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NANCY AZARA
 
"Maxi's Wall,"
Carved and painted wood w/ gold, silver, palladium leaf and encaustic 2006

ARTIST'S STATEMENT

“Nancy Azara, like Magdalena Abakanowicz and Louise Bourgeois, typically groups her forms together: while we read these works as unitites, they are usually composed of 10 or 20 parts. Besides the theme of extension and growth, Maxi’s Wall also explored themes of protecting, sheltering, confronting, and mothering”

Margaret Sheffield, July 2007

Maxi’s Wall Intensely spiritual in a transhistorical and transcultural way, this assemblage of vertical forms reads like a call to celebration. Composed of various shapes and sizes, its colors and images have long been associated with the artist. The reaching hands and the gold are hallmarks. There are also shades of red and purple and an occasional heart. These contemporary spirit poles evoke thoughts of tribal rites and universal prayer.

Harriet Senie, Sculpture Magazine, March 2009

Nancy Azara is an artist who has exhibited her sculpture and collages in New York City throughout the U.S. and abroad. Her work is carved, assembled and painted wood often gilded with gold and silver leaf and encaustic as well as mixed media collages. Her mixed media collages, mylar, paper, paint and sometimes wood chips, are about time in relation to memory and personal history. Curator, critic Leonie Bradbury describes them as mixed media collage drawings seamlessly combining a contemporary printmaker’s aesthetic with organic mark making.

Nancy speaks about her sculpture. I have been carving sculpture in wood for a long time. It has felt like a good “fit” for me as I have always admired trees and I often even as a child felt that they held a metaphor for my experience of life. Most recently my work has been about the cycle of time, about the death of my mother, about the birth of my granddaughter, (See Maxi’s Wall, and Leaf Altar for Nunzia) and my own aging.

Her work will be shown at the Andre Zarre Gallery in Chelsea, NY in March 2010. She has shown in numerous one woman exhibitions at Donahue/Sosinski Art and A.I.R. Gallery in New York City, at the Froelick Gallery, Portland, Oregon, the SACI Gallery, Florence, Italy, the Tweed Museum in Duluth, Minnesota, Rudolph E. Lee Gallery in Clemson, N.C., the Gwinnett Fine Arts Center in Duluth, Georgia and many group shows such as the traveling Rutger’s University exhibition How American Women Artists Invented Post-Modernism, 2006. She was the featured sculptor at the SANYI Museum in Taiwan in 2008.

Azara has recently written a book, Spirit Taking Form: Making a Spiritual Practice of Making Art (Red Wheel/Weiser) and an essay, “In Pursuit of the Divine” for The Kensington and Winchester Papers: Painting, Sculpture and the Spiritual Dimension, (Onerios Books). She was a founder of the New York Feminist Art Institute (NYFAI) in 1979, where she was on the board and taught a workshop called “Consciousness Raising, Visual Diaries, Art Making” for many years. She has been a visiting artist in both the United States, Europe, and India, most recently at the Bogliasco Foundation, Genoa, Italy and at Chikraneketan in South India (state of Kerala).

 

RESUME

nancy@nancyazara.com
www.nancyazara.com
Nancy Azara's Wikipedia Page

EDUCATION

1974 Empire State College S.U.N.Y., B.S.
1964-67 Art Students League of New York, Sculpture with John Hovannes, Painting and Drawing with Edwin Dickinson
1960-62 Lester Polakov Studio of Stage Design, New York City
1957-59 Finch College, N.Y., A.A.S.

ONE-WOMAN EXHIBITIONS (selected)

2011 Spirit Taking Form: Rubbings, Tracings and Carvings, Farleigh Dickinson University, Teaneck, NJ
2010 Spirit Taking Form: Rubbings, Tracings and Carvings, Farleigh Dickinson University, Teaneck, NJ
2009 Nancy Azara, Suffolk Community College, Long Island, NY
2008 Maxi’s Wall, A.I.R. Gallery, New York, NY
Nancy Azara, Sanyi Museum, Miaoli, Taiwan
2005 Spirit at Comma, Comma Gallery Orlando, FL
2004 New Sculpture, Froelick Gallery Portland OR
Transformations, The Firehouse Art Gallery, Nassau Community College, Garden City NY
2003 Spirit Taking Form, The Inquiring Mind Gallery, Saugerties, New York
2002 Nancy Azara: Memorial to Spirit, The Interchurch Center, Treasure Room Gallery, New York City
Nancy Azara, Sculpture, Western Wyoming Community College, Rock Springs, Wyoming
2001 Changes and Passages, Froelick Gallery, Portland, Oregon
Nancy Azara, Sculpture,Colburn Gallery, University of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont
2000 Heart Wall and other works, Donahue/Sosinski Art, New York City

