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Exhibitions & Events:

Distance, Skowhegan Alumni Exhibition

NYSCA Credit
Sara and Joseph Bedrick Credit

March 10 Event Banner March 24 Event Banner

NYSCA Credit
Sara and Joseph Bedrick Credit

February 17-April 7, 2019
Works on Paper by Skowhegan Alumni

Curated by Betsy Alwin and Steve Locke
Opening Reception: Sunday, February 17, 2019, 2-5 pm

Skowhegan Postcard Image

Skowhegan Postcard

Click here to view Press Release

Curators Steve Locke and Betsy Alwin organized their exhibition around the concept of “distance”—̶  physical, chronological, intellectual, emotional, geographic, etc. All Skowhegan alumni share the experience of distance from their unique summer on the Skowhegan campus. The curators were further inspired by Solmaz Sharif’s poem, Look, which explores consequences that result from perceptions of difference and distance. This exhibition includes works by artists of varying ages, from various cultural backgrounds, who work in various locations around the country and around the world. Although the works in Distance all can be called “works on paper,” the diversity of shapes, sizes, materials and techniques reflects the variety of contemporary art practices encompassed under that single rubric.

Kim Abraham, Alejandro Acierto, Lauren Adams, Negar Ahkami, Colleen Asper, Rebecca Baldwin, Keren Benbenisty, Caitlin Berrigan, Suzanne Broughel, Derrick Buisch, Neil Callander, Greg Chann, Sue Collier, Oliver Comerford, Karishma D’Souza, Anthony Craig Drennen, Jesse England, Nicholas Fraser, Baris Gokturk, Rachel Granofsky, Mark Haddon, Russell Hamilton, Katie Herzog, Christina Hutchings, Saskia Jorda, Courtney Jordan, Nils Karsten, Becky Kinder, Baxter Koziol, Shaun Leonardo, Anthony Lepore, Cyriaco Lopes, Colin McMullan DBA Emcee C.M., Master of None, Nat Meade, Fabiola Menchelli, Helina Metaferia, Nyeema Morgan, Bennett Morris, Ester Partegas, Carol Pepper-Cooper, Bundith Phunsombatlert, Marilyn Propp, Hanneline Rogeberg, Sherrill Roland, Michelle Rosenberg, Annesofie Sandal, Amanda Schoppel, Austin Shull, Molly Springfield, Draga Susanj, Elizabeth Tubergen, Traci Tullius, Tabitha Vevers, Robert Wechsler, Yoav Weinfeld, Jane Westrick.

by Solmaz Sharif

It matters what you call a thing: Exquisite a lover called me.
Whereas Well, if I were from your culture, living in this country,
       said the man outside the 2004 Republican National
       Convention, I would put up with that for this country;

Whereas I felt the need to clarify: You would put up with
       TORTURE, you mean and he proclaimed: Yes;

Whereas what is your life;

Whereas years after they LOOK down from their jets
        and declare my mother’s Abadan block PROBABLY
        DESTROYED, we walked by the villas, the faces
        of buildings torn off into dioramas, and recorded it
        on a hand-held camcorder and I said That’s a gun as I
        trained the lens on a rusting GUN-TYPE WEAPON and
        That’s Iraq as I zoomed over the river;

Whereas it could take as long as 16 seconds between
         the trigger pulled in Las Vegas and the Hellfire missile
         landing in Mazar-e-Sharif, after which they will ask
         Did we hit a child? No. A dog. they will answer themselves;

Whereas the federal judge at the sentencing hearing said
         I want to make sure I pronounce the defendant’s name

Whereas this lover would pronounce my name and call me
         Exquisite and LAY the floor lamp across the floor so that
         we would not see each other by DIRECT ILLUMINATION,
         softening even the light;

Whereas the lover made my heat rise, rise so that if heat
         sensors were trained on me, they could read
         my THERMAL SHADOW through the roof and through
         the wardrobe;

Whereas you know we ran into like groups like mass executions.
         w/ hands tied behind their backs. and everybody shot
         in the head side by side. it’s not like seeing a dead body walking
         to the grocery store here. it’s not like that. its iraq you know
         its iraq. its kinda like acceptable to see that there and not—it
         was kinda like seeing a dead dog or a dead cat laying—;

Whereas I thought if he would LOOK at my exquisite face
         or my father’s, he would reconsider;

