Join Recent Graduates and Faculty for "Film Fest at the Farm" in Rhinebeck, NY - hosted by SoMad Studio


Film Fest at the Farm is an independent film festival at the height of the harvest in Rhinebeck, New York. This two-night event will feature screenings, talks and installations from environmental filmmakers & artists. This includes esteemed participants such as Grahame Weinbren, Laura Parnes, Shelly Silver & Isabella Rossellini. The festival is produced by SoMad Studio, an artist collective & creative space in the flatiron; SoMad is founded by 2019 SVA MFA Photo/Video graduates Sara Arno, Carla Maldonado, Paul Simon, and Serichai Traipoom. Their work will be featured alongside fellow graduates Johnnie Chatman and Jonathan Ellis.

Due to the nature of this event ticket sales are limited, but please see the festival webpage for further information.


Elinor Carucci and Marvin Heiferman in "The Space Between" at Julie Saul Gallery

From March 7- April 20, the Julie Saul Gallery is pleased to present a group exhibition featuring work by MFA Photo/Video faculty members Elinor Carucci and Marvin Heiferman. "The Space Between" brings together artists across disciplines who portray the many phases of intimate relationships. "The Space Between" refers to both the physical joining of couples as well as the passage of time that unifies them or causes them to drift apart.


Through love and coupling, humans unite and become one, as depicted by many of the artists' works featured in the group show. Form and action stops at the perfect moment of union in Elinor Carucci’s close up of a man and woman as their lips almost meet.

Elinor Carucci graduated in 1995 from Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design with a degree in photography, and moved to New York that same year. In a relatively short amount of time, her work has been included in an impressive amount of solo and group exhibitions worldwide, solo shows include Edwynn Houk gallery, Fifty One Fine Art Gallery, James Hyman and Gagosian Gallery, London among others and group show include The Museum of Modern Art New York and The Photographers' Gallery, London.

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.


Writer Marvin Heiferman doesn't consider himself an artist outright; however, his passion for photography and keen eye has resulted in many photographs being captured and shared through social media. Heiferman, aka “@whywelook” zooms in on the outline of a man and woman on the subway on his daily commute; combining body language, a tattoo and patterned dress to suggest intimacy.

In addition to being a contributing editor to Art in America, Heiferman has written for numerous museums, galleries, publications, catalogs, blogs, and magazines including The New York Times, Gagosian Gallery, CNN, Artforum, Design Observer, Aperture, and BOMB. Heiferman is the author, editor, and packager of over two dozen books on photography and visual culture, including Photography Changes Everything (Aperture, 2012).

Faculty and alumni featured in Photograph Magazine's 30th Anniversary Issue

This month, photograph magazine features work by thesis student Petros Lales and alum Pacifico Silano, with additional commentary by writers, artists, and MFA Photo/Video faculty Lucas Blalock, Lyle Rexer and Marvin Heiferman.

Writing on Lales's The Time Traveler, photographer Lucas Blalock asserts:

"...computer space has at once given us a model for engaging with the virtualities latent in the material world, and new tools with which to picture them... [The Time Traveler] is funny and wise and weird. The eye contact is astonishing. Sci-Fi is all around us these days but rarely is it so convincing."

Petros Lales,  The Time Traveler , 2017.

Petros Lales, The Time Traveler, 2017.

Pacifico Silano,  Untitled (Mirror) , 2018.

Pacifico Silano, Untitled (Mirror), 2018.

Curator Marvin Heiferman says of Pacifico Silano's featured work Untitled (Mirror)

"The gutter-- in the publishing world and on city streets-- is a place we're often cautioned to avoid... the place where images butt up against each other with only a paper fold, white border, or staple separating one from the next. I haven't stopped thinking about this particular one since I first saw it because, spit right down the middle, it's about here versus there, nature and the nature of looking, and, of course, scenarios designed to excite."

In addition to these works highlighted in "photograph is 30," alumni Dinh Q. Lê and faculty Wardell Milan are featured artists in the January/February issue as well. Milan's first West Coast exhibition at the Fraenkel Gallery is highlighted as is Lê's retrospective at the San Jose Museum of Art in California. To read more from photograph magazine's 30th Anniversary Issue, visit the publication's site.

Wardell Milan,  Michael Ross , 2018.

Wardell Milan, Michael Ross, 2018.

Department chair Charles H. Traub's new book "Taradiddle" featured in New York Times


In a recent article on The New York Times MFA Photo/Video Chair Charles H. Traub's new book "Taradddle" was highlighted and examined in a thoughful piece by writer Rena Silverman. The article and interview includes selections from the body of work. As Silverman notes:

"Photography seems like a truthful medium. Photographs are used for scientific and forensic evidence for their supposed truthfulness. Even Edgar Allan Poe thought daguerreotypes disclosed “a more absolute truth, a more perfect identity of aspect with the thing represented.”

Bronze Horseman, St. Petersburg, Russia, 2003

Bronze Horseman, St. Petersburg, Russia, 2003

Traub, himself, goes on to say of the work:


“A taradiddle is by definition a petty lie, a little falsehood or trifling told often to amuse or embellish a story,” he said. “As our world is full of them, seen and witnessed through advertising, P.R., propaganda, flirtations, staged events and presentations of all sorts, I simply came to the conclusion that even the straightest of photographs made in real-world witness was also such.”

Tavern on the Green, Central Park, NYC, 2006Credit

Tavern on the Green, Central Park, NYC, 2006Credit

Silverman goes on to assert:

"Mr. Traub’s taradiddles appear not just within the layers of his frame but in his careful combination of images afterward, a practice similar to that of Nathan Lyons, who thought bringing two photos together on a spread created an entirely different third meaning. Using scale, depth of field, and ironic pairings of subjects, Mr. Traub creates a whimsical world."

To take a closer look at the body of work, please click here.

Fraenkel Gallery presents first West Coast exhibition of Wardell Milan

Fraenkel Gallery in San Francisco proud to present the first West Coast exhibition of New York-based artist and MFA Photo/Video faculty member Wardell Milan. Milan's work will be exhibited January 3 – February 16th, 2019 with an opening reception to take place on Saturday, January 5th. On view will be new work by Milan in mixed media, photo-collage, drawing and painting, including a number of large-scale works incorporating cut-and-collaged photographs.

Wardell Milan,  Mortal Men , 2018

Wardell Milan, Mortal Men, 2018

Throughout his practice, Wardell Milan sustains a thoughtful inquiry into the nature of beauty and the unconscious, touching on topics such as body modification and gender performance.

From a recent group of significant works on paper, two approximately six- by eight-foot drawings (both 2018) present dynamic groups of enigmatic individuals cast within idyllic scenery, which the artist animates with an architectural swirl of geometric patterning. In making these works, Milan also takes a journey through the history of photography – invoking Henri Cartier-Bresson, Nobuyoshi Araki, Robert Mapplethorpe, and others – seeking out compositional ideas and physiognomic cues in an array of iconic imagery.

Wardell Milan,  Romantic Sunset , 2017

Wardell Milan, Romantic Sunset, 2017

Works by the artist may be found in the collections of The Art Institute of Chicago; Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago; Denver Art Museum; Brooklyn Museum, New York; Hessel Museum of Art, Bard College, New York; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Morgan Library & Museum, New York; The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; UBS Art Collection; Daniel & Florence Guerlain Contemporary Art Foundation, Paris; Hall Art Foundation; and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Eva & Franco Mattes' "Riccardo Uncut" on view through The Whitney Museum

For Riccardo Uncut, MFA Photo/Video faculty and renown artists Eva and Franco Mattes posted a call on social media, offering to buy someone's phone for $1,000 in order to turn the photo and video contents into an art project—an uncut and uncensored portrait of someone's life. The project is currently on view at The Whitney Museum's online database.

still from  Riccardo Uncut

still from Riccardo Uncut

Accessible to the public as a customized, chronological slideshow, Riccardo Uncut gives viewers a unique glimpse into the personal life of Riccardo, the chosen applicant. The archive consists of approximately 3,000 images taken between 2004–2017 that include documentation of travels and vacations, friends and family, partners and sexual desire, daily life at home, office dynamics, food, art, architecture, and artistic endeavors.

Riccardo Uncut was inspired by the questions, “How do we construct our digital memory?” and “Is there still such a thing as a ‘private photo?’” Social media create a perfect arena for re-creating the self as a lifestyle brand, performing a daily me, an idealized version of ourselves. With Riccardo Uncut the Mattes investigate where one might find authenticity in self-representation and an unedited version of the self.

Infamous Italian artist duo Eva and Franco Mattes are best known for their subversive and innovative new media work, which exposes various ethical and political ramifications of the Internet as both reality and theory. Often going by the pseudonym 0100101110101101.org, they are hackers, activists, and some of the originators of Net Art. Large scale projects include Stolen Pieces, in which the Mattes’ stole fragments from fifty famous artworks over the course of two years and displayed them in a glass cabinet, Darko Maver, a fictionalized radical Serbian artist with gruesome work, and Portraits, which took place within the virtual computer game Second Life. Deeply committed to the concept of audience experience and interaction, the Mattes’ continue to explore the dark quality of human nature in the realm of online media.

To hear the Mattes' speak about Riccardo Uncut and for a short preview of the work, please watch the video below:

"Middle Distance or The Anxiety of Influence: Photographs from Los Angeles" by Isaac Diggs

Isaac Diggs is a photographer and faculty member with MFA Photo/Video. For over two decades he has photographed the urban fabric of cities and communities in the United States and abroad. His work has been exhibited in the United States and Japan, and is part of private and public collections like the New York Public Library and the Walker Art Center, among others. He has received support from the Asian Cultural Council, The Center for Photography at Woodstock, The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and The Puffin Foundation. A native of Cleveland, OH, Diggs received his B.A. in English Literature at Columbia University and his M.F.A. in photography from the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College. He has taught at the School of Visual Arts since 2000. His book, 125th: Time in Harlem, done in collaboration with Edward Hillel, was published in 2014.

Of his recent work, Diggs reports: "I photograph in and around cities. I walk and drive through them with multiple still cameras making pictures as I go. This movement back and forth, often covering the same terrain or region again and again, creates a rhythm of its own which becomes a platform for visual discovery. And the multiplicity of camera formats encourages me to engage different motifs - (urban) landscapes, portraits, found still lives, architectural exteriors and interiors - that reflect my layered experience of dense and/or expansive city environments.

from “Middle Distance…” by Isaac Diggs

from “Middle Distance…” by Isaac Diggs

Not just any city will do. I am most attracted to port cities that are frayed around the edges, and where the movement of people and goods rarely stops; and cities where the cultural landscape refracts our anxieties around race, sex or class; and communities where deep cultural roots are threatened by gentrification and development. Often they are the same place. I have traced some of these themes in my project, Middle Distance or The Anxiety of Influence: Photographs from Los Angeles, to conjure the underlying tension I sense in much of the American urban landscape."

For more information or to pre-order Diggs' forthcoming book "Middle Distance or The Anxiety of Influence: Photographs from Los Angeles" please visit the following website.

Kunbi Oni's article on Modernism and African Identity in "Post"

The names, cultures, and nationalities of African artists who influenced Picasso have historically been omitted from scholarship. Yet Picasso's interest in African masks is well-known. In her essay published by Post, MFA Photo faculty and MoMA staff member Kunbi Oni charts the implications—and possibilities—that closer attention to the makers of such masks could shed on modern art.

The following is an excerpt from Kunbi's article, "Closing the Gap: Picasso and Narrating More Specific African Identities in Modernism:"

“'I want to understand the Primitive sculptures in terms of the Western context in which modern artists ‘discovered’ them.' Today, more than three decades later, we are more than ready to reconsider how we engage with the twentieth-century “traditional” African objects embedded within the modernist narrative...

We know that “none of the African pieces Picasso saw in his first few years of fascination with ‘art nègre’ were more than just decades old,” and that they came from a set of cultures in the region of West Africa...Applying this small detail makes it possible to deepen our scholarship and to broaden our scope—and thus, potentially, to provide us with a new way of telling the story of modernism..."

To view the full text, visit the "Post" website here.

Kunbi Oni is an Administrator in the General Counsel's office at The Museum of Modern Art in New York and a faculty member of the School of Visual Arts with more than 10 years of experience teaching Art History to both undergraduate and graduate students.

Robert Bowen artist talk about Bioscleave House

Faculty member and artist Robert Bowen will be participating in an artist talk about the Bioscleave House with Bryan Whitney and Don Byrd.

When artists Shusako Arakawa and Madeline Gins set out to construct their “Lifespan Extending Villa,” Bioscleave House, artist Robert Bowen was inspired by their one-of-a-kind construction, to create his experimental documentary, The Long Island House. “Imagine a house that is an abstracted three-dimensional diagram of what a house might be,” Bowen writes. “Bioscleave is a perceptual research station built to study the relationship of the body to built architectural spaces.”

Bowen will discuss his work and Bioscleave’s lure of immortality with photographer and artist Bryan Whitney, whose work focuses on how we perceive and experience real space and ourselves, and cultural critic Don Byrd.

The event will take place on September 26th at 6:30. Program is free, but advance registration is recommended. Please click here to find out more information.

Images via Madeline Gins and Arakaw

Images via Madeline Gins and Arakaw

Robert Bowen is a New York based multimedia artist, college professor (School of Visual Arts; MFA Photo/ Video, and MFA Computer Art) and writer. 

Steel Stillman featured in Osmos Magazine

Faculty member and contemporary artist, Steel Stillman will be featured in the Summer 2018 issue of Osmos Magazine with his writing "6 Photographs". Featuring a radical blend of arresting images, print quality, and distinctive design, Osmos magazine is the most recognized publication in the market fostering contemporary perspectives in photography as the medium crossing all creative industries and practices--art, design, fashion and propaganda, aiming at the core of our imagination.

To learn more and reserve your copy, please click here.

OSMOS 15 cover.jpeg

This issue will also feautre Marilyn Minter, artist Jill Magid on her ongoing engagement with the work of Alexander Calder, an essay by contributing editor Tom McDonough on Anne Collier, Drew Sawyer on Elle Pérez, Russian Ghanaian photographer Liz Johnson Artur's "beautiful moments of everyday black life around the world" and Dale Harding's murals created using a stencil technique practiced by the artist's ancestors: the Bidjara, Ghungalu and Garingbal peoples of Central Queensland, Australia