Repopulations: New Horizons

Grantee of Brooklyn Arts Fund Grant Type: (Brooklyn Arts Fund/Local Arts Support/Creative Equations Fund) Project Profile: Daniela Holban (Curator)

Photo courtesy of Last Frontier NYC & Sol Kjok

Brooklyn Arts Council announced in March 2022 an allocation of over $1.3 million to 238 Brooklyn-based artists and cultural organizations. This year marks the highest number of grantees and awardees as well as the largest amount of funding BAC has ever distributed. Art Spiel in collaboration with Brooklyn Arts Council features some artists who received a Brooklyn Arts FundLocal Arts Support, and/or Creative Equations Fund grant in 2022.

‘REPOPULATIONS: New Horizons’ is the second iteration of the Climate Week-inspired exhibition series REPOPULATIONS which focuses on environmentally-themed subjects and takes place yearly during the summer and early fall months. The exhibition is part of the larger NOoSPHERE Arts’ WE ARE NATURE Series: art events that make full use of the unique stage setting of the Kingsland Wildflowers bird sanctuary at Broadway Stages in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, to engage a diverse audience in environmental efforts through art. 

The exhibition brings together a group of 17 contemporary artists to reflect and discuss environmentally-focused themes, the state of the world today and new conceptions of the future. The exhibition will focus on female-identifying and non-binary artists, in an attempt to construct visions of the power of creation + destruction and metaphorically reclaim sacred spaces for the priestess archetype. This temporary environment will be used for reflection, meditation and celebration of nature, humanity, and inspiration, a place meant to contemplate how we will build a new world after the Pandemic, which stands as the symbolic Flood of our times. The exhibition will present site specific installations, immersive sound experiences, video, sculpture, and 2D works and will occupy Last Frontier NYC and parts of the Kingsland Wildflowers Rooftops.

Artists: Valincy-Jean Patelli, Jodie Lyn-Kee-Chow, Sarah Brook, Sabrina Barrios, Asdis Gunnarsdottir, Alex Wolkowicz, Anne-Katrin Spiess, Cheryl Maeder, Marie Elena Pombo, Whitney Vangrin, Valerie Hallier, Beatriz Chachamovits, Rachel Frank, Deborah Jack, Jodie Mim Goodnough, Virginia Luna Montgomery, Isabel Beavers

Daniela Holban is a Romanian-born curator, cultural producer and programs director with over 15 years of professional experience in art institutions, museums, and nonprofits. She specializes in curatorial direction, public programming, and artist management. Her curatorial practice seeks to respond to and present systems of self-reflection, identity, multipolarity, and sustainability. She is dedicated to public engagement, artist development, environmentally-based art programming, and action-driven communities. She currently oversees programming and curation at NOoSPHERE Arts and is the head curator at Artfare. In the past, she has worked with the Metropolitan Museum of Art, MANA Contemporary, {CTS} Creative Thriftshop, William Bennet Gallery, The Ear Classical, and The Fashion and Textile Museum in London.

Tell me about your project and how it fits within your overall practice.

My curatorial practice seeks to respond to and present systems of self-reflection, identity and multipolarity. In recent years, there has been a shift in my practice towards more of an environmental lens, and a focus on building and seeking sustainability in response to the current state of the world. I have always looked to the arts for answers and deeper truths and I continue to do so with this exhibition. By inviting artists to reflect on the same subject and to imagine possible versions of the future, I continue this journey and exploration. The exhibition is meant to represent a conversation: an exchange of ideas and solutions between the curator, the artists and the audience.

The exhibition will populate a few different arena within the 520 Kingsland Avenue building. Inside Last Frontier, a massive industrial warehouse loft, the exhibition will present 6 different video based artists (Virginia Luna Montgomery, Isabel Beavers, Deborah Jack, Whitney Vangrin, Cheryl Maeder and Asdis Gunnarsdottir) whose work investigates ideas on climate change, eco-feminism, ritual, shared vulnerability and atomic consciousness. Alongside the video based work, the space will host an installation by María-Elena Pombo which is part of the Starches of Abya Yala: an ongoing research project exploring corn, cassava, and potatoes as a way to understand the past, present and future of this territory and the modern world at large. Other smaller 2D and 3D works by Jodie Lyn-Kee-Chow, Asia Sztencel, Valerie Hallier, Beatriz Chachamovits, Rachel Frank and Jodie Mim Goodnough will also be on view in the space.

The rest of the exhibition will be site specific and will activate the Kingsland Wildflower Rooftops. Sabrina Barrios’ Rise of the Missing Planet (pictured) is a site-specific art installation inspired by the story of Tiamat, the Goddess of Creation for the Matriarchy or the Goddess of Chaos for the Patriarchy. This art installation is part of a trilogy series, and is inspired by the Brazilian new-concrete movement of the 60’s, its ideals and explorations. The other two installations were built in Finland (2017) and Brazil (2019). Two other outdoor installations will adorn the green rooftops: a site specific sculptural work by Sarah E. Brook and a sculptural piece with sound by Alex Wolkowicz.

photos courtesy NOoSP HERE Arts and Sabrina Barrios

For more details on the project: