2016 Participants

Beatriz Balanta was born in Colombia, South America. She received her Ph.D. from Duke University in 2010 and holds a BA in Sociology from Boston College. Balanta’s scholarly work analyzes the photographic and literary dimensions of racial formation in Latin America. Her research interests encompass 19th century debates regarding freedom, citizenship, and nation building in Brazil, Colombia, and the United States as well as contemporary theorizations of art practices from the Global South. She is an assistant professor at SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts. Balanta is currently co-teaching a course, along with Mary Walling Blackburn, that mobilizes the role of the stranger in both South and North American art production.

Morgan Bassichis is a writer and performer whose live comedic work explores history, mysticism, and just, like, being alive. Morgan has performed in New York at Artists Space, Dixon Place, La MaMa ETC, MoMA PS1, PARTICIPANT INC, the Poetry Project, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. Morgan’s shows include When the Baba Yaga Eats You Alive and The Witch House. Morgan’s essays have appeared in the Radical History Review, Captive Genders, and other edited volumes. Morgan was a 2015 Process Space Artist with the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and a 2015 Art Matters grantee. Morgan’s performances have been described as “out there” (by Morgan’s mother) and “intense” (by Morgan).

Daniel Bejar is an interdisciplinary artist living and working in Brooklyn, New York. Bejar is currently a 2015 fellow in Interdisciplinary Work from the New York Foundation for the Arts. He is also a 2014 recipient of a Franklin Furnace Grant, and a 2013 recipient of the Rema Hort Mann Visual Arts Grant. Bejar’s work has been featured in publications such as The New Yorker, Harpers Bazaar HK, Magazine B, and Hyperallergic, among others. Bejar’s work has been exhibited internationally and was recently included in the Brooklyn Museum’s Crossing Brooklyn exhibition in 2014. Additional exhibition venues include El Museo Del Barrio, NY; SITE Santa Fe, NM; Georgia State University, GA; Artnews Projects, Berlin, Germany; and Bronx Museum of the Arts, Bronx, NY. Bejar is a 2007 MFA recipient from the State University of New York, New Paltz, and received his BFA from the Ringling College of Art & Design, Sarasota, FL.

Dr. micha cárdenas directs the Poetic Operations Collaborative, a design research lab at the University of Washington Bothell applying technological creativity to advance social justice. She is Assistant Professor of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences and Interactive Media Design at the University of Washington Bothell. cárdenas is an artist/theorist who creates mobile media to reduce violence and increase health. cárdenas’ forthcoming book, Shifting Poetics uses practice-based research to understand trans of color movement in digital media, where movement includes migration, performance, and mobility. cárdenas has been described as one of “7 bio-artists who are transforming the fabric of life itself” by io9.com. She is a member of the artist collective Electronic Disturbance Theater 2.0. Her solo and collaborative artworks have been presented in museums, galleries, and biennials around the world.

Paula Chakravartty is Associate Professor of Media, Culture and Communication (MCC) at the Gallatin School, New York University. Her publications include Race, Empire and the Crisis of the Subprime (with Denise Ferreira da Silva, Johns Hopkins Press, 2013), Media Policy and Globalization (with Katharine Sarikakis, University of Edinburgh Press and Palgrave, 2006), Global Communications: Towards a Transcultural Political Economy (with Yuezhi Zhao, Rowman & Littlefield, 2008). She is the co-editor of a recent special issue on “Infrastructures of Empire” in Media, Culture and Society (2016).  She has worked with the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) on Media Activism and the New Political in the Inter-Asia program since 2013. She is also a member of the Gulf Labor Coalition and the NYU Coalition for Fair Labor.

Stamatina Gregory is a curator and art historian. A doctoral candidate at The Graduate Center at the City University of New York, her work focuses on the interrelationship of photography and politics. She is the co-curator of Bring Your Own Body: transgender between archives and aesthetics, which is traveling this fall to Haverford College. In 2005-2006 she participated in the Whitney Independent Study Program, and from 2007-2009 she was the Whitney Lauder Curatorial Fellow at the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania, where she organized several exhibitions including “Carlos Motta: The Good Life,” and “Tavares Strachan: Orthostatic Tolerance.”  Her retrospective of the work of New York photographer and activist Brian Weil (1954-1996) at the ICA in Philadelphia recently traveled to the Santa Monica Museum of Art: the catalog is published by Semiotext(e). She was Deputy Curator of the inaugural pavilion of The Bahamas at the 55th Venice Biennale. She is the Associate Dean of the School of Art at The Cooper Union.

