Museum Presents CONVERSATIONS @ the SDMA

Six artists whose work is represented in the exhibition Recycled, Revisited will participate in Conversations @ the SDMA, a program of discussions between curators, artists, collectors, and SUNY faculty/staff that explores issues related to current museum exhibitions. The discussion will occur on Wednesday, August 10 at 6:30pm in the West Wing Galleries of the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art. It is free and open to all.

Image available at Recycled, Revisited includes a selection of work by artists from the Arts Society of Kingston. Co-curated by John Dahlsen and Dr. Alice Wexler, the exhibition is based on the Earth Charter, a declaration of the fundamental principles for building a just society with a special emphasis of the world’s environmental challenges. In the wide range of challenging works presented here, evocative wall, floor pieces, and installations are created from an eclectic variety of recycled and natural materials that include plastic bags, worn fabric, rocks, mesh, mirrored steel, beeswax and photography. The exhibition is on view and open to the public thru September 18.

Artists participating in Conversations on Wednesday, August 10 include:

Shelley Parriott Parriott’s concern is the nature of our journey, temporal or transcendental. Shaped layer upon layer from the worn fabric of external experience and the constrictions of the conditioned self, these are bundles of memory and spirit which allude to “body” as bundle for the soul; or the bundles of our lives gathered in haste, held in hope or in despair, carried along or left behind – abandoned, lost, crying out, or lying mute beside the road. With a disquieting sense of slippage, never-quite final shapes address the dichotomy between our physical and spiritual aspects and the transitory nature of form. Each embodies an ever enduring “anima” clothed only in fragile garments accrued on long night routes traveled, an engrossing struggle of resistances deep in the heart of the work speaks of being/non-being, presence/absence – what is found, lost, extant, or relinquished as we pass along the way. Our tenuous material existence is the medium through which every aspect of “self” is transformed.

Elisa Pritzker “The mixed media works that I’m showcasing belong to two environmental projects. One, related with the Pyramids of Naxos in the Greek island of the same name, during the 2004 Olympic Games where I was invited to participate as an artist representing the USA. The project exemplified through art the excessive waste in the Island and the world. The other one, called Garbage to you, Money to them, was conceived while freelancing for the curatorial department of the Studio Museum in Harlem for seven months. To get to the Museum I took the Hudson Line of Metro North, from Poughkeepsie to 125th Street in Harlem, three times a week. During my commuting time, I documented with my digital camera, mostly from the train, a place at 127th St. & Park Ave. run by low-income people that make money collecting recyclables. Most of the photos were taken from the train and some walking by the previously stated location. I was awarded with a 2004 Puffin Foundation Grant for this project.”

Franc Palaia Photo-illuminations incorporate photographic imagery with domestic recycled and found industrial objects. Duratrans or (durable transparencies) are inserted into auto parts, steamer trunks, lamps, crates, suitcases, toys, furniture, appliances, antique signs, and other throwaways of contemporary life. Each piece is illuminated from within and when arranged in a room setting, the back-lit images of oil fires, cave paintings, explosions, corporate logos, endangered animals and ruined architecture cast off an eerie glow in a semi-darkened space. These iconic lanterns produce seductive and provocative sensations that hover between folk art and savvy media-wise constructions. The images either echo or contradict their container and its’ imagined contents. I give these consumer relics a second life, sometimes a better and perhaps a more important life than their original purpose for existing. In the process, Photo-illuminations convey a subtle reference to environmental, political and cultural concerns.

Barbara Bachner My paintings and mixed media sculptures deal with memory and transience. I alter manmade objects, shoes in this instance, as metaphors for philosophical and abstract concepts of existence in contemporary life. Acknowledging that all matter will age and transform over time, I find that memory, unreliable and selective as it may be, is the longest lasting element in our lives; in fact, it is the most difficult to erase, as the unconscious harbors this hidden map to our existence, occasionally releasing it into the conscious mind. I use writing, often from dreams, as a mnemonic alternative to image in my work, establishing a dialogue between surface texture and text. To document places, events and objects in time and fix them in memory, I take photographs and transfer the images onto my paintings and mixed media sculptures, as seen in the shoes in the current installation “StoneWalk.” Paint is treated as a liquid substance with form-making ability and as a ground for writing, drawing and photo transfers. All materials are “found” in the process of living as well as in realizing the artworks.

Anthony Krauss In the first of three images involving the universally symbolic hub of urban activity, New York City, “Freedom Forever,” we find man contemplating a symbol of the antiquity and continuity of human culture in the form of a reflective pyramid situated in the foreground of a view of the island metropolis. In this juxtaposition, we meditate upon the course of our social progress as a species and price of the compromises that have sustained our civilization.

Meadow The twig sculptures rightly named “The Wood Spirits,” are an on going part of my “Space Series,” and can be traced back to the artist residency I spent in the woods at Northwaters in Temagami, Ontario in 1991. These pieces evoke memories of ancient markers, totems or remnants of forgotten cultures one might stumble upon hidden deep within the woods. The execution is simplistic, and the standing figures resemble primitive or childlike “stick figures.” However, there is a definite air of sophistication about them that draws the viewer into a world of magic and mysticism.

Conversations @ the SDMA is coordinated by Judi Esmond, Museum Educator of the SDMA. For museum information please call: 257-3844 or Judi Esmond, Museum Educator 257-2331.

Summer Museum hours: Wednesday – Saturday 11am – 5 pm Sunday 1 – 5 pm

For more information about the exhibition please visit: