On View: January 9 – January 23, 2022
Target Gallery, the contemporary exhibition space at Torpedo Factory Art Center, celebrates the work of the Post-Grad Resident artists—Eliza Clifford, Lindsey Kircher, Danny Varillas, and Nicole Wandera—in 2021 Post-Grad Residency. The exhibition will be on view through Sunday, January 23, 2022.
The Post-Grad Residency Program is a competitive, juried opportunity that provides meaningful support to artists who recently earned an accredited degree in the visual arts. Residents have three months of exclusive access to Studio 319 in the Art Center, wherein they create work, interact with the public, and connect with other arts professionals. It allows for professional development and networking, and a chance to define their practices outside of an academic context.
The juror for the 2021 Post-Grad Residency program was Gretchen Schermerhorn, Artist Director of Pyramid Atlantic Art Center.
About the 2021 Post-Grad Residents
Nicole Wandera (B.F.A., Communication Arts at Virginia Commonwealth University, 2019) was the Winter Resident (January – March). Her work is a reaction to the contemporary social and political landscape. Her figure paintings, which also incorporate digital elements, are catharsis. She creates from her perspective as a mother, an immigrant, and a black woman.
“I mirror the world I live in, reflecting it in my work,” she said. “I began my residency during a very volatile time in this country’s history. We were slowly opening up again, and the insurrection on January 6th happened. I am simply recording history through my work, and I wanted to capture that moment. These pieces are me trying to decipher these emotions and anxieties.”
Lindsey Kircher (B.F.A., Fine Art at Pennsylvania State University, 2019) was the Spring Resident (April – June). Her work comes from an urgency to understand her own body and her femininity and sexuality. She is interested in exploring the many ways she experiences the world in a female body. Approaching her work from an environmentalist and feminist perspective, she’s also inspired by non-human plants and animals that reflect the complex experiences of womanhood. The work chosen for this exhibition illustrates the evolution of her narrative style.
“Experimenting with this new technique of overlapping layers in a manner similar to collage has freed me to create more complex imagery and discover new connections between women and nature during my process of working,” she said.
Eliza Clifford (B.F.A., Graphic Design, Printmaking, and Book Arts with Certificate in Gender and Women’s Studies at University of Wisconsin–Madison, 2019) was the Summer Resident (July – September). Trained as a graphic designer and printmaker, she created a multisensory and multidisciplinary body of work, primarily through prints. During her residency, she was interested in how spaces encapsulate our identities
“Our homes and the spaces we interact with daily have an irreplaceable place in our identity and encapsulate our everyday experiences,” she said. “The works on view captures my evolution in different materials. My practice explores new themes, connecting our personal identities to the sublime nature of our everyday lives.”
Daniel Varillas (B.F.A., Graphic Design at Maryland Institute College of Art, 2019) was the Fall Resident (October – December). He is a multi-disciplinary artist who uses a variety of media to explore complex themes. He regularly incorporates motifs like farming tools, plants, and the traces left by agricultural pests into his work as a metaphor for his personal experience as a first-generation Salvadoran American.
“Through an exploration of various media, the work combines hand weaving, natural dying, metal casting, and garment production as ways to address family history and Salvadoran culture as I understand and experience it,” he said.
Target Gallery is open Wednesday – Sunday from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Target Gallery has a limited visitor capacity to allow for social distancing. Those who wish to visit Torpedo Factory Art Center are asked to adhere to current Virginia Safer at Home guidelines, including maintaining a social distance with people from different households, wearing face coverings indoors, and frequent handwashing for 20 seconds or use of hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
Target Gallery is in Studio 2 in the Art Center, located at 105 N. Union St., Alexandria, VA.