June 9, 2011 — Area residents and visitors are invited to attend a free Works-in-Progress Program and Reception on Tuesday, June 21, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., at the Sculpture Space studio, 12 Gates Street, Utica, located nearby the Historic Brewery District. The reception is sponsored by John Aiken of JCA of Utica, Inc. The restaurant sponsor is The Lotus Garden Noodle and Sushi House on 399 Bleecker Street in Utica. Area musician Michael Patrei and his band “The Swordfish Trombones” will perform in collaboration with artist-in-residence Jongsun Lee, who will present an interactive “rice” performance. Her performances involve body movement and sound.
The public is also invited to a mayoral ribbon cutting ceremony immediately prior to the reception, at 508 Wiley Street, performed by Mayor David Roefaro, at 5pm. The house at this address is the new Sculpture Space Artists Residence, purchased and renovated by Sculpture Space with support from community residents and from the Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties. The Department of Urban and Economic Development of the City of Utica supported façade renovations at 508 Wiley with a $20,000 grant secured through a federal Community Development block grant.
The reception following the ribbon cutting is only one block from the house at the Sculpture Space studio. Here the community will have the opportunity to view exciting sculptural contemporary work in a wide range of media created by emerging professional visiting artists, Asuka Goto (Brooklyn, NY), Jongsun-Jay Lee (Brooklyn, NY) and Olivia Robinson (De Ruyter, NY). These artists have spent up to two months at Sculpture Space making new art. During Jongsun Lee’s “rice” performance a cascade of rice will fall on her head from approximately 10 feet: she will try to catch individual grains with a pair of chopsticks and other utensils. The artist will invite all interested people to listen to the sound falling rice and see if it conjures up the image of masses of hungry, churning stomachs. Jongsun also performed at Piers and Blake while in Utica.
“The art is original, experimental and cutting edge and always totally intriguing,” said Sydney L. Waller, Sculpture Space executive director. “The artists are articulate, inventive and delightful. They are each so different from one another, demonstrating a broad spectrum of approaches to contemporary art making. We hope the public will enjoy this glimpse into the creative process.”
About the Artists:
The newest arrival to the 35-year-old international artist residency program – that has been attracting professional artists to the Mohawk Valley since 1976 – is Asuka Goto. Goto receive her MFA in Sculpture from Tyler School of Art and her BA and Post-Baccalaureate Certificate from Brandeis University. She has participated in residencies at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, the Vermont Studio Center, the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and HomeBase Berlin. She is the recipient of several awards including a Joan Mitchell MFA Grant and Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Individual Creative Artist Fellowship. Her first solo show is scheduled to open this summer at Real Art Ways in Hartford, CT. Goto grew up in Boston, MA and Yokosuka, Japan and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. Goto’s work explores the relationship between the human body and constructed space. Through participatory installations that often involve movable architectural elements, she invites viewers to reshape the space that surrounds them.
Jongsun-Jay Lee was born in Daegu, South Korea. Lee began her art education at Montgomery College in Rockville, Maryland. She completed her BFA at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland. She earned her MFA (2009) at the Rinehart School of Sculpture at MICA. Jongsun received a Jacob K. Javits Fellowship Award from the U.S. Department of Education. Jongsun-Jay has participated in various artist residencies, including the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, MA; the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, VT; and the Beijing Studio Center in Beijing, China. Lee has exhibited her work nationally and internationally. She lives and works in New York City. Lee is a multi-media performance based artist, investigating the human condition and communicating the tension surrounding personal conflicts and social inequities. The central core of her work is an active collaboration between artists to inform and support under-served communities.
Olivia Robinson is a multimedia artist whose work spans performance, installation, research, and community engagement. Robinson’s diverse body of work, which ranges in scale from hand-built textile circuits to architectural-scale inflatable structures, investigates issues of justice, identity, community, and transformation. She has received awards and honors from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, the Franklin Furnace Fund, the Harpo Foundation, the New York Foundation for the Arts, Sculpture Space, and the Center for Land Use Interpretation. Her work has been recognized in books, journals, and CD/DVD releases and has been presented at internationally recognized venues including the Baltimore Museum of Art, the WPA/Corcoran Museum, the American Visionary Art Museum, the Museo d'Arte Provincia di Nuoro in Sardegna, Italy, the Albany Symphony Orchestra, the Center for Photography at Woodstock, SIGGRAPH, ISEA, and Boston Cyberarts Festival.
About Sculpture Space:
Sculpture Space is an international artist in residence program, the only one of its kind in North America. Work created at Sculpture Space is subsequently shown in museums, sculpture parks and galleries around the globe. Sculpture Space is a recent recipient of the Mohawk Valley Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year award for its non-profit category. A unique cultural resource within the City of Utica, the Mohawk Valley and Upstate New York, Sculpture Space promotes interaction between international visiting artists and the local community by placing works in the public domain, hosting studio tours, and collaborating with other organizations to exhibit artists' projects. Several hundred artists apply annually. Twenty national and international artists are accepted each year to enjoy two-month residencies. They receive stipends, subsidized housing, 24-hour access to the studio and technical assistance. The program is in part made possible with support from the NYS Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts (which believes that a great nation deserves great art), the Milton and Sally Avery Foundation, area foundations and corporations and generous friends.
For further information, please call 315-724-8381 or visit www.sculpturespace.org.