Grace Bakst Wapner’s work with urethane or satin, clay or bronze, chiffon or pipe cleaners in an interactive dialogue between material and object has been determinative in her process. In the early 1970s she erected walls and barriers constructed from satin and velvet, alluding to the dual nature of our social interactions, and now, in the 2000s, after working for years with clay and bronze, on paper and on canvas, she has returned to working with fabric, sometimes conjoining the fabric with clay. Throughout, there has been a continuing belief that the implementation of color, line, texture, and form can evoke abstract truth. She studied painting and sculpture at Bennington College and at Bard, where she participated in the MFA summer program. But it has been her intensive day-to-day studio practice and the looking at the work of other artists that have most significantly informed her work. She has had twenty-nine one-person shows, participated in over one hundred group shows, lectured and taught, and been the recipient of honors, grants, and awards. She believes that the singular and complex practice of making art both asserts and affirms our humanity.
Deborah Dancy is a multimedia abstract artist whose paintings, drawings, digital photography, and small sculptures play with the shifting intersection between abstraction and representation. Her many awards include a Guggenheim Fellow, a Yaddo Fellow, the American Antiquarian Society William Randolph Hearst Artist and Writers Creative Arts Fellowship, and the National Endowment of the Arts NEFA award. Her work is in numerous collections, including the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO; 21c Museum; the Baltimore Museum; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Birmingham Museum of Art; the Hunter Museum; the Detroit Institute of Art; the Montgomery Museum of Art; the Spencer Museum of Art; the Hunter Museum of Art; Vanderbilt University; Grinnell College; Oberlin College Museum of Art; Davidson Art Center; Wesleyan University; and the United States Embassy, Harare, Zimbabwe. She is represented by Kathryn Markel Fine Arts, NYC; Robischon Gallery, Denver; and Marcia Wood Gallery, Atlanta.
Lia Dostlieva (Лія Достлєва) is an artist, cultural anthropologist, and essayist, born in 1984, in Donetsk, Ukraine. She is the recipient of several scholarships, including the Gaude Polonia Scholarship Programme for a Foreign Cultural Professional and a Visiting Fellowship for work on Ukraine in European Dialogue from the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna, Austria. Her exhibitions include Emplotment, featured in the Ludwig Museum in Budapest, Hungary, and Difficult Pasts. Connected Worlds in the National Gallery of Art in Vilnius, Lithuania. Her forthcoming exhibition, Black on Prussian Blue (with Andrii Dostliev), will be displayed at the Malta Festival in Poznań, Poland. She is the coauthor of Licking War Wounds, published by 89books in 2022.
Liliana Zavaleta is a visual artist who was born in Lima, Perú. She grew up in the United States and has lived and studied in Europe, the Near East, and South America. Zavaleta obtained her university degrees in French and Latin American Literature. She also studied at Parsons School of Design and was an award-winning art director before dedicating herself to her art work. Today she works full-time on her two- and three-dimensional visual work, dividing her time between Upstate New York and South America.
Kelin Perry is an artist and architect born in Charlotte, North Carolina. She graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture from SCI-Arc in 1979 and has since practiced architecture in Atlanta, Georgia, where she currently lives. Perry’s art centers on found materials, which she uses to evoke a sense of the fragility of beauty and the passage of time. She has cultivated a reverence for the unseen, discarded, and forgotten. Perry uses paint, paper, and other media as well, but the use of reclaimed materials is central to her work. Perry has been in group shows at Lowe Gallery as well as group shows and a solo show at Hathaway Contemporary in Atlanta. She has also been included in several shows and residencies at M. David & Co. in Brooklyn, where she is currently represented.
Angyvir Padilla lives and works in Brussels. In her practice, she invites us to take a closer look at the places we inhabit. By examining how we embody memory, she proposes that, in the journey between immanence and transcendence, the traces of our past seep into a persistent present. The environments Angyvir creates alter our perception of reality. As our presence enters into the dialogue, the sense of otherness we encounter reveals the essence of her work. Master with distinction, Fine Arts department, Luca School of Arts, Brussels (BE), 2018, Master with distinction, Sculpture department, ENSAV La Cambre, Brussels (BE), 2015, Bachelor, Art in the public space, ARBA, Brussels (BE), 2012, among other distinctions.
Elegy and Observation is an environmental requiem. Drawing on ancient and modern texts, the piece leaps and lurches among perspectives from intimate to global, tender to catastrophic. So too, our perceived relationship to the natural world is constantly shifting, from the poet’s tension between fear and delight, to scientific observation, biblical prediction of catastrophe, the unassailable truth of species extinction, and the poetry of those who have experienced natural disaster.
The songs comprising my October 2020 release, Ghosts of Our Former Selves, including the two presented here, were deliberately composed in a confessional mode. They form a forty-minute sonic memoir that draws on everything I have spent my six-plus decades learning as a composer of contemporary classical music (especially computer music) with deep roots in jazz and popular music traditions.
For a long time, I have used my body in creation of my work. The landscapes/maps on canvas are distillations of my urban wanderings, both physical and psychological. The emergence of these public performances—I’ll call them “urban en plein air interventions”—have become imperative for my survival “in the time of now.”