Cliff Leek, MA, is a PhD candidate in sociology at Stony Brook University, Managing Editor of the journal Men and Masculinities, member of the Board of Directors for the American Men’s Studies Association, and Research Fellow with Men Advocating Real Change. He has served as Program Director of the Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities and his research examines global efforts that engage men in feminism.

Evan Malater is a writer and psychoanalyst in private practice in New York City.  His essay, “Eigentime: Time in the Writing of Michael Eigen” was published as a chapter in Living Moments by Karnac Books in 2014. He is a Ph.D. candidate at the European Graduate School. He is currently completing a book titled The Impossibility of Free Association, a deconstructive reading of various Freudian texts concerning free association.

Carlos Motta was born in Bogotá, Colombia in 1978 and currently lives and works in New York. His work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at the New Museum, New York; MOMA/PS1, New York; Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; Tate Modern, London; Röda Sten Konsthall, Gothenburg; PinchukArtCentre, Kiev; and Sala de Arte Público Siqueiros, México City. He has also been included in group exhibitions at: Guggenheim Museum, New York; SF MoMA, San Francisco; Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona; Witte de With, Rotterdam; Jeu de Paume, Paris; and Castello di Rivoli, Turin. Motta was also included in the X Lyon Biennale; X Gwangju Biennale; Gothenburg International Biennale of Contemporary Art; International Film Festival Rotterdam; and Toronto International Film Festival. In 2016, Motta has several solo exhibitions including Mercer Union, Toronto; PPOW Gallery, New York ; Pérez Art Museum, Miami; Hordaland Kunstsenter, Bergen; and MALBA-Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires. Motta won the Main Prize for the Pinchuk Foundation Future Generation Art Prize (2014), was named a Guggenheim Foundation Fellow (2008), and has received grants from Creative Capital (2012), Art Matters (2008) and Cisneros Fontanals Foundation (CIFO) (2006).

Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei is a philologist with a background in music composition, linguistics, conceptual art, and philosophy. He studied under Avital Ronell at the European Graduate School and Christopher Fynsk at the Centre for Modern Thought. Recent publications include Cross-Examinations (Gent: MER. Paper Kunsthalle, 2015), Allegory of the Cave Painting (Milan: Mousse, 2015; co-edited with Mihnea Mircan), both awarded with a 2016 Best Dutch Book Design Award, and Lapidari, 3 vols. (Brooklyn: punctum books, 2015). As a translator, he has worked on Jean Daive, Alessandro De Francesco, Hervé Guibert, Dick Raaijmakers, Avital Ronell, and Nachoem M. Wijnberg, among others, and his writings have appeared in journals such as continent., Frakcija, nY, Parmentier, postmedieval, and Theory & Event. Van Gerven Oei is co-director of punctum books, and directs project bureau for the arts and humanities, The Department of Eagles in Tirana and multilingual publishing house Uitgeverij. He is also founding editor of the journal Dotawo: A Journal of Nubian Studies and editor of the New World Summit.

Sondra Perry (born 1986 in Perth Amboy, New Jersey) is an interdisciplinary artist whose works in video, computer-based media, and performance explore black stuff and the digital abstraction of subjecthood. In 2015, the artist’s work appeared in the fourth iteration of Greater New York at MoMA/PS1. Other exhibitions include Disguise: Masks and Global African Art, Seattle Art Museum, Seattle (2015) and Brooklyn Museum (2016); A Constellation, Studio Museum in Harlem (2016); the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (2016); and has participated in residencies at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Vermont Studio Center, Ox-bow, and the Experimental Television Center. Perry holds an MFA from Columbia University, New York City’s 12th largest employer and the number one cause of gentrification in the neighborhood of Harlem, New York, a BFA from Alfred University, and is currently based in Houston, Texas as part of the artist-in-residence program (CORE) at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

Jackson Polys is a visual artist who lives and works between what is currently called Alaska and New York.  His work reflects examinations into the limits and viability of desires for indigenous growth and for the future of indigeneity.  He began carving with his father, Tlingit artist Nathan Jackson, in high school, and has worked as a visual artist based in Ketchikan, Alaska as Stron Softi, with solo exhibitions at the Alaska State Museum and the Anchorage Museum. Exhibiting in Zurich and Brussels, he has also worked variously with museums seeking replacements for works that were repatriated under NAGPRA (the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act), before pursuing his undergraduate education in New York.  As Stephen Paul Jackson he obtained a BA in Art History and Visual Arts from Columbia University in 2013, and subsequently went on to receive an MFA in Visual Arts from Columbia University in 2015.

