installation at BRIC Arts Media,  Penelope Umbrico

Used Electrical Cords for Sale (eBay), 2009 – 2018 and Bad Display (eBay), 2017-2018, installation at BRIC Arts Media, Penelope Umbrico

© Dana Stirling

© Dana Stirling

The NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellowship Program makes grants of $7,000 to artists working in 15 disciplines, awarding five per year on a triennial basis. The program is highly competitive, and this year’s recipients and finalists were selected by discipline-specific peer panels from an applicant pool of 2,542. Since it was launched in 1985, the program has awarded over $31 million to more than 5,000 artists. This year, thanks to the generous support of photography nonprofit Joy of Giving Something, NYFA was able to award an additional five Fellowships in Photography, which has the largest application pool of any Fellowship category.

Foundations 2013-15,  Lucas Blalock

Foundations 2013-15, Lucas Blalock

NASA Stack No. 8 (Palouse, Australian Wildfire, Khyber Pass and Western Slope of Andes),  Julianne Nash

NASA Stack No. 8 (Palouse, Australian Wildfire, Khyber Pass and Western Slope of Andes), Julianne Nash

Pardon Our Appearance, 2017, Sinan Tuncay

Pardon Our Appearance, 2017, Sinan Tuncay


Susannah Ray’s series "Down For the Day" on view at Works on Water

MFA Photo/ Video alumni Susannah Ray and curator of Prints and Photographs at The Museum of the City of New York, Sean Corcoran, spoke at the Works on Water/Underwater New York Residency Project Space on Governors Island last month, where selections from Susannah Ray’s series "Down For the Day" are currently on view. They presented Ray's series on day trippers in the Rockaways and the history of photographing New York City beaches and other public spaces of leisure.

From Susannah Ray's "Down for the Day:"

Ariel , 2017

Ariel, 2017

Boobies , 2018

Boobies, 2018

"They all come down for the day. Camps set up shoulder to shoulder, mini-habitations, refugees from the city. Running into the water with a shout. By August it's like a bathtub. The late-afternoon sun, relentless, lowering in the sky, the shadows grow long, lifeguard whistles from one stand then the next, like a virus up and down the beach: everybody out. Shaking sheets and packing coolers, missing flip-flops and crying toddlers, trying to rinse off the sand, its everywhere on everything, sand, sand, and more sand."

Susannah Ray lives in the Rockaways, a small peninsula on the edge of New York City bordered by the Atlantic Ocean, Jamaica Bay, and JFK International Airport. This intersection of city and water is at the heart of her photography and extends her early interest in landscape photography, which she uses as as form of visual geography, rendering the complex interrelationships of place, people, history, and ideology.

Swimmers , 2017

Swimmers, 2017

Ray has had museum and gallery solo exhibitions and has been featured and reviewed in The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, and numerous online publications. Born in 1972 in Washington, D.C, she studied photography as an undergraduate at Princeton University and completed her MFA in 1997 at the School of Visual Arts MFA Program in Photography and Related Media. Susannah Ray is an adjunct Associate Professor of Photography and the Photography Program Supervisor at Hofstra University.

Sheet , 2018

Sheet, 2018

Lynn Shelton's "Sword of Trust" Opens in New York

MFA Photo/Video alumni Lynn Shelton opened her feature film "Sword of Trust" in New York. Shelton and comedian/ collaborator Marc Maron were on hand for post screening QnAs on the film's weekend opening in New York. "Sword of Trust" is currectly showing at Landmark 57th street and the IFC center.

Credit: SXSW Film Festival

Credit: SXSW Film Festival

The film chronicles a cantankerous pawnshop owner in Alabama (Maron) who spends most of his time swindling customers while trying and failing to get his man-child employee Nathaniel (Jon Bass) to do any work. When Cynthia (Jillian Bell) and her wife Mary (Michaela Watkins) try to hawk a Civil War-era sword inherited from Cynthia's recently deceased grandfather, he tries to get the better of them.

Variety's Dennis Harvey says: "“Sword of Trust” is light and loose, the kind of movie likely to illicit chuckles if seen at home (rather than the guffaws it earned from receptive crowds at its SXSW premiere). But in its small way, it does have something to say about our escalating culture of conspiracy theorists, revisionist history, and retro racial attitudes, albeit too frivolously to cause actual offense to those who pray the South shall rise again. Prospects will be modest, but could at least match that of Shelton’s earlier “Humpday” — and this is the funnier film of the two."

Lynn Shelton is a director and actress, known for Humpday (2009), Laggies (2014) and Your Sister's Sister (2011).

Liz Zito Performs Mueller Report Fan Fiction at ArtSpace

MFA Photo/Video Staff and Alumni Liz Zito recently performed Mueller Report Fan Fiction with Liz Zito at ArtSpace in New York City.

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The show is an accumulation of appropriated composited material made over the past two years, not coincidentally the same timeframe Special Council Robert Swan Mueller III was investigating and writing his now famous report. After the release of the Mueller Report in March 2019, Zito has been filling in the redactions with her own absurdist humor, while composing a noir-like narrative which follows Mueller’s investigative process. Zito's project highlights disputes over freedom of information and the manipulation of news distribution in the media.

