ABOUT ANITA GLESTA

Australian/American artist ANITA GLESTA’S work encompasses numerous approaches from object making to time-based installation sculpture, including digital technologies. Glesta states, “All of my work aims to subvert and catalyze different ways to think about our shared humanity in a historic and contemporary context. I integrate these concerns by inviting the viewer to look and to engage with their entire physical and psychological selves.”


Anita Glesta’s artistic career has straddled private and public worlds for over three decades. Her installation-based and public art works in diverse mediums have been exhibited in galleries, museums and alternative spaces including many sites in the public realm throughout the world. Public art has been paramount to her vision, connecting community through interactive engaging works.


Glesta’s solo museum and gallery exhibitions have included the Museum of Contemporary Art, Krakow (MOCAK); Peking Museum of Art and Archaeology, Beijing; Hudson River Museum, New York; White Columns, New York; White Box, New York; Five Myles, New York; and others. Numerous group exhibitions at Museums include the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; the New Museum Ideas City Festival, New York and many more.


Glesta’s permanent public art commissions include two commissions in the city of Sydney for the Yurong Water Gardens and a permanently installed integrated landscape at the Federal Census Bureau building in Suitland, Maryland with the General Administration Services Art in Architecture.


She is the recipient of many grants and awards, including the New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, New York State Council of the Arts New Media, Pollock/Krasner, and the Puffin Foundation. Glesta’s works and articles about her work have appeared in many journals, magazine and online reviews including BOMB, Hyperallergic, Studio International, Sculpture Magazine, Art in America, the Daily News, Art Daily, The New York Times and others.
Glesta lives and works in Brooklyn, New York

anitaglesta4@gmail.com www.anitaglesta.com




WATERSHED

Glesta began her project WATERSHED when she was invited to do work through the video art organization ARTPORT_Making Waves and the United Nations during the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference in 2009. Like many of her projects, she engaged in research to learn more about the topic. Through beautiful and sometimes lyrical imagery, her multi-channel video installation engaged the viewer in a story of how women on the continents of the planet are affected by global warming.


WATERSHED was first projected on the wall of St Patrick’s Basilica during the New Museum, Ideas Cities Festival in New York City in 2013, Just months after Hurricane Sandy devasted the Lower East Side. The work was projected in London in 2015, on the face of the National Theater on the Thames. In 2016, WATERSHED became an immersive video on the entire floor of the lobby of the Customs House for an Al Gore climate change conference. And in 2017 it was projected on an eighty-foot sidewalk in front of the Brooklyn Public Library in Red Hook, Brooklyn, an area that had been devastated by Hurricane Sandy five years prior.


Within the colorful moving imagery, Glesta integrated both the science and socio-politics of climate change. For the 2017 iteration in Brooklyn, she organized a panel of scientists, community organizers, the Mayor’s office of resilience, and the Brooklyn Borough President and current mayor, Eric Adams, to bring attention to a community that had suffered damage and neglect since the hurricane five years prior. 



NEUROSCIENCE RESEARCH


Glesta’s aesthetic lures the viewer into the work and subtly seduces the viewer’s attention to understand that there is something greater than what is visually presented. In this sense, her work can be considered subversive activism. This subtle and often subversive approach is manifested in her recent engagement with neuroscience. Glesta’s series about the inner workings of the body is an exploration of her own system and a symbolic gesture towards the universality of our humanity.


Despite the growth of research at the intersection of fine arts and health, there is still relatively little data on the impact of engaging with intersectional artwork at a neurological and physiological level. And access to therapy is often limited to the privileged few who can afford the access or even the language and tools to communicate their traumas.


Glesta was recently awarded a fellowship to research the neuroscience of how the vagus nerve, the largest in our nervous system, is affected by anxiety. (http://www.niea.unsw.edu.au/research/organisations/arc-laureate-felt-experience-empathy-lab-feel-lab). Drawing on the interdisciplinary resources offered by the fEEL Lab at the University of New South Wales School of Art, Design and Architecture, Glesta’s research investigates the impact of video-based or immersive artwork on the nervous system and the implications of this impact for mental health and trauma recovery.


UNNERVED, an animation Glesta created during her fellowship, will appear on the face of the Museum of the Moving Image in Federal Square, Melbourne for the month of October 2022 as part of a festival called “The Big Anxiety.” By locating UNNERVED at a highly visible location, Glesta will invite the public to understand our internal systems’ response to anxiety in a particularly anxious time. Illness has been art’s subject forever, but the medical, political, and social implications of public health and its intersections with science and human connection are even more relevant during the global experience of Covid.



