Fidencio Martinez was born in Oaxaca, Mexico, but raised in the U.S after his family migrated. His current work examines the debate over 'borders', 'edges', and the people that must traverse through them. In his work, Martinez manipulates paper, surfaces and maps to refer to the crafts and customs taught to him as a toddler in Oaxaca -- ones used to celebrate festivals and mourn the dead. For Martinez these techniques are a way to reconnect with a time and place no longer present.
Martinez received an Ma & MFA from the University of Iowa in 2015 and a BFA from Memphis College of Art in 2013. Recent group exhibitions have occurred at Smithsonian's PopUp Gallery, MD; Cleveland Museum of Art, OH; Dubuque Museum of Art, IA; International Print Center New York, NY and the Chicago Artist Coalition, IL. Recent solo exhibition were held in Chicago, Iowa, North Carolina, Tennessee, Missouri and Maryland. Martinez is now based out of Chicago.
Leonardo Benzant’s work includes painting, performance, sculpture, sound and installation, and is driven by his connection to the trans African-Atlantic diaspora. He recognizes both his ties and disjunction from an ancestral past by considering the possibilities of genetic imprints, cultural identification, innate and intuitive beliefs and a conscious seeking of links that reveal continuities that are hidden or largely unsuspected by the mainstream. He imagines himself as an Urban Shaman, exploring both the familiar visible world and the hidden dimensions of other realms that lurk beneath the surface of daily life. The sense of personal cosmology in Benzant’s practice grows from both experiencing and observing the details of everyday life and ritual. Artworks emerge out of the crossroads of life, history, memory and imagination – a place between that suggests multiple layers of meaning. Inspiration is derived, in part, from the various modes of communication encountered in African-derived rituals.
Leonardo Benzant grew up in Brooklyn, NY and is currently based out of Queens, NY. He has studied at the Pratt Institute, NY and Borough of Manhattan Community College, NY. He has exhibited widely in galleries and institutions throughout NYC, New Jersey, Los Angeles, and Charlotte, NC. He has been written about in various publications, including ARTSlant, and Africanah.Org, and is in numerous private collections in NY, CA, DC and the Dominican Republic.
Pat Palermo is a painter as well as the writer/illustrator of an ongoing serialized graphic novel (LIVE/WORK) which debuted its first issue in 2011. He often uses humor and narrative media as a means to engage and satirize the absurdities of the business of meaning-production in the contemporary art world, and in society at large.
He received a BFA from Ohio State University in 2001 and an MFA in Painting/Drawing from Bard College in 2005. In 2010, he co-founded SOLOWAY, an artist-run gallery and performance space in Brooklyn NY. He was awarded the Xeric Grant for self-publishing comics artists in 2006 and his comic book LIVE/WORK was featured on The Best American Comics Anthology’s list of Notable Books of 2012. His work has been exhibited in New York, Los Angeles, Calgary, London, Paris, Geneva and Milan.
Diana Puntar is a sculptor - object maker - installation artist – collaborator and educator. Her current work continues her investigation of the vague and often muddy edges between the natural and constructed world.
Her work has been exhibited at PARTICIPANT INC, Blackston, PS1/MoMA, Luhring Augustine Gallery and other notable venues. She is the recipient of two Pollock Krasner grants, a NYFA Fellowship and has been an artist in residence at Yaddo, ArtOMI and the Millay Colony. Puntar is an Assistant Professor of Sculpture at California Polytechnic State University.
Michael Waugh is known for intricate, labor intensive works combining word and image. To Waugh, the selection of texts and images and the relationship between the two are the conceptual heart of his work. “These are worlds made of words that draw upon a historical quest for knowledge and for political progress—a quest often at odds with social reality,” he explains. Waugh explores these themes through drawings, mixed-media installations, performances, and videos, as in "The Wealth of Nations" project for which he has staged (and documented) laborious, endurance readings using Adam Smith's text about capitalism. However, Waugh is best known for his large, representative drawings, formed using minuscule handwritten words, a practice known as micrography. In these drawings, Waugh transcribes texts—such as government commissions and theoretical books about power and capitalism—into unsettling portraits and landscapes. Michael Waugh was born in Cambridge, MA. He earned his graduate degree in painting at New York University in 2000 but he also has degrees in writing acquired at Texas State University and history at the University of Texas. He has exhibited internationally for the last fifteen years and his work has been reviewed by the New York Times, Art in America and ARTNews. He is the recipient of awards of the New York Foundation for the Arts, The Marie Walsh Sharp Space Program and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation.The artist lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.
