School of Visual Arts presents “And Then . . .,” an exhibition of thesis projects by the MFA Visual Narrative class of 2017. Curated by faculty members Jonathon Rosen and Ed Valentine, “And Then . . .” is on view Saturday, July 8, through Monday, July 24, at the SVA Gramercy Gallery, 209 East 23rd Street, New York City.
The MFA Visual Narrative students have devised exciting and wildly diverse bodies of words and pictures while maintaining a focus on narrative. Their work arose from the closely held parts of the students’ own lives—using the connective tissues of their own histories, preoccupations, experiences and found stories. This process required a great deal of personal bravery and tenacity to find the voice and means necessary to achieve their own unique visions.
In these projects—and in this program— art and story are intimately interconnected. Whether hand-stitched collage, penciled drawing, gouache, faux-realistic notebook, pixelated video game or fully-realized digital environment, each project incorporates a visual style absolutely and positively intrinsic to its tone.
As these stories developed, characters in the projects began to take on lives of their own. Some reached out, making connections to their heritage or history (Bruja and There, Once). Others looked around and questioned their sense of family or community (Landfall, Cadence’s Castle and The Sprout). And there were those that stretched themselves to make—or break—strong ties to other beings at great personal cost (The Weeping Trees, Aura and Spice of Life). Seen altogether, all of these characters (including the non-human ones) struggled to link with their own humanity.
The projects, which reflect deep connections between our students’ own history and artistry, now go out into the world to connect with you. We hope that you will find “And Then . . . ” enlightening and enlivening, and we hope their spark will continue to burn long after this exhibition.
The class of 2017 includes Rosa Chang, Christina Ebert, Liz Enright, Mary Georgescu, Cady Juarez, Michelle Nahmad, Ella Romero and Thomas Slattery.