FUƧION NYC is an engaged, curator-driven art show. The organizers will produce several curatorial
experiences for the public at the Clemente Soto Velez Cultural & Educational Center. Our show will
explore what it takes to live and express oneself as a full human being. Technology has not only
changed our lives forever but also the relevancy of human endeavor. All facets of our life have been
affected and how we relate to one another. So, we will look at ways where we can re- integrate our
humanity creatively that includes are desires, individual tastes and environment through the lens of
curators and artists of color.
Savona Bailey-McClain currently lives and works in New York City. She is an independent curator,
producer and preservation advocate. The range of McClain’s practice has included sculpture,
drawings, performance, sound, and mixed media. McClain is the Executive Director and Chief Curator
for The West Harlem Art Fund, Inc. a sixteen year old public art organization serving neighborhoods
around the City. Her public art installations have been seen in the New York Times, Art Daily, Artnet
Magazine, Los Angeles Times, DNAinfo and Huffington Post among others. McClain strives for a
soulful, meaningful connection with the public and the “arts”. It simply has to be approachable as far
as she is concerned. McClain has installed at Times Square, DUMBO, Soho, NoLita, Williamsburg,
Governors Island, Queens, Harlem (East, Central & West), Chelsea, the Bronx and East Harlem this
past fall. McClain has a liberal arts degree from the University of Pittsburgh.
Yves Marie Vilain is a Brooklyn born multimedia producer, with Haitian roots. He got his start
producing commercial photography for organizations such as Filmmaker’s Magazine, IFP and Writer's
Guild of America - WGAE. His portfolio includes work with celebrities & public affairs figures, such
as Harry Belafonte and former NYC Mayor Bloomberg. Yves has a BA degree in media studies, at
Queens College and has evolved into a creative team player with entrepreneurial skills. His love for art
and media is a driving force in his professional career.
Ina Archer who is a participating curator and who organized many of the digital works shared, “The digital artists included in this show spotlight
the challenges as well as opportunities that technology presents. These time-based art works remain fully human through the integration of the
hand(made) and hand(held) devices. Using various media old and new, these artists share deliberate and aesthetically-motivated evocations of
lo-tech and artisanal methods that include single channel, installation video, film, digital animation, performance and drawing”.
Yasmin Hernandez inspired by the theme of the show stated “This exhibition, focusing on what it means to express oneself as a full, complete
human being, has finally given me the opportunity to pay tribute to my brother’s life and legacy. The bandanas use image and text from poems
and songs to chronicle his short, but full life, from Puerto Rico to Brooklyn to community hero before ending his battle with cancer.”
Co-producer Yves Marie Vilain summed everyone’s feelings by saying that "Fusion NY provides what the art world is missing: diversity of
The line-up of curators and artists include:
Lead Curators & Producers: Savona Bailey-McClain and Yves Marie Vilain;
Participating Curators: Ina Archer, Badder Israel, Richard Beavers, Suave Rhoomes
Artists: Ina Archer, Brian Convery, Dianne Dwyer, Dan Ericson, Scherezade Garcia, Chris Harris, Yasmin Hernandez, Ariel Jackson, Shani Peters,
Joshua Reynolds, Adrienne Reynolds, Jamal Shabazz, Madeline Schwartzman, Shiro, Dianne Smith, Toccarra Thomas, and Yves Marie Vilain
Artist Interviews on YouTube:
History of West Soho
FUƧION NYC abuts the Charlton-King-Vandam Historic District which includes the South Village area of Greenwich Village and West Soho. History
of the area goes back to the Dutch and the mid 1640’s. The first known farms were owned by freed slaves. Varick Street was named after Richard
Varick , a Revolutionary War officer who served as Attorney General and then Mayor of the City of New York from 1789-1801. Aaron Burr helped with
the creation of King and Vandam. The street King was named for Rufus King, a fellow U.S. senator; and Vandam for Anthony Van Dam, a wealthy
importer and city alderman.
The area has a lively history with commercial activity on the waterfront, anti-slavery history and Irish immigration. Many houses were kept in the
same family for generations, and many people who led lives of distinction in the City continued to live here.
Counting Sheep by artist Kyu Seok Oh and produced by the West Harlem Art Fund, Times Square Alliance & Armory Show
In its sixteen years, The Armory Show has become an international institution, and every March, artists, galleries, collectors, critics and curators from all over
the world make New York City their destination. The concept of a week of arts-related events grew organically, and was formalized with the support of the city
Mission of Armory Arts Week
In celebration of the city’s unparalleled artistic communities, Armory Arts Week highlights a neighborhood or borough’s arts scene each night with events. Past
events have included special receptions, open studios, art tours, museum discounts, performances, panels, artist discussions and parties.
