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September 5 - October 7

Abstract artwork featuring red and orange triangles in a polygonal shape over a dark red background. White and black swirly lines varnish the painting.
Credit: Judith Linhares, "American Paisley," 2016, oil on canvas.


Thu, Sep 14, 6:00pm - 8:00pm

BFA Visual & Critical Studies is pleased to present "Paisley," its first exhibition of the 2017–18 academic year. The show, curated by faculty member Peter Hristoff (BFA 1981 Fine Arts), will be held at the SVA Flatiron Project Space, 133/141 West 21st Street from Tuesday, September 5, through Saturday, October 7, with an opening reception on Thursday, September 14, from 6:00 to 8:00pm.

"Paisley" will present objects, ephemera, photographs and textiles that have incorporated the paisley motif, as well as works by more than 40 contemporary artists interpreting it. Continuous slideshows on the gallery monitors will present hundreds of paisley images and a catalog with a foreword by BFA Visual & Critical Studies Chair Tom Huhn and an essay by faculty member Isabel Taube will accompany the exhibition.

The paisley motif has endured over the centuries to become an example of the interconnectedness of the many cultures that claim it as their own. From early trade routes to the present, it has often been re-interpreted and revitalized in textiles, jewelry and other objects. A symbol for some, decoration for others, its continual re-definition—from leaf, to fertility image, to royal stamp, to shawl design, to a symbol of "Orientalism”— loads the shape with meanings that can be endlessly peeled back, layer by layer, as a fascinating lesson in history, politics, economics and art.

Exhibiting artists include: Sarah Apollo, Maria Babikova, Steph Balich, Anna Bauer, Leigh Behnke, Oona Brangam-Snell, Luisa Caldwell, Santiago Chavez, Paloma Crousillat, Steven D'Arbenzio, Paul D'Innocenzo, Steve DeFrank, Xueing E, Katya Fine, Kayla Gibbons, Elizabeth Glaessner, Melissa Guido, Qiuyu Guo, Rachita Habbu, Muyi He, Jung Yoon Hong, Jiajia Huang, Keryn Huang, Jason Isolini, Suzanne Joelson, Dennis Kardon, Annette Lee, Marilyn Lerner, Cassandra Levine, Judith Linhares, Yiang Liu, Maharam, Judy Mannarino, Diana Marianovsky, Lily Maslanka, Material Technology & Logistics (MTL), Nicole McGrogran, Michelle Mercurio, Jon Nazareth, Olivades, Chae Won Park, Lillian Park, Fangjun Qu, Dominick Rapone, Jezneel Ross, Charles Rossi, David Sandlin, Kenny Scharf, Jeffrey Schiff, Lexi Shcroppe, Gary Stephan, Atif Toor, Charles H. Traub, Rene Trevino, Nina Tsur, Elif Uras, Mary Jo Vath, Justin Vega, Erika Verhagen, Yi Tung Wang, Joanna Wezyk, Kevin Wixted, I-Chia Wu, Xiaojie Wu, Be
njamin Ryan Yankowy, Yiman Ye and more.

Free and open to the public