COMMISSIONS

2008 Heart Wall on loan through October, Lobby of 340 Madison, New York, NY
2008 Time/Path, Byrdcliffe, Woodstock, NY
2005 Hands For Phyllis and Susan (private) for Phyllis Chestler and Susan Bender.
2003-2004 Hand Garden/ Doctors Wall for the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, Hamilton NJ.
2003 Lily/Hand Brydcliffe Woodstock, NY.

AWARDS (selected)

2010 Civitella Ranieri Foundation Fellowship, Umbertide Italy
2004 Elan Lifetime Achievement Award, Women’s Studio Center (WSC) NYC
2001 Chikraniketan Fellowship, Kovalam Junction, Kerala, South India
2000 Bogliasco Foundation Fellowship, Genoa Italy

GROUP EXHIBITIONS (selected)

2010 Encaustic Palimpsests, Art Link Gallery, Seoul, Korea
Waxed in Time: 4 Takes on Encaustic, Tenri Gallery, NYC
NYFAI Visual Diaries, Farleigh Dickinson University, Teaneck, NJ
NYFAI Visual Diaries, Suffolk Community College, Long Island, NY
Speak For The Trees, Friesen Gallery, Seattle, WA
2009 Bridging Generations: Women Artists and Organizations from Rutgers' Collection, Rutgers’ University, New Brunswick, NJ
Third Person Singular, Lesley College, Art Institute of Boston, MA
A Group of One’s Own: Women’s Visual Arts Organizations in America, Voorhees Special Exhibition Galleries, Zimmerli Art Museum, New Brunswick, NJ
2008 A.I.R. Gallery: The History Show, Work by A.I.R. Artists from 1972 to the present, A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
A.I.R. Gallery: The History Show, Archival materials from 1972 to the present, Tracey/Barry Gallery, Bobst Library, NYU
Scene Change: The New York Gallery Artists, A.I.R. Gallery, New York, NY
African Belief Influences on Contemporary Art Altars, An Exhibition of Altars and Ritual Offerings, Dr. M.T. Geoffrey Yeh Art Gallery, Queens, NY
Your Documents Please, traveling to: New York, NY; Bratislava, Slovak Republic; The Museum of Arts & Crafts, Itami-shi, Japan; Yokohama, Japan
2007 Layering Space, Restructuring Time: COLLAGE, Kleinert/James Art Center, The Woodstock Guild, Woodstock, NY
Cool Aid, Andre Zarre Gallery, NYC, NY
Exploring Multiple Dimensions (Juror’s Piece), Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, NM
Paths: Real and Imagined, Brydcliffe, Woodstock Guild, Woodstock, NY, curated by Nancy Azara
From the Inside Out: Feminist Art Then & Now, Dr. M. T. Geoffrey Yeh Art Gallery, St. John’s University, Queens, NY
2006 Bestiary, Froelick Gallery, Portland, OR
2006 7 + 14, Kleinert James Art Center, Brydcliffe, Woodstock Guild, Woodstock, NY
2006 homohome, Objects for the Queer in All of Us, Cinders Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
2006 How American Women Artists Invented Post-Modernism. Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ (traveling)
Encaustic Works 2005, Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz, NY
Spirit Forms: the art of Nancy Azara and Laurie Gross, Auburn Seminary, NYC NY
2004 Sketches, A.I.R. Gallery, New York NY
Winter Group Show, Froelick Gallery, Portland Oregon
A Part Apart, Western Wyoming Community College, Rock Spring Wyoming
2003 The Lily: Loosely Seen, Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition, Brydcliffe, Woodstock Guild, Woodstock, New York.
Larger than Life: Women Artists Making It Big, Susquehanna Art Museum, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
The Fine Art of Craft, Susquehanna Art Museum, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Rites of Spring, Sacred Magical and Ceremonial Art, Kleinert/James Art Center, The Woodstock Guild, Woodstock, New York
Unbuilt Visions, Brick Bottom Gallery, Somerville, MA
2002 The Heart of the Matter: Artists Explore the Book, Open Book, Minneapolis, Minnesota