GERNIKA / GUERNICA

GERNIKA/GUERNICA explores and memorializes the tragedy of September 11, 2001 through testimonies of the remaining few survivors of the Gernika bombing, sculptural pieces, and video art. The Gernika narratives, which I collected and edited over the course of five years, reflect on the universal feeling of loss, while also observing that our historic understanding of contemporary atrocity has been shaped as much by Picasso’s interpretation in his painting Guernica as by the actual bombing of the Basque village in 1937. Art and history are in constant dialogue. In the months following the 9/11 attack, I thought constantly about Picasso’s great painting. I wanted to understand what it means to make art in the context of a memorial, in particular to make images memorializing atrocity. This began a five-year-project, during which I visited the village of Gernika more than 20 times. I learned that the survivors of the bombing, that killed more than 1600 innocent people and maimed another 900, had never been interviewed before. I videotaped their conversations and documented their memories and thoughts about the atrocity, sometimes using Picasso’s Guernica as a starting point. The multi-media installation includes their testimonies, along with sculptural work and video installations. Testimonies in Spanish, English, Polish and now Mandarin emanate from eight bronze sculptures of old fashioned radio boxes upon which small sculptures—a bird, a hand, a foot, symbols from Guernica and from the 9/11 catastrophe—perch. The two-minute narratives are motion activated. 


The installation was first shown at White Box in Chelsea and Chase Manhattan Plaza with the LMCC, and has been shown subsequently at the Museo Nacional de Antropologia, La Paz, Bolivia in 2008, the Museum for Contemporary Art Krakow in 2012, and the Peking Museum of Art and Archaeology at Peking University in 2013 to inaugurate their new Contemporary Art Gallery.

CV


SOLO EXHIBITIONS


2013 Peking University Museum of Art and Archaeology, Beijing, China

2012 Museum of Contemporary Art MOCAK, Krakow, Poland

2009 Five Myles Gallery, (two person show), Brooklyn, NY

         Museo Nacional, La Paz, Bolivia
2008 Instituto Cervantes, Belgrade, Serbia, “GUERNIKA / GUERNICA”

2007 White Box Exhibition Space, New York, NY

         Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, outdoor installation, Chase Manhattan Plaza

2003 Black and White Gallery, Williamsburg, NY

1996 Annandale Galleries, outdoor site-specific sculpture, Sydney, Australia

1996 The Performance Space, Sydney

1989 Hudson River Museum, Yonkers, NY

1985 White Columns Gallery, New York, NY



OUTDOOR VIDEO PROJECTIONS


2022 UNNERVED Museum of The Moving Image, Federal Square, Melbourne,

2020 WATERSHED:

         Parrish Art Museum, Southhampton, NY

         Basilica Hudson, Hudson, NY

2017 WATERSHED projection on sidewalk, Red Hook BPL, Bklyn, New York

2015 WATERSHED projection on the National Theater, London, UK
2013 WATERSHED New Museum Ideas Festival, NYC
2012 PUTTI FOR SARA Big Screen Plaza, NYC



GROUP EXHIBITIONS


2020 “On Another Note”, Lehman College Gallery, Curated by Alva Greenberg
         “Forefront, Women in Fine Arts”, Mass MOCA

2018 Peking University Museum of Art and Archaeology, Beijing, China

         Princeton University Gallery, “Artists and Environment”
2017 “On Another Note”, Lyman Allen Museum, New London, CT
2016 Satellite Art Fair, Installation at Paradise Hotel, Miami Beach
         “On another Note” group show, Yale Art School, Curated by Alva Greenberg
         “Intimate Transgressions” Chang Hei Shek Museum, Taipei
2015 “Intimate Transgressions”, White Box, NY, Inter Gallery, Beijing
2013 New Museum Ideas Festival, WATERSHED New York, NY
         “The They Group” Installation at “The Old School”

