Announcing our 2021 Engaging Artist Fellows and Artist-in-Residence

Posted on Tuesday, January 19th, 2021

A loose grid of headshots of 8 artists and one artist collective with 3 people. There is black text saying "Engaging Artists 2021" below the grid. They are a mix of ages, mostly young and mid-age, mostly female or female presenting, one male. There are white people and people of color.

We are excited to announce the 2021 Engaging Artists (EA) cohort! A big congratulations to our Fellows, Amy Ritter, Amy Wetsch, Andrew Freiband, Bel Falleiros, Chantal Feitosa, Freya Powell, Hanae Utamura, and Hyperlink Press. And we are so happy to be working with our 2021 Artist in Residence, Sean Desiree, who is an alum of our 2020 EA Fellowship program! We look forward to a year of collaboration and growth.

ENGAGING ARTISTS is More Art’s 2-tiered, Fellowship and Residency program for artists seeking to both develop and sustain their public art and socially-engaged practice. The program curriculum encompasses a professional development series, public art commission opportunities, mentorship, and peer networking. For more info on the program, visit the Engaging Artists page.

Meet the 2021 Fellows

Amy Ritter

Amy Ritter grew up in Eastern Pennsylvania in a double-wide mobile home. She is influenced by working class people, their stories, workplaces, homes, and bodies; specifically those living in mobile homes. She has been systematically archiving mobile home parks with overarching research questions around the American Dream, specifically the myth of social mobility and the stigma and shame around places we call home.

Ritter received her MFA from The Ohio State University, her BFA from Tyler School of Art, attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2016 and currently lives in Brooklyn, NY. She has attended numerous residencies including the Vermont Studio Center, Fine Arts Work Center, LMCC, Trestle Artist in Residence, Dé Clinic International Mixer Residency, NYU Visiting Scholar, and Yaddo. She has shown most recently at the Sculpture Center Cleveland, Fleisher Arts Memorial in Philadelphia, The Porch Galley in upstate NY, The Museum of Sex (NY), BRIC (NY), Laurence Miller Gallery (NY), Socrates Sculpture park (NY), and Loyola University (MD).

Amy Wetsch

Amy is a NYC based multidisciplinary artist and educator originating from Louisville, Kentucky. Her artistic practice spans from creating installations, paintings, drawings, mixed media sculptures, to publicly engaged works. Amy’s work examines the intersections of various sciences and investigates ideas of the internal and external struggles of the human body. Her work focuses on lifting chronically ill voices while shedding light on the mistrust in our modern-day medical systems. Another large facet of her practice focuses on collaborating with people in diverse scientific fields such as planetary scientists from Johns Hopkins University and NASA. She believes there is a healing power emitted when communities come together to reflect on the wonder and awe of the world around us and the power of the human imagination. 

Amy received her BFA from Western Kentucky University (WKU) and her MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in the Mount Royal School of Multidisciplinary Art. Amy has exhibited her work in various galleries and museums nationally, including The Kentucky Museum, The National Academy of Sciences, The Museum of Contemporary Art Nashville, and in galleries throughout New York City. Amy has attended artist residencies such as the Trestle Art Space Residency and the Post Contemporary Residency. She was selected as a 2018 HEMI/MICA Extreme Arts Fellow, a 2018 National Academy of Sciences fellow, and selected for a 2019 European Space Agency conference in Madrid, Spain. Amy is also a lead artist on the newly selected NASA mission, Dragonfly.

Andrew Freiband

Andrew Freiband is an artist, filmmaker, producer, educator, and research-artist. He is the founder and director of the Artists’ Literacies Institute (ALI), an experiment in arts education and engagement that helps artists reframe their artistic practice as research, and then connects them to new possibilities for intervening meaningfully in social, ecological, political, civic, and economic systems.

As a critique of the instrumentalization of artists as only communicators or servants of the marketplace, the ALI seeks to discover new, more meaningful roles for artists in their society and communities.

He holds more than two decades of extensive field experience at the many intersections of art, education, media, film, journalism, literature, social impact, international development, research, and strategic design.

Bel Falleiros

Bel Falleiros is a Brazilian artist whose work focuses on place, our relationship with the land, and its impact on our identities. Beyond her studio practice, she participates in collaborative projects across the Americas connecting art, education and autonomous thinking. She is currently a teaching artist at Escuelita en Casa and Dia:Beacon, and has her first public sculpture on view part of the Monument Now show at Socrates Sculpture Park in New York.

Chantal Feitosa

Chantal Feitosa is a Brazilian American artist and educator from Queens, New York. She works between image-making, language, and pedagogy to explore themes of belonging, idealism, and care. The processes of collage and archiving are at the heart of her practice when developing digital media, semi-fictional narratives, or socially engaged work. Her films have screened at the Harlem International Film Festival (NY), Vidlings & Tapeheads (MI), the Every Woman Biennial (NY), and the Anti-Racist Classroom’s Represent Film Festival (CA).

Feitosa received her BFA in Film/Animation/Video from the Rhode Island School of Design with a concentration in Literary Arts & Studies. She has been an artist in residence at the Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Residency Unlimited, and Smack Mellon’s Artist Studio Program as a Van Lier Fellow.

Freya Powell

Freya Powell uses time-based and linguistic platforms to explore language and its relationship to memory, myth, and history. Her work has been exhibited in solo shows at Art in General, Brooklyn, NY (2017), Herron School of Art, Indianapolis, IN (2017), and Arts Santa Monica, Barcelona, Spain (2014.) She has participated in group shows at institutions including EFA Project Space, New York, NY, Queens Museum, Corona, NY, Socrates Sculpture Park, Long Island City, NY, #1 Cartagena: the First International Biennale of Art, Cartagena de India, Colombia, and the Bronx Museum, Bronx, NY, among others. Her work is in the collections of the New York Public Library; the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection; and the Franklin Furnace Archive. Most recently she was awarded a development residency at MoMA PS1 and a New Work Grant from the Queens Council on the Arts (2019). Powell holds an MFA from Hunter College, New York, NY.

Hanae Utamura

Hanae Utamura is a Japanese interdisciplinary artist. Utamura works in video, performance, new media installation, and sculpture. She connects human beings and earth, using the body as a conduit. The negotiation between nature and civilization, and how the will of life manifests itself in its processes has been the central focus of her practice. She reflects on our relationship to nature, focusing on how we imagine, experience, and affect the natural world through scientific development and historical narration.

She received her MFA at Chelsea College of Art and Design in London and BFA at Goldsmiths, University of London. Utamura has received support through numerous international residencies and fellowships including Akademie Schloss Solitude (Stuttgart, Germany), Künstlerhaus Bethanien (Berlin, Germany), PACT Zollverein (Essen, Germany), Art Omi (Hudson, U.S.), Santa Fe Art Institute (Santa Fe, U.S.), Aomori Contemporary Art Center (Aomori, Japan), National Museum of Contemporary Art, Changdong Art Studio (Seoul, S.Korea), Seoul Art Space_GEUMCHEON (Seoul, S.Korea), Florence Trust (London, U.K.) and more. She has been awarded the Shiseido Art Egg Award, Axis/Florence Trust Award, UNESCO-Aschberg Bursary Award, NYFA Immigrant Artist Mentoring Program, Bunkacho Grant by the Japanese Ministry of Culture, the Pola Art Foundation, Nomura Art Foundation, i-style Art and Sports Foundation, and has been exhibited extensively in Asia, Europe, and the United States. She was a visiting scholar at New York University in 2019, supported by the Japanese Ministry of Culture, as part of the Japan – United States Friendship Exchange Program in the Arts.

Hyperlink Press

Inspired by South Korean online LGBTQ communities in the 2000s, Hyperlink Press is an online publication and curatorial collective to create intersectional platforms to showcase work by artists navigating the in-between spaces. Hyperlink Press’ mission is to empower the underrepresented history, experience, and identity in the tech field, and art gallery system. Founded by Taehee Whang, Jeong Yoon Lee, and Minsoo Thigpen in 2018, Hyperlink Press would like to share the time of utopic excitement, that we felt back in our shared childhood of 2000s, for an equal world, breaking free from the traditional forms of community building.

Meet the 2021 Artist-in-Residence

Sean Desiree

Sean Desiree is a self taught artist and furniture maker, born and raised in the Bronx. They use wood from found pallets, demolished buildings, and discarded scraps to create works that range from 2D pattern based pieces to 3D sculptures that put race, gender and safety at the forefront. Their most recent solo show LIFTED: Public Housing, an Aerial Perspective was a collection of two-dimensional works depicting aerial views of seven public housing units in Hudson, NY. Profits from the sales were used to give a grant to an artist/maker living in Hudson Public Housing. In the summer of 2019, they expanded their skills by learning timber framing. They were a co-facilitator in the Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) Builders Immersions at Soul Fire Farm in Grafton, NY, where they learned how to build shelters/homes. Through the craft of woodworking, they aim to design life-size structures and sculptures that act as sanctuaries, protectors, and symbols of empowerment for BIPOC queer, trans and nonbinary people. In 2020, they were an Engaging Artist Fellow at More Art and currently a 2021 Workspace Residency at Wave Hill in New York City.

Rebuild More Art

Posted on Saturday, December 12th, 2020

A photo of a church on fire with flames coming out of the front steeple and windows. There are three firemen in the foreground with their backs to the camera. A couple of fire hoses point their spray at the building

Last January More Art moved into a working space in the basement of Middle Collegiate Church’s office building at 50 E 7th. Many of you may have seen coverage of the recent fire that devastated the church and the Women’s Prison Association’s Hopper Home, displacing 22 women and destroying a historic building, spiritual home, and sanctuary for so many.