Zach Moser facilitates collaborative and interactive investigations, designed to discover alternative methods of communication and new expectations of human potential. His work focuses on pursuing knowledge, alleviating the critical effects of injustice and participating in creative communities. He is co-founder of Shrimp Boat Projects, Workshop Houston and The Big Parade.
Moser received a BA in studio art from Oberlin College in 2002 and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2008. He has exhibited his work and projects at the Contemporary Art Museum of Houston, the Glassell School of Art and Diverseworks Art Space. He received the Compton Mentor Fellowship in 2003, the Artadia Award in 2006, the Idea Fund in 2008, in 2011, was an Artist in Residence at the University of Houston Mitchell Center for the Arts, and in 2012 received a Creative Capital Visual Arts Award .
Dan Schmahl (b. 1986) is a multi-disciplinary artist whose practice combines photography, video, bookmaking, and installation. His current work is focused on exploring and interpreting the historic role of sublime imagery and how it can relate to a viewer today. He runs a small book press project called Super Hit Press that specializes in crafting small edition artist books and zines.
He received his BFA from Florida State University.
Grace Ndiritu (Kenya/UK) studied Textile Art at Winchester School of Art, UK; De Ateliers, Amsterdam 1998-2000. Her archive of over forty ‘Hand-crafted videos' and 'Video Paintings' have been widely exhibited. Upcoming solo performances and screenings, Museum Modern of Art, Warsaw (2014). Recent solo performances and screenings Musee Chasse & Nature and Centre Pompidou, Paris (2013), ICA Artist Film Survey, London (2011), Artprojx at Prince Charles Cinema London (2009). Upcoming solo exhibition at La Ira De Dios, Buenos Aires (2014). Recent solo exhibitions Chisenhale Gallery, London (2007), the 51st Venice Biennale (2005) and Ikon Gallery, Birmingham (2005).
Upcoming and recent group shows include those at MAC International Art Prize, Belfast (2014), Kulte Gallery, Casablanca (2014), MACBA, Barcelona (2014), 9th Bamako Biennale (2011), International Center of Photography, New York (2009), 8th Dakar Biennale (2008). She was chosen for Apollo Magazine: 40 under 40 (2014) artists list and awarded 1st Prize for Landscape Video and Photography, at the Centre for Art and Nature, Spain (2010). Her work has been commissioned by MACBA, Barcelona (2014), Bluecoat Gallery, Liverpool (2010) and Glynn Vivian Gallery, Wales (2006).
Her work has been featured in Phaidon: The 21st Century Art Book (2014) and is also housed in museum collections such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York and private collections such as the Walther Collection, New York and Germany. Her experimental art writing has been published by Animal Shelter Journal Semiotext(e) MIT Press, Metropolis M art magazine and Oxford University Press.
Hilary Wilder is an artist who works in painting and installation. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, a grant from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, and a Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Professional Fellowship.
Wilder has exhibited work in solo exhibitions at venues that include The Suburban (Oak Park, Illinois), Open Satellite (Seattle), the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, and Devin Borden Gallery (Houston), and in group exhibitions throughout the US. Her videos have been screened at festivals at the University of Southern California, The Pacific Film Archive, and Chicago International Film Festival, among others.
She has recently participated in artist residencies at the Ucross Foundation, the Jentel Foundation, and at the Association of Icelandic Visual Artists (SIM) in Reykjavik. In 2004, she completed a two-year fellowship as both a Visual Artist resident and a Critical Studies resident in the Core Program at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston.