Armory Arts Week attracts visitors from all over the world, as well as residents of New York City and the Tri-State area. According to a 2007 independent
economic impact study, of the 52,000 visitors to The Armory Show, 56 percent (29,000) were visitors to New York City; out-of-town visitors were comprised of
11,000 from other countries, 5,000 living in the suburbs of NYC, and 13,000 from elsewhere in the United States; and among all out-of-town visitors, 73 percent
cited The Armory Show as their primary reason for being in New York City.
FUƧION NEW YORK in partnership with the West Harlem Art Fund will conduct museum tours with El Museo del Barrio and the Studio Museum in Harlem.
Permanent Collection Tour & Wine Tasting
El Museo del Barrio, often known simply as El Museo (the museum) is a museum located in the East Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan. It is located
towards the northern end of Museum Mile, immediately north of the Museum of the City of New York and south of the future Museum for African Art.
Founded in 1969, El Museo specializes in Latin American and Caribbean art, with an emphasis on works from Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rican in New
The museum features an extensive collection of around 8,500 pieces composed of pre-Columbian and traditional artifacts, particularly a large
permanent Taino exhibit, as well as 20th century arts and crafts, graphics and popular media, Mexican masks, textiles from Chile and photographs and
traditional art from Puerto Rico. There are often temporary exhibits on Puerto Rican and Latino modern art. The museum also sponsors numerous
festivals and educational programs throughout the year including the annual Three Kings Day parade.
Tour & Wine Tasting at Red
Rooster in Harlem
The Shadows Took Shape
After Funkadelic. Maggot brain. 1971 (V2), 2013
Courtesy the artist
The Shadows Took Shape is a dynamic interdisciplinary exhibition exploring contemporary art through the lens of Afrofuturist aesthetics. Coined in 1994 by writer
Mark Dery in his essay “Black to the Future,” the term “Afrofuturism” refers to a creative and intellectual genre that emerged as a strategy to explore science
fiction, fantasy, magical realism and pan-Africanism. With roots in the avant-garde musical stylings of sonic innovator Sun Ra (born Herman Poole Blount, 1914–
1993), Afrofuturism has been used by artists, writers and theorists as a way to prophesize the future, redefine the present and reconceptualize the past. The
Shadows Took Shape will be one of the few major museum exhibitions to explore the ways in which this form of creative expression has been adopted
internationally and highlight the range of work made over the past twenty-five years. The exhibition draws its title from an obscure Sun Ra poem and a
posthumously released series of recordings. Providing an apt metaphor for the long shadow cast by Sun Ra and others, the exhibition features more than sixty
works of art, including ten new commissions, charting the evolution of Afrofuturist tendencies by an international selection of established and emerging
practitioners. These works span not only personal themes of identity and self-determination in the African-American community, but also persistent concerns of
techno-culture, geographies, utopias and dystopias, as well as universal preoccupations with time and space.
The twenty-nine artists featured in The Shadows Took Shape work in a wide variety of media, including photography, video, painting, drawing, sculpture and
multimedia installation. Participating artists include Derrick Adams, John Akomfrah, Laylah Ali, Edgar Arceneaux, Sanford Biggers, Edgar Cleijne + Ellen
Gallagher, William Cordova (in collaboration with Nyeema Morgan and Otabenga Jones & Associates), Cristina De Middel, Khaled Hafez, Trenton Doyle
Hancock, Kira Lynn Harris, Kiluanji Kia Henda, Wayne Hodge, David Huffman, Cyrus Kabiru, Wanuri Kahiu, Hew Locke, Mehreen Murtaza, Wangechi Mutu,
Harold Offeh, The Otolith Group, Robert Pruitt, Sun Ra, RAMM:ΣLL:ZΣΣ, Lili Reynaud-Dewar, Larissa Sansour, Cauleen Smith, William Villalongo and Saya
Woolfalk. Accompanying the exhibition will be a 160-page, fully illustrated exhibition catalogue (designed by Kimberly Varella of Content Object, Los Angeles),
with twenty-nine artist entries and essays by the exhibition’s curators; an introduction by Studio Museum Director and Chief Curator Thelma Golden; and newly
commissioned essays by foremost scholars and writers Tegan Bristow; Samuel R. Delany; Paul D. Miller aka DJ Spooky, That Subliminal Kid; Kodwo Eshun;
and Alondra Nelson; and a tumblr page, shadowstookshape.tumblr.com. The Shadows Took Shape is organized by Naima J. Keith, Assistant Curator and Zoe
Whitley, independent curator.
