Arlington Art Center’s “Curators Spotlight” Introduces Four Rising Curators to Region

By Editorial Team on January 11, 2017

Arlington Arts Center’s Curators Spotlight provides a platform for new curators, artists, and ideas in the Mid-Atlantic Region to create groundbreaking exhibitions. Launched in 2015, the Curators Spotlight exhibition returns this year to continue AAC’s commitment to contemporary art.

This nine-month program formalizes AAC’s long-standing tradition of elevating local and regional curators by offering professional guidance and support during the development of their exhibitions.

This year’s emerging curators are Kayleigh Bryant-Greenwell, Betsy Johnson, Katy Scarlett, and Ann Tarantino. Like the inaugural show, Instigate. Activate. | new curators, new ideas, each curator will be responsible for presenting a group exhibition, showcasing the artists and themes of their choice. In this way, four independent shows make up the Curators Spotlight exhibition.

As a result, audiences will experience fresh perspectives, new artists, and a variety of curatorial voices that represent interests ranging from the body and issues around gender and the internet to the politics and poetics of water and the role of labor in artistic production.

Selected Curators and Exhibition Descriptions:
Kayleigh Bryant-Greenwell | Greenbelt, MD
Questioning what it means to be an artist in the age of the internet, Click Here takes a look at the effects of the internet on our current society; where high artistic achievement was once defined in strictly academic terms, now we see a democratization of the field throughout the realms of the World Wide Web.

Participating artists: Rachel Bone, Nancy Daly, Michelle Lisa Herman, Dina Kelberman, Lindsay McCulloch, Molly Springfield, Jenny Walton, and Stephanie Williams.

Kayleigh Bryant-Greenwell is a selected contributor to the forthcoming Museums As Sites for Social Action [MASS Action] toolkit produced by the Minneapolis Institute of Art. She is an independent curator and writer, and the public programs coordinator at the National Museum of Women in the Arts, where she is building an initiative focused on women, arts, and social change. She served as an adjunct professor with P.G. College and as a community liaison with P.G. County Arts and Cultural Heritage. She has worked as the visual arts coordinator at Strathmore and as operations manager at the David C. Driskell Center. She holds a BA in Art History from the University of Maryland, College Park; an MA in Museum Studies from the George Washington University.

Betsy Johnson | Arlington, VA
Minding the Hand explores art as a product of labor and the effects of the rise of technology on our physical world. The artists involved in this exhibition have chosen to continue labor-intensive, hands-on practices that are deeply rooted in materiality and physical experience, and strongly believe in the transformative power of making to organize chaos, fill voids, and create synergy among people and things.

Participating artists: Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin, Yoko K., Melissa Forkner Lesher, and Elsabé Dixon.

Betsy Johnson is a specialist in modern and contemporary art history and theory with expertise in curatorial practice, community engagement, education, and public programming. She is currently a curatorial assistant at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, DC. She earned a Master of Arts in Art History from The Pennsylvania State University in 2004 and is ABD in the Department of Art History and Archaeology at the University of Maryland. A resident of Arlington, Virginia, Betsy is an Arlington Arts Commissioner and an Arlington Public Arts Committee Member.

Katy Scarlett | Philadelphia, PA
Let Me Look at You features work by artists who deal with the relationship between power and the human body. By outlining human fragility, and in some cases, the body’s vulnerability to both physical and emotional violence, these works interrogate structures of authority. Altogether, the works within this exhibition operate from an uneasy space of acknowledging mass objectification while still attempting to depart from coded histories of power inherent in representation of the body.

Participating artists: Aaron McIntosh, Allana Clarke, Andria Morales, Brandon Dean, and Caitlin Rose Sweet.

Katy Scarlett is an independent curator based in Philadelphia, PA. She has worked in a variety of arts organizations such as The Delaware Contemporary, Philadelphia Museum of Art, and Queens Museum of Art. Katy is interested in curatorial practice, and accessibility and education within a museum setting. She earned her BA in Art History, Theory & Criticism, Studio Art from Stockton College of New Jersey and her MA in Art History from Hunter College, City University of New York.

Ann Tarantino | State College, PA
SEEP explores the ways in which contemporary artists use water in their work, whether as subject matter, medium, or both. Water, in its myriad forms and interpretations-whether as a source of visual inspiration, a substance with social and political implications, or the actual stuff of art itself-is at the root of all the work in the exhibition. Taken together, the works offer a fuller understanding of how contemporary artists respond to, visualize, interpret, conceptualize, and see water today.

Participating artists: Caetlynn Booth, Rob Carter, Rachel Farbiarz, Bonnie Levinthal, Giulia Livi, and Patrick McDonough.

Ann Tarantino is an artist who has exhibited everywhere from museums and galleries to botanical gardens and zoos. Twice featured in New American Paintings, she is a 2016 recipient of a Fulbright award for artistic practice in Brazil. Her work has been exhibited at the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, Mixed Greens (New York, NY), Brooklyn Botanic Garden (Brooklyn, NY), Ateliê Alê (São Paulo, Brazil), and The Contemporary Austin (Austin, TX). She lives and works in State College, PA, where she is Assistant Professor of Art and director of the Woskob Family Gallery at Penn State.

Curators Spotlight will be on view Jan. 21 – Mar 26, 2017 with opening reception Saturday Feb. 11, from 6 – 9 pm. Gallery talks with selected curators are scheduled for Saturday, March 4, 1 – 4pm.  See East City Art’s Gallery and Openings section for published listings.

(via Arlington Arts Center. Photo courtesy of Arlington Arts Center.)