She currently holds the positions of Associate Professor and Graduate Program Director in the Department of Painting + Printmaking at Virginia Commonwealth University.
Autumn Knight is a Houston-based performance/multi-disciplinary artist. Knight holds an M.A. from New York University and a B.A. from Dillard University, New Orleans. Her performance work has been included in shows at DiverseWorks, Art League Houston, Project Row Houses, Texas Southern University Museum, and Alabama Song (Houston, TX).
Joe Joe Orangias' practice intersects Fine Arts, Design and Critical Theory. The driving goal of his work is to sustain, but also challenge the social and cultural identities of certain spaces as they transition over time. His focus has been on how spaces of everyday infrastructure choreograph and, at times, force the body to move and perform in distinct ways, including certain sexual and gender roles.
Orangias holds an MFA from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and BFA from the Savannah College of Art and Design. He has exhibited work internationally, received an ASA Visual Arts Fellowship from the Hochschule für bildende Künste Hamburg and participated in residencies at Art342 Foundation in Colorado and Atelier OPA: Original Products & Architecture in Tokyo. He recently received the 2014 SMFA Traveling Fellowship to realize a project at different sites in New Zealand.
John Hodany (b. 1974, New York) received his BFA from The Cooper Union in 1995 and his MFA from de Ateliers 63 (Amsterdam, NL) in 2002. For the past ten years he has been living and working between New York and Berlin.
Hodany’s work has been exhibited at Zurcher Gallery, Eleven Rivington, Greenberg Van Doren and Rare Gallery in New York. In Germany his work has been exhibited at Lena Bruening, Sabine Knust and Conradi Gallery, in Sweden at Loyal Gallery and in The Netherlands at Fons Welters, Play Station. Most recently Hodany has shown his work at Zurcher Gallery in Paris. His work has also been featured in many international art fairs including FIAC, The Armory Show and Art Basel.
His work has been reviewed in Art in America, The New York Times, Time Out NY, Le Figaro (F) and de Volkskrant (NL) among others. His work is in the collection of The Museum of Modern Art, NYC, the Artotheque du Limousin (France) as well as private collections.
Davide Savorani (Faenza, 1977) is an Italian visual artist.
After graduating from the Academy of Arts in Ravenna, he has performed extensively in projects by Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio, Kinkaleri, ZimmerFrei and Invernomuto. Savorani creates installation-based works using a variety of different media: from drawing to photography, from sculpture to performance. His practice questions pointedly the approach towards the exhibition space, which he treats as a time-sensitive entropic area.
He has participated in several group exhibition including: Prune In The Sky, Toves Galleri, Copenhagen (2012); Not An Image But A Whole World, Kunstraum, Wien (2012); Against Gravity, ICA, London (2010); HaVE A LoOk! HAve a Look!, FormContent, London (2010); #02. Mal d’Archive, La Friche la Belle de Mai, Marseille (2010); Santarcangelo 39, Santarcangelo (2009); And yet it moves, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebuadengo, Guarene (2009).
Among his solo exhibitions: Green Room, Careof, Milan (2011), Gallisterna, Brown Project Space, Milan (2008).
Savorani is among the participants of L’inadeguato/Lo inadecuado/The inadequate, Dora Garcia’s extended performance shown at the Spanish Pavilion during the 2011 Venice Biennale
Josh Bernstein inserts his own travels, sculptures and photographs into larger historical narratives.
His work has been exhibited in the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Bryan Miller Gallery in Houston, and the Emergency Room Gallery at Rice University. It has been reviewed in the Houston Chronicle and the Houston Press, as well as Artforum.com and Art Fag City.
Bernsteins work is included in several private collections and the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. He received his B.A. from AmherstCollege and his M.F.A. from Mason Gross School of Art at Rutgers University.
Zachary Zeke Podgorny’s birth name is Zachar Vaks, and written in Cyrillic letters it looks like 3axap Bakc. 3axap was born in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, and became Zachary Podgorny when he and his family moved to America, one year after the dissolution of the U.S.S.R. Since then he has been Zachary, Zach, Zack, Zaktion, BeaRaWare, and Paint Conductor. A few years ago he began signing his work as 3axap, as a nod to his roots. Different identities are linked to each name: a different persona for each new moniker. 3axap has become an anthropologist of his identity, and painting and drawing, along with music, cooking, and performance, are the tools he uses to uncover different aspects of himself.
