Angeliki, 2019
Screening on the third floor of MOCA Tucson
Museum of Contemporary Art
265 South Church Avenue
Tucson, AZ, 85701
Thursday December 12th, 2019
7pm – 9pm including Q&A.
Current MOCA Tucson Artist in Residence Santina Amato, is proud to present Angeliki, a durational video portrait of a women with her weight in dough. The durational video is 83 minutes long, capturing dough slowly creeping to consume a woman and her personal space. It is the first time Amato will be presenting one of her full length video works within a public screening setting.
The creation of this work was partially supported by the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events 2019 Individual Artist Grant and is an ongoing series.
Amato’s position as AIR at MOCA Tucson is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency.

Join us for an evening talk with our newest Artist in Residence, Santina Amato.
December 3rd, 7.30pm – 8.30pm

Museum of Contemporary Art
265 South Church Avenue
Tucson, AZ, 85701
Members: Free
Public: $10

About the artist:

Santina Amato was born in Australia to Italian Immigrants and migrated to the US in 2010. She received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and is interested in the ephemeral nature of material and labor processes, working in a wide range of mediums from paint works on paper to large-scale installations. As a material focus, her particular interest in using bread dough within her installations, sculptures, video and photographic works, and especially in live settings, is the dough’s life cycle; once activated by warm water and sugar, the cells of yeast split and divide, similarly to when an egg is fertilized by sperm. There is a peak moment when dough is voluptuous, full, and ripe, just before it begins to ‘die’.

By observing the similarities in the life processes of dough and her own body – the way it moves, the way it feels, the way it is observed by others, the way it is perceived by the self, its temporal relationship to the world & to others – Amato attempts to translate certain complexities through an interdisciplinary artistic dialogue. These are the complexities associated with her own experience of being female, her relationship to her own body and those that she desires, female heterosexuality, desire, erotica, intimacy, and aging.

Artist In Residence
11/28/2019 – 12/29/2019
MOCA Tucson
265 S Church Ave,
Tucson, AZ 85701

Amato will be giving a public artist talk at the Museum on December 3rd at 7.30pm.

Solo Exhibition
Because the flowers won’t last
New performative sculptural work using discarded items from local thrift stores.

Ignition Projects
3839 W Grand Ave,
Chicago, IL 60651
Exhibition Opens October 5th, 6-9pm
10/5/2019 – 11/2/2019
Saturday and Sunday 12-5pm

SUN, 16 JUN AT 19:00
Bubbly Creek Performance Art Assembly
1029 W. 35th St.
Chicago, Illinois

A Festival Celebrating the Bridgeport Neighborhood
June 13-16 | 2019
Curated by Angeliki Tsoli
Featuring Live Art by
Santina Amato | Jessica Elaine Blinkhorn | Óscar González-Díaz | Carlos Salazar Lermont | Giulia Mattera | Smeza+Keegan | Diana Soria | Nicolina Stylianou | ieke Trinks

In her performance titled Seedbed, Amato combines two childhood memories – one of her mother using her body to make bread dough, the other, her mother dyeing her clothes black on news that her father had passed away in Italy. As a child, Amato’s mother would use her whole body to knead dough on the kitchen table to feed the family. When it was ready, she would put it in a bowl, lead Amato and her siblings into Amato’s bedroom to place the bowl on her bed, covering it with her bed blankets. She would then lead Amato and her siblings out of the room, shutting the bedroom door behind them whispering, “keep quiet as the dough is sleeping”. The other memory is watching her mother boil up a big pot on the kitchen stove when she received news that her father had passed away in Italy. She proceeded to put her clothes into the pot, one by one, to dye them black to wear over the coming year as a sign of mourning her father’s death; black being the colour of mourning in the Italian culture and the only time that it is (was) seen appropriate to wear this colour.

Amato will be creating 40lbs of bread dough (the approximate weight she would have been when witnessing her mother dye her clothes as a sign of mourning) to place into a bowl that sits on a single bed. Wearing a black Labour and Birthing Hospital Gown bought off Etsy, Amato will leave the dough to “sleep” while it continues the performance without the body present.

