(s)mother 2.0 care (in a time of crisis)
a cont’d exploration of
an expanded definition of
a demystification of
Enjoy the replay of the (s)mother mid-run conversation
(s)mother 2.0 care (in a time of crisis)
an exhibition curated by Anna Adler
at Bethany Arts Community, May 8th – May 29th, 2021
Jasmin Eli Washington, Pearlyn Tan, Erin Sweeny + SHELTER, Rakel Stammer, Kari Smith, Jackie Skrzynski, Ahna Serendren, Gazelle Samizay, Zuri Sabir, Asya Reznikov, Kristen Rego, Jessica Pinsky, Labkhand Olfatmanesh, Celeste Neuhaus, Katya Meykson, Kacie Lyn Martinez, Jason Maas, Ashley Lyon, Gianna Leo Falcon, Rita Leduc, Maria Kondratiev, Natasha Keller, Tara Johnson, Michelle Anne Harris, Edith Ford, Debora Faccion Grodzki, Jonathan Diggs, Lauren Cherry, Elizabeth Castaldo, Whitney Browne, Jessica Bottalico, Ida Frisch + Jannik Abel, Jaime Posa Cornell + Leticia Perelstein, Renee + Joseph Wilson, MOM collective: Anna Adler, Erin Brody, Corinne Cappelletti, Caryn Akin Davis, Jodie Fahey, Sheree Hughes, Rebecca Pollack, Sahar Muradi, Alison Taffel Rabinowitz, Monica Rose
About the exhibition
(s)mother 2.0 care (in a time of crisis)
an exhibition curated by Anna Adler at Bethany Arts Community
May 8th – May 29th, 2021
(s)mother 2.0 is a curated exploration of mothering in a time of crisis, taking the form of painting, drawing, photography, performance, video, and text; accompanied by a series of programs and dialogues, committed to expanding, deromanticizing, and demystifying the idea of what it means to mother (v).
This is a physical, month long, exhibition, as well as an online gallery, accompanied by both virtual and in person gallery hours and events.
opening: Saturday, May 8, 5-6pm, via Zoom
mid-run Conversation: Saturday, May 15, 11am, via Zoom
closing: Saturday, May 29, 2pm: Curated Nature Walk, at Bethany Arts Community
M-F 10am-4pm, select weekends (below), and by appt
Sat, May 8, 10am-3pm
Sun, May 9, 12- 4pm
Sun, May 16, 12-4pm
Sat, May 22,10am-3pm
Wed, May 26,10am-3pm, 5-8pm (extended evening hours)
Sat, May 29, 10am-3pm
Curatorial Statement aka 'The case for Warm Milk'
I have been thinking about the decision to use Jackie Skrzynski’s painting Warm Milk as the primary promotional image for (s)mother 2.0 and wanted to provide you with a bit of context on the collaborative curatorial concept that informed this choice. In my initial proposal to Bethany, I wrote that this exhibition is very much about the multiple facets of motherhood, more specifically, it is an effort to de-romanticize the myth of motherhood and confront the dualities, or rather multiplicities, that exist in the condition of mothering. Moreover, the exhibition is situated in the context of multiple crises: the pandemic, political turmoil, and the racial reckoning catalyzed by the movement for Black lives, all of which is filtered through the lens of mothering, and or caring for another human being, while processing the trauma that this process (and the general chaos of the world around us) often involves.
The deer in Jackie’s painting is a symbol of power, beauty, strength, and sustenance. Despite its suspected tragic fate, the doe’s belly and teats are full of (warm) milk, simultaneously signifying death and rebirth.
As you may know, mothering and birthing is beautiful and full of so much joy, however it is also full of grief, loss, isolation, and hopefully ultimately survival. It is the casting aside of one identity and the birthing of not only another human but another part of yourself, a sort of reincarnation.
There is work in this show that describes the beauty of becoming a mother, there is work in this show that describes the struggle, there is work that embraces the collaboration between mother and child in both creative and emotional ways, there is work by mothers who have lost children, and work by fathers who have been lost (and reconnected) to their children through incarceration, there is work by people such as myself who (at least temporarily) lost themselves in the process of mothering, due to postpartum depression. In the spirit of this effort I invite you to embrace this multitude of work and the dialogue it will hopefully engender, and to (re)see the image of Warm Milk, in the context above.
Confronting this image of the deer, in a compromised state, a state of trauma, yet with it’s milk still warm, is exactly what the show is about. Yes, there is an element of shock, but within that same moment, there’s a push to go a step beyond and consider what it means to care, to contain, to sustain, to survive, and especially, in a year of a global pandemic, we think that this image is not only relevant but quite beautiful. Think of it as a sort of modern Dutch Vanitas painting — reminding us of the close proximity between birth and death, love and loss, sustenance and depletion, and so much more.
Anna Adler, Curator + (s)mother 2.0 artists, February 18, 2021
Exhibtion installation photographs by Erin Sweeny
Zuri Aset, aka Zuri Sabir, she/her, Ghana, West Africa
Statement & Bio
Zuri Aset, aka Zuri Sabir, is a mother, birth doula, and visual artist consumed by her Spirit Game of trusting the Call of her Higher Aspects at every turn. Currently Living in West Africa while her children remain in the Cage of the West until they can legally return to their Mother Land, her inner emotional landscape is full of complexities too intricate to describe. But she still tries to. She sends Love and Eternal Light and Learning and Levity to all y’all. Peace.
Jessica Bottalico, she/her, Beacon, NY
I feel very fortunate in these current circumstances that what inspires me most to create artwork is both the female form and my own domestic space. When I was pregnant, I became obsessed with creating vessels and drawings of containers that represented my ever changing body. Since having a baby, staying home on maternity leave, being forced to stay home again as a matter of public health, and then having to go back out into the world, I’ve had a newfound appreciation for my body, and the space it occupies.. I love seeing how light affects the forms and patterns around my home, allowing me to make paintings and drawings that flatten space while acting as a snapshot of this bizarre, isolating time.
Living and working in Beacon, NY, Jessica Bottalico examines the narrative behind mundane objects that occupy domestic spaces. Bottalico completed her BFA at Maryland Institute College of Art and MFA in Painting at Rutgers University. Recent exhibitions include J Cacciola Gallery, Bronx Community College, Zurcher Gallery, Causey Contemporary, Proto Gallery, and Abrons Arts Center. She has completed Residencies with the Vermont Studio Center, and the Alfred and Trafford Klots International Program for Artists in Lehon, France. She exhibits with Collective 131, an online collective of female artists. When she’s not painting, and making ceramics in her studio, she teaches art to high schoolers, and spends time with her baby girl.
Whitney Browne, she/her, Brooklyn, NY
Far from Shore is a duet of photographs made in the studio that help me encapsulate, mourn, and articulate my feelings about the results from medical tests that I have a less than 20% likelihood of conceiving a child. My decision to not try for children is conflicting. I see other birds flying to shore to nest, while I am isolating, riding out the waves of a gambling inner sea.
Articulating movement and experimentation with the camera, Whitney Browne is a photographer whose work explores gestures and symbology as reflections of mental states. She has spent the last decade developing her own experimental photography methods, working to build a visual language between photography and performance. Best known for her involvement in the dance community, she currently works from and manages Caravaglia Studio in New York City. Browne has been an educator for The School at Jacob’s Pillow since 2012. She was recently awarded her first solo show for Summer 2022 at the Herzegovina Museum in Trebinje, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Browne received a BA and BFA from Hunter College in Social Anthropology and Fine Art Photography. In 2020, she started Light Language, which is her independent online teaching practice.
Elizabeth Castaldo, she/her, Peekskill, NY
I work with collage, drawing, and printmaking to create works on paper and art ist’s books that explore the connection of feminine sensuality to nature and its manifestations in modern culture. I wish to equate femininity with a powerful force of creation and sexuality independent from the desire of others. I am working with the idea of the divine feminine, a power I seek to recognize within myself while reconciling that with the pressure put on me as a woman and a mother living within a patriarchal society. How can one subvert these cultural expectations and limitations and tap into a deeper consciousness, centered in love, rather than in domination, as a way to care for self, others and the earth? How can we tap into holistic ways of healing from the damage that is inflict ed on us by harmful aspects of society that have become the norm created by centu ries of white male hetero-patriarchy? During 2020, themes of interconnectedness started coming out in my work and I began to think about the ways we are held together when we can’t be physically together and the ways we find to offer support to loved ones and our communities during difficult times when the usual methods are not available to us.
My work is process driven and each stage of the work is a reaction that is informed by the work that preceded it, and each new piece or body of work comes from the work that preceded it. In short, work comes from work. Play and experimentation are very important to my practice. I work with pattern and layering, building up hand drawn patterns, watercolor washes, and collage of both original prints and found images. I am inspired by patterns in nature that are mirrored in the body, and the way natural forms are appropriated into the decorative arts. I commune with the work through the meditative process of creating repetitive hand drawn and collaged patterns. I scour through fashion, pornography and bridal magazines looking for images of feminine bodies that I break down into parts and reassemble into new configurations. The layering involved in collage, printmaking and bookmaking provides the opportunity for concealment, excavation, and revelation. Printmaking and multiples are central parts of my art practice and I am passionate about creating art with a foundation in the practice and theory of printmaking. Bringing many media together allows me to create something unique, expanding and transforming each process, and over the course of several years I have developed a personal visual language.
Elizabeth Castaldo is an artist, printmaker, and bookbinder living and working in Peekskill, NY and New York City. She works with collage, drawing, and printmaking to create works on paper and artist’s books that explore the connection of feminine sensuality to nature and its manifestations in modern culture. She has completed residencies at the Center for Book Arts, NYC and Printmaker’s Open Forum. Castaldo received her MFA from SCAD Atlanta where she was a Dean’s Fellow in Printmaking and her BFA from the School of Visual Arts. In November 2020, her solo exhibition, Proximate Magic, was presented at Saint Joseph’s College in Patchogue NY. in 2019, her work was included in the traveling exhibition, “Freed Formats: The Book Reconsidered”. Elizabeth organized the exchange portfolio “Earth/Mother” for the SGCI 2020 conference “Puertografico”. She teaches printmaking and book arts at Parsons School of Design and the Center for Book Arts NYC. Her work is held in many private and institutional collections including SCAD, The University of Alberta, Carnegie Mellon University, and Yale University.
Lauren Cherry, she/her, Red Hook, NY
There once was a girl whose other half lived across the street. They were like shadows to each other. One of them died and the other was lost in the world. Drifting around she was finally tethered by medication. It was helpful at the moment. She followed her urge to create and studied art where she met the most beautiful man. He was quiet and complicated and loved all of her. They were blissful in the dry hills, under the sun, poor and in love. They made art together, with ease and generosity. They had a baby and moved to the land of wet heat, green moss and white ice. It was hard to figure out the new dynamic. They fought more but also loved each other more, in a deeper way. The couple stopped making art together. She felt distorted, lost and in crisis without knowing how or what to do. She found an angel that told her to stop taking her medication, that it was distorting her. She listened and stopped. She was amazed at how easy it was. She was still lost though. Becoming a mother had changed her and she felt far away from who she was before. She wanted to find a way to exist that was authentic. This felt hard, like all parts of herself had been confused. But she tries everyday, some days she makes things, some days she just is. And that is enough.
Lauren grew up in Boulder, Colorado. She studied ceramics at the University of Colorado, Boulder where she graduated in 2008. She received her MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2011. She currently lives in New York’s Hudson River Valley with her husband and son.
Jaime Posa Cornell, she/her, Croton on Hudson, NY
During my third trimester, I had many conversations with my midwife and doula about having help set up for me and my family once baby arrived. We spoke often about how “it takes a village”. I grew up with three sisters and watched my mother largely take care of us all on her own. We never had a babysitter and I don’t remember ever seeing anyone except my mother doing everything around the house. The concept of “a village” to help the mother was/is foreign to me, except for when I witnessed it during my time living in Central America. Still, it was never internalized. I am now six weeks postpartum with my second and realizing how desperately I am missing and needing community. And, yet, I don’t know where to look for it. My close friends don’t live nearby, I don’t know many local mothers and, truthfully, it’s just a bit hard to ask for help. I still feel some amount of guilt and shame that I can’t do this on my own. And I’m still trying to build that elusive village.
I am a mama, step-Mom, and. . . still, Me. Sometimes, I have to remind myself that. I’ve always wanted to be a full-time, whole-heart mama. I just didn’t realize how much it would consume me. Shortly after having my first daughter in February 2019, I realized I was losing touch with my other passions and, largely, my sense of Self. Little by little, I began adding practices back into my life to create space for me to be Me again. And so, my website/blog, Mud & Miracles, was born besides me & my babies. Writing has been my salvation.
Leticia Perelstein, she/her, Brooklyn, NY
Bio & Statement
I was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina and moved to New York City when I was a child. My primary medium of creative expression is photography. I acquired a Master’s Degree in Peace Education from the University for Peace in Costa Rica. With this degree I have combined my experience and passion in documentary photography, public art and art education with the theory and practice of peace education to work in community learning initiatives where participatory social change is at the forefront.
