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NEw York Academy of art 2012


2012 Master of fine arts THESIS

This catalog was published in conjunction with the 2012 Master of Fine Arts Thesis Exhibition presented by the New York Academy of Art

Exhibition Curators: Margaret McCann and Peter Drake Exhibition Organizers: Elizabeth Hobson and Sean Mearns Exhibition Registrar: Heidi Elbers Graphic Designer: Andrew Shea

New York Academy of Art 111 Franklin Street, New York, NY 10013 (212) 966–0300 02

© 2012, New York Academy of Art

TABLE OF CONTENTS Introduction by Peter Drake, Dean of Academic Affairs


The Pursuit of Realism, Essay by Jonathan Goodman


2012 Postgraduate Fellows


2012 Master of Fine Arts candidates






Introduction The conventional model for how an art school should be structured is so common now as to be virtually academic: offer a bit of this and a bit of that; don’t take a position because the art world is in a constant state of flux; whatever you do, don’t specialize. This has resulted in a jack–of–all–trades condition that makes most art programs indistinguishable from each other. If you travel from coast to coast, from one MFA program to another, you can enter their doors and become convinced that you haven’t moved at all. On the surface this seems like a good idea; the art world has been in a pluralist stalemate for over thirty years and shows no signs of ever changing. Why should an MFA program take a position? The simple answer is that all art making takes a position. The very act of picking up a brush is a declaration. Choosing to make objects in a digital age is taking a stand. Believing in anything is potentially progressive. The relativity of pluralism has created a critical crisis where all things seem equal, but does anyone really believe that? The real joy of art is not found in watching someone make an acceptable version of a patented school, but rather it is in the iconoclastic, the anomalous and the unexpected. In effect, it is doing precisely what you shouldn’t be doing. The New York Academy of Art enters this critical crisis with a firm belief that when young artists are given the most extensive set of visual tools available and a complete awareness of contemporary culture, they will make important contributions to visual culture by doing what many people believe is no longer possible, making great art. It has been suggested that there are no more great movements to be had from art making, that the great contributions of the last century have been exhausted. This has an “end of history” ring to it that is both dispiriting and contrary to cultural evolution. Great art is being made and will always be made by artists who refuse to adapt to the accepted norms of their era and instead forge ahead with work that is masterful, critically aware and deeply contrary. We present the graduating class of 2012 as a prime example of what can happen when talent, intelligence and willful determination meet as a counterpoint to cultural relativity. Peter Drake, Dean of Academic Affairs 04

The Pursuit of Realism by Jonathan Goodman It goes without saying that there is a revival of interest in figurative realism; and that the New York Academy of Art is effectively providing students with the tools necessary for the pursuit of representation. In the New York art world, host to circumstances where anything goes, realism often loses out to more technological or unskilled art. But it is the dream of the Academy to outfit its artists with a kit of abilities that will enable them to render the figure or the landscape with both lyricism and technical skill. As a result, classes are oriented toward the development of tools based on long and often difficult study of the model; at the same time, however, it is clear that, simply by being in New York, the influences that come down from above may be more speculative and wilder than earlier generations of artists studying similar subjects. This is, I think, a good way of proceeding—representational art can reflect the spirit of the time just as effectively as video or performance art. Indeed, this is true world wide—if we look at the situation in mainland China, most of the recent, so–called avant–garde worked figuratively in order to mock repressive politics. Additionally, the skills being taught at the Academy are good for the length of a career, as one becomes increasingly skilled in the service of art of ever–greater intensity. Accuracy not only counts as a tool of the artist, it is part of the total acceptance of an image. But it also true that accuracy cannot be followed simply for itself—without nuance or intuition, realism can often become stiff and conservative. Yet, to the credit of the students, the work at the Academy is consistently an art of real feeling, made more genuine by attention to detail. We can see this in the work of the three Fellows chosen for institutional support this year: Aliene de Souza Howell, Emily Davis Adams, and Ian Healy. De Souza Howell’s large linocuts of a polar bear swimming and a doe reclining on its side have the affecting immediacy of something seen as if for the first time—this comes, at least in part, from the highly realized detail that is part of her imagery. Adams’s studies of the environment in particular places—a traffic light against a blue sky, a grayish tan study of a desert valley and road, and a series of wooden posts in deep blue water—also make their mark with the visualization of specificity: one might imagine that the accuracy found in the paintings is a direct rendering of a specific site, which she communicates with verve and intelligence. And the third Fellow, Healy, presents two severed pigs’ heads, not rotting yet, but clearly on the road to decay. It’s a difficult image, but one which becomes that much more remarkable for its very difficulty, achieved by close attention to the particular. 05

It is physically impossible, in an essay of this size, to include references to all the graduating students (the class comprises about fifty students). But I shall try to underscore themes and trends in the artists I do mention. Some of the work that occurs results from a rather surrealist, as opposed to realist, preoccupation with form. For example, Adam LaMothe creates the wild, funny, and rather disturbing Bacon Swarms in an American Landscape (2012), which consists of, well, bacon swarming upward from lower left to upper right, over a yellow wheat field toward a brilliant blue sky. A signboard occurs on the left, which includes a poster that says “Jesus loves me,” while on the right, a very angry dog keeps watch, his open mouth filled with menacing teeth. It is a funny but threatening image, one that does not especially endorse the American dream. Alexander Barton’s huge (68 by 80 inches), hyperrealist Knee (2012) also joins the ranks of the absurd: made with oil, blood, and shellac on linen, the painting offers the viewer a larger–than–life view of a body part that threatens as much as it endears itself to its audience. Barton is in some ways representative of the students’ push to get it right, a tactic we see again and again, no matter the content of their material. The work of Alexandra Evans is memorable for its technical skill and the nature of her themes—in two small (12 by 12 inches) untitled paintings, we see on one a human heart on a painted dish, accurately perceived and rendered; and on the other, a heart–shaped icon, in which the white of the small plate (also painted) shows up as the heart, surrounded by red color that forms the shape. There is also a study of two tongues, presumably human but maybe bovine, that affects the viewer in a visceral way. Alexandra Finkelchtein gives us a lushly painted vision of the expulsion of Adam and Eve from Paradise (2012), complete with a long perspective of a river, flanked by wooded areas; expressionist clouds fill the upper right, while blossoms are found on the left. The expelled couple fills the lower right; their agony is clearly visible in this romantic, compelling painting. In contrast to Finkelchtein, Blake Zoephel offers straightforward, affecting studies of swimmers in a pool, achieved with charcoal. The influences seem to come from the 1930s, when artists such as John Sloan and Paul Cadmus concentrated, as Zoephel does now, on the human body. The swimming pool, it seems, is a great equalizer; everyone is exposed, having stuffed his or her body into a bathing suit. Here as elsewhere, the body is endlessly amusing as a source of imagery because it belongs to all of us, and because there are so many differences in the physiques of different people. Sculpture is also practiced in the school’s program, and this writer saw many horses with painstakingly detailed musculature on the shelves of sculpture students at the Academy. Colin Moore’s life–size nude, produced in bronze and entitled Davida (2012), possesses a classical dignity but also relates to the female studies of Rodin. Her face, 06

