Archive for August, 2015

Student Artwork Update: Wayne Gregory

Sunday, August 9th, 2015

We’re proud to present SVACE student artwork by Wayne Gregory! Wayne has taken our Fine Arts courses, including Pastels, taught by Shelley Haven.  See Wayne’s artwork in our display cases at 380 Second Avenue, 8th floor, until September 1st!

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Wayne Gregory, “Wild Tulips”


From Wayne’s artist’s statement:

“My name is Wayne Gregory.  I am an aspiring artist and have been interested in art since I was a child growing up in Jamaica.  I have worked in most of the mediums from oil to acrylic to water colour and charcoal/pastels.  I love pastels the most since I have more range of control and it gives me better freedom to move colour around on the paper. I have taken classes at SVA for the last four years and I am currently enrolled in the Pastels Continuing Education class being taught by Shelley Haven.  I have also taken the Nature and Landscape class.  It has been a serene pleasure for me so far and I look forward to many more years here at SVA.”

See more of Wayne’s artwork on his website and his Facebook page!

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Wayne Gregory, “Alien Flowers”

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Wayne Gregory, “Spring Orchid”


Faculty Updates

Tuesday, August 4th, 2015

SVACE faculty members are keeping busy this summer! Viktor Koen and Matt Rota, Illustration and Cartooning faculty members, have new illustrations in some high-profile places:

Check out a new illustration by Viktor Koen for ARCHITECT magazine, publication of the American Institute of Architects.  As always, Viktor reveals background and insights at his blog.


Illustration by Viktor Koen for ARCHITECT magazine


And see Matt Rota’s illustration for a “Cli-Fi” piece at  Medium!


Illustration by Matt Rota for Medium


“Concerning Human Understanding” Panel Discussion

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

Today’s blog post was written by William Patterson, staff member at SVACE:

The SVA Summer Residency Program hosted a panel discussion on the Residency alumni exhibition, Concerning Human Understanding, recently on view at SVA’s Visual and Critical Studies Gallery.  All three exhibiting artists were in attendance to discuss their work, along with art writer Thyrza Nichols Goodeve, who posed a number of thoughtful questions on the themes of communication, madness and the strategies common to all of the artists’ work.

The panel was preceded by a brief introduction by the three artists.  Sandra Erbacher was first to present, and spoke about her evolving interest in Institutional Critique.  Erbacher felt that the practices of Institutional Critique from the 1970’s had become narrow and limited in the way they critiqued the structure of power.  She decided to rethink  “Institution,” exchanging the term for the more far reaching “bureaucracy,” and replacing “critique” with “humor.”  This change in terms allowed her to explore new ways of commenting on the context, history and effects of  “bureaucracy,” with strategies that could be more immediate or insightful than traditional commentary.


Sandra Erbacher, “Ctrl+Alt+Del,” 2015, archival inkjet print, 22×42″

Works from the show, such as Ctrl+Alt+Del, 2015, are evidence of her thinking.  The image de-familiarizes a computer keyboard by erasing off the letters, leaving only blank keys and the plastic frame. This act interrupts the purpose of the device as a means of communicating and forces the viewer to see it as a blank object, a product of plastics and modernist design, in all its genuine strangeness. It no longer seems like a means to communicating human thoughts, but a series of blank and impersonal cells through which nothing can pass.

Marianna Olinger discussed the documentary film she was working on, about a corrupt and abusive mental health institution in Rio de Janeiro. She interviewed and shadowed mental health workers who had been working to rehabilitate the institution’s patients.  Marianna spoke of how inadequate normal, verbal communication was when attempting to understand these victims, and how the mental health workers had to place a much greater emphasis on their body language and tone of voice than we usually do in order to communicate.  Marianna decided to reinterpret the idea of a documentary with this in mind.  In following the cues of these patients, she sought to tell their story with that same emphasis on nonverbal language, and to understand what is often dismissed as “madness” as a form of language. It was this attempt that resulted in Wearing the Inside Out, her contribution to the Concerning Human Understanding exhibition. The video piece acts as a study in the structure of madness as a language, and as a precursor to the film she will ultimately create.


Marianna Olinger, “Wearing the Inside Out,” 2015, video

Tim Roseborough focused on a unique visual font that he invented called Englyph.  Tim uses Englyph in a variety of ways to both conceal and redirect statements written in conventional language.  Applications range from building visual puzzles out of the names of Tim’s friends to organizing a list of racial slurs in an Englyph pyramid by their frequency of use online.  This form of data visualization is always in negotiation with its own immediate aesthetic value, as it conceals a message behind an almost impenetrable code.

Nevertheless, the Englyph system can be read, and that possibility, if not always acted on, remains an important aspect of the work as it is written.  For Tim’s piece in the exhibition, he used Englyph to pattern a wall of the gallery with the message “Everything but Art.”  At center he placed a blank canvas. Words are Stronger than Art was the name of the installation, which served a potent irony within the context of the show, as the work of all three artists, each in their own way, proved just how untrue that really is.


Tim Roseborough, “Words Are Stronger Than Art,” 2015, vinyl mural, 11 ft x 18 ft, and canvas

A video of the complete panel discussion is available below:

Warm Up 2015

Sunday, August 2nd, 2015

Warm Up is back at MoMA PS1, now in its 18th year. If your fear of crowds is outweighed by your interest in the best experimental live music, sound, and DJs, then Warm Up is sure to deliver!

This year’s Warm Up features COSMO, a water-purifying installation by New York/Madrid architecture firm Andrés Jaque, Office for Political Innovation.  The winning design of the 16th annual Young Architects Program, COSMO is high on concept and performativity, but low on shade.

The August 1st edition featured DJ sets by Tiga, Via App, and Frank & Tony, and live sets by Bob Moses and resident synth wizard Gavin Russom.

The breeze-friendly set design is created by Fort Standard of Brooklyn, who draped the front facade in a curtain of gold Mylar. Sound is provided by Jim Toth and his team, who have upgraded the world-class sound system with new subwoofers and amplifier presets.