Jonathan Diggs, he/him, Brooklyn, NY aka Diggstown
Bio & Statement
Jonathan Diggs aka Diggs is a devoted father, son, and brother; he is a recent returning citizen committed to community building, and focused on reentry support. His creative practice includes writing and drawing. His altruistic abilities guided him to becoming a hospice worker (for incarcerated elders). During the pandemic Diggs has spent his time volunteering; providing hands on help to others in the community.
“My contribution to this exhibition is to give clarity to the incarcerated men and women, to let them know that there is light at the end of the tunnel, that tough times don’t last, but tough people do…Imma end this with an acronym: P.E.A.C.E. POSITIVE ENERGY ACTIVATES CONSTANT ELEVATION.”
Jonathan Diggs, P.E.A.C.E., handwritten inspirational text, 8.5 x 11”, 2021, Price Upon Request, on view in physical gallery only.
Debora Faccion Grodzki, she/her, Ithaca, NY
The works I present in smother are Mo-Om objects.
The Theory of the Mo-Om Object
The theory of the Mo-Om-object is a play with the theory of the Non-object, written by Brazilian poet Ferreira Gullar in 1959. While Gullar’s theory is about the history of modern art — he defends that the Non-object was the destination, the end-point of the liberation of the artwork from signification — the theory of the Mo-Om-object is the manifestation of universal knowing expressed in the materiality of life. When liberated from signification the artwork can then exist/be perceived from the common-ground of our shared material condition. Gullar wrote that the Non-object “is a transparent body”, “through which a synthesis of sensorial and mental experiences is intended to take place”. The Mo-Om-object is the body that synthesizes experiences (mental, sensorial, spiritual, cultural, natural,…); it is not a destination, but the present time in which trans-actions exist. The Mo-Om-object is not “transparent”, because it is not an appearance, it doesn’t appear to be — It is — And through being, in the constant activation of the present time, the Mo-Om-object is trans. It trans-figures, trans-verses, trans-forms.
The continuing return of the a-ha moment in which perception meets consciousness. In which making meets meaning that leads back to making and so on and so forth. The Mo-Om-object is Paulo Freire’s conscientização in material form. The Mo-Om-object is the spiral of time that was not stretched into a line by coloniality. It is not organized chronologically, but exists in the time of Kairos, the opportune time; the time when action is manifested, connections happen, when luck strikes, fortune is grand, and abundance is noticed.
The Mo-Om-object is the negation of the negation in the Non-object. It is what emerges from a negation, that which reverberates into something else. The Mo-Om-object is that something else, it is emergent. Mo, the word for I in Yoruba and Om, the word for ultimate reality in Hindu texts. Words, sounds, air that vibrates inside and outside of us. The material of air that bounces back, breaks through, carries forth life. The breath. The breathing that guarantees life. Mo-Om-objects are marks of the end of the enigma. They are the creative act in itself. They are portals to the impulse and the continuity of creativity.
The theory of the Mo-Om-object is a play because it follows the perspective of a child: the child doesn’t separate play from life. The Mo-Om-object exists in this same space of reality of the play for the child; the ultimate reality. In this way, different from Helio Oiticica’s Parangolé, which was an in-corporation, Mo-Om-objects are trans-corporeal. Mo-Om-objects translate, transfuse, transgress, transcend, transubstantiate. Different than Lygia Clark, Mo-Om-objects are not propositions. Mo-Om-objects are post-therapy. They are not exercises of Freedom, they are manifestations of Freedom. Freedom in itself. Mo-Om-objects don’t propose, they transpose. Like the child who plays with, the Mo-Om-object exists with. The theory of the Mo-Om-object is a play because it vanishes when care is gone, when the attention is over.
Debora Faccion Grodzki was born in the mountainous region of Minas Gerais in Brazil (1985). In her early twenties, she lived and traveled extensively in Italy, where she has a second-citizenship. The time she spent in Europe informed her sense of history and deepened the value she gives to continental American hybrid cultures. After researching and working in the intersection of art and communication in Brazil, Debora moved to the United States in 2012 to pursue her Ph.D. in art history at SUNY Binghamton. In her Ph.D. research, she studies Brazilian artists who created international careers in the 1970s, a study that significantly impacts her art-making. Passionate about the creative insights given by theory, Debora currently lectures in the Art & Design department at SUNY Binghamton, where she teaches a course titled “From Critical Theory to Creativity.” She works from her home studio, where she shares with her Polish-American partner the care of their 20 months-old daughter and their dachshund dog. With the 2020 social isolation and the time spent at home, Debora’s home studio is taking over all aspects of her life. In this context, she keeps going back to painting, a medium that at the same time allows her to process historical references and express our contingent living situation.
Gianna Leo Falcon, she/her, New York, NY
This piece deals with the duality of motherhood; I enjoy the lighting and the negative space in it. Like life, it’s a play between dark and light.
Gianna Leo Falcon is currently a wedding photographer in NYC, is attending NYU graduate school for mental health, and is a mother and wife. These days, she spends a lot of time trying not to go crazy, meditating, and immersing herself in learning this new world we live in. She hasn’t had much time to work on personal projects, but will be spending the next few months in Pennsylvania, cultivating land, she hopes to start learning more about sustainability, and living less dependent on the government.
Edith Ford, she/her, Highland, NY
Aim: To capture my feelings for life in its relationship to nature and time.
Art is the filter through which I seek to construct meaning from the dust of daily life.
1947 Born San Antonio, Texas
1969 BFA University of Houston, Studio Art & Philosophy
MA University of Utah
Traveled and worked in Cameroon, West Africa in U.S. Peace Corps.
Taught art and literacy to underserved youth in U.S. Virgin Islands, and Brooklyn, NY.
Ida Frisch, she/her, Oslo, Norway
If mother nature was a force, or maybe even a person, how would she show up, and how would she display her force so that we could bow for her straightforwardness, her collectedness, her non bullshit. Frisch wished to create a strong, yet vulnerable text about the courage to show up in the midst of a crisis, and paired with the photographer Jannik Abel, the two artists have attempted to create a door through which, if we open it, we can reconnect with the natural force that surrounds us, that holds our space, that we exist through.
Ida Frisch (b. 1990) is an artist, social worker and self-taught off-grid enthusiast. She is deeply interested in how we reconnect with nature, and how art and text can help us open up to nature yet again. She lives in a forest where she keeps track of owls, passing deers, and slowly growing carrots.