though, seems to offers us a troubled countenance; this may be the way Moore connects to our current lives, led in the midst of often substantial anxiety. Daniel Williams presents a complicated plaster cast of nude women within a very tight space, but he also offers, in life–size, cast aqua resin, a human being with some sort of monstrous sprite above him. His works strike me as outstanding examples of technique, whereby he sets up problems and then works them out in ways that are rivetingly memorable. Elyse Hradecky works with plaster and clay; her offering in plaster, Leda and the Swan (2011) shows a nude woman, erotically posed, with a wild tangle of hair; the title refers to a poem by Yeats, which meditates on the consequences of this amorous encounter with Zeus in the form of a swan. Another work, Cori (in progress), shows a young woman at rest. There is a sympathetic, nearly magical realism to Hradecky’s art, which communicates well with its audience. It would be hard to paint in New York without picking up some of the styles of its leading figurative practitioners, for example, John Currin, whose early portraits were studies in sleazy figuration that addressed the banality of art and class—because Currin deliberately courted the shallowness of the culture, he was able to portray the milieu of the well–to–do as a spectacle evoked with genuine affection, and equal amounts of real narcissism. Gary Murphy follows Currin’s lead, with a trite treatise called Horsemanship (2012). In this picture, a blonde young woman stands against a fence and watches what looks like a thoroughbred standing against a fence with a young man sitting on the animal. This is affluence, but somehow visitors feel compelled to ask the question, “At what price?” Murphy’s other entry suggests types from the posh Westchester suburbs—wealthy women laughing from ear to ear (2012). Murphy’s sardonic treatment is not directly a part of this painting, but it is surely headed in that direction; it feels like it is only a matter of time before the women establish a coterie based on snobbism. A kind of romantic absurdism is also found in the work of Jacob Hicks, whose Totem, Tower, and Acrobats (2012) and Chandelier (2012) consist of complicated figures and masks that have a carnival–like gaiety to them and are pictured every which way—right side up and up side down. Hicks’s paintings feel like frozen allegories whose implications are not terribly appealing; this dark feeling appears despite the fact that the intricacy of the painting is a salient, and positive, treatment of what he sees. James P. Hopper’s two treatments of the death of a virgin (both from 2012) feel a bit like Philadelphia painter Sidney Goodman’s dramatic allegories; Hopper is a traditional painter, whose feelings are intensified by the title’s reference to a great genre of the past. It is difficult today to use the Old Masters as a guide, but Hopper does it very well. He is, however, at pains to use the past as a starting point, rather than a template that would stifle his creativity. Time will tell if Hopper can bring his technique further in the service of genuinely contemporary ideas. The first version shows 07

a woman, obviously in pain, clothed in a red turtleneck and supported by three men, while the second shows a bare–chested man, wearing orange–red leggings or tight pants, being covered with sheets. A humorous surrealism returns in the paintings of Jen Miller, who presents us with The Storm (2012), a largish painting with grass and wood on canvas, in which a person’s very white feet stick through the hole of what seems to be a log. Meanwhile, above the wheat, we notice the rain about to fall on the landscape below; its gray skies offer more or less proof that such an event will happen. Miller’s other contribution is very funny: Kansas Saints (2012) consists of a conservatively dressed, fifties–type couple with haloes clearly painted around their heads. The background in this horizontal work is divided in half: silver above and gold beneath. Oddly moving, Kansas Saints preserves a quirky holiness in Middle America—surely an accomplishment of some sort! Jesse Stern has painted a strong self–portrait (2012), in which he looks blankly back at the viewers, challenging his audience to a staring contest. The rough honesty of the painting is in contrast to Dinner Party (2012), in which a woman, dressed in black and wearing a top hat, appears to be the life of the party—being the only human form in the painting and bearing her breasts through an open shirt. There is also a round table with a dusky red tablecloth, which holds platters of food, a green plant, and a classical bust. This is a still life of sorts, in which the artist has grouped together disparate objects to see if a finished composition can be generated from them. Sarah Crumlich’s Momentary Expression (2011) shows us a detailed study of a pair of hands that are intertwined. The particularity of their homeliness makes the image that much more affecting. And Sarah Beatty’s Kansas Burns (2012) is an apocalyptic study of three burning figures on a meadow; one is a skeleton, one is a woman, and the last is too far in the background to see clearly. This is a horrific image depicting horror in pure daylight. As Beatty knows, the surreal is all the more unforgettable when the image is both plausible and absurd in the same moment. Me and You and You and Me (2012) address intimacy: both are paintings of two nudes on a bed by Jo Hay. The figures’ bodies are painted different colors, while the general approach bears comparison with the art of Lucien Freud. Hay has found a way of making her art larger than the sum of its parts, and the use of different colors on the women’s limbs is an original twist on an academic subject. Jonathan Beer paints fascinating studies of landscape and urban architecture; he has the habit of placing one image on top of the other, making the paintings complex and intricate in their reading. In an untitled painting from 2012, he puts together a complicated array of signage, buildings, and some decorative effects that feels that much more modern because of its compositional density. Finally, Nicolas Holiber does caricatured sculpture and paintings, whose roughness communicate an attractive if 08

eccentric and awkward energy: 97 Years after Kirchner (2012), shows a bust of a man with one eye, which somehow communicates vulnerability as well as horror. The painting Stars and Stripes (Heir to the Throne) (2012) is a kind of rough, postmodernist Last Supper, with four grotesque figures, including a skeleton, seated at a table, celebrating the steps of a stumbling baby. The many different styles and themes of the graduating class of 2012 argue for a various and even a postmodern reading of the art. It also proves that realism is a true property of the imagination, with differences prized rather than unanimity forced. This, then, is an advantage of a school in which a general, but open, atmosphere prevails. As time goes on, these students will take their place among the active artists of their generation; they will inevitably evolve beyond the circumstances and styles of their current education. It is to the New York Academy of Art’s credit that the students are leaving with newly acquired skills rather than the over–intellectualization that bedevils many art schools nationally. It is fair to say, then, that the pursuit of realism carries the student beyond his or her studies into a newfound, genuine style. And because the styles are different, viewers can take pleasure in the idiosyncrasy of what they see. Because the Academy gives its classes freedom, the students respond, as we see here, with imagery that is very much their own.


2012 Postgraduate Fellows Each year the Academy selects three outstanding graduating artists to receive postgraduate fellowships. The Fellows are awarded residencies which include studio accommodations, a stipend, exhibition opportunities, tutorial support and opportunities for teaching assistantships. The fellowships are awarded through a competitive application and selection process.


Emily Davis Adams –

Trona, 2012 – Sierra Valley, 2012 – oil on linen on aluminum – 12 x 12 inches – “I think whatever I shall meet on the road I shall like.” — Walt Whitman Song of the Open Road


IAN Healy – Pigs, 2011 – oil on canvas – 80 x 96 inches – I explore emotional levels of pain and anguish through depictions of death and suffering.


Aliene de Souza Howell – Ursa Major Lost at Sea, 2012 – linocut – 36 x 84 inches – edition of 12 – My work is about the contrast of permanent and accidental elements of being. I enjoy carving out each line in the linoleum because I feel it leaves a sensuous, somewhat harsh and intensely engaged physical excavation of the image.


Master of Fine Arts Thesis The Academy’s MFA thesis program aims to involve students in the professional considerations of researching and making artwork intended for exhibition. The thesis constitutes a body of work intended to showcase each MFA candidate’s mastery of skills and personal vision. The Faculty Committee, in consultation with the individual artist, selects one or more pieces from that body of work for the culminating MFA Thesis Exhibition.


2012 MFA candidates Sir James Adkins Linda Andrei Buket Atature Rami Baglio Alexander Barton Elana Baziz Sarah Beatty Jonathan Beer Lisa Benson Nicholas Borelli Ramona Bradley Joseph Brickey Jessy Brodsky Kelly Burke Kristina Cao Miguel Carter–Fisher Aleah Chapin


Sarah Crumlich Jessica Damsky Randall DiGiuseppe Elisabeth Ehmann Alexandra Evans Richard Fine Alexandra Finkelchtein Nate Gaefcke David Gordon Angela Gram Jo Hay Jacob Hicks Nicolas Holiber James P. Hopper Elyse Hradecky Sean Hyland John Jameson

Evan Kitson Adam LaMothe John Lark Mitchell Martinez Jen Miller Colin Moore Gary Murphy P Ryan–Kleid Holly Ann Sailors Echo Shi Alison Simmons David Stenulson Jesse Stern Catherine Stickles Kaitlyn Stubbs Daniel Williams Blake Zoephel

Sir James Adkins – The Harbinger (detail), 2012 – resin – 60 x 36 x 33 inches – In these moments, we feel as though we will shine above all others, and fulfill our true potential; nothing can stop us from achieving our dreams: we are invincible, a knight in his armor embarking on his next great journey.



Linda Andrei – Ode to Man, 2012 – oil on canvas – 40 x 50 inches – I am interested in the psychosexual and political implications of a female artist’s active gaze on a male object, and the potential that lies therein for the liberation of both from the chains of gender stereotyping.


Buket Atature – Untitled, 2011 – oil on canvas – 24 x 28 inches – My work is a visual diary where I explore the longing for once present intimacy and desire. As witnesses I use ordinary and suggestive details that trigger my memory, while observing being myself and being in a couple at casual intimate moments.


Rami Baglio – Crone, 2012 – oil on canvas – 30 x 40 inches


Alexander Barton – Knee, 2012 – oil, blood, shellac on linen – 80 x 68 inches – God fear my prolific peer.


Elana Baziz – Decomposed, 2012 – oil on canvas – 30 x 40 inches – “I live in company with a body, a silent companion, exacting and eternal.” —Eugene Delacroix


Sarah Beatty – Knot, 2011 – oil on board – 24 x 18 inches


Jonathan Beer – Untitled, 2012 – oil on canvas – 40 x 48 inches – Memory is not the inaccessible dream we imagine it to be – it is a vision in a virtual space that is constantly being reassembled and restructured. In the spaces between memory we find identity.


Lisa Benson – Flow, 2011 – plaster – 14 x 6.5 x 11.5 inches – edition of 20 – “Two sturdy oaks I mean, which side by side, Withstand the winter’s storm, And spite of wind and tide, Grow up the meadow’s pride, For both are strong. Above they barely touch, but undermined. Down to their deepest source, Admiring you shall find Their roots are intertwined Insep’rably.” —Henry David Thoreau, Friendship


Nicholas Borelli – Landscape, 2011 – mixed media on canvas – 30 x 40 inches – “In this time, in the Time of the Locust, when we have nothing to ourselves but the hollowness within us, in the Time of Bone, when we have nothing to do but wait, nothing human moves here.” —M. John Harrison, A Storm of Wings


Ramona Bradley – Creation, 2011 – oil on paper – 120 x 144 inches – For life to move forward everything must move through us.


Joseph Brickey – Premonition, 2012 – resin – 15 x 10 x 8 inches – True vision, whether of forms or of ideas, sees both structure and surface, universal nature and individual nuance, underlying anatomy and superficial wrinkles. It perceives the cosmic and the cosmetic, the rule and the exception, unity and variety, body and soul.


Jessy Brodsky – The Lady Next Door, 2012 – oil on canvas – 38 x 34 inches – “A process in the weather of the world. Turns ghost to ghost; each mothered child Sits in their double shade A process blows the moon into the sun, Pulls down the shabby curtains of the skin; And the heart gives up its dead.” —Dylan Thomas, A Process in the Weather of the Heart


Kelly Burke – Quiver, 2012 – oil on linen – 48 x 36 inches – “We shall not cease from exploration And the end of all our exploring Will be to arrive where we started And know the place for the first time.” —T.S. Elliot


Kristina Cao – Strawberry, 2011 – oil on wood panel – 36 x 24 inches – “The moment eternal – just that and no more – When ecstasy’s utmost we clutch at the core, While cheeks burn, arms open, eyes shut, and lips meet!” —Robert Browning, from Now


Miguel Carter–Fisher ­– Dad, 2012 – oil on panel – 24 x 18 inches


Aleah Chapin – Twoness, 2012 – oil on canvas – 74 x 55 inches – I want a tension between the physical presence of a person and the tactile quality of paint. I want the beauty of tradition rubbing against the hyper–reality from a contemporary lens.


Sarah Crumlich – Momentary Expression, 2011 – oil on panel – 30 x 30 inches – Drawn from both the momentary and specific impressions in life, my work seeks to explore the weathered nature of time and experience, the f leeting moment of understanding in relationships, the glimpse of beauty in the broken and worn. Utilizing methods such as gestural brushwork and textural effects the work itself evolves into an impression of these transitory experiences. As the many fragmented moments are gathered and developed over time they find a language that presents a f leeting view of the whole. 33

Jessica Damsky – A Strange Growth, 2011 – oil and 24 karat gold on panel – 24 x 20 inches – In my work, I address the contemporary American mindset towards femininity, presenting it as the remnant of antiquated belief structures that still affect both how women are perceived, and how they perceive themselves. I appropriate icons and imagery dealing with femininity, and depict myself and others as literally embedded in this ancient framework.


Randall DiGiuseppe – Gowanusaurus, 2012 – oil on canvas – 28 x 44 inches – Growing up in all four of New York City’s outer boroughs has made me a de facto world traveler. This unique experience combined with my unorthodox imagination is the catalyst of my inspiration.


Elizabeth Ehmann – St. Vincent’s, 2011 – oil on canvas – 26 x 20 inches – “I live and love in God’s peculiar light.” —Michelangelo


Alexandra Evans – Untitled I , 2012 – Untitled II, 2012 – oil on panel – 12 inches diameter – “Love is a serious mental disease.” ­—Plato


Richard Fine – Gruesome Gramps, 2012 – aquatint – 8 x 10 inches – Some artists create because they possess great skill, some create because they relish in the very act of creation, I create because I have no other choice. Painting has saved my life.


Alexandra Finkelchtein – Expulsion from Paradise, 2012 – oil on canvas – 58 x 107 inches – In the ‘sea’ of technology assisted image making, I do High Art using my imagination and natural ability to draw and match colors.


Nate Gaefcke – Rubbernecking, 2012 – mezzotint – 17 x 15 inches – A good idea is nothing without remarkable execution.


DAvid Gordon – This Could Happen, 2012 – oil on canvas – 24 x 36 inches – My thesis project is about the horror, beauty and ridiculousness of war.


Angela Gram – Devolve, 2012 – oil on canvas – 48 x 72 inches – Through juxtaposition of animal and human imagery I symbolically contrast personal notions of idealism towards the natural world, against an impersonal superficiality in modern consumer society. The irrational spatial environments reflect an unsettling conflict when the worlds of man and animal begin to merge.


Jo Hay –

Me and You, 2012 – oil on canvas – 96 x 60 inches – Human beings are never still. Even in the deepest sleep there is a rhythmic movement to breathing. I am excited by the aliveness of life and its innate desire to live.


Jacob Hicks – Chandelier, 2012 – oil on canvas – 78 x 60 inches – My painting is totemic projection and autobiography. In it I construct status symbols of the western aristocrat (statues, fountains, and chandeliers) from the disappearing relics of marginalized, endangered, and extinct cultures.


Nicolas Holiber – Stars and Stripes (Heir to the Throne), 2012 – beeswax and oil on linen over panel – 48 x 72 inches – Using a diverse range of technical methods and tools, I have committed myself to expressing meaning through painting and sculpture, rather than articulating a veritable reality. My work represents a world distorted under a lens of extreme existential weight and political ideology.


James P. Hopper – Death of the Virgin, No. 2, 2012 – oil on panel – 24 x 18 inches – I want my work to explore the latent religious potential of images, as well as how our desire for a central narrative and purposeful interpretation of events is frustrated by the postmodern era.


Elyse hradecky – Leda and the Swan, 2011 – plaster and mixed media – 9 x 17 x 33 inches



Sean Hyland – Interrupted, 2012 – oil on cradled panel – 30 x 36 inches – Insomnia is a certain kind of monster that grabs ones reality and twists it on its edge.


John Jameson – Boiler Room, 2012 – oil on panel – 24 x 18 inches


Evan Kitson – Skull, 2012 – graphite on paper – 16 x 12 inches – Honesty is the key to great work. It’s the only thing that I can stand behind being timeless, and the only thing that will save you from somebody else’s shadow while allowing you to develop your own. Honesty fosters insight and genuine visual dialog, it is this that I am after.


Adam LaMothe – It’ ll Be Our Secret, 2012 – oil on canvas – 48 x 72 inches – My work explores ideas of over–indulgence, gluttony, and self–destruction as a means to question notions of American exceptionalism and tackle the nature of what it is to be a American today.


John Lark – Untitled (Bed), 2012 – oil on canvas – 72 x 60 inches – Positioning figures uncomfortably or awkwardly in an environment I hope to exaggerate their inability to integrate with their surroundings, and show the moment before a possible transformation. The doubled figures represent the way each generation is ensnared by the previous one, ordained to similarities in appearance and ideology.


Mitchell Martinez – End of the Affair, 2012 – oil and acylic on canvas – 36 x 72 inches – The complex, layered and delicate perception of the feminine from the masculine point of view is the basis for much of Mitchells’ work. Coming from a surrealist tradition, his work builds itself from the abstract an impulsive to the symbolic and allegorical representation of the foibles of the human nature.


Jen Miller – Kansas Saints, 2011 – oil and metal leaf on wood – 5 x 14 inches – I am exploring how memories and emotional entanglements of generations of families connect through the shared experience of living in the overwhelming vastness of the prairie and how those intangible experiences are closely tied to the sometimes oppressive isolation of that terrain.


Colin Moore – Davida, 2012 – bronze – 66 x 18 x 20 inches – Davida is based on the biblical saga Dave and Goliath, a favored story regarding courage and justice. This contemporary version of the timeless tale reminds us that any one of us may have a Goliath in our live so we must acknowledge our weakness and adapt to the challenge.


Gary Murphy – Horsemanship, 2012 – oil on linen – 18 x 17 inches – My work addresses contemporary ritual and cultural archetypes. Employing traditional techniques, subtle transgressions open a space for alternative readings and investigate the nature of escape and desire.


P Ryan–Kleid – Sonj, 2012 – oil on canvas – 45 x 65 inches – P Ryan–Kleid likes to facilitate a dialogue through her satirical paintings.


Holly Sailors – When a Rose Speaks to the Grave, 2012 – oil on panel – 12 x 9.5 inches – “Distance–woman–averts truth–the philosopher. She bestows the idea. And the idea withdraws, becomes transcendent, inaccessible, seductive. It beckons from afar. Its veil flout in the distance. The dream of death begins. It is a woman.” —Jacques Derrida



echo shi – The Dancer Triptych #1, 2012 – oil on canvas – 84 x 48 inches – My paintings are narrative and will always remain narrative.


Alison Simmons – Meditation with Neon: How to Catch a Mermaid, 2012 – hand constructed burlap net, brass wire, neon – 96 x 60 x 36 inches


David Stenulson – Two Swans with Blanket, 2012 – oil on paper – 50 x 36 inches – Deadrealm is Deadrealm because it only sees Dark Outer Void in the color gray.


Jesse Stern – Self–Portrait, 2012 – oil on panel – 20 x 16 inches – My work seeks the truth and character of the subject – whoever, or whatever, it may be – within the often overlooked beautiful minutiae of the mundane.



Kaitlyn Stubbs – Venn, 2011 – oil on canvas – 34 x 34 inches – In my paintings, I acknowledge the fragmented condition of our contemporary culture, while also providing a new & alternative wholeness for the viewer.


Daniel Williams – Not Yet, 2012 – cast plaster – 12 x 9 x 5.5 inches – The goal of my thesis project was to create a figurative dialogue representative of the human psyche with Freudian psychoanalysis at its root. However, simply creating avatars to represent the Id, Ego, and Superego ended up lacking context and were far too crude in their handling to evoke the turbulence and range of emotion desired. In the end the solution was to acknowledge to the viewer that these representations are literally coming from the head.


Blake Zoephel – Jumping In, 2011 – charcoal – 50 x 38 inches – By painting or drawing an image I am expressing my experience of the world,thereby creating the reality of my joy, wonder and/or sadness that I perceive.


new york academy of art The New York Academy is a graduate school that combines intensive technical training in the fine arts with active critical discourse. We believe that rigorously trained artists are best able to realize their artistic vision. Therefore, Academy students are taught traditional methods and techniques and encouraged to use these skills to make vital contemporary art. As such, the Academy serves as a creative and intellectual center for all artists dedicated to highly skilled, conceptually aware figurative and representational art.



Margaret McCann, Interim Faculty Chair Harvey Citron Catherine Howe John Jacobsmeyer Edward Schmidt Wade Schuman

Lisa A. Bartolozzi Margaret Bowland Jiwoong Cheh Susanna Coffey Patrick Connors Monica Cook Cynthia Eardley Daniel Edwards Stephen Ellis

SENIOR CRITICS Steven Assael Will Cotton Vincent Desiderio Eric Fischl Jenny Saville


Judy Fox Laura Frazure Thomas Germano Michael Grimaldi Laurence Hegarty John Horn James Hoston Edgar Jerins Kurt Kauper

David Klass Andrew Lenaghan Leonid Lerman Nina Levent Dik Liu Sharon Louden Randolph L. McIver Mark Mennin Fred Mershimer

Roberto Osti Jean-Pierre Roy Judith Schaechter Robert Simon Robert Taplin Dan Thompson Nicola Verlato Patricia Watwood John Zinsser

BOARD OF TRUSTEES Eileen Guggenheim, Ph.D., Chair David Kratz, President Ludwig Kuttner, Treasurer Margot Gordon, Secretary

Curtis Bashaw Gordon Bethune Nicolas Bos Maureen Chiquet

Kate de Brienne Eric Fischl Paul Johnson Seán McCarthy

Alyssa Monks Natalie Riessen David Schafer Richard Segal

Sybil Shainwald Andy Spade Island Weiss Russell Wilkinson

Richard Blumenthal Trustee Emeritas Christopher Forbes Trustee Emeritas

Laura Frazure Jonathan Goodman Hilary Harkness Julie Heffernan Ridley Howard

David Humphrey Rashid Johnson Sharon Louden Edward Lucie-Smith Carlo McCormick

David Remfry Dasha Shishkin Alix Sloan Pete Surace Herb Tam

Bob Taplin Leslie Tonkonow Thomas Woodruff Saya Woolfalk Dustin Yellin

Artist Advisory Council George Adams Pearl Albino Margaret Bowland John Bowman Rosson Crow

Amy Cutler Greg Drasler Robert Feintuch Judy Fox Natalie Frank

President’s Advisory Council Bob Colacello Carrie Malcolm Glenn O’Brien Gabriela Palmieri Bettina Prentice Eli Wilner


new york academy of art ADMINISTRATION David Kratz, President Peter Drake, Dean of Academic Affairs – Denise P. Armstrong, Assistant to the Dean of Academic Affairs John Cichowski, Director of Continuing Education & Weekend Manager Aston Crossdale, Security Raheenm Duran, Maintenance Heidi Elbers, Exhibitions Registrar & Alumni Coordinator Tim Evans, Senior Accountant Elvin Freytes, Director of Student Affairs Holly Frisbee, Librarian & Archivist Frank Harrison, Director of Security Elizabeth Hobson, Director of Marketing & Events Lisa Kirk, Director of Development


Eric Kirkland, Maintenance Stephan Korsakov, Director of Finance Sean Mearns, Marketing & Events Associate Harry Michas, Director of the Office of the President Andrew Mueller, Director of Admissions & Financial Aid Troy Payne, Maintenance Kaiser Shakoor, Staff Accountant Andrew Shea, Design Director Michael Smith, Operations Manager & Model Coordinator Alan Williams, Maintenance Grady Zeigler, Building Manager


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2012 MFA Thesis Catalog  

The New York Academy of Art is a graduate school that combines intensive technical training in the fine arts with active critical discourse.