The panelists that selected the 2015-2016 Smack Mellon Studio Artists were: Gary Carrion-Murayari, Kraus Family Curator, New Museum; Lisa Dent, Director of Resources & Award Programs, Creative Capital; Stamatina Gregory, independent curator and critic and Associate Dean of the School of Art at The Cooper Union. Preliminary panelists were: Esteban del Valle, Molly Dilworth, Oasa DuVerney, Lauren Was of Ghost of a Dream, Dread Scott, and Suzanne Song, all former Smack Mellon Studio Artists.
Gary Carrion-Murayari is the Kraus Family Curator at the New Museum in New York. Over the past four years, he has curated solo exhibitions by artists including Phyllida Barlow, Ellen Gallagher, Haroon Mirza, and Camille Henrot. He has co-curated several New Museum exhibitions including, Ghosts in the Machine, NYC 1993 and Chris Ofili: Night and Day. He previously worked at the Whitney Museum of American Art for several years, where he curated or co-curated a number of exhibitions including the 2010 Whitney Biennial. He has contributed to publications including Flash Art, Domus, Kaleidoscope and many museum catalogues.
Lisa Dent is the Director of Resources & Award Programs at Creative Capital. Previously, Dent served as the Associate Curator of Contemporary Art at the Columbus Museum of Art in Ohio, held curatorial staff positions at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art and was a director at Friedrich Petzel Gallery in New York. In addition, Dent has worked in film and the performing arts as a scenic designer, art director and producer on numerous projects. From 2004-08, Dent owned and managed Lisa Dent Gallery in San Francisco, where she presented the work of emerging and mid-career international artists. She has served on numerous juries and committees and is currently a board member of Visual AIDS. She has taught courses in art history and design at Cooper Union, University of California, Davis, Columbus College of Art and Design, and The Ohio State University. Dent received a BFA from Howard University, an MFA from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, and completed the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program in curatorial studies.
Stamatina Gregory is an independent curator and critic based in New York. In 2005-2006 she participated in the Whitney Independent Study Program, and from 2007-2009 she was the Whitney Lauder Curatorial Fellow at the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania, where she organized five exhibitions including Carlos Motta: The Good Life, and Tavares Strachan: Orthostatic Tolerance. She has organized group exhibitions and public programs at venues including Austrian Cultural Forum, New York; FLAG Art Foundation, New York; The Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Eugene; Tyler School of Art, Philadelphia. Her recent retrospective of the work of New York photographer and activist Brian Weil (1954-1996) was recently on view at ICA in Philadelphia and will open at the Santa Monica Museum of Art in January 2015: the catalog is published by MIT/Semiotext(e). She was Deputy Curator of the inaugural pavilion of The Bahamas at the 55th Venice Biennale.
A doctoral candidate at The Graduate Center at the City University of New York, she writes on contemporary landscape photography, militarism, activism, and the media. She has taught art history, critical theory, and writing at Hunter and Baruch Colleges, CUNY, the University of Pennsylvania, and at the State University of New York, Purchase College, where she was visiting professor in 2011-2012. She is currently the Associate Dean of the School of Art at The Cooper Union.
The studios are located in the lower level at 92 Plymouth Street. Duration of the program is June 1, 2015 - May 15, 2016.
The Artist Studio Program was launched in 2000 in response to the crisis in availability of affordable workspace for artists living and working in New York City. The program normally provides artists working in all visual arts media a free private studio space accessible 24/7 and a $5,000 fellowship (dependent upon funding). The program does not provide living space. Artists also have access to three shared common areas: a state-of-the-art digital production lab; a fabrication shop; and a kitchen/lounge area. Each year, Smack Mellon convenes a panel of arts professionals to select the artists from over 600 applicants. Smack Mellon hosts two Open Studios events annually, as well as sponsored visits from curators, critics and gallerists, which provide significant exposure and invaluable career building opportunities.