2021-2022 CCA Grants

Architecture and Utopia
Michael Ashkin

An exhibition involving photographs of Ithaca (2020-22) with supporting text. The accompanying text is an inquiry into the relationships between language, perception, western philosophy, and various forms of power which have consolidated historically. It is also an inquiry into the nature of a strangeness repressed beneath the surface of everyday life, a strangeness with no language to express itself but which must, nonetheless, be acknowledged in that it is part of what is real.

Musics of Southeast Asian America
Christine Balance

Concert, artist talks, and class visits by hip hop artists Bochan Huy and Ruby Ibarra, whose work references not only histories of popular music in the Philippines and Cambodia but also how Asian Americans form their political voices through song and musical genres.

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Listening in Slow Motion by Melissa Conroy
Listening in Slow Motion
Melissa Conroy

An exhibit of abstract drawings and functional sculptural textiles. Drawing and painting is a process of visual research and discovery of meaning. The drawings and textiles embrace material exploration, technology, and a focused, but open creative process. The connection between the narrative themes that emerge in the work and the abstract approach to artmaking is another layer for the viewer to consider.

Helen's Hector Returns Home
Jack Elliott
A large red oak tree was removed from the A.D. White House garden in 2016 and after five years, is being returned as a sculpture to the garden, to recognize the important, but largely forgotten, roles that Helen Magill, the wife of A.D. White, played in Cornell’s history. Helen Magill was the first woman to earn a Ph.D. in the United States and an enthusiastic gardener. Her degree was in Greek studies. Thus, the piece is entitled “Hector”, referring to the Greek prince who served as the protector for Helen of Troy, as the tree served as protector of Helen Magill’s garden, overlooking the south pedestrian entry point.
A Voice of One's Own
Hosted by Lucy Fitz Gibbon

Students and faculty, alongside visiting artists — composer Katherine Balch, baritone Sidney Outlaw, and pianist Michael Brofman — present two concerts of music by female/female-identifying composers in celebration of International Women’s Day.

Engaging Communities, Empowering Students: Curating Fashion at Cornell, 1936-1960
Cornell Fashion + Textile Collection

In this fashion exhibition, we explore the collaborations between Cornell faculty, staff and students that led to the development of Cornell’s Fashion + Textile Collection in the mid twentieth century, focusing specifically on how university dress collections serve as repositories created for and by students.

Vocality: Singers Play and Instruments Sing
Cornell Chamber Singers

A three-day examination of the porous boundaries that divide various musical communities, culminating in a musical performance representative of the work.

Dressing the Circus: History, Function, Fashion, Labor
Denise Green + Jenny Leigh Du Puis
A physical and digital exhibition exploring the phenomenon of circus costume and its history, form and function, influence on fashion, and the labor behind the garments from design to costume “death”, including worn artifacts, images, and audiovisual media.
The Pleasures of the Quarrel
Rebecca Harris-Warrick

This opera centers on a pivotal moment in French operatic history known as the “War of the Buffoons,” an aesthetic battle between people in favor of maintaining the traditions of classic French opera and others who favored the more progressive and comic ideas coming from Italian operas of the day.

Leslie Lok

The design explores the coupling of augmented reality (AR) technologies with non-uniformly sized lumber to develop a digitally informed and customized hollow-core cross-laminated timber (HCCLT) wall assembly.

Reasonable Practices
Elizabeth Meyer

This proposal brings together separate, but sequential semester collaborations between two contemporary artists in a paired alliance with two BFA alumni, Taber Colletti and Danni Shen. Since matriculation these former students have successfully transitioned their subsequent research toward roles as gallerist, critic, and curator. The project provides an opportunity for faculty and advanced students to engage with this team in collaborative research to create work/s within the context of expanded print media.

Unlocking Creativity - Custom Half Scale Forms
Kimberly Phoenix

An interactive exhibit inspired by the Cornell University history of the custom dress form. This exhibit included two workshops for those interested in exploring the custom form.

The Sculpture Shoppe
Verity Platt

The Sculpture Shoppe is a curated exhibition with public-facing educational programming drawing upon works from the Cornell Cast Collection and responses to cast culture and classical art by contemporary artists and thinkers.

Locally Grown Dance: Goldberg Variations by Mark Haim
Byron Suber

A solo dance work created to Bach’s Goldberg Variations by choreographer Mark Haim, performed by Miles Yeung-Tieu and Cornell students.

30th Anniversary of CU LGBT Studies: A Devised Play from the Archives
Sara Warner

Students from Introduction to LGBT Studies create an original play devised from archival material in the Human Sexuality Collection (HRC) at Olin Library and from oral histories with queer, trans, and non-binary alums. The script will be archived in the HRC. This project is part of a rolling anniversary to celebrate 30 years of the LGBT Studies Program (and also the 50th anniversary of women, gender, and sexuality studies at CU).

MFA NYC Exhibition
Department of Art MFA Program

Each spring, Master of Fine Arts candidates work individually and collectively towards an exhibition in New York City. This is an important point to which candidates orient themselves throughout the year, functioning as a culmination of the artistic research and individual studio practices. It is a unique opportunity for Cornell MFA students to show their work together, meet alumni, and gain exposure in a major hub for contemporary art.

Disrupting Quietude in Suburbia: Landscape Activism
Asha Bell

A series of 24 photographs documenting lawn signs in the small suburban town Nyack, New York, home of the famous painter Edward Hopper. These signs are not radical political acts but rather a means of communication with neighbors and passers-by, and in some instances, a way to influence property values and community image. This project seeks to explore the contradictions within this sign-based communication, play with the notion of traditional suburbia, the picket fence mowed lawns, American flags, and call them into question.

Red Desert Artist Residency
Hosted by Laura Cetilia

The Cornell Contemporary Chamber Players host a residency with guest ensemble Red Desert. Composers in Cornell’s DMA program are featured, including works by Joshua Biggs, Maria Alejandra Bulla, Laura Cetilia, John Eagle, Miles Jefferson Friday, and Han Xu.

Mundu: Inheritance, Generation, & Land in Tanzania
Rebekah Ciribassi
Mundu (“sickle” in Swahili) is a collaborative, three-part ethnographic film project that builds on insights from ethnographic dissertation research on sickle cell disease inheritance; it tells intimate stories around the themes of place and inter-generational relationships in various regions of Tanzania.
Ishini Akarshana Gammanpila

This web series is set in the fictional Fingertown where zany, anthropomorphic fingers reside. We follow the lives of three roommates: Beatrice, Joe, and Brian as they navigate through their daily lives interacting with the other fingers around them.

Ever-Patterned Collapsing
Erika Germain

Ever-Patterned Collapsing is a ritual of language, meaning-making, poetry and painting. A collection of paintings, poems, books, and an exchange of meaningful objects shared within a collective space, the metaphors of language and religion; meaning and feeling.

Allan Greller

On-site exhibition consisting of sculpture, video, sound, and work on paper excavated from West Hill’s 1926 abandoned landfill. Visual and sonic works made with with/of objects found on site that address the site’s history (human and non-human) and connection to the historical and contemporary Ithaca community. The project culminates in a self-curated exhibition located both on the site itself and in a traditional indoor space.

Sabor a Carne
Sabrina Haertig-Gonzalez

Sabor a Carne is a sculpture series navigating the relationship of Latinx identity to poultry processing in the United States. The cannibalism of labor. Bring your own Sazón.

The Wave
Maya Kamaeva + Ming Yu Yang + Hancheng Zhang + Jaeha Kim

Using robotic arms for mass production of the joinery, The Wave is an outdoor installment of what could become a large series of wooden sculpture or furniture. The Wave explores and highlights the concept of fluidity through an innovative use of Chinese and Japanese-inspired parametrically designed, robotically milled joinery that allows curving along all three axes, while celebrating AAPI heritage in building technology.

Situating Lesbian Desire
Caitlin Kane

A weekend-long series of staged-readings, virtual conversations, and virtual playwriting workshops, organized around the work of two writers whose plays investigate gender, sexuality, race, and place: C.A. Johnson’s THE CLIMB and Audrey Cefaly’s THE GULF.

La Cámara
John Kennedy

La Cámara is a 30-minute documentary shot in Tecún Úman, a town at Mexico-Guatemala border, that uses sensory ethnographic practices to recast the stories refugees and migrants have of deportation and migration in the Trump era. By illustrating the transnational ties that exist in a border as a space of detention and human mobility, and as a space of indebtedness and violence, this documentary speaks to irrational, nativist forms of border securitization that exacerbate repeat attempts at unauthorized border crossing.

Carnival Publication
Kitsch Magazine

Kitsch publishes a carnival-themed issue of poetry, fiction, personal essays, and pop culture analysis reflecting on subjects including the notion of occasion, gender and gender performance, and literal and metaphorical illusions.

Entanglement Emerging
Tina Lam

Experimentations with transformed matter sourced from the fundamental constituents of the Earth’s core and soil — biomass, minerals, and ores. Embodied in sculptural forms, this exhibition explores the potential that dwells in the recesses of the unknown via processes of transformation, of the haptic and the hybrid.

Sonja Lockhart + al aguas

confluencial presents the work of al aguas and Sonja Lockhart together. Individually submerging into their experiences of Black and Indigenous peoples’ vitality in bountiful to barren social scapes, they recognize the refuge in turning to landscapes, creating an opening for merging an ever changing stream of connections between them.

Perform it Yourself (P.I.Y.)
Piyawat Louilarpprasert

A series of sounds, video performances, and conversations with ideas among post-dramatic theatre, virtuality, and theatricality with the collaboration of renowned Thai artist and educator, Professor Anothai Nitihibon. The project curates a series of performances that reimagine the process of “post-dramatic theatre” which involve diverse creativities among digital technology, filming process, staging management, and theatrics.

Elegy for Exported Desire
Z. Cecilia Lu

Hybrid exhibition and workshop examining the history and experience of Chinese Medicine in America. The history of Chinese medicine in America is long and fraught: it surfaces many questions surrounding the racialization and gendering of healing practices and the contrast of alternative medicines to Western biomedicine. The project draws upon these dual histories—of the exoticization of alternative medicines and the unifying, communal power of alternative medicine—as well as traditions of social practice art, which seeks to engage the community and provide service and experiences not traditionally tied to the white-cube gallery space.

Erin Miller
An outdoor exhibition of sculptural prints at the Cornell Botanic Garden that explore senses and perceptions, accompanied by an artist-made chapbook/zine distributed at no cost to visitors. Through a dedication to creative exploration and critical thinking, Bloom confronts what we think we know about the human experience and consciousness, opening ourselves up to the uncomfortable and the unknown.
Model Organisms
David Nasca

Model Organisms transforms the lobby display cases in Mann Library into miniature aquariums featuring small sculptures inspired by the Cornell Collection of Blaschka Invertebrate Models. During the late 19th century, father and son team Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka produced these highly detailed glass models of marine invertebrates. Intended for use as teaching aids, these models were also fascinating works of art in their own right. A.D. White, Cornell’s first president, ordered a full set for Cornell in 1885. Cornell has one of the most complete collections of Blaschka invertebrate models in the world.

The People Before Penn's Woods
Wulfgar Ramsey

A short documentary interviewing an indigenous woman’s experience moving to Pennsylvania, and shedding light on the massacre of the Conestoga tribe.

Haunted Natures, Hidden Environments
Kelly Richmond

A performance laboratory, a haunted house, an environmental exorcism; Haunted Natures, Hidden Environments is a one night performance-installation event at the Schwartz Center, wherein spectators must traverse a richly material, multi-media, walk-through performance environment which asks them: “Where has theatre been while the world’s been falling apart?”

Neanderthal Funeral Vestment
Cardinal Robinson

Created in collaboration with a local sheep and goat farmer from Blue Spoon Farm, in the Finger Lakes region. Jacqueline Spoon skinned and tanned her animals when their time had come. The construction of this vestment utilized the entire skin, making very intentional cuts where the piece was to be spread about the body. The entire piece was sewn by hand. This project rebukes the idea that lower prices achieved by cheap labor and cheap materials is ideal, and instead prioritizes the environment, local manufacturing, and human rights.

You Reap What You Sow
Chloe Tsui + Erin Huang
A series of illustrations featuring different native seed and plant varieties from the physical land in which Cornell stands and the native groups from which Cornell has profited, screen printed on hundreds of cards to create an interactive mural in which viewers can tear off a piece of the mural to take. The exhibition subverts standard colonial representations of indigenous agricultural practices through the creation of a new type of natural archive in collaboration with local organizations such as the Onondaga Nation Farm and the Hudson Valley Seed Hub.
Gayogohó:no' Onęhę:ʔ Ǫweh (Cayuga Original Corn)
Waylon Wilson
This project builds upon existing and developing research around the Sullivan-Clinton Campaign and the dispossession of the Gayogohó:no’ people to propose an online virtual exhibit that engages users in new methods of interacting with Gayogohó:no’ history, land, language, and culture through multiple forms of media, and from multiple perspectives.
Wenjia Zong
Overload is a phenomenon to describe the excessive amount of things being handled at once. This project, a series of laser-cut and 3D printed clothing, focuses on overload from environmental and cognitive perspectives. Both contexts challenge external and internal welfare and have significant negative impacts on humans’ well-being in our modern society. Natural indicators, including planters, fragrance diffusers, and light strips, are strategically installed inside and outside of the garments to encourage visual and olfactory interaction.
Masters of Disguise or Re-veil
Layla Zubi
Masters of Disguise or Re-veil consists of braided rugs that reference Ottoman era carpets and their history, associated visually with Renaissance paintings and the names of the Renaissance painters. Zubi’s recent works explore multicultural pairings of places and identities together, the notion of community and gathering, and narratives of women figures from Islamic history from a female perspective.