The New Social Environment#244

Artfare: Empowering Artists + New Ways of Discovering Art

 

1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Join us for a conversation with artists Young Sun Han, Maya Jay Varadaraj, Tahir Carl Karmali, and Liz Nielsen alongside Founder of Artfare Aki Karja and Artfare Curator Carolina Wheat. We’ll close with a poetry reading from Darien Hsu Gee.

In this talk

Young Sun Han

Young Sun Han
Courtesy of Young Sun Han
Artist, performer, and activist who articulates human stories through intersecting media: photography, moving image, durational performance, and installation. His work aims to document and reveal connections between communities through their shared struggles, histories, and desires. In the past year, their work has focused on public action and protest, coalition building, and collaborations with other queer friends. Han’s work has been exhibited across the U.S., United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, and New Zealand. Han teaches at the Mason Gross School of Art and Design, Rutgers University.

Maya Varadaraj

Photo of Maya Varadaraj by Stephanie Bassos
Photo by Stephanie Bassos
An interdisciplinary artist and designer, she received her Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Apparel Design from the Rhode Island School of Design before completing a Master’s Degree at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Varadaraj’s work has been exhibited internationally at Sapar Contemporary, Vitra Design Museum, Museo Del Disseny Barcelona, Nature Morte, Sakshi Gallery, Salone De Mobile, Mana Contemporary, Established Gallery and Medium Tings among others. She has been featured in publications such as Juxtapoz, Platform Magazine, and We Make Money Not Art.

Tahir Carl Karmali

Tahir Carl Karmali
Courtesy of Tahir Carl Karmali
(b. 1987, Nairobi) is an artist based in Brooklyn. His work spans photography, installation, papermaking, sculpture, and sound. Karmali’s work was on exhibition at The Shed in August 2019, was the subject of a solo exhibition at STRONGROOM, and is a part of Second Careers: Two Tributaries in African Art at the Cleveland Museum of Art, until March 2021. His work has been exhibited at LKB Gallery, Hamburg and Copenhagen; Circle Art Agency, Nairobi; High Museum of Art, Atlanta; Kunsthal Rotterdam; and Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, among others. Karmali was awarded a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant, and residencies at Lower East Side Printshop, The Watermill Center, Triangle Arts Association, Pioneer Works, and others. He is an Adjunct Professor of Sculpture at Brooklyn College.

Liz Nielsen

Liz Nielsen
Courtesy of Liz Nielsen
An experimental photographer based in Brooklyn. Her photographs are made without a camera and can also be described as light paintings or photograms. She works in the analog color darkroom exposing light sensitive paper and processing it through traditional photographic chemicals. Nielsen received an MFA from the University of Illinois, her BFA from SAIC, and her BA in Philosophy and Spanish from Seattle University. Liz has exhibited her work extensively in New York, London, and Paris. Her photograms have been featured at international art fairs such as Paris Photo, Photo London, AIPAD New York, Unseen Amsterdam, and Landskrona Foto in Sweden. Nielsen has been reviewed in the New Yorker, the Guardian, the London Financial Times, LensCulture, Vogue UK, and FOAM magazine among others.

Carolina Wheat

Carolina Wheat
Courtesy of Carolina Wheat
Based in Brooklyn and Newburgh, Carolina is cofounder & director of Elijah Wheat Showroom. Wheat writes about art & culture and has curated numerous political and socially conscientious exhibitions in Detroit, Berlin, London, Chicago, and New York. She is a founding member of the Nasty Women Exhibition movement and continues to work with artists, collectors, and activists internationally. Her professional experience and faculty mentorship inside higher-education includes strategic enrollment management, portfolio development, non-fiction writing and career preparedness. Wheat collaborates with Artfare as a curator, artist liaison, and exhibition designer. Her curatorial work has appeared in The New York Times, Artforum, The Brooklyn Rail, and others.

Aki Karja

Aki Karja
Courtesy of Aki Karja
Since 2018, Aki has been splitting his time between Artfare and Gemic, a NY based progressive strategy consultancy. Before starting his career in finance, Aki was a professional skateboarder. He is a former Finnish champion in skateboarding and snowboarding. Aki received his Master’s degree in Finance at the Helsinki School of Economics. Post graduation Aki worked as an analyst for Morgan and Stanley in New York. From 2004-2006 he worked in Blackstone Group’s Private Equity division. Since 2006 until late 2017, Aki worked as a senior investment professional in three different long-short equity hedge funds —Newbrook Capital, Millennium, and Royal Capital. Aki and his wife have always had a passion for art. They live in Brooklyn where many of their friends work as professional artists.

The Rail has a tradition of ending our conversations with a poem, and we’re fortunate to have Darien Hsu Gee reading.

Darien Hsu Gee

Darien Hsu Gee
Author of five novels published by Penguin Random House that have been translated into eleven languages, and a memoir, Allegiance. She won the 2019 Poetry Society of America’s Chapbook Fellowship award for Other Small Histories and the 2015 Hawai‘i Book Publishers’ Ka Palapala Poʻokela Award of Excellence for Writing the Hawai‘i Memoir. With Carla Crujido, she is the editor of Nonwhite and Woman: 153 Micro Essays on Being in the World, which will be published in 2022. She is the recipient of a Sustainable Arts Foundation grant and a Vermont Studio Center fellowship. Gee holds a B.A. from Rice University and an M.F.A. from the Rainier Writing Workshop at Pacific Lutheran University. She lives with her family on the Big Island of Hawai‘i.