Jannik Abel, she/they, Oslo, Norway
Bio & Statement
Jannik Abel is an internationally renowned Norwegian artist that has been widely shown internationally in museums, galleries and public spaces. Abel´s practise is concerned with imminence and inheritance — both in humanity and nature.
Michelle Anne Harris, she/her, Philadelphia, PA
Through the child’s eyes I relearn coping with the traumas of childhood. This is part of the reason I work in the home as a domestic laborer. I made 300 similar wax transfer prints to be used in an installation before covid. One year later I am in the process of reexamining these old works. Using them as the basis of collages and collaborations.
The transfer process used here involves drawing with crayon on sandpaper, then flipping it onto the paper for ironing. The hot iron melts portions of the original drawing onto a new piece of paper. I choose this method of sandpaper wax transfers because it requires minimal everyday materials. I use these 300 prints to initiate a reworking of the print. Often I collaborate with the children I take care of, as in Hazel 01.
The sculpture, Sammy, is from a series of pieces made from deconstructed children’s toys. The works channel a mode of playing through different improvisations until the sculpture is finalized.
Michelle Anne Harris is a multimedia artist recently moved to Philadelphia, PA from Chicago, IL. She makes work about domestic labor and about physical and behavioral health disabilities. Her work takes different forms including handmade functional abstract ceramic smoking pipes, prints on paper, photography, and short videos and installation.
Tara Johnson, she/her, Middletown, NY
Statement & Bio
My name is Tara Johnson, I am the mother of two.
I’ve been drawing for six years and absolutely enjoy it.
I am inspired by women and our beauty. I am colorblind which is rare for women, so I like to paint with numerous colors.
I graduated Dutchess Community College with an Associates Degree in 7-12th grade history, moved on to Mount Saint Mary College where I received my Bachelor’s in History.
Tara Johnson, Serenity 1, acrylic paint on canvas, 6 x 8”, 2019, $50 on view in physical gallery only.
Tara Johnson, Serenity 2, acrylic paint on canvas, 6 x 8”, 2019, $50 on view in physical gallery only.
Natasha Keller, she/her, Ithaca, NY
After years of feeling broken by the strain and isolation of mothering, Natasha has emerged with a renewed sense of purpose: to bring visibility to the experience of modern motherhood through storytelling and performance art.
Natasha is an artist and mother of two. She has been a musician, a teacher, a dressmaker, a designer, a writer, and a stay at home mom. Lately she is writing in her journal, studying stand up comedy, and learning how to make a podcast.
Natasha Keller, Mom ad infinitum, video loop, 2021, $5 per digital download
Maria Kondratiev, she/her, Queens, NY
My paintings loosely reference the cosmos and the natural world – forests, oceans, the night sky, fading mountains – and are made intuitively by adding and taking away marks until symbols emerge. Narratives occupied by humorous, and tragic figures inhabit these spaces. Ghosts from childhood, memories of home, dreams in conflict with the present.
These particular paintings deal with loss and grief, triggered by worries I have as a mother.
Maria Kondratiev was born in St. Petersburg, Russia and works in Queens, New York. Maria Received her BFA in Painting and Printmaking from the School or Art and Design, S.U.N.Y. Purchase College and her MA in Art Therapy from New York University.
Rita Leduc, she/her, Carmel, NY
To allay contemporary existential anxieties, I ground myself in material-driven engagements with the living world. Using provisional materials, I create installation and photography at chosen outdoor locations. This work records visual and phenomenological data that I then distill into site-specific lexicons of colors, shapes, textures, and marks. Off-site, I use these lexicons to explore the space between explicit and implicit memory. Using drawing, collage, installation, and sculpture, I articulate visual rhymes, augment sensorial encounters, and evolve ongoing conversations. Individually, each piece visualizes stages along my process of acquaintance with the site. Holistically, each series chronicles an intimate transition from temporary, individual experience to enduring, reciprocal relationship. Deep Ecology deems this alliance “self realization:” the exchange of egoic anxieties for continuity and kinship.
Leduc collaborates with chosen outdoor locations, yielding work that includes photography, painting, drawing, collage, and installation. Recent shows include: Mount Saint Mary College (NY), Whitesbog Historic Village (NJ), Project 59 at Governors Island (NYC), RAW (Miami), Ortega y Gasset Projects (NYC). Residencies: PLAYA, Tofte Lake, Vermont Studio Center, White Pines. Support: NYFA, the Jerome Foundation, Atlas Obscura, the Wells College Scholar-in-Residence Program, Rutgers. Recent publications: Artis Natura, A+E Collective, 100days100women. MFA: Mason Gross at Rutgers, Post-Baccalaureate: SAIC, BA: UPenn. Current teaching: William Paterson University, Ramapo College, Rutgers, and Caldwell College. She is creator and director of GROUNDWORK, an interdisciplinary creative retreat.
Ashley Lyon, she/her, Newburgh, NY
Since becoming a mother in 2018, I have returned to primarily sculpting the figure, but with my child (and new self) as primary muse. This recent artwork, seeks to mine the incredibly rich and complex territory of all the changes, to both the physical and physiological body, inherent in the process of becoming a mother. I hope to visually illuminate the complexity of the mother experience, which is breathtaking, beautiful, confusing, and grueling all at once. I am frequently returning to the term “matrescense” defined by Alexandra Sacks as: the birth of a mother. This term presents a psychological and physical transition much like that found in the time of adolescence in which one can commonly feel ambivalence or other extremely contradictory emotions simultaneously. It also speaks to how the reality of motherhood often doesn’t measure up to our expectations or those established by societal norms.
Ashley Lyon uses clay material to create objects and images to construct a dialectical relationship between space, viewer, image, and form. Instead of using life-casts, she meticulously hand builds all the components of her work, addressing levels of realism in an attempt to transcend traditional figuration. In 2011 she received an MFA in Sculpture + Extended Media at Virginia Commonwealth University and in 2006 a BFA in Ceramics from the University of Washington in Seattle.
Jason Maas, he/him, Waldoboro, Maine
During the lockdown; my wife Corinne was pregnant, I wrote a series of poems to our unborn daughter, Adalyn. These selected poems address three life stages; pregnancy, birth, and adulthood.
Jason Maas is a visual artist, writer, licensed mental health counselor and a new father exploring themes of masculinity, mental illness, creativity, and power.