INA ARCHER’s multimedia works and films have been shown
nationally including in Cinema Project’s EXPANDED FRAMES: a celebration
and examination of critical cinema in Portland, Or., “Cinema Remixed and
Reloaded: Black Women Artists and the Moving Image Since 1970″ at
Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, GA., and The Contemporary Art
Museum, Houston. Her awards include residencies at Jentel Artist Residency,
Sheridan, WY, Blue Mountain Center, NY and Civitella Ranieri in Umbria,
Italy. Ina was a Studio Artist in the Whitney Independent Study program, a
NYFA multidisciplinary Fellow, a 2005 Creative Capital grantee in film and
video, and a 2010 nominee for the Anonymous Was A Woman award. Archer
is adjunct faculty at Parsons The New School for Design. She is a member of
New York Women in Film and Television’s Women’s Film Preservation Fund
and a board member of IMAP, Independent Media Arts Preservation. She
earned a BFA in Film/Video from RISD and a Master’s in Cinema Studies at
NYU focusing on race, preservation, early sound cinema and technology.
Ina’s writing includes essays and reviews for Film Comment, Framework and
Black Camera. She blogs about the “interconnectedness of all things
(media)”and a bit about horror at email@example.com.
BADDER ISRAEL was born and raised in Puebla,
Mexico. Israel was born into Mexico's graffiti scene.
His dad is the legendary old-school graffiti artist,
Mosh. Israel began to graffiti professionally when he
was 15 years old. His dad used to own a graffiti store
where Israel helped out. His dad was also the one that
coordinated the Graffiti Expo in Mexico where the elite
of the elite would show up and put it down for their
crew and country that they were representing. Later
on, the artist name Badder was given to Israel after
paying his dues in the street scene. Badder is now 27
years old and lives in Brooklyn, New York. Badder's
historical graffiti pieces have given him a name in New
York since his roots are represented through his
artwork. Since his move to New York, Badder has
mastered many different skills including air brushing
and tattooing. Badder is tattooing more than ever but
still has a crew based out of Brooklyn, New York.
Richard Beavers is a seasoned art professional with over fourteen years in the art industry.
He is the owner of House of Art Gallery in Brooklyn, New York established in 2007.
He has worked with numerous private and corporate clients and often provides guidance
and information related to art investments and art education. Richard has quietly
amassed a reputation for his curatorial experience having curated exhibits across the
country with works by contemporary fine art artists such as: Jamel Shabazz, Dan Ericson,
Jas Knight, to name a few.
He spent ten years in the television and film industry with MTV Networks. It was during
this time that he worked on the side and honed his skills by assisting mentors Lorita
Brown, owner of Clinton Hill Simply Art Gallery and renowned artist Leroy Campbell. His
experiences with both proved invaluable and led to many other opportunities.
Richard has been recognized by the National Urban League of Young Professionals for his
accomplishments and contributions to the contemporary fine art world. He has become a
driving force in the art world within a very short period of time and is recognized by artists
and collectors alike.
He believes is giving back to the community and has graciously donated his time to speak
at area schools to young people about art, community responsibility and
entrepreneurism. He has also worked with various foundations and organizations to raise
money through the sales of art for worthy causes (Tom Joyner Foundation, Brooklyn
Prom Project) Richard’s commitment to art can be witnessed at House of Art Gallery.
“The walls are my canvas-it is the place where I have found my form of artistry”.
Imitation of Life
IMITATIONS OF LIFE is an intervention created by artist Dianne Smith and curated by Savona Bailey-McClain. The artist will re-create Lenox Avenue and
its pedestrian malls with standalone works inspired by WPA photographs, archived by the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, of street scenes
from the 1930’s and 40’s. The works include an ace of spade card, boom box, double Dutch rope, Domino cubes and a stoop that’s common for brownstone
buildings. Behind the boom box will be a bench where music will be installed underneath for residents to hear. For the double Dutch rope, we hope to have
the work connected to a powered device so it could turn. And the stoop will have pictures affixed in the layers of the stairs. Lenox Avenue is considered the
heartbeat of Harlem. That was dubbed by Langston Hughes in his poem Juke Box Long Song. For this iconic boulevard that is co-named after Malcolm X,
the artist hopes to spotlight the magic that once made this street known for its jazz clubs and soap box politics
DIANNE SMITH is an abstract painter, sculptor, and installation artist. Her work has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in New York City’s Soho
and Chelsea art districts as well as, numerous galleries and institutions throughout the United States. She is an educator in the field of Aesthetic Education
at Lincoln Center Institute (LCI), which is part of New York City’s Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Since the invitation to join the Institute over six
years ago she has taught K-12 in public schools throughout the Tri-State area. Her work as a teaching artist also extends to under graduate and graduate
courses in various colleges and universities such as: Lehman College, Brooklyn College, Columbia University Teachers College, City College, and St. John’s
University. Dianne is a Bronx native of Belizean descent. She attended LaGuardia High School of Music and Art, the Otis Parsons School of Design and the
Fashion Institute of Technology. Smith recently completed her MFA at Transart Institute in Berlin. She currently lives and works in Harlem, NY.