         Special Project Volta Art Fair, “WATERSHED” New York, NY

         Katherine Nash Gallery, “Invitation to Peace” Minneapolis, MN
2012 Big Screen Plaza, Video installation “PUTTI FOR SARA”
         “Landscape of the Mind”, Nash Gallery, U of Minn, Minneapolis
         “Cycle Interrupted” LACE Gallery, Los Angeles
2010 ARTPORT/ Cop 15 Commission for Cop 15 Summit on Climate Change, Centro Cultural de Espana, Mexico City
         “ABSOLUTE ZERO” San Jose Zero Biennale, New Technologies
2009 ARTPORT video installations, Art Basel, Switzerland
2007 Brooklyn Arts Council, 9/11 Film Festival, “Gernika/Guernica” documentary
2005 Biennale de Deshechos, Castellon, Spain
2004 “Sculptor’s Drawings” Black and White Art Gallery, New York, NY
1998 Sculpture Symposium, Sydney, Australia
1997 “Art Inter Change”, Benefit for Sydney Children’s Hospital, Sydney, Australia
         “Perspecta” Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney,Australia



AWARDS, COMMISSIONS, PUBLIC ART


2017 Red Hook Library Bklyn, New York WATERSHED projection on sidewalk
2016 Customs House at Ellis Island, Commission by Generation Investments
2015 Totally Thames Festival, Commission for WATERSHED project on the National Theater
2013 Public Art temporary Installation New Museum Ideas Festival
2010 NYFA Artist Talk @Murphy and Dine Gallery, NYC
2008 General Services Administration Commission Sculpture for Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill, Federal Census Bureau Building, Washington, DC
2007 Puffin Foundation Grant
2006 New York State Council for the Arts grant for Guernica/Gernika Project
2003 Fiscal Sponsorship NYFA for project, Desde El Cielo, Hasta El Fondo
2002 New York Foundation for the Arts Grant
2001 Pollock Krasner Foundation Grant
         Site specific sculpture permanent commission, “Chianti Sculpture Park” Chianti, Italy
2000 “Yurong Water Gardens” completion of Permanent Commission, Cook and Phillip Park, Sydney, Australia
1999 Sydney Olympic Millennium Park Commission in Collaboration with EDAW Landscape Architects, Sydney
         Wynyard Park, Sydney City Council Commission Signage/Sculpture
1997 Mt. Annan Botanic Gardens: Sydney, Sculpture Commission Sydney City Council
         Priority One Projects; “Lang Park” In collaboration with EDAW, Landscape Architects
         National Association of Visual Artist, Promotion and Development Grant for “Perspecta” Art Gallery New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
1995 Australia Council: CEAD Grant, for Rushcutters Bay Kindergarten Outdoor Sculpture



ART FAIRS


2016 Installation of REVERIE at Satellite Art Fair Miami Beach with ArtW
2015 With Cynthia Reeves Gallery, London Art Fair 15, Video installation SPIN
2014 With Cynthia Reeves Gallery, Silicon Valley Art Fair, Special project installation of SPIN video
2013 Volta Art Fair with Artport-Making Waves Video group, Special Project



TEACHING POSTS


2019 Visiting Professor, Pratt University
2011 – 14 Director, Public Art Interdisciplinary Residency, School of Visual Arts,
Summer 2005-2010 Visiting Artist Public Art Residency Program, School of Visual Arts
1999 Adjunct Professor, University New South Wales, School of Architecture
March 1996-June 1997 Adjunct Professor, Sydney College of the Arts, Sydney University, Sydney, Australia
April 1996 Visiting Adjunct Professor, University of Wollongong, New South Wales, Dept of Fine Arts
September 1995-December 1996 Adjunct Professor; University of New South Wales, School of Landscape Architecture, Sydney, Australia; Sydney College of the Arts, Department of Sculpture
1986–1994 Adjunct Professor, Long Island University, Brooklyn Campus, Brooklyn NY



RESIDENCIES


2017 (Re)Create Residency, Asti, Italy
2016 Bundanon Residency, Australia
2012 Laba Residency, 14th st Y, New York, NY
2008 Bogliasco Liguria Study Center Residency
2004 Fundacion El Paraiso, Mojacar, Spain
1998 University New South Wales, Sydney Australia
1994 The Gunnery, Woolloomooloo, Australia

BIBLIOGRAPHY


2020 Studio International, Artists in Covid
         Fluxus Magazine, Feature, Anna MacNay
2017 Metropolis Magazine WATERSHED
         Brooklyn Eagle WATERSHED
2016 Hyperallergic, Review Satellite Art Fair, Monica Uszerwicz
2015 Studio International video interview for WATERSHED
         Studio International, Review London Art Fair, SPIN featured
         Yale Radio Interview
2014 The Economist, review of Silicon Valley Art Fair, SPIN featured
2013 Studio International interview with Lilly Wei, (Nov.)
2014 Sculpture Magazine, Review by Lilly Wei of “GUERNIKA/GUERNICA” (Mar.)