Kacie Lyn Martinez, she/they, Costa Mesa, CA
The pieces in this exhibition are artifacts of processing the traumatic loss of my mother, who’s fourth deathiversary occurs during this exhibition. Raquel, my mom, was a beautifully complicated person who suffered from mental illness and was haunted by her own traumatic upbringing. These pieces show my ongoing conversation with grief, which draws inspiration from my travels throughout the desolate desert landscapes of Southern California and the Southwest, places I often find salvation. In my more recent work I’ve been coping with having never truly experienced adolescence, as I mothered my mother from an early age. Desert Scroll (2021) and Landscape Note 184 (2021) stretch into themes of lightness, laughter, and play as a part of a coming-of-age series where later in life one uncovers childhood.
As a participatory fiber artist / tejedora, facilitator, and organizational designer, Kacie Lyn Martinez (CA) is on a journey to understand how individuals and communities heal, dream, and self-actualize. For over a decade and across five countries, she has built installations and programs that reimagine safe and engaged communities. In addition, her personal practice spans fiber, poetry, painting, metalwork, and printmaking to create a highly personal visual vocabulary and a discursive identity landscape of her underworld. With advanced degrees from Wellesley College and the London School of Economics, she uses her diverse background in intergenerational healing, systems thinking, civic-focused technology, and community organizing to collaboratively envision and weave together new possibilities.
Katya Meykson, she/her, Bronx, NY
When our airplane lifted off from Moscow to New York, I saw everything I knew disappear in the window. I relied on my memories to transition to the new environment, it comforted me to recall the familiar, but it also hurt to be reminded of what was no longer here. In my works, I explore the duality of immigrant memory, it’s a comforting and traumatic experience.
My works appear to encompass vast and indistinct terrains; they seem intimate but distant like a memory of a homeland. Carefully painted soft structures with natural shapes and colors create a sense of comfort and protection. I reconfigure maps and organic patterns into talismanic, tactile objects with embroidery techniques and a variety of materials. Incorporating packaging forms and old fabrics suggests past time and space traveled. Intuitively painted patterns and textures on sewn together shapes form uncanny objects that look like mutations and fragments of roots, branches, animals, body parts. These sensory objects have cutouts and stitches to evoke feelings of distress and void. I use traditional techniques and aged materials with personal imagery to make transitional and packable objects like security blankets. It comforts me to make an absence present, which can accompany me at all times.
Katya Meykson immigrated to Birmingham, AL from Moscow, Russia in 1996. She received her Bachelor’s of Fine Arts from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2005. She currently lives and works in the Bronx, New York. She is a mixed media artist working in painting, drawing, and sculpture.
MOM Collective is an ongoing living archive of texts, images, and objects related to motherhood, and the expanded definition thereof, collected by Anna Adler.
Artists include: Anna Adler, Erin Brody, Corinne Cappelletti, Caryn Akin Davis, Jodie Fahey, Sheree Hughes, Rebecca Pollack, Sahar Muradi, Alison Taffel Rabinowitz, Monica Rose
On view in the (s)mother studio/reading room, within the current (s)mother 2.0 exhibition at Bethany Arts Community.
Celeste Neuhaus, she/her Pittsburgh, PA
RAISE – lift, build, or erect:
raze – tear down or demolish, level to the ground, to destroy
rays – narrow beams of light; traces of an enlightening influence
This piece revisits an ancient image that appears in multiple mythologies, depicting the human dependency upon the nourishment and nurturing of a mother nature.
Performed in the nave sanctuary of a former church, with oiled/anointed bodies positioned around a cage that acts as a throne, RAISE mimics The Pietà, the divine mother and child. In this way, it presents the act of a body being fed off of as a sort of holy action.
Inspired by the “wild woman” of folklore and myth as seen by Clarissa Pinkola Estés, this hybrid human/animal she-wolf (fangs bared, artificial nails filed into claws) combines the power of the erotic with the sanctity of motherhood.
The myths that influence the ideologies of western culture fail to celebrate the aspects of the divine femme that are mysterious, fierce, and wild; this is because the versions that continue to be reiterated come from a time when the original myths had already been appropriated and converted to support the aims of a Patriarchal society.
Unaware that its disdain comes from fear, Kyriarchy reacts to this subconscious fear of the untamed through violence: possession, domination, and, often, annihilation. Since the making of this video, federal protections for endangered wolves have been revoked and states have taken advantage of this lapse in oversight by encouraging the slaughter of wolves and their pups, decimating an already fledgling population. (One way to honor the lives taken is to support the organizations working within the judiciary system to restore protections so that these regal and loving creatures are not erased from the earth.)
In RAISE I embody the wildness and the darkness that humans contain within us beneath our conscious minds. Facing these things has long terrified humanity, whether we are aware of it or not. If only we could collectively embrace the truth: we are all animals and everyone is born from darkness.
Celeste Neuhaus is a witch who fuses art and magic. Her imagery, objects, performances and rituals support healing from the effects of kyriarchy by revealing the often overlooked interdependencies between the corporeal/ cultural/ psychological/ political/ecological/ cosmological. Her offerings have been experienced throughout the United States in magic temples, DIY venues, salt flats, art galleries, fields of wildflowers, vacant lots, rooftops, and museums.
Currently based in Pittsburgh, Celeste earned her BFA at the University of Illinois at Chicago and her MFA at the University of New Mexico where she participated in the Land Arts program in Art and Ecology. Celeste worked as an independent art instructor for over fifteen years with students ranging from toddlers to elders. While teaching in the School of Art at Carnegie Mellon University, Celeste discovered her love of mentoring students one-on-one. Providing people with individually focused guidance became her mission: she now professionally leads people through aligning with the cycles of their unique creativity.
Labkhand (Labbie) Olfatmanesh, she/her, Los Angeles, CA
BabyMaybe is an ongoing project comprising performance, photographs, film, interviews with women of child-bearing age, and interactive gallery experiences.
Decades after the women’s liberation movement (WLM) of the 1960s, the automatic expectation that a woman will bear children and choose motherhood still persists. This is the case irrespective of geography, race, religion, or ethnicity or the fact that we are in the second millennium, at a time of unprecedented technological progress, an era where an openly gay can be a frontrunner for President of the United States. So much has changed, and yet there are beliefs so ingrained in all of us that they seem stubbornly inescapable. Being born female means being born having to answer to others for the choices you make with regards to your body.
Why do we feel comfortable casually assuming that a woman will have or will plan to have a child? How did bearing a child become a key indicator of a woman’s identity and value? Are women simply forever trapped by virtue of their biology? Will they ever be truly free?
Since April 2018, artist Labkhand Olfatmanesh has been exploring these questions through a variety of mediums, including film, photography, provocative public performance art, and interactive gallery experiences. Her artistic investigations for “BabyMaybe,” as she has christened it, have led her far and wide. She has interviewed women in her native Iran to record their perspectives on the pressure they feel to procreate, and she has conceptualized startling performances, as when she walked down crowded Hollywood blvd in Los Angeles, where she’s based, wearing a clear plexiglas pregnant belly containing a lifelike plastic baby.