THE OUTLAW CLOTHESLINE considers imposed notions of masculinity, access and agency. It considers the struggles of poor boys of color in particular. What
cultural elements must they negotiate, compromise, sample, appropriate, reject along their ascent to manhood? Which societal pressures must they rebel against in
order to rise powerfully into their complete, sacred, authentic selves? This project considers how many have been lost to this battle. The Outlaw Clothesline is, in
essence, a memorial project. It pays tribute to my own brother and his personal journey from outlaw to community hero as he navigated through a life cut short by
cancer. His is one story, one voice in a vast collection of untold stories, unheard voices, that have somehow been inauthentically appropriated, repackaged and
commodified by the mainstream media. This project aims at reclaiming them, allowing them to shine in a more dignified light.
YASMIN HERNANDEZ is a Brooklyn-born and raised Puerto Rican artist . Yasmin Hernandez’ work is rooted in struggles for personal, political and spiritual liberation.
Her on-going project Bieké: Tierra de valientes combines oral history, painting, installation and video to explore the struggle for peace and justice in Vieques after
decades of US Navy bombing maneuvers. Her 2011 mural Soldaderas, honors the work of painter Frida Kahlo and poet Julia de Burgos, inspiring continued solidarity
between the neighboring Mexican and Puerto Rican communities in East Harlem and beyond. The artist was invited to participate in another East Harlem-based
project, Mi Querido Barrio. Organized by the Caribbean Cultural Center, the project utilizes augmented reality technologies to reenvision the historic and cultural
significance of the community. Recent projects draw more from the artist’s personal experiences to connect to the greater human struggle for survival and liberation.
Luz explores the cycle of life and death in tribute to her brother who passed from cancer in 2010. Linea Negra, inspired by the midwife-assisted home births of her
two sons, considers the spiritual and transcendent experience of birthing when driven by the innate wisdom of women’s bodies and a universal feminine spirit. Most
recently these two projects have fused into a new concept called Fluido where the artist channels her family’s own espiritismo tradition. Fluido is a reference to the
universal fluid or life force of which all living things and natural forces are comprised, and informs the formal principles of the works. Yasmin has received various
recognitions for her commitment to community building through the arts. She was selected as an honoree in El Museo del Barrio’s 2014 Three Kings Day Celebration.
Other recognitions include an Artist/ Activist of the Year award in 2006 from the NYC-based organization Art for Change, the Ramón Feliciano Social Justice Prize from the
Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College CUNY and a Mujeres Destacadas/ Outstanding Latinas Award by New York-based Spanish-language newspaper, El
Diario/ La Prensa. Yasmin attended the LaGuardia High School of the Arts in Manhattan and holds a BFA in Painting from Cornell University.
FEATURED DIGITAL ARTISTS
Shani Peters is a Harlem based artist from Lansing, MI, working in video, printmaking, and public projects. Her
work reflects interests in social justice histories, cultural record keeping, media culture and community building.
Peters completed her B.A. at Michigan State University and her M.F.A. at The City College of New York. She
has exhibited/presented work in the US and abroad, at the Schomburg Center for Black Culture and Research,
Rush Arts Gallery, The Savannah College of Art & Design, The Open Engagement Conference, The Visual Arts
Network Conference, The Contact Theatre (UK), and at Seoul Art Space Geumcheon (SK). She has completed
residencies with MoCADetroit, The Laundromat Project, Project Row Houses/Visual Arts Network, apexart to S.
Korea, the LES Printshop, The Center for Book Arts, LMCC, and the Bronx Museum’s AIM program.
Madeline Schwartzman is a New York City filmmaker, writer and artist. Her book See Yourself Sensing:
Redefining Human Perception, published by Black Dog Publishing London in 2011, is an multidisciplinary
collection of futuristic proposals for the body and the senses. She recently curated an exhibition of the same
name at San Jose State University, and is co-curator of Objects of Wonder at the Beall Center for Art
+Technology (opening in 2015). Schwartzman teaches design and video production at Barnard College and
Parsons: the New School for Design. Her films and videos have screened at festivals in the United States and
abroad. Schwartzman is currently working on a project called 365 Day Subway: Poems by New Yorkers
(starting May 2013). Every time she rides the subway she asks a stranger to write a poem.
Long interested in community-building and alternative ways of exhibiting and curating art, in 2008 Michael cofounded with fellow artist Eve Fowler Artist Curated Projects (ACP), an artist-run nomadic space operating from
the artists homes. ACP grew to include shows at other artist's houses, commercial galleries and non-profit art
spaces, including Art Production Fund's LAB space (NY), Pasadena Armory Center for the Arts, and a series of
artist-led tea ceremonies at the iconic Schindler House in Los Angeles. To this day, ACP has worked with over
150 artists.Michael is represented by Jessica Silverman Gallery in San Francisco.
Ariel Jackson lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She was born in 1991 in Monroe, Louisiana and raised
between New Orleans, LA and Mamou, LA. In 2009 she was selected as an artist to look out for in
New Orleans Magazine's "Who's Who". During her time at The Cooper Union for the Advancement
of Science and Art she received The Robert Breer Film Award for Excellence in Film, Video and
Animation and The Benjamin Menschel Fellowship Award for Documentary. She is currently
participating in the Artist in the Marketplace program at the Bronx Museum.
Dianne Dwyer grew up in New England. Now she lives in Brooklyn, where she is having a circus in
My work can be seen on-line, inside, and outside.
Here in New York, I have created installations at the Tenement Museum, Charas El Bohio, and
Judson House. I recently collaborated with K.I.D.S. and Flux Factory in a series of street actions,
K.I.D.S. Has Some Work To Do. My work has been included in the WPA/C Experimental Media
Series in Washington, D.C., as well as digital media and performance festivals and screenings in
Bulgaria, Cuba, Montenegro, Russia, and Venezuela.
Last fall I performed Can I Get You Anything Else?, in Flux, in Atlanta, and Off the Strip, a new
genres festival in Las Vegas. The piece was created for the exhibition, a set of directions for making
something, at Grotto Gallerie in Brooklyn.
CURATED DIGITAL WORKS
SHANI PETERS: video animation: “Half Hasn't Been Told”
Black/Indigenous overlap is a pretty clear allusion to 'fusion'. ...There's also a scene where Thomas Jefferson Jr. Skypes
Harriet Tubman's consulting firm from his iPad ;
Ariel Jackson: Sculpture with video projection: 'The Itis'
“The Itis' and the video is a commercial broadcast of Confuserella's archetype Lil Lil teaching about the 1-2-3 process of the
'By Any Means' Program. 'By Any Means' (B.A.M.) is a community program aiming to answer problems that seem
unanswerable by teaching the 1-2-3 process: Space, Shape, and Build.”
MADELINE SCHWARTZMAN: Multiscreen video: “ELEVATED”
“Flexin is body poetry made with gliding, freezing, pausing, connecting, flowing and disrespecting gravity. Schwartzman
chanced upon Troy (aka Ratchet) “connecting” while soliciting a poem on the 2 train for Poems By New Yorkers. On a
subsequent ride, he introduced her to seven members of the Special Ops team who transformed the Q train on a midnight
ride to Coney Island.”
Diane Dwyer: 2 short video loops “I am an elephant” and “Thumb wars”
A simple hand video and a thumb wars piece with performance by Diane Dwyer and Matthew De Leon.
“For me, hands transformed by technology speak to how we engage, express and understand ourselves in a world both
virtual and mortal.”
Ina Archer: 2 video loops projected on a collaged “screen” . “OK Ina sings Chlo-e” and “Vitaphone Short”
1/Costumed in “Western” gear constructed from printmaking and craft paper and cardboard, Ina channels Oklahoma Bob
Albright, himself channeling African-American performer, Jules Bledsoe, singing “Chlo-e”.
2/A kaleidoscopic digital montage of imagery from Vitaphone films, the first synchronized sound technology for musical
CURATED DIGITAL WORKS
Toccarra Thomas : digital printing (and projection?) on paper garments or in digital frames “All the Rage”
All the Rage is a series of living posters that depicts the shift of a particular person, place, or event from something specific to symbolic and eventually
abstracted and fragmented.
Adrienne Reynolds: digital photograph series “Chalk Drawing Series” Documentation of a time-based performance drawing
Chris Harris: experimental imagery in film but shown as single channel video
Scherezade Garcia: single channel video animation
STREET ARTIST LADY K-FEVER
CONTEMPORARY ARTIST DAN ERICSON
PHOTOGRAPHER JAMEL SHABAZZ
STREET/GRAFFITTI ARTIST SHIRO
STREET ARTIST JOSHUA
ARTIST KENLY DILLARD