The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz is acquiring two new artworks by regional artists for its permanent collection: “Chingona AKA Libby,” 2017, by Libby Paloma, and several of the “A-historical Landscapes” series, 2019, by Jean-Marc Superville Sovak.
Paloma and Superville Sovak are two of 15 Hudson Valley artists currently exhibiting at The Dorsky Museum as part of “Madness in Vegetables,” the 2019 installment of the annual Hudson Valley Artists series. The exhibition is guest curated by Alyson Baker and Candice Madey and on view at The Dorsky through Nov. 10.
The acquisitions are made possible through The Dorsky’s Hudson Valley Artists Annual Purchase Award program, which enables the museum to acquire exceptional work by Hudson Valley artists and enrich its holdings in contemporary art from the region each year. The Purchase Award is supported by the Alice and Horace Chandler Art Acquisition Fund.
“Chingona AKA Libby” is an assemblage self-portrait from Libby Paloma’s series, “Lo Que No Sabrías (What You Wouldn’t Know),” which combines vernacular photographs and antique household items with thousands of glass beads, miniatures, bones, pieces of jewelry and religious relics evoking both traditional folk art and a campy kitsch aesthetic. The work tells a coming-of-age story of being queer and Mexican-American in the 1990s, when Paloma first started to ask why stories like hers were not being told in history books or popular culture, even though her ancestors had lived here long before settlers came to the land.
Libby Paloma was born in Southern California and raised in San Francisco. Her work often references these landscapes, and the Chicanx and queer culture she was surrounded by for much of her life. Paloma’s work also uses storytelling, family history and meticulous application of a variety of materials as strategies to think critically about iconography, visibility and representation. She has been an artist in residence at The Wassaic Project in Wassaic, New York, and the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont. She exhibited in a two-person exhibition, “Chingona Por Vida,” at the Hudson Valley LGBTQ Center Gallery in Kingston, New York and has recently had new works in group shows including “Return and Recall,” 25 East Gallery, New York, and “You Can Do Anything,” Gallery No. 17, Brooklyn.
“A-historical Landscapes” uses as its source the 19th century landscape engravings typical of the of the Hudson River School, onto which Jean-Marc Superville Sovak has added details from anti-slavery tracts, such as captured fugitive slaves and Underground Railroad caravans, that may at first glance appear incongruous. The actions depicted in these “edits” in fact represent scenes that occurred in close historical proximity to the period when the original landscape prints were made. In this way, the “A-historical Landscapes” series offers a “decolonizing” strategy that aims to fill in the absences left by dominant art historical narratives.
Jean-Marc Superville Sovak is a multidisciplinary artist and teaching professional whose work deeply involves his life and the community around him. Superville Sovak’s art has been exhibited at the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Socrates Sculpture Park, Kingston Sculpture Biennial, Manifesta 8 European Biennial of Contemporary Art in Spain, and ISCP in New York City. His videos are distributed by Videographe, Inc., and have been screened worldwide. Superville Sovak’s public works include a neighborhood portrait-drawing-as-oral-history project (“I Draw You Talk”) and guided tours of New York City housing projects. He has been a Visiting Lecturer at schools and universities including Bard College, and has also taught at the Dia Art Foundation and the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.
Next year’s Hudson Valley Artists call will be available on the museum’s website in early February 2020. Artists who wish to receive notification of the artist’s call can subscribe to the Museum’s email list at http://www.newpaltz.edu/museum.
Previous Hudson Valley Artist Purchase Award winners include Richard Edelman, Deb Lucke, Nestor Madalengoita, Holly Hughes, Stephen Niccolls, Patrick Kelley, Adie Russell, Gilbert Plantinga, Thomas Sarrantonio, François Deschamps, Curt Belshe and Lise Prown, Charles Geiger, Barbara Leon, Elisa Pritzker, Amy Talluto, and Mollie McKinley.
About The Dorsky Museum
Through its collections, exhibitions and public programs, the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art supports and enriches the academic programs at the College and serves as a center for Hudson Valley arts and culture. With more than 9,000 square feet of exhibition space distributed over six galleries, The Dorsky Museum is one of the largest museums in the SUNY system. Since its official dedication in 2001, The Dorsky has presented more than 100 exhibitions, including commissions, collection-based projects, and in-depth studies of contemporary artists including Robert Morris, Alice Neel, Judy Pfaff, Carolee Schneemann, and Ushio Shinohara.
Museum Hours: Wednesday–Sunday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Closed Mondays, Tuesdays, holidays and intersessions.
For more information about The Dorsky Museum and its programs, visit http://www.newpaltz.edu/museum or call (845) 257-3844.