Much like the themes she’s exploring, “BabyMaybe” is an ongoing project and a work in progress. Follow along with Labkhand (Labbie) as she gestates her most ambitious art-child to date…
BabyMaybe/Plastic Belly, 2018, Performance/Document, Los Angeles, CA
I dressed up a young lady in plastic with a big transparent belly made out of plastic with babies and spend a day with her in the city of LA (Downtown Union Station) and capture different example setups of mom who is dealing with lots of unhealthy environmental issues while unaware of how little choice there is to these kinds of exposure.
After all, we are biologically and culturally programmed to have kids so here’s my argument:
When you create somebody, you impose all the risks of life on them!
Labkhand Olfatmanesh, born in Tehran, Iran; her work explores themes of feminism, racism, and isolation, and how these forces take shape in the United States and her birthplace of Iran. Her work in photography, video and performance has been exhibited in group and solo exhibitions, across the US and internationally, including including Photo London U.K.; Rencontres d’Arles, France; Craft Contemporary, Los Angeles; Helm Bakery District in collaboration with the Culver City Arts Foundation; the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery; and the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco. She was also awarded the LensCulture Portrait Awards Jurors’ Pick and received first place at the Los Angeles Center of Photography ‘s second annual fine art photo competition. She earned a B.A. in graphic design at Azad University in Tehran, Iran and a Photography Certificate at the London Academy of Radio, Film, and Television. Her work has also been featured by the United Nations, the British Council, and Australian High Commission as well as the UNESCO Palace, Lebanon. She currently resides in Los Angeles and is a board member at Level Ground organization.
Labkhand Olfatmanesh, BabyMaybe – Excerpt, Video Project
Jessica Pinsky, she/her, Cleveland, OH
On August 2, 2019 after 29.5 hours of labor I gave birth via emergency c-section to my twins, Benjamin and Mira. After a near hysterectomie, my uterus was repaired in such a way that I will never become pregnant again. Days after in the recovery room, I received reiki from a hospital employee. She guided me through meditation and my weaving ‘Delivery’ appeared before my closed eyes. The designs for ‘Labor’ and ‘Recovery’ came months later and complete the reflective narrative of my 6 day experience in the hospital. In the time spent weaving I isolated myself from the experience of motherhood and allowed for the healing of my own trauma.
Jessica Pinsky grew up in Akron, Ohio and moved to Cleveland in 2011, after receiving a BFA from New York University in 2006, and an MFA from Boston University in 2009. Her artwork bridges painting, weaving and sculpture: she is represented by Hedge Gallery in Cleveland, OH. In 2012, she worked closely with Cleveland Institute of Art to found Praxis Fiber Workshop, a community textile organization where CIA students can receive credited classes. She is currently the Executive Director at Praxis and faculty in the Sculpture & Expanded Media Department at Cleveland Institute of Art.
Kristen Rego, she/her, Rosendale NY
The pictorial space in the painting, “Viewers Left Ajar” contains corrugated cardboard surfaces bending toward and away from the primary light source. The light and shadow represent aspects of our lives we are willing to share (the light) and the ones we prefer to leave in obscurity (the shadow).
The cardboard forms are punctured with factory-made holes that appear to be spaced perfectly for a person to peer through like binoculars or viewfinders. They are reminders to be observant, playful, and present in the moment, much like the nature of my two-year-old daughter. Every day, I continue to adjust a little more to my life as a mother / artist / teacher / person. Even if I cannot see through to the other side, I will remain in the focal point of the current moment.
Kristen Rego lives in Rosendale, NY. Kristen has exhibited work at the John Davis Gallery, Hudson, NY, Women’s Studio Workshop, Rosendale, NY, Kent Place Gallery, Summit, NJ, WCC Center for Digital Arts, Peekskill, NY, LabSpace, Hillsdale, NY, and the Pelham Art Center, Pelham, NY. Previously, she was a Vermont Studio Center resident and grant recipient. She obtained a BFA from Ohio State University and an MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University. She is currently a professor at SUNY Dutchess and SUNY New Paltz.
Asya Reznikov, she/her, New York, NY
My work intersects sculpture, video, performance, photography, drawing, and installation. It is concept driven and investigates the complexities of being a political refugee, a woman, a mother, and an artist through the lens of language, identity, cultural history, architecture, and art history. Coming to the United States at a young age from the Soviet Union and being raised straddling two politically and socially conflicting cultures, I have always been aware of the limitations of spoken language as well as the implications of cultural identity. I incorporate language and personal objects in video sculptures and installations that invite viewers to experience and be confronted with their identity as self and foreigner.
I am fascinated with packing and how suitcases act as vessels. How do we choose what we bring with us when we go somewhere? How do we curate our identity through the objects and clothing we select when we will go elsewhere? I delve into these questions in my video sculptures; some are finite and some continue infinitely in loops addressing issues of disjointed space and global culture. Often, my work pays homage to historical works through framing and iconography, yet conceptually, it explores contemporary issues of foreignness, cultural baggage, feminism, and ideas of home. One of my ongoing series of work is directly informed by my former homes. I create architectural models of homes or landmarks where I have lived from postcards of the new location where I am residing. I then photograph these models as I hold them in the surroundings where I currently live. While the postcard models appear to fit into their new environments, they are conspicuously out of place. Conflating place, scale and space, these works investigate how architecture reflects culture and what ‘home’ means.
Most recently, I have been creating installations and video sculptures that address birth and the process of nurturing life. I explore how these evolutionary processes parallel the birthing and nurturing process of making art and how they intertwine and mirror life cycles, seasons and nature. These works are often interactive through their scale and intense presence. Sculpted tactile elements are inviting and reference the video component of the work, while the audio is penetrating and develops with the progression of the video. The video elements in my sculptures and installations are seamless loops, simultaneously pausing time and evolving. They mimic the cycles in nature that on an intimate scale, have infinite depth of phenomenon while upon zooming out, are contained within the greater cycles of the seasons, years, and planetary rotations. Some actions seem humorous or absurd, perceived as Sisyphean tasks, however they are the very fibers of individual life that make up time, space, and experience tethering us to self and cosmic, native and foreigner, child and mother.
Asya Reznikov was born in Leningrad, USSR and came to the US as a child. Her work is exhibited nationally and internationally in galleries and museums, and is in numerous public and private collections. She holds MFAs from Hunter College and the Universität der Künste, Germany and a BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art. Reznikov received a two-year postgraduate fellowship from the Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst, Berlin, Germany and awards from the DAAD, Germany, and from the Cultural Ministry of Spain. She has lived and worked in Germany, Italy, England, and Holland, and currently resides in NY.