2012 Catalogue Museum of Contemporary Art, Delfina Pierkawska

2011 Studio International, Feature Article, Janet MacKenzie Spear
2010 Daily News, Feature article, “Census Project”
         Azure Magazine, Feature Article, “Census Project” (Oct.)
         Public 42, Feature Article, “Guernika/Guernica” (Dec.)
         Art Daily, Feature Article, “Census Project” (Jul.)

         PUBLIC 42, Gernika Project

2009 Sculpture Magazine, Feature article by Carol Schwartzman
         NYFA Online Newsletter. Featured Artist Profile.
2007 BOMB LIVE Magazine interview

         Catalogue Essay, Elisabeth Sussman for “Gernika/Guernica”

2005 Sculpture Magazine, “Pedazos” Jill Conover

         Catalogue Essay, Biennale de Deshechos

2003 Radio interview, Radio Euskadi

         Catalogue essay, Elisabeth Sussman, for Black & White Gallery
         Design de espacao publico Centro Portuges publication

2001 CITY SPACES Published by Craftsman House, edited by E. Mossop

         The Arts in Urban Development, University Of Barcelona Press, by A. Remesar

2000 Sculpture Magazine, feature article by T. MacGowan
         Architectural Review Magazine “Body and Mind, Sydney’s Olympean Feats”
1999 Monument Magazine Review Paul McGillick
1998 Monument Magazine
         Art in Australia; Review of “Perspecta” by Paul McGillick
         City Weekly “Metro Sydney Gossip”
1997 Monument Magazine “Public Art, Public Places,” by Tempe MacGowan
         Sydney Morning Herald, “Perspecta” Review by J. MacDonald
         June ABC Radio, Australian National Radio, “Earthbeat” Interview for Botanic Gardens Sculpture

         Catalogue for “Perspecta” Art Gallery of New South Wales Essay by Barbara Matilsky, Curator Ackland Art Museum

1996 Sydney Morning Herald, “Art Talk”, Review by B.James
1994 SBS “IMAGINE” Television program interview for Centennial Park Sculpture
1992 New York Times, “Forces of Nature” by Michael Brenson. Television, Radio Books, Catalogues


PAPERS & CONFERENCES


2017 Art Table, Coral Gables, Books and Books
         Brooklyn Public Library, Red Hook, Bklyn, Panel discussion, “WATERSHED’
2016 Women in Public Art, Art Omi, Ghent, NY
2015 Women Sexual Slavery, Moderator on panel, Sackler Center for Feminist Studies, Brooklyn Museum
2011 Best Practice Lecture, AIA Conference, New Orleans, LA
2009 NYC Lecture on Public Art, AIA, New York, NY
         Presentation of Gernika Project documentary, CEREV Montreal, Concordia University, Canada
2005 Guest Speaker, AIA, New York, NY. (Oct.)
2004 Guest Speaker: FOCA Arts Festival, Castellon, Spain
2003 Guest Speaker for Guernica to Gernika conference, Gernika Museum of Peace, Guernica, Spain (Dec.)
2002 Guest speaker and moderator, Art to Start, VanAlen Institute, (Oct.)
         Gernika Gogoratuz, Annual Peace Conference, Guernica, Spain (Apr.)
         Lecturer at School of Fine Arts, University of Barcelona, Spain (Mar.)
2001 Public Art Workshop, Waterfront Cities, Barcelona, Spain (Oct.)
         Guest Speaker, Common Places Workshop, Oporto, Portugal (Feb.)
2000 Lecturer at School of Landscape Architecture, Harvard University, MA (Oct.)
         Lecture, International Sculpture Park Symposium, Fanano, Italy (Sept.)
1998 Lecture at School of Landscape Architecture, University of NSW, Australia
         Award; Best Practice, Sydney College of the Arts, Sydney, Australia
1997 Conference “Intersections,” College of Fine Arts, UNSW, Sydney, Australia (Aug.)
         Art Gallery of New South Wales for “Perspecta” Emerging Paradigms in Design University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia (Jul.)


EDUCATION


2020 Laureate Fellowship for PhD, UNSW Feel Lab, New Media and Neuroscience
1980 – 1982 School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
1976 – 1980 Parsons School of Design and the New School, BA
1977 Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture