An exhibition featuring Diego Anaya, Liz Atz,
Linda Ekstrom, Adebunmi Gbadebo, and Alberto Lule
curated by Sarah Cunningham and Samantha L. Smith ‘21
Digital exhibition launches March 1, 2021
Public window installation & campus residency by Liz Atz, March 1-19, 2021
In-person exhibition: September 27-October 30, 2021
Linda Ekstrom, watch recorded lecture
Diego Anaya, watch recorded lecture
Alberto Lule, watch recorded lecture
Liz Atz, March 16, 6:30pm
Beginning February 25, Pace University Art Gallery will launch the Substance exhibition and associated programs. Consisting of an artist residency, Zoom artist talks, a window installation, and a virtual exhibit this spring, followed by an in-person exhibit this fall, Substance brings together five abstract artists—Diego Anaya, Liz Atz, Linda Ekstrom, Adebunmi Gbadebo, and Alberto Lule—who express meaning via their materials rather than through representational imagery.
The first event will be a Zoom lecture by Linda Ekstrom on Thursday, February 25 at 10am ET. Linda Ekstrom’s works from her Word series use text from religious sources as a form of inspiration and commentary. Many of her artworks are made from altered pages of the Bible, which is representative of how Ekstrom explores feminist issues, particularly within the role of Jewish and Christian religious history and tradition. Her work addresses the suppressed stories of women both in the Bible and throughout art history via the process of disassembling and then reassembling this book which has been used to inspire, divide, and control readers.
From March 1-19, the Gallery will host a residency by Liz Atz during which she will create a large-scale window installation on-site. Made of mushroom-based plastics she casts herself, Atz’s bright, immersive installations critique commercialism, materialism, and consumption. During the residency, Atz will experiment further with chitosan—by casting, adding pigment, and laser cutting. Pace students, faculty and staff are invited to drop in to see the process Tuesday through Thursday from 1pm-3pm or to make an appointment. The public will be able to see the process unfold via the window installation at 41 Park Row. She will give a Zoom talk about her work on Tuesday, March 16 at 6:30pm.
On March 1, to celebrate the launch of the digital exhibit, the Gallery will host a Zoom artist talk by Diego Anaya at 6:30pm. Anaya’s work is minimalist in imagery, yet he celebrates his Mexican heritage through the use of ground corn, corn ash, and sand with which he creates rough and uneven surfaces. The texture compels the viewer to examine the work closely and even to want to touch and smell the granular surface, creating an immediate and intimate connection between the viewer and the artist.
On March 10 at 3pm, the Gallery will present a Zoom artist lecture by Alberto Lule who critiques and exposes the prison industrial complex in America as a form of modern slavery. His Investigation series offers insight to his experience as a formerly incarcerated person by using fingerprint powder—a tool used by police to prove someone was at the scene of a crime—as his drawing material. Thereby, Lule reclaims his past, present, and future, stating that he isn’t at the mercy of the corrupt American prison system any longer.
Also included in the both the digital and in-person exhibits is artist Adebunmi Gbadebo who writes, “My material is human hair from people of the African Diaspora. Our hair is so connected to our culture, politics, and history!” She represents identity and history in Blues People by incorporating prints of historical documents onto paper embedded with Black hair. In so doing, she exposes the grim history of American slavery that has been erased by white-centric narratives and materials. In Black hair, she finds “a material and a history in which to root my own work that positions the people who looked like me as central to my practice.”
The Substance exhibit was curated by Sarah Cunningham, Art Gallery Director/Assistant Clinical Professor, with Samantha L. Smith, ‘21, Gallery Intern/Research Fellow, with support from the Provost’s Academic Year 2020-2021 Student-Faculty Undergraduate Research Award through the Center for Undergraduate Research Experiences (CURE). The in-person exhibit has been re-scheduled for September 27-October 30, 2021.