Seedbed references Vito Acconci’s 1972 performance of the same name, subverting, while reclaiming, the uterus as the ultimate seedbed. Performance starts at 7pm sharp on June 16th but as it will be durational, the performance will continue throughout the whole nights programming.

At A Distance #3 is the third annual iteration of this project, and the first to take place in Chicago. This exhibition continues the exploration of the boundaries and grey areas which might exist between artist/curator and technician/collaborator. By asking the artists and the curatorial team to each cede some degree of control, this project seeks to stimulate new avenues for process-oriented art. The resulting exhibition presents work that questions or comments on the role of author, de-emphasized egos and suggests that collective authorship may exemplify connectedness as inherently conditional to the processes of making.

The 18 artists on display at Wedge Projects each challenged the selection committee and installation team in their own unique ways, with some projects opening myriad questions regarding materials and the communication of content. The final form of each of the works in this exhibition was fabricated without the artists present, and represents one possible completed state for each idea.

Participating artists include:
Kioto Aoki
Santina Amato
Bruce Barber
Caitlin Cocco
Gary Duehr
RJ Harrington
Tracie Hayes
Hannah Hirsekorn
Christalena Hughmanick
N. Adriana Knouf
Xiaohan Li
Jacob Lunderby
Ellen Mueller
Sunita Mukhi
Lauren Sudbrink
The Mutual Society of Arts
Yasen Vasilev
Raymond Yeager

Curatorial committee members include:
Peter Fleps
Angela Lopez
Matt Martin
Dieter Roelstraete
Alisa Swindell
Udita Upadhyaya
A. P. Vague

Currently on exhibit at the Arts Club of Chicago; Carmen, from Amato’s on going series Portraits of Women With Their Weight In Dough and Untitled (Dough Still Life With Flowers) will be exhibited on the screens in the drawing room. Squash, Press, Knead, Push, Amato’s first attempt at mono-printing that was created whilst Artist-In-Residence at MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA in 2018 supported by the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events (DCASE), 2018 Individual Artists Program (IAP) Grant, will also be on exhibit until May 30th, 2019.

Santina Amato is an awardee of the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, 2019 Individual Artist Program Grant. The grant will partially support the creation of up to five new portraits in Chicago to add to her ongoing series Portraits of Women in Their Weight in Dough.

Ignition Project Space
3839 W. Grand Ave. #1
Chicago, IL 60651
March 1-30, 2019
Opening Saturday, March 16, 6-9pm
Gallery hours: Saturdays 12-5 and by appointment

Nibble is a small taste of each artist who will develop a project in the main gallery during season 3 in 2019.
Santina Amato
Yvette Kaiser-Smith
Melissa Leandro
David Sanchez-Burr
Jose Santiago-Perez

Santina Amato showcases new work created while AIR at Crosstown Arts, Memphis in 2018.

Dec 7th 2018 – Jan 12th 2019
ACRE Projects
1345 W. 19th Street
Chicago, IL 60608

Gallery Hours:
First three Sundays, Noon-4pm
& by appointment

Artists: Ada Pinkston, Danielle Rosen, Liz Roberts, Santina Amato, and Sonia Louise Davis //

Curated by Ann Meisinger and Nathan Florsheim

Opening Night Performance/Reading:
December 7th, 7pm
Sonia Louise Davis and Patricia Rose (Catherine Feliz, Luan Sherman, and Danielle Rosen)

To circumambulate is to complete a circuit all the way around an object. In many devotional practices, the object circumambulated is an idol or otherwise sacred item. The lap or laps can represent the passage of time, a spiritual journey or a funerary or other ritual procession. In the same breath, this walk is a revolution with no beginning and no end and a linear evolution of an event. Each of the artists in Circumambulation investigates an aspect of time whether it is the collapsing of distant timelines into one moment through video, the fabrication of an object made from a daily performative interaction or a reach back into the past from the present.

The works in this show don’t just present a transformation as a frozen, crystallized moment in time but they interrogate the process of metamorphosis and that moment’s structure, functioning as performative documents. These artists connect viewers with the past, present, and future, inviting a consideration of how the passage of time shapes and reshapes all things.

Ada Pinkston is a multimedia artist, educator, and organizer living and working in Washington DC as a fellow of the Halcyon Arts Lab. Born in New York, her artistic research interest spans the breadth of Social Science, American Studies, African -American Studies and socially engaged community art practices. Over the years, her work has been featured at a variety of spaces including The Baltimore Museum of Art, the Walters Art Museum, the Peale Museum, Transmodern Performance Festival, P.S.1, The New Museum, Light City Baltimore and the streets of Berlin. A graduate of Wesleyan University (B.A.) and Maryland Institute College of Art (M.F.A.) she has given guest lectures at NYU, UCLA and The National Gallery of Art. Her most recent collaborative project includes founding the LabBodies Performance Art Laboratory in Baltimore, Maryland.

Danielle Rosen currently lives and works nomadically on various farms and artist residencies throughout the world. She received her BFA from the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design in 2011 and her MFA from the University of Chicago in 2013. Recent solo exhibitions include COYWOLF at TESSELLATE, Pontiac, MI in 2018, HYDRA at 65GRAND, Chicago, IL in 2017 and TOTEMS at The Ski Club, Milwaukee, WI in 2015. Residencies include the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Madison, ME in 2018, JOYA in Parque Natural Sierra María- Los Vélez, Spain in 2018, HEIMA in Seyðisfjörður, Iceland in 2018, Vermont Studio Center in 2018, and ACRE in Steuben, WI in 2017. Rosen’s work has been featured or reviewed in publications including Inside/Within, Jubilat, Chicago Reader, Bad at Sports, Voyage Chicago, Foundwork and Newcity. Rosen’s recent work continues her problematization of human-cultural representations of animal(s), of self.

Patricia Rose is a performative platform created by Danielle Rosen. In 2011, Rescue Press published The Institute for Species Systemization: An Experimental Archive under Rose. Projects by Patricia Rose have since evolved to encourage collaborative authorship. With Rose, identity becomes a mutable context in which humans intersect and are invited to perform animality: collectively, polyvocally, and queerly. In 2017, The Museum of Contemporary Art and the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, IL hosted performances by Rose. In 2018, Velvethorns by Patricia Rose was published in the inaugural issue of Pigeon: A Radical Animal Reader. On December 7th, 2018, Rose will be giving a reading at ACRE Projects.

Liz Roberts has screened/exhibited with Ann Arbor Film Festival, Chicago International Film Festival, Microscope Gallery (Brooklyn, NY), Wexner Center for the Arts (Columbus, OH), EMMEDIA Gallery & Production Society (Calgary, Alberta), the Film-Makers' Cooperative (New York, NY), Cranbrook Academy elsewhere. In 2017 she was invited by the Cleveland Museum of Art to create a performance and sound piece in collaboration with musician Henry Ross. Their work, Death Knell, destroys a car as a live performance using only hand tools, recording the sounds with dozens of contact microphones. The resulting audio composition was released as a double cassette by the Cleveland music label Unifactor Tapes. Roberts is a core participant in MINT, a decentralized collective and former warehouse space in Columbus, Ohio. She is currently faculty in Graduate Studies at Columbus College of Art & Design and the Art Department of The Ohio State University.

Santina Amato is a multimedia artist whose work addresses the notion of the intimate body, especially the female body. She was born in Australia to Italian immigrants and has lived and worked in the USA since 2010, receiving an MFA (Photography) from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2017. Earlier this year, Amato had her first solo exhibition in the USA titled Monster, supported by the Illinois Arts Council Agency (IACA), Individual Artist Support Project Grant and exhibited at Heaven Gallery in Chicago, IL. She most recently fulfilled the position as Artist-in-Residence at MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA supported by the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events (DCASE), Individual Artists Program (IAP) Grant and is the Founder and Director of Moving_Image_00:00, a biannual festival in Chicago of moving image works created by Chicago-based artists. She is a current Smack Mellon Hot Pick Artist for 2018/2019 and Fall Artist-in-Residence at Crosstown Art, Memphis, Tennessee.

Sonia Louise Davis (b. 1988, New York, NY) engages improvisation across installation, writing, weaving, and performance. Her work is informed by critical race and feminist theory, as well as her training as a jazz vocalist. She has performed at the Whitney Museum of American Art and
published in Women & Performance: a journal of feminist theory. An honors graduate of Wesleyan University and alumna of the Whitney Independent Study Program, Sonia lives and works in Harlem, New York City.

Ann Meisinger is a New York City based curator and educator who works as an AssistantEducator for Public Programs and Creative Practice at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and
previously served as the Assistant Curator of Public Programs at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. She is a member of the curatorial collective Third Object and currently serves as a
curatorial fellow for ACRE.

Nathan Florsheim is an artist and educator living in Chicago, IL. His work investigates how photography functions as a representational medium within the exploration of space, memory, and belonging. He currently studies at the School of Art Institute of Chicago, works as the Gallery Manager for ACRE Projects, and teaches photography and filmmaking at the Evanston Art Center.

ACRE Projects welcomes all gender expressions and features gender neutral bathrooms. ACRE’s space is wheelchair accessible. Please contact Kate Bowen ( for more information.

Dis-rupted: A Performance Santina Amato
4-8pm, December 4th, 2018
Crosstown Arts’ 430 Gallery
430 N. Cleveland,
Memphis, TN

Dis-rupted is a durational performance that focuses on the materiality of bread dough and women’s bodies in a designated space (430 Crosstown). This will be the largest project Amato has attempted with bread dough; inviting twelve female identifying women to create 900 lbs of dough in a public performance setting held on December 4th between 4-8pm. The (anti)climax of the event sees the performers lay, stand or sit in the dough as it rises around them, consuming their bodies. This work is a continuation of Amato’s investigations into the materiality of dough and her focus on the notion of the intimate body, especially the female body.

Santina Amato
Caitlin Hassinger
Ashli Aaron
Megan Travis-Carr
Bianca Phillips
Mary Jo Karimnia
Lily Anderson
Julianna Johnston
Erica Vanhaute
Elizabeth Elder
Madelyn Altman
Asayah Young

Open Studios
November 30th, 2018
Crosstown Arts
1350 Concourse Ave.
Memphis, Tennessee

Take a behind-the-scenes tour of Crosstown Arts resident artist studios during the Crosstown Arts Open House. Crosstown Arts provides free studio space inside Crosstown Concourse (and the surrounding neighborhood) for residents, but these studios are typically off-limits to the public.

Resident artists include Alex Paulus, Ama Codjoe, Darius Wallace, Jing Niu, Jeremiah Matthews, Sid Richardson, Alicja Trout, Jon Crawford, Jules Johnston, Karina Alvarez Castillo, Lauren Asta, Lizzy Martinez, Rory Golden, and Santina Amato.

This is happening in conjunction with the Crosstown Arts Open House, which will showcase all of the new spaces — galleries, the Green Room, theater, cafe, Art Bar, Shared Art Making, and artist studios. Live music, food, drinks, performances, tours, art exhibitions, and more.

Artist Lecture at University of Memphis
11:30 – 12:30pm,
November 7th, 2018
Art and Communication Building,
Room 310, 3715 Central Avenue,
Memphis, Tennessee.

if you have two legs, borrow another pair and run,
HERE Arts Center,
145 6th Ave, New York, NY 10013
July 19– September 1, 2018
Tuesday – Saturday, 2 – 7 pm.

If you have two legs, borrow another pair and run, a loose translation of a Persian proverb, frames this group exhibition reconsidering singledom. Positing that being single is not a condition of lack or in need of remedy. Asking instead, what if singledom is such a scarily powerful state that we find ourselves undermining it? Challenging the cultural perspective that one’s life is complete only after finding a partner, the works in this exhibition forefront, instead, the empowerment found in true autonomy. Offering ways to address the paired world with surreal prosthetic or embracing the repudiation of a contemporary life ‘uncoupled’ and exploring notions of the missing partner or the insufficient, abandoned romance. Co-curated by Santina Amato and Sarah Skaggs, with artwork by Mohadeseh Rahimitabar, Katya Grokhovsky, Lauren Steinberg, Lindsay Hutchens, Katie Hammond, Santina Amato and Monica Rezman. A limited edition catalog with contributions by the artists and cover design by Angela Azmitia will be available at the reception.

Mohadeseh Rahimitabar is interested in creating a dialogue between language, in particular, language used within proverbs, and the role of materials in defining every-day objects. This show borrows as it’s title Rahimitabar’s contemplation on the Iranian proverb اگر دو پا داري ، دو تا ديگه هم قرض كن و فرار كن, loosely translated into English as “If you have two legs, borrow another pair and run”. Within the context of this exhibition, her beautifully crafted wooden sculptures titled The Blind Leading The Blind and If You Have Two Legs, Borrow Another confront the social narrative that singledom is a potential disability. The structural reinforcement of value in being coupled reflects in our everyday life: reduction of income tax, employer sponsored health insurance and benefits are extended to the partner, booking a hotel room for two is a given, paying rent is halved, and the list goes on. Singledom is costly. Rahimatabar offers the viewer a pair of prosthetics to borrow, so that the single person can run in a world that is made for pairing.

Within her practice, Katya Grokhovsky employs her body as a tool to weave together the personal and the political, creating a stage for the bodies of the historically oppressed, in relation to the social order. Bad Woman video sculpture reminds us of the old eccentric lady of our childhood: the one that sat on the peripheries of our family or community events, looked upon as too ‘out there’ for finding a partner. The bachelor is praised, the spinster, ostracized. Bad Woman pushes this trope to campy excess to subvert the gaze and confuse the viewer, her gestures reflect desire and the restraints that are imposed to contain it. She attempts to hold a position of desire but is easily distracted and at one point, rubs watered down red paint onto her legs in an attempt to recapture the fertility and sexual height of her long gone ‘desirable’ and youthful state. It reminds us of Jill Soloway’s TV series adaptation of Chris Kraus’ I Love Dick: “I was born into a world that presumes there is something grotesque, unspeakable about female desire. And now all I want is to be undignified, to trash myself. I want to be a female monster.”

Exhaustingly attempting to blow up an air mattress by placing the pump at her groin, Lauren Steinberg simulates masturbation and other sexual acts in Performance Anxiety, Go Love Yourself. Steinberg is interested in presenting objects altered through performance, acknowledging object associations with her body while expanding on what these objects can be. Her video work included in this exhibition confronts the viewer, presenting the act of masturbation and sex, without the ‘other’s’ participation. The ‘other’ in this instance is a plastic air mattress that receives the results of Steinberg’s hard work. The inanimate object almost arrives at its ideal state – to support a body in repose – yet Steinberg is left exhausted and without the satisfaction of ‘the little death’ that we all aim for in sexual relations, whether it be by ourselves or with others. Connections to the history of the vibrator and why it was invented come to mind. The vibrator ”was developed to perfect and automate a function that doctors had long performed for their female patients: the relief of physical, emotional and sexual tension through external pelvic massage, culminating in orgasm.” Natalie Angier, New York Times.

Presenting as a Vanitas with a photograph of decaying fruit hanging on the wall above the naked figure of a man, we are reminded that states of desire, erotica, youth, and pleasure will inevitably change, even die, leaving us alone again. Lindsay Hutchens takes to the photographic medium to look to the intersecting and contingent visual aspects of the clichéd American nuclear family structure, and how photography and video can be used to resist that structure’s legitimacy as opposed to uphold it. Her work titled Alex on the Last Day of Spring, inverts the patriarchal convention of the nude, inviting the viewer to gaze upon a male figure in repose. Hutchens’ work questions the structures of our intimate or familial relationships and the assumptions and ideologies we carry unknowingly. Notions of the perfect partner conflate sustained attraction and companionship. We are taught that to experience desire, erotica and pleasure, one must be in union with another, in a normative, sustainable, long term relationship. Is it possible to simply enjoy the moments of desire and erotica without developing a co-dependency on the other? And if it is possible, is society willing to let people who choose their singledom in desire, live without repercussions?

Katie Hammond has been plagued by disability for the past ten years and her work is a selfish salve for her chronic pain and its psychological ramifications. The paint is applied on velvet, a material that we associate with warmth, intimacy, and the pleasure of touch, yet the imagery is the sterile world of a body in pain where the fixing of the basic functions (or dysfunctions) of the human body occur. Hammond tackles the self portrait to reflect on her challenges: Self Portrait in Hot Tub, Self Portrait with Bird Skeletons and Wedding Ring Tan Line (Frida Kahlo paper doll book), Self Portrait with Incision and Chihuahua (Frida Kahlo paper doll book), Self Portrait with Cropped Hair (after Frida Kahlo). Using both humour and horror, her work In this exhibition reflects the challenges that lie within for a person plagued by disability and an artist without health insurance insurance.

