Background, Identity and the Straight White Male Discussion

Here is more info on this discussion and speaker biographies. This will take place at #class next Saturday the 6th at 4pm! RSVP is recommended to hashtagclass (at) gmail (dot) com.

Background, Identity and the Straight White Male – (Suggested by An Xiao )
As William Powhida wrote, “The complexion of the art world is a lighter shade of pale, and despite the Whitney Biennial’s gender parity all is not well in the market.” Artist An Xiao would like to invite an open table discussion about how artists’ identities and backgrounds influence the perception, reception and display of their work. How do factors like perceived race, gender, age, socioeconomic status and sexual orientation affect our experience of the art world? To what extent *should* an artist’s background be considered? We welcome those of all backgrounds with open arms to talk about your art, which could be worth making the implicit explicit. This panel will be moderated by writer Joanne McNeil.

Hector Canonge is an artist and teacher who lives and works in New York City where he studied literature, film and Integrated Media Arts. His work incorporates the use of various media and commercial technologies, physical environments, cinematic, and performance narratives.

Canonge’s works have been exhibited at the Jersey City Museum, The Bronx Museum of The Arts, Queens Museum of Art, and in various galleries in New York City and New Jersey, and it has been reviewed by the New York Times, ART FORUM and on online publications such as NYRemezcla, and Turbulence. As part of his community initiatives, he started the monthly Queens’ LGBT film program CINEMAROSA. He is also the co-founder of QMAD, Queens Media Arts Development, a non-for profit arts organization that serves various communities of Queens.

Susanna Heller is an artist and teacher who paints, draws, and walks the city. Her work has been exhibited at Magnan Projects in New York, Olga Korper in Toronto and others thorugh the east coast, Canada and the Netherlands. Her work has been reviewed in the Brooklyn Rail, Art Info, Art in America, The New York Times, and she has taught at Rutgers, Parsons New School, and Yale.

She spoke recently with Carolina Miranda on WNYC about the Tino Sehgal Show.

James Kalm is the pseudonym of a Brooklyn based painter who is a long time contributor to The Brooklyn Rail. He has written hundreds of published art reviews, catalogue essays, and cultural commentaries.

He invented the concept of online streaming video art criticism with the “Kalm Reports” employing YouTube and with over 350 programs and has a worldwide following on the internet. His reports have been featured on numerous websites, art blogs, and online magazines like, Art Daily and Saatchi Online TV. He is married, with two adult children, paints and writes in Brooklyn.

Raghava KK is one of India’s most celebrated emerging artists. His work has spanned genres as widely disparate as painting, sculpture, installation, film, performance, and even his own wedding.

He started his career in 1997 as a cartoonist with Indian national dailies and over the next 10 years, would reinvent himself to use several different mediums. He has lectured and taught at several art institutes, including the Ecole des Beaux-Arts (Nimes, France) and the New Hampshire Institute of Art (Manchester, NH, USA). Recently, he was invited to speak at the TED conference in California.

He lives and works both in the New York and Bangalore, India.

Joanne McNeil is a science and technology writer living outside Boston, Mass. She writes the popular blog The Tomorrow Museum, a collection of images and speculative essays exploring how technology, science, and economics are affecting the fine arts.

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