The Immigrant Artist Biennial (TIAB) is a volunteer, female-led, artist-run project. TIAB 2020 launched in March in New York City at Brooklyn Museum, and continued in September through December at EFA Project Space, Greenwood Cemetery, and virtually, presenting 60+ artists. This interview series features 10 participating artists.
Georgia Lale is Greek visual artist with Anatolian heritage, based in New York City. She received her MFA from the School of Visual Arts, NYC, and her BFA from the Athens School of Fine Arts, Greece. She is the recipient of several awards and fellowships. Her work has been shown internationally in Berlin, Venice, Brussels, Izmir, and Athens, among others. She has presented her work in major performance festivals, such as the Venice International Performance Art Week and Nuit Blanche Festival in Brussels. Lale’s work has been exhibited in the New York City area, including Smack Mellon, Shiva Gallery, and The Hole. She has been invited to talk about her work by Yale University, the Dedalus Foundation, and MoMA. Her public performance #OrangeVest was presented at the Greek Pavilion at the 15th Venice Architecture Biennale.
Jana Astanov is an interdisciplinary artist, a poet and an independent curator born in Poland, and living in the US. She is a founder of CREATRIX Magazine, portal for creative expression focused on art, activism and spiritual practice. Her work includes photography, poetry, performance art, sound art, and installation. In her work, she utilizes spiritual traditions, somatic movement, sound art, ritualistic theatre and Astrofeminism, a term she has developed through her character Yannanda The One Who Speaks With The Stars. Together with her partner Niko van Egten she co-created an electronic music group ASTRALOOP featuring her poetry in dark electronic arrangements. She has performed at Tate Modern, Smack Mellon Gallery, Grace Exhibition Space, Venice Biennale, Documenta 2017, and many other galleries, festivals and independent venues worldwide. She is also the author of five collections of poetry: Antidivine, Grimoire, Sublunar, The Pillow Book of Burg, and Birds of Equinox. In this interview for Art Spiel Jana Astanov discusses her ideas on performance art and specifically on her most recent upcoming curatorial project ALEMBIC: Body and Spirit. Live Art as Healing Art.
Right before the Coronavirus outbreak prompted a mass-shutdown of New York City’s galleries and museums, multidisciplinary artist, radio show host and (self-proclaimed) psychotherapist Lisa Levy recreated her classic guerrilla art project ‘Studio 54 Reject’. On the opening night of the “Studio 54: Night Magic” exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum, Levy stationed herself outside the institution’s main entrance. Standing behind a small table encircled by red velvet ropes and four stanchion posts, she gestured toward a sign reading “Studio 54 Reject T-Shirt, $20” while imploring passersby to take pride in “reject status” with the purchase of a shirt, newly re-designed in gold glitter and the official logo.
Alicja Gaskon has just returned from an excursion to the border dividing North Korea and South Korea, a No man’s land where she has discovered a reality which reminded her unexpectedly of her European roots and will become an entry point for a new body of installation work. This is one of many excursions Gaskon has experienced and explored in her work. She shares with Art Spiel some of her explorations, the ways she mines her experiences, and her upcoming projects.
Tansy Xiao is a curator, artist, writer, translator, and an overtly out of the box thinker. She shares with Art Spiel some insights on her upcoming curatorial project at Radiator, her art-making, as well as translation and writing processes.
AS: Tell me a bit about yourself and what brought you to art – writing, translation, curation and making.
Tansy Xiao: I wasn’t properly schooled, neither did I consider myself an artist when I was travelling around and painting abstract murals in exchange for food and accommodation. Now you might call it an unprompted residency. During my long trips and brief sojourns, I would write book length letters to my friends, with a mutual understanding that they were not obligated to reply. I joined and formed communities, then left them, until I have relatively settled in New York, a city with such transience that the fear of being trapped in a constricted niche no longer haunts me. That’s when I began my practice as a curator and translator. If I were to describe my status quo now, I’d quote D. H. Lawrence’s last paragraph in Rainbow: