NWSA Presents the 2nd Installment of Artists - Scholars & Curators Lecture Series With Speakers from Across the Nation

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The New World School of the Arts visual arts division will offer students and faculty the opportunity to participate in a new virtual workshop entitled “Artists, Scholars, & Curators: A Lecture Series.” This series of lectures will focus on contemporary artmaking and research practices, expose students to new pedagogical practices and reflect on the current world in which visual artists are anchoring their artistic practice. The lectures will include a Q&A session giving attendees the opportunity to engage with the presenters and delve into the subject matter.

“The NWSA visual arts division will keep this lecture series as a Zoom event because we will be able to have speakers from all over the world including Denver, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Chicago, Detroit, and Columbus. Most of the speakers will focus on career advice and their own career paths to help students learn techniques to balance art practice and life responsibilities after college. Students will also have the opportunity to engage in a dialogue about career path options they might want to explore after graduation,” said O. Gustavo Plascencia, NWSA Dean of Visual Arts.


September 3rd, 2021

Career in Teaching to Non-Profit 

Samantha Johnson, Executive Director & Curator at Colorado Photographic Arts Center

Johnson has been the Executive Director and Curator at the Colorado Photographic Arts Center since 2015. She holds a certificate in Arts Development and Program Management from the University of Denver, an MFA from Lesley University College of Art & Design, and a BFA from Alfred University. Prior to joining CPAC, she taught photography and visual arts for 12 years at high schools in Boston and Denver. She has curated exhibitions with contemporary artists such as Jess T. Dugan, Daniel Coburn, Barbara Ciurej & Lindsay Lochman, and Zora Murff. Samantha has served as a reviewer at Houston FotoFest, Review Santa Fe, PhotoPlus New York, Medium, Month of Photography (MoP), and Filter. She has juried several exhibitions including Critical Mass and The Fence. She is a longtime member of the Society for Photographic Education and served as Treasurer of the Southwest region from 2013-2016 and Co-Chair of SPE’s 2013 Southwest regional conference in Denver. She was named one of Colorado’s Top 100 Creatives 3.0 by Westword and has been featured in Lenscratch.

October 1st, 2021

Chasing Ghosts: Silence, recollection and belonging in the Afghan diaspora

Gazelle Samizay, Multi-disciplinary artist and filmmaker

Born in Kabul, Afghanistan and raised in rural Washington state, Gazelle Samizay’s work often reflects the complexities and contradictions of culture, nationality, and gender through the lens of her bicultural identity. Her work in photography, video and mixed media has been exhibited across the US and internationally, including at Whitechapel Gallery, London; Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery; the California Museum of Photography, Riverside; the de Young Museum, San Francisco; and the Slamdance Film Festival, Park City, UT. Her pieces are part of the permanent collections of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the Center for Photography at Woodstock, NY; and En Foco, NY. In addition to her studio practice, her writing has been published in One Story, Thirty Stories: An Anthology of Contemporary Afghan American Literature and she is a founding member of the Afghan American Artists and Writers Association. Samizay has received numerous awards and residencies, including from the Princess Grace Foundation, NY; Craft Contemporary, Los Angeles; the Arizona Community Foundation, Phoenix; Level Ground, Los Angeles and the Torrance Art Museum. She is currently an artist-in-residence at Side Street Projects, Los Angeles. She received her MFA in photography at the University of Arizona and currently lives in San Francisco.

November 5th, 2021

Working Artists Survival Guide

Micheal Swank, Director at PRPGMX

Micheal Swank graduated from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a BFA – Printmaking, and Design in 1998. In his design career, he has been Art Director for California Tan (packaging), San Francisco Examiner (Hearst), Miller Huber Marketing, Joie de Vivre Hotels, S.F. Business Times, Disney, Dance Magazine, Pasadena Weekly, and others. Micheal began to teach Graphic and Web Design in 2001 and decided to pursue teaching as a full-time profession. In 2006, he completed his Master’s in technology from Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA. He led within the design education community as Academic Department Director, Graphic Design and Web Design Interactive Medias at the Art Institute of California Inland Empire, Art Institute of California San Francisco, and Associate Dean of Academics Art Institute of Houston – North. In January 2012, after a significant car accident caused him to reflect on his dreams to pursue his art, he left his position as Dean to live abroad, travel, learn, create, and reignite his passion for art. He has since lived in China and Mexico City DF; after spending two years focusing his practice in Ventura, CA Micheal relocated to Mexico City permanently in 2018. In 2019 Micheal openedPRPG.mx(Proyectos Residencia y Proyectos Galeria MX) to create a sense of community between the artists of Mexico and the rest of the world with an emphasis on amplifying the stories of the queer community.

February 4th, 2022

[Working Title]

Tony Lewis

In an ever-expanding engagement with drawing, Tony Lewis (b. 1986, Los Angeles, CA) harnesses the medium of graphite powder to confront such social and political topics as race, power, communication, and labor. The material provides a literal and conceptual foundation for the artist's work, as it is stretched, smudged, rubbed, spliced, and folded across a variety of handmade and found surfaces. Graphite powder is an inherently unruly medium, a substance that threatens to wander. Lewis nurtures this dispersal, allowing for the powder to build into a ubiquitous state that settles upon and indiscriminately marks paper surfaces; the graphite-slick studio floor becomes a "tool the same way a pencil is a tool." Lewis lives and works in Chicago. His work has been the subject of recent solo exhibitions including Anthology 2014-2016, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C. (2018); Plunder, Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA (2017); Alms, Comity and Plunder, Museo Marino Marini, Florence, Italy (2016); and nomenclature movement free pressure power weight, Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland, OH (2015). Lewis participated the 2014 iteration of the Whitney Biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, NY and was the recipient of the 2017-2018 Ruth Ann and Nathan Perlmutter Artist-in-Residence Award at the Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University, Waltham, MA.

March 4th, 2022

Art Practice as Experiment or Industry

Paul Echeverria, Multidisciplinary artist and Assistant Professor of Digital and Emerging Media Production at Wayne State University

Paul Echeverria is a filmmaker, digital artist, and educator. His creative practice examines the formative dynamics of childhood, parenthood, and the family structure. In addition, he creates works that contemplate the unavoidable collision between humans and technology. Echeverria's debut feature, …sol y lluvia, won Best Foreign Language Film at the Long Island Film Festival. In addition to filmmaking, he is a digital artist who works in the areas of e-literature, social media, and data manipulation. His films and digital works have been exhibited at multiple venues, including the Angelika Film Center, Anthology Film Archives, the Bronx Museum of the Arts, and Experiments in Cinema. Echeverria is an Assistant Professor of Digital and Emerging Media Production at Wayne State University and serves as a board member for the non-profit organization the Millennium Film Workshop. Prior to arriving at Wayne State, he was the founding director of the Digital and Interactive Media Arts (DIMA) program at Western Connecticut State University.

April 1st, 2022

Return to the Blue Mountains

Amanda Kline, Interdisciplinary artist and Assistant Professor of Art, Otterbein University

Amanda Le Kline is an interdisciplinary artist who works with photography, video, installation, and participatory art forms. Her research interests include history, nature, identity, and women and gender studies. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Lycoming College in 2008 and her Master of Fine Arts from The Ohio State University in 2014. She is currently an Assistant Professor of Art at Otterbein University. Kline is a member of The Page Collective, an artist collaboration group that facilitates community engagement through site-specific installations and participatory art projects. Their work is invested in exploration, education, and research. Kline has recently had solo exhibitions at The Beyond Gallery in Bennington, Vermont, and the Port Columbus Gateway to the Arts Gallery in Columbus. She participates in regional, national, and international group exhibitions, with recent galleries including The Dairy Barn Arts Center in Athens, Ohio, Box 13 Artspace in Houston, Texas, and the Indian Council for Cultural Relations in Kolkata, India.


Aspiring artists in the NWSA Visual Arts division can join other exceptionally talented students as they engage in the pursuit of their artistic career in the visual, graphic, or electronic arts. Trained by nationally renowned practicing artists, students at New World School of the Arts are encouraged to develop a personal, artistic, and aesthetic vision while mastering their technical skills in traditional and new media. Students are allowed to explore new paths while at the same time being exposed to the work of both classical and contemporary masters. Through disciplined training in traditional and new media, students develop new skills and refine others while gaining invaluable understanding of the roles of art and design in society. Areas of concentration include Art & Technology, Drawing, Graphic Design, Painting, Photography, and Sculpture. Information about the NWSA Visual Arts division at (305) 237-3620.

A Florida center of excellence in the visual and performing arts, NWSA provides a comprehensive program of artistic, creative, and academic development through a curriculum that reflects the rich multicultural state of Florida. With programs accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art, Dance, Music and Theater, NWSA offers four-year BFA and BM college degrees, as well as the high school diploma. Through its rigorous curriculum and conservatory-style teaching NWSA empowers its students to become leaders in the arts. New World School of the Arts was created by the Florida Legislature as a center of excellence in the performing and visual arts. It is an educational partnership of Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Miami Dade College, and the University of Florida. Information about New World School of the Arts at 305-237-3135 or at http://nwsa.mdc.edu/