Shawn(ta) Smith-Cruz is a married and single, zinester, archivist, writer, and black-dyke-participant of intentional, community-specific, collective spaces. A coordinator at the Lesbian Herstory Archives, and Head of Reference, appointed as Assistant Professor at the Graduate Center, CUNY. From (the people’s republic of) Brooklyn, Shawn founded the Queer Housing Nacional List, and has since purchased a home designated for queer women of color (QWOC) with her wife in the Bronx. Shawn is a co-editor of upcoming special issue of Sinister Wisdom, a lesbian literary and art journal on Honoring the Michigan Women’s Music Festival. Shawn often speaks on black lesbian communities in NYC and is currently organizing the archive for the women of the Salsa Soul Sisters, the first black lesbian organization in the country. Learn more about Shawn on her commons page: http://shawntasmith.commons.gc.cuny.edu/about/

Jeannine Tang is an art historian who teaches at the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College as Senior Academic Advisor and LUMA fellow. Previously a fellow at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and a Critical Studies participant at the Whitney Independent Studies program, her writing on contemporary art and exhibitions has appeared in numerous books and publications such as Artforum, Art Journal, Theory, Culture & Society, Afterimage, and the Journal of Visual Culture. Jeannine is currently working on a book on contemporary art, information and profiling in the 1970s; and co-curating a major exhibition and research project on the New York City galleries American Fine Arts, Co. and Pat Hearn Gallery, to open at CCS Bard’s Hessel Museum in 2017.

Alise Tifentale is an art and photography historian. She is a PhD candidate in Art History at the Graduate Center, City University of New York, and a researcher at the Software Studies Initiative, a research lab focusing on photography in contemporary social media led by Lev Manovich. Recent projects include a study of selfies in five global cities Selfiecity (2014) and The Exceptional and the Everyday: 144 hours in Kyiv (http://www.the-everyday.net, 2014). Tifentale is the author of Photography as Art in Latvia, 1960-1969 (2011) and co-curator of North by North East, the pavilion of Latvia at the 55th Venice Art Biennale (2013), together with Anne Barlow and Courtenay Finn. Tifentale is the founder of photography magazine Foto Kvartals and served as its editor-in-chief (2006-2010). Her articles have appeared in journals such as Networking Knowledge, ARTMargins, Russian Art & Culture, Art History & Theory, and others.

Wu Tsang’s films, installations, performances, and sculptures move fluidly among documentary, activism, and fiction. Her projects have been presented at museums and film festivals internationally, including Tate Modern (London), Stedelijk Museum (Amsterdam), MCA (Chicago), Berlinale Film Festival, South by Southwest Film Festival (Austin), and Hot Docs Festival (Toronto). Her 2012 film Wildness premiered at the Museum of Modern Art’s Documentary Fortnight, and her work was also featured in the 2012 Whitney Biennial and in “The Ungovernables” New Museum Triennial. Recent solo exhibitions include Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst (Zurich) and Spring Workshop (Hong Kong).

Soyoung Yoon is Program Director and Assistant Professor of Art History & Visual Studies at the Department of the Arts, Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts, The New School. She is also a Visiting Faculty at the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program [ISP]. In 2015-2016, she was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Pembroke Center at Brown University, under the annual theme of “Fatigue,” the first installation in a five-year series on “War.” Yoon received her Ph.D. from Stanford University, and holds a B.A. from Seoul National University. Yoon is at work on two book projects: Walkie Talkie, regarding the rise of cinéma vérité amidst the struggles for decolonization and new techniques of policing; and Miss Vietnam: The Work of Art in the Age of Techno-war, a project on feminist mediation, which reframes technological reproducibility via the framework of reproductive labor.