“The camera makes everyone a tourist in other people’s reality, and eventually in one’s own.” Susan Sontag. Santina Amato, well known for her works using bread dough, presents a new work from her ongoing series that appropriates amatuer porn downloaded off the internet. Her practice results from conceptions that come from her personal experience in her female body, drawing on themes such as strangeness/foreignness, intimacy & vulnerability, self & Other, presence & absence, and horror/desire. In Violet Room, the woman’s sexual partner is removed from the scene, frame-by-frame, leaving us with a surreal voyeuristic lens into subjects pleasure. We are presented with a video of a woman in an erotic state but we are not able to locate or identify with the sexual partner who is providing the pleasure. We are left out. We are not invited. We are simply asked to watch, to be a ‘tourist’, as a woman enjoys her erotic state, by herself. This surreal world is one where it is possible to find pleasure without the labor of the act, but also removed from the necessity and awareness of the partner.

Unapologetic in offering a nuanced and complicated understanding of satisfaction that is divorced from its relation to a partner, these works aim to make space for the narrative that the uncoupled individual is not in a state of want or lack. These works make evident the norms we internalize and offer a sensual, erotic and surreal world that attempts to subvert them.

Works List
Katya Grokhovsky, Bad Woman, 2017, Video, 13 minutes
Mohadeseh Rahimitabar, The Blind Leading the Blind 2, 2017, Cherry wood, purpleheart wood, playdough, brass rod, 23”
Mohadeseh Rahimitabar, If you have two legs borrow another pair and run, 2016, Cherry wood, metal rod, 43”

Lauren Steinberg, “Performance Anxiety”: Go and Love Yourself, 2016, Video of a performance, 8 minutes on a loop
Santina Amato, Violet Room, 2018, Video, Edition of 5, 02:32
Lindsay Hutchens, Alex on the Last Day of Spring, 2017, Archival inkjet print, 30”x40”, Edition of 3, two AP
Mohadeseh Rahimitabar, Resistance practice, 2017, Video, 00:09:38
Katya Grokhovsky, Bodybeautiful, 2013, Fabric, toys, acrylic, ribbons
Katie Hammond, Self Portrait with Cropped Hair (after Frida Kahlo), 2016, Acrylic, paper, glitter, fabric, canvas, 60”x48”
Katie Hammond, Party Cactus, 2016, Wire, paper pulp, nails, glitter, acrylic, plastic pot, 30” tall
Katie Hammond, Self Portrait with Incision and Chihuahua (Frida Kahlo paper doll book), 2016, Acrylic on velvet, 36”x32”
Lindsay Hutchens, For Lindsay, 2017, Archival inkjet print, 40”x30”, Edition of 3, two AP
Monica Rezman, Spring Giddness 2, 2011, Charcoal drawing on archival inkjet print, 30”x40”
Monica Rezman, Love’s confusing joy, 2011, Archival inkjet print, 11”x17”
Monica Rezman, Unseen World, 2011, Archival inkjet print, 11”x17”
Katya Grokhovsky, Bodybeautiful, 2013, Fabric, toys, acrylic, ribbons
Santina Amato, Untitled (Dough Project Self Portrait), 2015, Video, 00:08
Katie Hammond, Self Portrait with Bird Skeletons and Wedding Ring Tan Line (Frida Kahlo paper doll book), 2016, Acrylic on velvet, 36”x32”
Katie Hammond, Self Portrait in Hot Tub, 2016, Acrylic on velvet, 36”x32”

Artist Bios

Lauren Steinberg ( is an interdisciplinary artist based in Chicago who graduated with an MFA in Performance from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She creates queer uncanny spaces by borrowing from her vocabulary of: endurance performance, clowning, stunt work, muscle memory, drag-king routines, inflation and deflation to question our set environments and expectations. She has performed at multiple locations including HEREarts Center New York, Mimosa House London and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago.

Katya Grokhovsky’s ( practice encompasses several mediums, including installation, performance, sculpture, video, painting and drawing, which she employs to explore ideas of gender and identity construction, alienation, labor and the self. She is an interdisciplinary artist, independent curator, educator and a founding director of Feminist Urgent. She holds an MFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, a BFA form Victorian College of the Arts and a BA (Honors) in Fashion form Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology. She is a recipient of numerous awards, residencies and fellowships and has exhibited her work extensively nationally an internationally.

Lindsay Hutchens' ( practice is as an artist, writer, researcher, and curator. Through these collaborative mediums, she theorizes a feedback loop of pleasure and obligation that exists in both the mechanical and biological forms of reproduction within family photographs, proposing in response a present-ness in photography that might disrupt hierarchies of ancestor and descendant.

Santina Amato ( is an interdisciplinary artist whose work addresses the notion of the intimate body, especially the female body. Her practice incorporates video, sculpture, installation, painting and photography and is deeply rooted in psychoanalytic thinking and feminist theory to translate the complexities of her own female sexuality, desire and erotica within a patriarchal system. Amato is known for her works using bread dough as a material focus but presents a new work from her ongoing porn series. Manipulating amateur porn downloaded from the internet and using it as a material to renegotiate the meaning of it’s original context, Amato’s porn works reflect on the psychosexual nature of intimate relationships. She is a current Smack Mellon Hot Pick Artist for 2018/2019.

Through the suggestive motif of hair, Monica Rezman ( explores conceptions of femininity, beauty, and the body. Hair, in her drawings and photographs, is always either severed from its human subject or fully engulfing her, producing a visceral response that verges on the uncanny—that aesthetic emotion whereby something deeply familiar is experienced as foreign and strange. Hair, a most intimate and familiar material, becomes alien and uncomfortable when seen in isolation or in unnaturally copious amounts.

Mohadeseh Rahimitabar ( is a multidisciplinary artist who was born in Iran. She gained her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and currently lives and works between The Netherlands and United States. She is interested in questioning the role of norms, values and rules that shape the identities and human bodies in social and cultural contexts. Her practice investigates into the relationships between the language and social-cultural values. This show borrows as its title Rahimitabar’s contemplation on the Iranian proverb, نک†رارف†و†نک†ضرق مھ†رگید†یاپ†ود†یراد†اپ†ود†رگا†, which in English loosely translated to “If you have two legs, borrow another pair and run”. Within the context of this exhibition, her wooden sculptures titled The Blind Leading the Blind and If You Have Two Legs, Borrow Another confront the social narrative that singledom is a potential disability

Katie Hammond ( makes acrylic paintings on canvas and velvet, and sculptures from lo-fi materials such as cardboard and wire. Her work explores self-portraiture, symbolism, and iconography, with nods to art history, pop culture and kitsch. Hammond earned her MFA in Painting and Drawing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2016. Following graduation, her work was featured in EXPO Chicago and she had a solo show at Western Exhibitions, Chicago. In 2018, her work was included in group shows at LVL3, Heaven Gallery, Riverside Arts Center, and HERE Arts Center in New York. She has received fellowships to Ox-Bow and Vermont Studio Center residencies. Hammond was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan and currently lives and works in Chicago.

Smack Mellon Hot Pick Artist 2018/2019
Smack Mellon: Supporting emerging, under-recognized mid-career, and women artists since 1995.
Located at 92 Plymouth Street in DUMBO, Brooklyn.

Smack Mellon’s Hot Picks program was launched in 2007. The top artists, as selected from the Studio Program applicants by a panel of esteemed curators, arts professionals, and established artists, are featured on the Smack Mellon website and social media for one year.

Artist In Conversation With Jeremy Biles

Heaven Gallery
May 18th – June 24th

Artist in Conversation
June 24th, 1.30pm

Please join us for a conversation between artist Santina Amato and scholar Jeremy Biles on Monster, Amato’s first solo exhibition in the US, currently on view at Heaven Gallery.

Amato and Biles will discuss ‘embarrassment’ as a creative force and motivation in transforming the awkwardness of one’s personal life and the unappeasable need to make the private public into works of art available for unrestricted consumption by the public.

The conversation will be followed by a Q&A.

Jeremy Biles, PhD, is the author of Ecce Monstrum: Georges Bataille and the Sacrifice of Form. He teaches at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.