Gazelle Samizay, she/her, San Francisco, CA
My work in photography, video and multimedia focuses on issues of culture, nationality and gender through the layers of my own identity and history. My aim is to connect people through intimate visual stories. This impulse first began as a young, Afghan American woman in a post 9/11 landscape, and grew in subsequent years, as divisions between non-Muslim Americans and Muslims deepened. I was compelled to provide a counter depiction of Afghanistan, my birthplace, and give people the opportunity to reconnect to a shared humanity.
Much of my work explores familial history, cultural expectations, and gender norms. I examine how the repression of events is passed between generations as an unspoken trauma. I use video to recreate uncomfortable silences and reveal the secrets buried within. This personal trajectory has developed into an inquiry into collective histories of personal and public trauma.
In my aesthetic choices, I position the viewer to face injustices that continue to reverberate in society. My female characters find empowerment within their oppression, illuminating the contradictions and complexities of gender and culture, while challenging stereotypes of powerlessness and victimhood. Presenting video in multi-channel formats and in public installations disrupts traditional storytelling methods and resists myopic characterizations of the “other,” while photographs allow for a trace image.
Upon My Daughter
Several women collectively embroider the wedding dress of a young bride as she wears it. Each stitch symbolizes one piece of advice she is given. Individually, the threads are very delicate, but amassed together their strength becomes visible, symbolizing the powerful, yet complicated bonds between the women in this family. Eventually, the women disappear, leaving the bride to ponder if her experience of social pressure was internal or imposed by those around her.
Born in Kabul, Afghanistan and raised in rural Washington state, Gazelle Samizay’s work often reflects the complexities and contradictions of culture, nationality and gender through the lens of her bicultural identity. Her work in photography, video and mixed media has been exhibited across the US and internationally, including at Whitechapel Gallery, London; Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery; the California Museum of Photography, Riverside; the de Young Museum, San Francisco; and the Slamdance Film Festival, Park City, UT. Her pieces are part of the permanent collections of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the Center for Photography at Woodstock, NY; and En Foco, NY. In addition to her studio practice, her writing has been published in One Story, Thirty Stories: An Anthology of Contemporary Afghan American Literature and she is a founding member of the Afghan American Artists and Writers Association. Samizay has received numerous awards and residencies, including from the Princess Grace Foundation, NY; Craft Contemporary, Los Angeles; the Arizona Community Foundation, Phoenix; Level Ground, Los Angeles and the Torrance Art Museum. She received her MFA in photography at the University of Arizona and currently lives in San Francisco.
Ahna Serendren, she/her, San Francisco Bay Area, CA
This series of drawings is part of an ongoing collaboration between our 2 ½ year old daughter Eleanora, and myself. Eleanora and I began this collaborative practice not long after the first COVID-19 quarantine order went into effect in our area. Like so many families, our lives and daily routines had been upended—we lost our part-time childcare and I had to temporarily shutter my studio and begin working from home while taking care of Eleanora full-time. With all regular playdates and activities suspended and our neighborhood parks closed indefinitely, I struggled to find ways to keep our very active toddler engaged.
Out of this confined and troubling time we began our collaboration. At 2 ½ years old, Eleanora had a limited attention span, so I had to think of games we could play to engage her and to sustain her focus as we drew and painted together. We played ‘chase’ with colored pencils, following each other and making swift, darting lines across the page. We had paint wars in which one color would lord over the others. We covered our paper in copious colored dots and then invited Eleanora’s collection of plastic animal figurines to come feast on them. Periodically, Eleanora would invent her own games, which often involved taking wet paper towels and wiping away every mark we’d made or creating soups of dirty paint water and pencil shavings. Things got messy and urgent. I had to find a balance between letting her destroy, explore and disrupt, and inventing rules and structures to keep us moving forward together in the process.
For me, the drawings that we’ve created together over these past months track some of the dramatic shifts in energy and emotion that we’ve experienced individually and in our primary relationships during the pandemic. Sometimes intimate, sometimes suffocating, sometimes playful, sometimes clashing, the abstract marks and movement in these pieces mirror the evolving dance between us as mother and daughter and record some of the ways we’ve moved together through this challenging chapter of our lives.
Ahna Serendren was born in La Jolla, California. She holds an MFA in combined media from Hunter College in New York City, a BFA in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute and a BA in English literature and creative writing from UCLA. Ahna’s work has been exhibited at Maldonado Projects in New York City, Idio Gallery and Deanna Evans Projects in Brooklyn, and The Every Woman Biennial and Nicodim Gallery in Los Angeles. Her work resides in private collections in New York, Los Angeles and London. She currently lives and works in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Jackie Skrzynski, she/her, Newburgh, NY
My drawings often confront anxieties that sit just below consciousness. During the process of making the images, the meanings surface. In the works here, I came to realize I was confronting my limitations as a parent, especially my ability to provide and protect.
Jackie Skrzynski (skrin-ski) makes drawings and paintings that collapse the artificial boundary between humans and nature. She earned her undergraduate degree in Art from UNC-Chapel Hill, including a pivotal year in Spain, and her MA and MFA from the University at Albany, NY. Her artwork has been widely exhibited at universities and galleries, including Mount Saint Mary’s College, University of Nevada, the Seligmann Center, and Morehead State University. She has received grants from the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund, the New York Foundation of the Arts (SOS), and is a 4-time recipient of the Orange County Individual Artist award. She contributed a chapter to the anthology Reconciling Art and Mothering and has had her own artwork appear in several publications.
Beyond her studio practice, Skrzynski is interested in bringing art to the community in creative ways. She is the founder of PUG Projects, through which she curates temporary art exhibits in transitional, economically diverse spaces. She also created the yearlong outdoor collaborative piece Silent Walks on the Half Moon documented in a blog by the same name, which has been exhibited at the Dorsky Museum at SUNY New Paltz.
She is currently Artist-in-Residence at Black Rock Forest in Cornwall, New York.
Kari Smith, she/her, Peekskill, NY
I’m in the dark, painting by flashlight after bedtime. Or frenzied, running out of time during naps. And the rush and the anxiety and the time expiring fits perfectly into the realm of the series I’ve been working on. It’s a lot of the same. Repetition. Stellan, my child, front and center, bleeding, disappearing. Or animals. Disintegrating. Legs just melting, until they’re heads and torsos of small, helpless creatures. I’ve had this dream for years. The animals change, but the rest just repeats over and over. I love them so much, and I already know at the very beginning that I’m going to watch them disappear, and I’ll never be able to have that love for long. Maybe that’s why I love Stellan so relentlessly. Or maybe all parents do. He trips, and my stomach feels like it’s falling. I photograph his face obsessively. Mortality is now constantly on my mind. I paint Stellan’s face bruised, bleeding, concerned, crying, because it hurts me to look at it. I feel that helplessness, like in my dreams. It’s a sort of sad, yet triumphant full circle for me. A kind of permanence.
Kari Smith is a painter and photographer, who grew up in St. Louis, Missouri and now lives in Peekskill, New York. She’s self-taught, as a painter, and didn’t begin showing any paintings until recently. Shows include, To the Lover of Small Things, a juried, small works group show at Gallery 22 in Peekskill, NY (2015), Year of the Maggot, a solo show at Gallery 22 in Peekskill, NY (2015), Lake Peekskill Arts Festival group show (2015), and the juried, small works group show at the Garrison Art Center in Garrison, NY (2020).
Kari studied photography in high school, in St. Louis, MO, where she participated in many juried shows, and continues to shoot both film and digital photos. After moving to New York, she won Honorable Mention in the Photo District News World in Focus contest, and her work was subsequently published in National Geographic Traveler in 2009, as well as in Square Magazine, issue SP03 in 2013.
Rakel Stammer, she/her, Kingston, NY
I make work to move towards a greater understanding of the architecture of power and how it relates to the formation of relationships. My intention is to push myself and anyone who engages with my work to reflect on the complexity of attachment, care and violence. “The Mother Series”, consists of work from 2016 and a more recent piece from 2020. It centers on my memory of my mother, her substance abuse and her passing. In it I investigate and contextualize the ambivalent feelings I have towards her as a role model, caregiver, victim and abuser, through a series of images, written pieces and performances. While also reflecting on the emotional costs of reproductive labor and the toll it takes on the women tasked with this labor.
I describe my practice as one of theorizing. The objects and performances I make function as documentation, as well as vessels to communicate the (mostly) invisible labour of processing, remembering, imagining and conceptualizing.
Rakel Stammer (b. 1989) is a Danish interdisciplinary artist, print maker and teacher. Her work engages questions of violence, care, memory, feminist theory, autonomy and Marxist thought. Using symbols, abstract visuals, writing and installation, Rakel complicates the structure of power, response and attachment, through the lens of autonomy, self-reliance and interdependence.
Her work has been included in exhibitions at Galaria Central [Mexico City, Mexico], Navicula Artis [Saint Petersburg, Russia], Centre Del Carme [Valencia, Spain], FRANK Gallery and Studio [Malmö, Sweden] and 4 boxes [Skive, Denmark].
Rakel graduated from the Comic School in Malmö in 2016. She received a 6 month residency at Krabbesholm Højskole in 2020, and is an alumni at The Women’s Studio Workshop [Rosendale, NY].
Erin Sweeny, she/her, Philadelphia, PA
A remnant from our daughter’s first birthday. A resting place for an object. A lazy sculpture. In days layered by early parenting and a pandemic, necessity and function often trump form. But in certain moments, utility and the elements can also bring revelation.
Integrating the use of lens-based media, site-specific investigations and ritual, Erin Sweeny’s process is centered around themes of movement and distillation. Chance, repetition, and the grid are all players in a process defined as both scrappy and reverent. She holds an MFA in Photography from the Cranbrook Academy of Art and has been an artist-in-residence at Ox-Bow, ACRE and The Wassaic Project. Her writing has been featured in The Brooklyn Rail and as a regular contributor for Art21 Magazine; her 2017 artist book, Protanopia, was published by Small Editions. Sweeny is also the creator of Shelter, a podcast centered around conversations about home, place and refuge. She lives in Philadelphia.
Pearlyn Tan, she/her, Portland, OR
One of my constant fears as a mother comes from being the mom of a special needs kid who has no stranger danger and loves everyone he meets. My son has Williams Syndrome (WS) and a common trait of WS is having a gregarious personality, a strong drive to approach strangers, and the desire to connect with lack of social fear. People with WS see all faces as friendly. Loving everybody you meet can be such a gift but can also be such a curse and, of course, a risk. So, with those feelings always in the background, this drawing came about one night after listening to a NYT The Daily podcast episode “Something Terrible Has Happened” about sexual assault, told by a 40 year old man’s experience as a child in the Boy Scouts.
I have been creating artwork under the pseudonym @the_unordinary_motherhood on Instagram since 2016 after my younger son was born with a genetic multi-system disorder called Williams Syndrome – https://williams-syndrome.org
My artwork started as an outlet to process and express my experiences through all the uncertainties, challenges and joys of navigating through a new, unordinary journey in uncertain times. What started in a place of fear and darkness has grown into an expression of hope.
My work revolves around the theme of motherhood and Mother Nature as they are core in my life. Art also provides a space to reclaim some of the loss of self and identity that comes with motherhood. After prior careers as an advertising art director, designer and hairstylist, I have found my passion as a self-taught illustrator and printmaker.
Originally from Singapore, I live in Portland OR, USA.
Jasmin Eli-Washington, she/they, Bronx, NY
Her work is currently focused on painting, on canvas and fabric, as well as on parenting, mothering, teaching, resulting in and centered around themes of blackness, coexistence and love.
Jasmin Eli-Washington is an artist, educator, mother, wife, activist, entrepreneur, and model. She/they were born and raised, and are still living and working in The Bronx.
Renee Wilson, she/her, Bronx, NY // Joseph Wilson, he/him, Ossining, NY
Statement & Bio
Renee Wilson, she/her, Bronx, NY: wife, mother, activist, entrepreneur.
Joseph Wilson, he/him, Ossining, NY: husband, father, friend, musician, composer, preacher.
Joseph Wilson is a composer, musician, singer, songwriter and librettist, currently incarcerated at Sing Sing, CF in Ossining, NY, where he is working on an opera, and is involved in several creative projects including Carnegie Hall Musical Connections program and Rehabilitation Through the Arts theater program. He has collaborated with Grammy Award winning mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato among others, composed music with his sister Myosha, and has been featured on several TEDexTalks. He is a loving father to his 5 year old daughter Faith, and devoted husband to his wife Renee.
Find Joseph on FB via Jwillsingsong and read more about his story here: https://psmag.com/social-justice/what happens-when-inmates-at-sing-sing-learn-to-compose
Renee & Joseph Wilson, The Village, audio recording, live reading, and printed text, 2020, NFS