REVIEWS AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Summer, 2010 Calyx, A Journal of Art and Literature by Women, Vol. 26, Number 1, ed. Beverly McFarland
Spring, 2009 “Maxi’s Wall,” A.I.R. Gallery, Sculpture Magazine, Harriet Senie
Summer, 2008 “Nancy Azara at 340 Madison,” ArtNet Magazine, Walter Robinson
Summer, 2008 “Hickory with Hands,” il Bollettino, Lisa Cicchetti
July, 2008 “The New York Feminist Art Institute,” N. Paradoxa, Volume 22 , Katie Cercone
January, 2008 “Azara in the City,” Smart Art/Woodstock Times, Paul Smart
Winter, 2008 “Stepping out of the Beaten Path: Reassessing the Feminist Art Movement,” Signs, Brodsky and Olin
August, 2007 “Lucid Dreaming,” Chronogram, Beth Wilson
June 7, 2007 “Byrdcliffe Paths,” Woodstock Times, Paul Smart
April 16, 2007 “Executive Adopts Motto for Job Stress: Work Hard, Be Nice”, The Wall Street Journal Carol Hymowitz
Winter 2006 “Spirit Taking Form: Making a Spiritual Practice of Making Art” by Nancy Azara, Reviews, Italian Americana, Joanna Herman
March, 2, 2006 “7 + 14, New Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild show a harbinger of fresh views” Woodstock Times, Paul Smart
October 20, 2005 “The Spirit In the Wood” The Woodstock Times Paul Smart
January, 2, 2005 “Unbound: selected artists” The New York Times Westchester Art Reviews D.Dominick Lombardi
October, 13 2004 “Going For Gold: Nancy Azara conjures a gilded world” Willamette Week Richard Speer
March 10, 2004 “Visual Arts: One Review” Willamette Week, Richard Speer
January 14, 2004 ”Visual Arts: One Review” Willamette Week
January 10, 2004 ”Art exhibit opens Jan 19 at WWCC” Sweet Water County Guide
January 9, 2004 “Art Observatory: thulin part of a 5-woman show in rock springs”, Planet Jackson Hole Richard Anderson
January 2004 “WWCC Art Gallery to Show `A Part Apart’” Daily Rocket Miner,
March 28, 2003 “’Rites of Spring’ Exhibit Powerful, Sensational” Daily Freeman, Mary Casai
June 26, 2002 “On Public Display,” The Ithaca Times, Karey Solomon
April 4, 2002 “Colleague Curation: Artists Choose Artists at Kleinart/James,” Woodstock Times, Paul Smart
March 13, 2002 “WWCC Art Gallery Welcomes ‘Changes,’” Daily Rocket-Miner
February 28, 2002 “Azara Installation Featured at WWCC Art Gallery to April 24,”Sweetwater County Guide
August 5, 2001 “Shoebox’s finest Inspire Creativity”, Anne Price, Sun Magazine
February 11, 2001 The Art of Encaustic Painting by Joanne Mattera, Watson-Guptill Publications
2001 “Flights of Fancy for Books, Not for Publication,” Helen A. Harrison, New York Times
2001 Frontiers, A Journal of Women Studies Vol. XXI, Number 3, 2000
October. 26, 2000 “Mirror Mirror at the Museums,” Steve Robles, The Sun, San Bernardino, California
Summer 2000 “Passages (Blood Panel, and Azara and Barrington Hand),” Calyx Volume 19, Number 2
July/August 2000 “Nancy Azara at Donahue/Sosinski Art,” Sculpture Magazine, Harriet Senie
June 2000 “Nancy Azara at Donahue/Sosinski,” Art in America, Janet Koplos
February 18, 2000 “Nancy Azara: Art in Review,” Weekend, Holland Cotter, New York Times

COLLECTIONS (selected)

Amherst College, Amherst, MA
The Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY
Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinatti, OH
City College of New York of the City University of NY, NYC
David Dorsky, Dorsky Projects, Long Island City, NY
Davis, Polk and Wardwell, NYC,
Everson Museum, Syracuse, NY
Franklin Furnace, NYC,
Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton, NJ
Los Angeles County Museum, Los Angeles, CA
Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC
Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee, WI
Museum of Modern Art, NYC, NY
National Gallery of Women in the Art, Washington, DC.
Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA
Provincetown Art Association and Museum, Provincetown, MA
Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, Hamilton, NJ
University of Oklahoma, Fred Jones Museum of Art, Norman,OK
University of Southern Illinois at Edwardsville, Edwardsville,IL
Yale Museum, New Haven, CT
Sanyi Museum, Miaoli, Taiwan