Manju Shandler in Domestic Brutes at Pelham Art Center

In Dialogue with Manju Shandler


Manju Shandler working on Persistent Mothers in her studio in Brooklyn, NY 2020. Photo Stephen Estrin.

Manju Shandler creates symbolic art that speaks to current events. Building upon established storylines from myth, religion, and history, her mixed media artworks create richly layered narratives that reflect on our dense and complicated times. Shandler believes people are natural storytellers that make sense of the world through by mining both personal experience and collective memories that have been passed down. Her work dips into this well. Training as a theatre designer helps her to envision installations and her background as a puppet builder informs how she approaches building objects. Identifying as a mother seeps into everything she does.

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Lacey McKinney in Domestic Brutes at Pelham Art Center

In Dialogue with Lacey McKinney


Lacey McKinney at McColl Center for Art + Innovation, 2019,.Courtesy Chris Edwards Photography

Lacey McKinney who resides in Upstate New York, is drawn to the alchemy of processes like painting and alternative photography. For the last several years, McKinney has worked within the framework of painting, using figuration to reference embodiment. Usually splitting her time between working in the studio and teaching, this year she feels lucky enough to embark on a one-year teaching sabbatical, which has given her extra time for experimentation with other media such as using cyanotype process to make photograms that incorporate into collage and mixed media works. The artist shares some insights on her body of work in Domestic Brutes, the all women group show at the Pelham Art Center which engages the visitor with diverse approaches of what feminism means in American society today.

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Fay Ku in Domestic Brutes at Pelham Art Center

In Dialogue with Fay Ku

A person standing in a kitchen

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May 2020. The artist lives and shares a studio with her partner, who is a musician. She is usually on the other side of her worktable, or else he wouldn’t have been able to sneak this photo of her.

For Taiwanese born artist, Fay Ku, the single, most formative event in life was immigrating to the United States. Ku says that if she had stayed in Taiwan, she would never have become an artist so she would have been a completely different person. It still surprises her how much this one event which she was too young to remember (though of course remembering all its aftershocks), shapes her work, often without her being consciously aware of the themes and issues at the time of making the work. Fay Ku shares some insights on her body of work in Domestic Brutes, the all women group show at the Pelham Art Center which engages the visitor with diverse approaches of what feminism means in American society today.

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Meg Atkinson – Painting as a Leap of Faith

One Tree, Two Mouthy Ghosts, 2019, Oil on canvas, 30 x 40 inches, photo courtesy Max Yawney

Meg Atkinson‘s paintings resemble puzzles open to multiple solutions. Her imagery is embedded with associative literary and visual layers, as clues to an open-ended riddle. Meg Atkinson shares with Art Spiel what brought her to art, as well as the way she has developed her approach to mark-making, space, gird, and color.

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Gabriel J. Shuldiner – Hybridsculptural Bruteminimalism


sLAY1_2019, postapocalypticblack®* [ modified acrylic polymer emulsion | carbon black pigment | calcium carbonate | water | modified industrial urethane enamel | modified polyurethane thermoset cellular plastic | vinyl acrylic co-polymer emulsion | acrylic stain-block sealant | mastic adhesive | polyurethane adhesive | solvent-based ink | nuisance dust | studio detritus | spit | air | light ]*proprietary | chrome enamel spray aerosol | cotton duck canvas | repurposed polystyrene | blackened stainless steel flat head hinge screws | reinforced galvanized steel wire, overall dimensions: 20.75 x 19 x 5.25 in.

Gabriel J. Shuldiner dislikes categorization of his work to the point that he invents new “isms” to describe its allusive hybridity – its DNA can be traced to abstraction with elements of minimalism, expressionism, and Arte Povera. While Shuldiner’s use of material is extensive , his use of color is restricted to mostly black, with tinges of other colors at times. Gabriel J. Shuldiner shares with Art Spiel some of his thought and work processes.

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Paulette Myers-Rich – Eyes with a Sense of Touch 

Soft Black Petal, silver gelatin print, 20×24”, 1985

Paulette Myers-Rich ‘s photography-based art books and prints reference abstracted landscapes where industry and nature intersect. Paulette Myers-Rich has consistently focused her gaze on the very moment of transformation in both interior and exterior spaces, when a place, nature, history, altogether shift. The artist shares with Art Spiel how she has developed her practice, her notions on book making, and how she sees her role as an artist today.

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Kyle Staver – New Work at Zürcher

In Dialogue with Kyle Staver


Kyle Stave, Venus and the Octopus, 2020, Oil on canvas, 70 x 58 in / 177,8 cm x 147,3 cm, Image courtesy of the Artist and Zürcher Gallery, NY/Paris

Kyle Staver’s second solo show at Zürcher Gallery in New York features new paintings, relief sculptures, drawings, and aquatint etchings through July 24th. In this interview Kyle Staver shares some ideas on her work process, touches upon the narrative and mythological elements in her work, and gives us an insight on her notion of art history.

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Artists on Coping: Cathy Diamond

During the Coronavirus pandemic, Art Spiel is reaching out to artists to learn how they are coping.


Studio Portrait, photo by Elizabeth Reagh, 2019

Cathy Diamond is a New York City-based painter. For decades, her imagery has fused elements of nature and figuration into a kind of narrative abstraction. Residency fellowships in Wyoming, Virginia, Maine and elsewhere form the building blocks of works developed in her Queens studio. Diamond spent two decades in Williamsburg, exhibiting there at Farrell-Pollock Fine Art, Sideshow Gallery, Gallery Boreas and Janet Kurnatowksi Gallery. She has shown extensively in New York City. Diamond’s paper works travelled to national print fairs with Oehme Graphics. She recently exhibited at 490 Atlantic Gallery and at SRO Gallery in Brooklyn. Diamond is Adjunct Lecturer of Painting and Drawing at Borough of Manhattan Community College.

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Artists on Coping: Jaanika Peerna

During the Coronavirus pandemic, Art Spiel is reaching out to artists to learn how they are coping.

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Jaanika Peerna at her pandemic era studio

Jaanika Peerna is an Estonian-born artist and educator living and working in New York since 1998. Her work encompasses drawing, installation, and performance, often dealing with the theme of transitions in light, air, water and other natural phenomena. For her performances she is often involves the audience in participatory reflection on the current climate meltdown. Her art practice stems from the corporeal experience of our existence and reaches towards enhanced awareness of the fragility, interconnectedness and wonder of all life. 

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Artists on Coping: Miles Hall

During the Coronavirus pandemic, Art Spiel is reaching out to artists to learn how they are coping.


Deconstructing the Apocalypse in her own Image, 72 x 84, Oil on panel, 2018. (in studio)

Miles Hall is a painter and draftsman. He has lived in California, Massachusetts, Japan, and New York, but now resides in Richmond, VA. His work explores the mythological relationship between the landscape and human figure. The science and psychology of visual perception is important to his practice. He currently teaches in the Communication Arts Department at Virginia Commonwealth University and maintains a critical visual arts review for the Richmond area called Lucid.

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