Due to the danger posed by the structural instability of the buildings, we have not yet been able to visit the site and assess the damage. With the combination of fire, smoke, and several feet of water in the basement, we cannot expect to recover much, though we hold out hope that some things may be salvaged.

As a staff, and a team, we have come together in support of one another and all those affected by this enormous loss, and we are immensely grateful that no lives have been lost. We are inspired by the love and vision of the Middle Collegiate Church leadership and community. We are also grateful to our director Micaela Martegani, who is forging ahead with as much care, energy, and hope as could be imagined.

Micaela started this organization in 2004, and much of the record of her and our work was stored in that office. Of course, our real achievements cannot be lost to fire. Our home is in community with the artists, students, teachers, and participants, in public spaces, and in New York City.

We are proud to be a part of the Middle Collegiate community. We mourn the loss of the Middle Collegiate Church as we have known it, but we look forward to working with the Middle Collegiate community to rebuild and find a new path forward.

We will share further information as we navigate this crisis and the road ahead.

Ustedes (Them): Immigration and Power

Posted on Friday, December 11th, 2020

A photograph of a drone flying over nyc, with the Freedom Tower and the buildings of lower Manhattan. The drone is mounted with two video screens that have a women's eyes on them so that the drone looks like a creature.

Ustedes (Them): Immigration & Power
A celebration in honor of International Migrants Day
Thursday, December 17, 6:00-7:15pm
Via Zoom. Register through the link below.

Please join us for a virtual celebration of our current public art project Ustedes (Them) by artist Krzysztof Wodiczko

Honoring International Migrants Day, the event will feature a screening of a short video of footage from the performance on Governors Island, a behind the scenes look at how it was made, statements from the participants in the project, a visit with the artist, and a timely conversation about immigrant rights including a Q&A.

In the live conversation, we will highlight how public art projects like Ustedes (Them) help amplify the work of organizations fighting on the ground. The guests, Commissioner Bitta Mostofi from New York City’s Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs and Angeles Solis from Make the Road New York, will talk about their current initiatives in support of immigrant rights, how the pandemic has magnified existing inequities towards immigrant communities, what can be done to minimize the effect in the months ahead, and what changes, if any, to expect due to the new administration.

Candystore, MC Extraordinaire
Emma Drew, Moderator, Editorial Assistant, More Art
Carolina Lora Pineda, Project Participant
Micaela Martegani, Founder & Director, More Art
Commissioner Bitta Mostofi, Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs
Amador Rivas, Project Participant
Angeles Solis, Lead Organizer, Workplace Justice Team, Make The Road New York
Krzysztof Wodiczko, Artist

Celebrate with us how public art, and organizations like More Art, can help shed light on endemic issues to create sustainable change. Plus, we will announce our 2021 projects and Engaging Artist Fellows!

Image: Ustedes (Them) by Krzysztof Wodiczko, Governor’s Island, New York, 2020, Photo by Julienne Schaer.

Watch the event recording here:

More Than Ever, NYC Needs +More Art

Posted on Thursday, October 15th, 2020

A black box with white text that reads "More than ever NYC needs More Art.

More Art emboldens artists with community participants to produce public art that seeks to shift the power dynamics within the art world towards those who are underrepresented or have limited access. As we continue into unpredictable and unprecedented times, the need for arts, culture, and building community is greater than ever, and artists can help us identify and carve a brighter way forward. The essential role that artists have historically played in healing and recovery after major setbacks can’t be underestimated.

Now, more than ever, we need your help! Show NYC that we need +More Art.

A Year of Public Water

Posted on Monday, June 29th, 2020

This week More Art launches a Year of Public Water, a project by artist Mary Mattingly that examines the complex history of NYC’s drinking watershed, bringing attention to the often unseen labor that people, along with our broader ecological community, undertake to care for our water. As the U.S. experiences a heightened health, economic, environmental, and water poverty crisis, millions of people face obstacles to access safe, clean running water daily. Agricultural runoff, byproducts of disinfection agents, as well as aging infrastructure like lead pipes have contaminated drinking water, especially in BIPOC and low-income communities. Addressing environmental, health, and economic conditions in and around New York City’s watershed and public water system is a vital precondition for the creation of a more just present and future for upstream and downstream New Yorkers.

A Year of Public Water is an invitation to examine our relationship to water in order to co-build more equitable partnerships between downstream water-receiving communities and upstream water-source communities. Join us each week for a new release of content including research, guest interviews, and calls to action.

Join the conversation

Follow #AYearOfPublicWater on Twitter and Instagram
Subscribe to the Public Water mailing list


Posted on Monday, June 1st, 2020

More Art stands in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. We stand with protesters demanding justice for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, and the many lives lost to racist violence and systemic oppression. We stand with those grieving the profound loss of life that has disproportionately impacted BlPOC communities during this pandemic. We stand with the activists, artists, and BIPOC communities who fight for a more just society.

We all have a role to play in dismantling white supremacy, fighting for equity, honoring the past, and realizing a better future.


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