Liz Zito is a multi-media artist and humorist based in Brooklyn NY. Zito uses her work as a tool to subvert main stream systems. Closely studying educational institutions, Zito’s work thinks critically about the evolution of art making in the age of the internet, using accessible information to reach informal audiences. Zito humorously dissects deeply ingrained power dynamics within pop culture and western civilization, creating work that lives happiest outside the confines of traditional art spaces.

Liz Zito is currently an administrator at the School of Visual Arts, MFA Photography, Video, and Related Media program, where she received her MFA in 2015.

Natasha Chuk and Tooraj Khamenehzadeh curate Haft Paykar | Seven Beauties

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Mohsen Gallery, Tehran recently presented a group exhibition curated by MFA Photo/Video Faculty Natasha Chuk and Alumni Tooraj Khamenehzadeh entitled “Haft Paykar: Seven Beauties,"

Haft Paykar | Seven Beauties is a group exhibition that revives, explores, and shares an ancient Persian text through an exercise in reception theory. This cultural theory fosters the idea that the meaning of any text is never fixed or transparent, rather shaped by a number of contributing factors by both the producer, who encodes a text with meaning, and the recipient, who decodes it. Interpretation is further shaped by distribution, personal experience, social circumstance, distance, and time.

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Khamenehzadeh's video installation, “I’m Not a Song to Be Sung” was also shown at Mohsen Projects > Pasio in June.

Tooraj Khamenehzadeh started his artistic practice in theater and then shifted to photography and video art. Today, photography, image-based projects, and sometimes the utilization of his theater background comprise the main part of his works. Born and raised in a region where Eastern Philosophy prevails, drew him towards the study and research mysticism.

His works are the result of his insights along this path, through which he tries to share layers of various realities with his audience. His approach to different subject-matters is rooted in reality; yet, he mostly makes use of dramatic elements to create surreal representations.

Natasha Chuk is a New York City-based, Latinx critical theorist and independent curator interested in film, experimental art, and creative technologies. Her research concerns the relations between interfaces and structures of perception (organic/inorganic) in media objects as systems of language, with particular attention to their ontologies, behaviors, affordances, and limitations, especially as they relate to advanced creative technologies, like VR, AR, CVR, MR, XR, machine learning, and computational photography. She holds a PhD in Media and Communication Philosophy, an MA in Media Studies, and a BA in Cinema Studies.

Rorschach Junyan Hou Opens "By Name" Gallery

Many congratulations to recent MFA Photo/Video graduate Rorschach Junyan Hou on opening "By Name" Gallery @ 324 Bowery, New York, NY!

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The current show at "By Name" features work by fellow 2019 alumni Hao Chen, Yi Chen, Brett Henrikson, Jonathan Ellis and Rorschach Junyan himself.

Interior views of “By Name”

Interior views of “By Name”

"By Name" is a multi-purpose space created to stand out from the typical cafe and art gallery. The goal is to create a contemporary art community for emerging artists by providing a location for them to gain exposure for their work. "By Name" incorporates different concepts—art, food, drink—to break the norm of viewing art in traditional venues. This is a place for all ages and all backgrounds that encourages people to enjoy art with relaxation, while cultivating an environment for creation, collaboration and performance.

MFA Photo/Video Chairman Charles Traub stops by for a visit

MFA Photo/Video Chairman Charles Traub stops by for a visit

The gallery is an art-inspired multi-purpose café concept with space to create, collaborate, perform and share ideas over freshly prepared drinks and food.

Hou's company goal is to create a contemporary art space for the community of local and international emerging artists contributing to the vibrancy of New York and beyond. "By Name" promotes dialogue with fresh artists and supports the introduction of dynamic and culturally relevant work to the existing art world.

Images by Yi Chen

Images by Yi Chen

Jonathan Ellis and friends

Jonathan Ellis and friends

Textiles by Brett Henrikson

Textiles by Brett Henrikson

Installation by Jonathan Ellis

Installation by Jonathan Ellis

Sculpture by Hao Chen

Sculpture by Hao Chen

“By Name” @ 324 Bowery, New York

“By Name” @ 324 Bowery, New York

Cat Buono in the Every Woman Biennial

MFA Photo/Video alumni Cat Del Buono is featured in this year's EVERY WOMAN BIENNIAL, an all woman and women-identified art biennial founded and curated by C. Finley. What began as the Whitney Houston Biennial, a wild one-night event of art and performance celebrating women in 2014, and expanded to a two-week exhibition in 2017 in the awakening of the #MeToo movement, will present its third iteration, titled Every Woman Biennial, from May 20 - May 29 in NY, and a sister biennial featuring LA-based artists June 2 - 12 in LA.

image courtesy Cat Del Buono

image courtesy Cat Del Buono

Opening Receptions for the Every Woman Biennial are as follows:

NYC: May 19th 1-4pm, La MaMa Galleria 47 Great Jones NYC SHOWS RUN May 20-29th 1-7pm everyday including memorial day

LOS ANGELES: June 2nd 4-7pm, Bendix Building 1206 Maple Ave LA SHOWS RUN June 3-12th 1-7pm

Del Buono's piece, entitled It's Time, blurs the line between photo and video by adding subtle movement within the image. The 1933 US Attorney's Office photo comes to life with the clock ticking in the background. The men in the featured photo seem to be stuck in time, perpetually waiting for the photo to be taken. Through ths work, Del Buono proposes a commentary on society being stuck in an era when white males hold the positions of power, begging the question: "When will the narrative move forward?"

Cat is also enjoying recent success with Our House Meridien, a free after-school arts program and community garden for local school children, which she recently launched in her hometown of Meriden, CT. Classes will be up and running by this fall with a Community Garden event on June 15th.

For more updates on Del Buono's recent projects, visit the artist's website.

Lucas Blalock in Whitney Biennial

An Other Shadow  ©Lucas Blalock

An Other Shadow ©Lucas Blalock

A broad range of projects and artists will be presented at this year's Whitney Biennial, including MFA Photo/Video faculty member Lucas Blalock. The 2019 Whitney Biennial will run from May 17 through September 22 with seventy-nine artists directly engaging with dance, performance, and the space of social engagement and critique.

The artists selected for the 2019 edition, ranging from emerging to well-established individuals and collectives, are working in painting, sculpture, drawing, installation, film and video, photography, performance, and sound.

Blalock will create a mural-sized photographic work to be exhibited on the façade of 95 Horatio Street, located opposite the Museum and across from the southern entrance to the High Line, on the corner of Gansevoort and Washington Streets.

The Whitney Biennial's curators traveled throughout the country and made more than 300 studio visits over the past year. A small number of the artists in the exhibition are Canadian, several are based in Puerto Rico, and a number were born abroad or now live and work outside the U.S.

The House Guest  ©Lucas Blalock

The House Guest ©Lucas Blalock

Lucas Blalock was born in Asheville, North Carolina and now lives and works in New York. Citing the poet and playwright Bertolt Brecht’s insistence on a theater that reveals its labor, Blalock is interested in revealing the process behind photographic images. Equally invested in both the history and the possibility of photography, Blalock shoots with a large-format camera on film and then scans his images in order to digitally alter them.

Elinor Carucci featured in People Magazine's Human Interest section

MFA Photo/Video faculty member Elinor Carucci is featured in People Magazine's Human Interest section for her coverage of the Washington Corrections Center for Women in Gig Harbor, WA.

©Elinor Carucci for  People Magazine

©Elinor Carucci for People Magazine

The project follows women participating in the Parenting Residential Program, an organization that’s been in existence since 1999. PRR offers more than a dozen pregnant woman in the minimum-security facility at Gig Harbor the opportunity to keep their children with them until they’re released.

For all of those inmates, including Karen Garcia — who came to prison seven months into her pregnancy — the program has given them a “second chance” to get their lives back on track and raise their babies in a safe environment.

“This program has saved my life,” Garcia tells PEOPLE. “It’s made me into a mother I never could have been if I were out on the streets.”

Elinor Carucci (b. 1971, Jerusalem, Israel) draws inspiration from her personal life to create poignant images that present her most intimate moments, contemplating identity, relationships and the passage of time. Carucci’s work highlights both beautiful and imperfect aspects of the human condition. In this way, her work grapples with the balance of the personal and the universal.

Her photographs are included in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art New York, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, Houston Museum of Fine Art, among others and her work appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, Details, New York Magazine, W, Aperture, ARTnews and many more publications.

Spring Salon Recap 2019

This year's Spring Salon showcased the hard work of our MFA Photo, Video, and Related Media students with a great turn-out from SVA's artistic community. Included in this Spring's Salon were works in portraiture, street photography, experimental and abstract image making, video installation, virtual experience, short film and much, much more!

Tianli Zhang interacts with an installation at Spring Salon

Tianli Zhang interacts with an installation at Spring Salon

Join us again in Fall 2019 for another engaging presentation from our student artists. Until then, please enjoy some highlights the Spring 2019 MFA Photo/Video Salon.

(image credit: Lingfei Ren, Hannah La Follette Ryan)

 
Petros Lales and Shuwan Chen checking out new work

Petros Lales and Shuwan Chen checking out new work

 
Heather Olker proudly stands with her prints at Salon

Heather Olker proudly stands with her prints at Salon

 
Ephemera from Petros Lales’s interactive thesis project “To be is to get cut”

Ephemera from Petros Lales’s interactive thesis project “To be is to get cut”

 
Lingfei Ren watches a video while Brett Henrikson introduces a guest to his “Next Slide” prints

Lingfei Ren watches a video while Brett Henrikson introduces a guest to his “Next Slide” prints

 
Yan Jin and her work at Spring Salon 2019

Yan Jin and her work at Spring Salon 2019

 
Portraits from Fernando Sancho’s ongoing project on hospitality workers in New York

Portraits from Fernando Sancho’s ongoing project on hospitality workers in New York

 
A Salon guest peruses Hannah La Follette Ryan’s photograph postcards

A Salon guest peruses Hannah La Follette Ryan’s photograph postcards

 

Thanks to this year’s participants and attendees for making Spring Salon 2019 a huge success!