Whereas You mean I should be sent MISSING because of my family
         name? and he answered Yes. That’s exactly what I mean,
         adding that his wife helped draft the PATRIOT Act;

Whereas the federal judge wanted to be sure he was
         pronouncing the defendant’s name correctly and said he
         had read all the exhibits, which included the letter I
         wrote to cast the defendant in a loving light;

Whereas today we celebrate things like his transfer to a
         detention center closer to home;

Whereas his son has moved across the country;

Whereas I made nothing happen;

Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is
         your life? It is even a THERMAL SHADOW, it appears
         so little, and then vanishes from the screen;

Whereas I cannot control my own heat and it can take
         as long as 16 seconds between the trigger, the Hellfire
         missile, and A dog, they will answer themselves;

Whereas A dog, they will say: Now, therefore,

Let it matter what we call a thing.

Let it be the exquisite face for at least 16 seconds.

Let me LOOK at you.

Let me look at you in a light that takes years to get here.

Betsy Alwin is a sculptor working in Minneapolis. She received her MFA from Illinois State University and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2001. She has exhibited her work nationally and internationally, including exhibitions at the Berkshire Botanical Gardens (Mass MoCA), the National Botatic Gardens in Washington D.C., The University of Washington, Tacoma, AIR Gallery, New York, and No Globe Exhibition Space, Brooklyn, NY. Public commissions include a permanent sculpture in Tokyo, Japan. Recent exhibition venues include De Chiara Projects, Stone Ridge, NY; Kolman and Pryor Gallery, Minneapolis, MN, the Waiting Room Gallery, Edina, MN, the Marian Art Gallery, Milwaukee, WI, and Icosa, Austin, TX. Alwin has forthcoming solo exhibitions at the Phipps Center for the Arts, Hudson, WI and Rosalux Gallery in Minneapolis. She was awarded a 2017 Artist Initiative Grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board.

Steve Locke (b. 1963, Cleveland, OH) is a Boston-based artist, raised in Detroit, Michigan. He received an M.F.A. in 2001 from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design and holds Bachelors Degrees from Boston University and MassArt. He attended the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture in 2002. He has been artist-in-residence at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston (2016) and for the  City of Boston (2018). He has received grants from The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, The Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation, and The Art Matters Foundation. Solo exhibitions include,there is no one left to blame, curated by Helen Molesworth for theInstitute of Contemporary Art, Boston,The School of Love with Samsøñ (Boston, MA), Family Pictures with Gallery Kayafas (Boston, MA and most recently#Killers atYOURS MINE & OURS in New York. He has had solo projects with the Boston Public Library, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Mendes Wood in Sao Paulo, Brazil, at VOLTA 5 in Basel, Switzerland and P.S. Satellites-A Project of Prospect IV in New Orleans. His work has been reviewed in ARTFORUM, Art in America, Art New England, JUXTAPOZ, The Boston Globe, and The New Yorker

Solmaz Sharif Born in Istanbul to Iranian parents, Solmaz Sharif holds degrees from U.C. Berkeley, where she studied and taught with June Jordan’s Poetry for the People, and New York University. Her work has appeared in The New Republic, Poetry, The Kenyon Review, Granta, and others. The former managing director of the Asian American Writers’ Workshop, her work has been recognized with a “Discovery”/Boston Review Poetry Prize, Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award, and an NEA fellowship. She was most recently selected to receive a 2016 Lannan Literary Fellowship and the Holmes National Poetry Prize from Princeton University. A former Stegner Fellow, she is currently a lecturer at Stanford University. Her first poetry collection, LOOK, published by Graywolf Press in 2016, was a finalist for the National Book Award.

Founded in 1946, Skowhegan is a school and residency for emerging visual artists on a 350-acre campus in central Maine. Skowhegan offers its participants an inquiry-based community bolstered by peer-to-peer critique, site specificity, and a long-standing tradition of experimentation that can only occur when removed from commercial and academic structures. The nine-week program also offers unparalleled mentorship with five resident and six visiting faculty members. Program participants join an intergenerational community of artists that transcends decades, trends, media, and artistic paradigms. As an institution, Skowhegan is proactive & responsive, and each summer is reinvented by the group of artists present on campus.


Sunday, March 10, 2019, 3:00-4:30 pm
Distance, Longing and the Digital
Artists in Conversation: A Conversation between Rebecca Baldwin and Traci Tullius

RSVP 718-937-6317 or rsvp@dorsky.org

Baldwin Image "Loudly Crying Face Prop" Tullius Image "Home" Tullius Image "Home"
Left: Loudly Crying Face Prop, 2018 by Rebecca Baldwin;
Middle & Right: Home, 2011 by Traci Tullius

Click here for printable PDF

The artists will discuss how they address longing and attempts to bridge the distance between here and there, now and then, through digital means. The media that the artists employ, video or text messaging, create their own meaning, separate from the subject itself, the sense of home or connection that was sought. In both artists’ work, this space is a rich place of meaning, discovery, humor and love.

Traci Tullius will show her 2011 video Home, related to her drawing in the show that depicts the decay, demolition and topographical erasure of her great grandparents’ 100-year-old farm house in Oklahoma.

Rebecca Baldwin will present a short performance, Txt Play, based on her work in the show, a series of text messages between the artist and people she is close to. Performers will recreate conversations aloud replacing all digital communications with analog interactions.

Rebecca Baldwin is a painter turned interdisciplinary and performance artist. She attended Skowhegan in 2004 and after a period of not making art Baldwin learned there are many ways to be an artist. She is currently earning her MFA at Hunter College where she intervenes in theinstitution and community with her work in subtle ways. Come to her thesis show in April! rmbaldwin.com

Traci Tullius An Oklahoma native, Traci Tullius received a BFA in painting from the University of Oklahoma in 1998, and an MFA in New Genres from the University of Kansas in 2001. After attending the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2002, Tullius relocated to New York City, where she is Chair of the Studio Art program at Stern College for Women/Yeshiva University. She has been a resident in The Space Program of the Marie Walsh Sharpe Art Foundation and the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Workspace Program, a Critic in Video at Yale University School of Art, and is a NYFA (New York Foundation for the Arts) Fellow in Cross-Disciplinary/Performative Work.


Sunday, March 24, 2019, 1:00-2:30 pm
Distance and (missed) Connections
Readings and a Discussion with Negar Ahkami and Cyriaco Lopes

RSVP 718-937-6317 or rsvp@dorsky.org

Ahkami "Spring From Shadow" image Lopes "missed Connections" image Lopes "Missed Connections" image
Left: Spring From Shadow, 2016 by Negar Ahkami;
Middle & Right: Missed Connections, 2015 Photographs by Cyriaco Lopes

Click here for printable PDF

Exhibiting artists Cyriaco Lopes and Negar Ahkami will discuss how themes of distance and connection, or missed connection, inform their distinct artistic practices. The artists will discuss the creative
potential they each find in observations of things that don’t quite line up or when disparate people, cultures, ideas or even things try to connect. The discussion will begin with Negar reading LOOK, the Solmaz Sharif poem that inspired the curators of Distance, and Cyriaco will read from the missed connections (man for man) from Craigslist which inspired his pieces on view.

Cyriaco Lopes has exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in Rio, the Museum of Art of São Paulo, El Museo del Barrio in NYC, Centre Wallonie Bruxelles in Paris, Casa Degli Artisti in Milan, etc. His work has been curated by Lygia Pape, Janine Antoni, and Luciano Fabro. He is the winner of the NYC World Studio Foundation Award, the Contemporary Art Museum Saint Louis Award, the Phillips Prize. His performances with poet Terri Witek have been seen at the Centro Nacional de Cultura in Portugal, the Salford Museum in England, the Atlantic Center for the Rts in FL, etc.

Negar Ahkami was born in Baltimore and raised in northern New Jersey. She received a BA from Columbia University in Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures (1992), and a JD from Georgetown University (1997). Ahkami attended Skowhegan in 2003 and received an MFA in Fine Arts from School of Visual Arts (2006). She has had solo exhibitions in New York at Leila Heller Gallery and LMAK Projects
(Williamsburg), and in the DC area at Marymount University’s Cody Gallery and at Arlington Arts Center. Her work can be seen at the New Britain Museum of American Art (CT) in The Beyond: Georgia O’Keeffe and Contemporary Art. Her work is in numerous national and international collections, and has been included in The New York Times, The Washington Post, ArtNews, and other publications and catalogues.


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