Earth Impermanence -- Polar self Portraits
Earth, Impermanence layers on summers of rowing on the main European artery, the Danube, and my
work on an Arctic expedition. The Arctic experience then took me to the Hudson Valley, carved out by
Arctic glaciers, to work on my Polar self Portraits series of works.
I did not have to step out of my spacious studio while working as the ASLNY's artist in residence at Vyt. Animals came to see me at dusk, looking at my work in the studio. But when I did venture out into the sprawling forests of the Hudson Valley, I made some unexpected discoveries. One of these was an art gallery in a converted fire
station. How uncanny, in the context of my work right next door about global warming.
The former fire station's light and space matched my work, which was exploring visually the dynamics between the self and the polar landscape, in the context of
The shimmering light and the uncanny happenstance of the space filtered through me.
A day or two came and went. A dawn chorus and the first rays of light teased my eyelids open.
Wide open. Framed by that skylight right above my bed, There I saw the curatorial concept for an exhibition at this fire-station-turned-gallery: to link
my Polar self Portraits project and its global relevance to the local specifics of the Hudson Valley and its
glacier deposits. It is to connect through art the here and now with the glaciers of the last ice age making
their home the Hudson Valley –– and the contemporary melting of the polar caps.
Then, during an early morning peripatetic sketching along the Hudson, it dawned on me that an
interpretation from the East and the West of the planet would resonate with the concept. So I invited a fellow artist at the ASL artist residency at Vyt, originally from Lahore, to join me in this exhibition.
The next few days we discussed my concept with the curator of UACNY during our triangular meetings in
the gallery and our respective art studios. We argreed that given the theme and its global as well
as local relevance, we should invite a local artist from the Hudson Valley to join the two of us in Earth,
And thus the concept inspired by the Danube in Europe, installations in the Arctic, and the light of the Hudson Valley started a life of its own. Its genesis
evolved into a confluence of the local: an exhibition of artists at the Vyt Residency of the Art Students League NY, for the first time, at the
local art gallery in the the Hudson Valley.
An exhibition of impermanent locals. Locus, Impermanence. Earth, Impermanence.
My curatorial concept inspired by Polar caps melting, the Hudson Valley and its
connection with the Arctic evolved to become the first ever exhibition of artists from
the historic Art Students League NY at Vyt featured at the local art gallery, a stone's throw away.
© Z s u z s a n n a A r d ó