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This July at SVA: Exhibitions to See In-Person and Online
July 2, 2021 by Maeri Ferguson
A photograph of a man smoking a cigar in a swimming pool. The photograph has been altered with dotted lines and cryptic notations.

India Lombardi-Bello, Meridian Chart for Tony Soprano, 2021, found photography and digital painting, from the MFA Art Practice exhibition “Work From Home.”

Credit: India Lombardi-Bello

July is a quiet month at the School of Visual Arts as summer begins in earnest, which leaves plenty of time to enjoy two exhibitions of work, one online and one “IRL” at the SVA Flatiron Project Space.

Viewable from the windows of 133/141 West 21st Street or inside the gallery by appointment, “a throw of the dice will never abolish chance” is on view now through Wednesday, July 7. This exhibition features multidisciplinary works by 10 artists based in Austria, Mexico, the U.S. and Uruguay, all of whom participated in SVA Continuing Education’s Artist Residency Project, the College’s first online residency program. 

Taking its name from the enigmatic poem by 19th-century French symbolist Stéphane Mallarmé, these works reflect on the dynamic of chance encounters and the interrelationships that emerge when artists convene from around the world during a time of global turmoil and unprecedented online connection.

The group has been meeting weekly for discussion, critique and mutual support. However, by coming together in the gallery space, the locational gaps are momentarily bridged, and the participants exist, for a time, in a shared physical context via their work. Curated by visual artist and Summer Residency faculty member Andrea Champlin, the exhibition features work by Albert Abdul-Barr Wang, Andrew Ackerman, Edie Beaucage, Marisa Bernotti, Nina Gospodin, Allison Hunter, Renee Rey, Aditi Ruiz, Ellen Hallie Schiff and Diane Tenerelli.

An abstract, expressionist painting featuring a number of circular yellow shapes.

Ellen Hallie Schiff, Celadon, 2021, from the SVA Artist Residency Project exhibition, “a throw of the dice will never abolish chance.”

Credit: Ellen Hallie Schiff

On Tuesday, July 13, MFA Art Practice presents “Work From Home,” an exhibition that explores the fractured domesticity that we’ve all experienced over the past 15 months. The advent of Zoom and remote work effectively declared that “the workspace is no longer just in the office—it’s wherever you are.” For many of us, that “wherever” was home, and its reassignment erased the bifurcation between our private and professional lives. In this exhibition—curated by Jacquelyn Strycker, department faculty member and director of operations and online curriculum—painted portraits commingle with dimensionless digital works, photographs and object-based pieces from eight different artists. 

Lisa Lee Freeman’s ink-splattered charts, annotated with symbols, text and numbers, often illegible, attempt to quantify a palpable sense of uncertainty and anxiety. India Lombardi-Bello makes “Meridian Charts,” created from found photography and digital painting, for the television characters and pop-culture icons that remind her of her own Italian-American heritage. And Juliet Walzer’s drawing series, “Waiting for a Connection,” documents snippets of Zoom sessions with her middle-school art students—drawn portraits from their gridded digital images, offering small glimpses of their home lives. 

Also featuring work by MFA Art Practice students Theodora Eliezer, Fei Jia, Maria Dolores Gregori and Christianne Ebel, “Work From Home” is on view in SVA’s online galleries through Monday, August 2.

An artwork featuring a blue zigzag bisecting the composition.

Lisa Lee Freeman,Things I Need to Believe, 2021, from the MFA Art Practice exhibition “Work From Home.”

Credit: Lisa Lee Freeman