Zachary Podgorny received his BFA from Tyler School of Art and his MFA from The Ohio State University. He has shown in Philadelphia, New York, Columbus and Vienna Austria.
Colin Hunt (b. 1973, New York) lives in Brooklyn, NY. He received his BFA from The Cooper Union in 1995 and his MFA from Columbia University in 1998. His work has been exhibited in New York galleries including: Artist’s Space, White Columns, and ZieherSmith as well as the Brooklyn Museum and the National Academy of Design. He has taught at Columbia University and the Cooper Union and been published in Columbia Magazine and The Brooklyn Review.
Kelly Sears is an animator and filmmaker. She received a B.A. from Hampshire College and an M.F.A. from the University of California, San Diego. Her collage animation media practice draws from genres such as experimental film, documentary, essay films, recycled cinema and critical fiction. She uses appropriated imagery from Post WW2 America, reworking discarded magazines, books, orphaned films and other ephemera, to investigate contemporary political narratives of power that include manifest destiny, expansionist doctrines, occupation, and surveillance. She uses a combination of analog and digital animation, video processing and sound design to intervene with the source images. Her work has screened at museums, galleries and film festivals, such as MOMA, The Hammer Museum, LACMA, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Machine Project, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Light Industry, Sundance Film Festival, Ann Arbor Film Festival and Black Maria Film Festival. She has been awarded residencies from Yaddo, The Core Program/Museum of Fine Arts Houston, and the Galveston Artist Residency. Currently she teaches Video Art at Scripps College.
Nick Barbee received his MFA in Painting from Tyler School of Art, Philadelphia, PA in 2009. He received his BFA in Painting from Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY in 2003. From 2009 to 2011 he was an Artist in Residence with the Core Fellowship Program at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. He was the recipient of an Exhibitions Fellowship from Temple University in 2007 and 2008.
Barbee’s work has been exhibited at the MAC and CentralTrak in Dallas and Inman Gallery and the Glassell School in Houston, TX. His work has also been shown at Temple Gallery, Vox Populi and The Ice Box/Crane in Philadelphia, and Doran Gallery in Boston.
Barbee has given lectures at Sam Houston State University and The Glassell School of Art, as well as Rice university. His work has been written about in the Philadelphia Weekly and ArtLies.com. His work is in the collection of The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston as well as private collections
Nsenga Knight is an interdisciplinary artist and filmmaker from Brooklyn, New York. In her artistic work, she mobilize a play with language and form and act as disruptive intervener and ardent preservationist: constructing archives, re-appropriating historical materials, and performing gestures that reference struggles of resistance and survival. There is a palimpsestuous circulation of meaning and function in her work and the traces of human presence and movement play an essential role in its development. Her approach to working with materials and ideas is part of a larger theoretical project that poses critical questions about process, power, representation, and the construction of historical narratives.
Knight has held artist residencies at Brandywine Workshop in Philadelphia, Film/Video Arts Center in New York, and was a BCAT/ Rotunda Gallery Multimedia Artist in Resident. She was most recently a recipient of the Leeway Foundation Art and Change Grant for her performance and print-based work Last Rite and was awarded Finishing Funds from the Philadelphia Independent Film and Video Association for her short film 4 Women. Prior to arriving in Galveston she facilitated the Muslim Voices of Philadelphia project at Scribe Video Center by training and guiding the Ahmaddiyya Muslim community in Philadelphia on how to write, film, and edit a film about their community’s history and current activities in that city. She has exhibited work at Project Rowhouses in Houston, Texas, the New Museum for Contemporary Art, PS1 MoMA, the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Art, and the Amistad Gallery at the University of Pennsylvania among others. Knight earned a Masters of Fine Arts degree at the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Arts in Film Production at Howard University.