ANNOUNCING THE 2017/18 SHIFT RESIDENTSGeorge Bolster is currently Director of Programs and External Affairs for the Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation and The 8th Floor gallery. In addition to his background in arts administration, he has curated numerous exhibitions including: i-podism: Cultural Promiscuity in the Age of Consumption, Tulca 2008, International Arts Festival, Galway City, Ireland; Urban Gothic, Café Gallery Projects, London, UK; and Multiplicity, Context Gallery, Derry, Ireland. His multidisciplinary practice uses oppositional narratives to address ideas and belief systems from multiple perspectives. In films such as Un/natural History: Drowning Captiva (addressing climate change and rising sea levels) and The Moon, McMoon’s, and the Moon Museum (addressing cultural preservation and conservation in the face of environmental disintegration), he uses a combination of science, history, and science fiction to examine our most prescient societal and species-wide challenges. His work has been shown in numerous museums and galleries throughout Europe, America and Canada. Bolster is a recipient of numerous awards from the Irish Arts Council, and the Arts Council of England. He completed the Firestation International Artist’s Residency in 2012, and, in 2013 he was given a residency award from the Rauschenberg Foundation.
Making visual stories in dialogue with her frequent questions and pervasive hopes, Elise Gardella tracks disruptions and harmonies in social groups and her own life—primarily working in drawing and photography. From 2012—2016 she instigated Presenting at 17, monthly happenings with artists, writers, and musicians at her apartment. In October 2015 she brought a celebration show of these artists, entitled 39X17, to La MaMa Galleria, NYC. Her solo show, Gray Shapeless Monster, was also at La MaMa. This work came out of her five years as an emergency room SAVI-Advocate for survivors of partner violence. Often collaborating she was part of Friends of William Blake, and the collective’s work was in Agitprop! at Brooklyn Museum of Art in 2016. Gardella lives in Manhattan and holds a BFA, California College of the Arts and a MFA from Bard College; Visiting Lecturer, Picture Berlin; Resident, The Shandaken Project; and since 2007 has worked at Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture.
Jeff Kasper (Queens, New York) is an artist with a research and engagement-centered practice. His current body of work in time-based media, situation, and writing, investigates the scripting of masculinity and queerness manifest in one-on-one, intimate encounters between men. He has been invited to lecture at the MoMA Department of Education, School of Visual Arts, School at the Art Institute of Chicago, CUNY, and The New School. His work has been presented as part of exhibitions and programs at the 26th International Graphic Design Biennial Brno, Czech Republic; Okno Gallery, Russia; Art in Odd Places; Bronx River Art Center; Artspace, New Haven; Queens Museum; and International Graduate Center for the Study of Culture at the University of Giessen. He received his MFA from Queens College CUNY and an interdisciplinary BA, also from CUNY where he studied at the Anne & Bernard Spitzer School of Architecture at The City College of New York. His work as an arts administrator has involved co-producing initiatives that put artists, neighbors, and community organizations in collaboration to create public art and educational spaces that address topics such as sustainability, aging, immigration, and housing justice, to name a few. Jeff is currently the Director of Communications & Engagement at More Art.
J. Soto is a queer transgender interdisciplinary artist, writer, and arts organizer. He has curated and performed work for The National Queer Arts Festival (San Francisco), Links Hall (Chicago), as well as Vox Populi (Philadelphia) among others nationally. His collaborative writing project, "Ya Presente Ayer" can be found in Support Networks, Chicago Social Practice History Series (University of Chicago Press). His organizing projects include the Latinx Artists Retreat (LXAR), which he recently launched with a group of Latinx artists and administrators and the Latinx Artist Visibility Award (LAVA) for Ox-Bow School of Art in partnership with The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is also a recent Fellow of the National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures Advocacy Leadership Institute (ALI). His recent writing can be found in Original Plumbing and Apogee Journal: Queer History, Queer Now Folio. He is currently Programs Coordinator for Equity & Inclusion Initiatives at Movement Research and Production & Access Coordinator at Eyebeam.
Maya Suess is an artist, educator and arts administrator. She makes drawings, installations, videos, performances and other mischievous entities. In 2016 she had a solo show at the Leslie Lohman Gay and Lesbian Museum Prince Street Project (NYC), and a work from that exhibition was hung in the Museum's 50 years of Collecting Exhibition in 2017. Maya has also shown work at the Film Anthology Archives (NYC); The European Cultural Capital, Umeå2014 (Umeå, Sweden); The Western Front (Vancouver, Canada); the Vancouver Art Gallery; Kansai Queer Film Festival (Kansai, Japan); The London Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (London, UK), among many others. She holds a BFA in Media Arts from Emily Carr University of Art and Design, and an MFA in contemporary performance from Simon Fraser University. Maya also works as a “radical arts administrator” as the Managing Director of Flux Factory, where she oversees an Artists-in-Residency program hosting over 40 artists annually, manages extensive programming in the public exhibition space, and wears many other institutional hats. Born on a small island off the coast of western Canada, today she lives and works in Astoria, New York.
Abbey Williams is a Brooklyn based video artist and proud native New Yorker. She received her BFA from The Cooper Union, her MFA from Bard College, and was a participant at The Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2004. Her work has been exhibited at TATE Britain, London; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid; The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; The Center for Contemporary Art, Tel Aviv; The Studio Museum of Harlem, and Williams was a part of the 2005 Greater New York exhibition at MoMA PS1. Her videos have been included in several festivals, including The New York Underground Film Festival, The DC Underground Film Festival, The Werkleitz Festival in Halle, Germany, and the Rotterdam International Film Festival. She has had solo exhibitions in Minneapolis at Franklin Art Works and in New York at The Barbara Walters Gallery at Sarah Lawrence College, Bellwether Gallery and Foxy Production. In support of her creative practice she has taught at The Cooper Union, NYU and CUNY. Abbey has worked as Program Manager for Socrates Sculpture Park, as Creative Director of The Rusty Fields Project at The Weeksville Heritage Center, and she is currently Program Associate for the Art Matters Foundation.
Wong Kit Yi is a Hong Kong-born artist based in New York. Her conceptual and performance based work animates human interactions by measuring, locating, and quantifying the intangible. Recent solo shows include Futures, Again, P!, New York (2017), and Sandwich Theory: convertible painting series, a.m. space, Hong Kong (2016). Her projects have been included in group exhibitions such as In Search of Miss Ruthless, Para Site, Hong Kong (2017), and Bringing the World into the World, Queens Museum, New York (2014). Wong’s work has been reviewed in the New York Times, Art in America, Contemporary Art Daily, e-flux conversations, Art Review, ARTnews, Asian Art News, The Art Newspaper, Art Asia Pacific, China Daily and Modern Painters. In 2015, Wong participated in an Arctic Circle Expeditionary Residency with support from the Jerome Foundation, producing several commissioned works and an essay film structured in her signatures karaoke-inspired format. She received her MFA from Yale University in 2012. Wong Kit Yi divides her time between being herself and the independent curator/archivist Ali Wong. She is currently Archivist and Researcher at Asia Art Archive in America.