Collaborations

Collaborations, Talks

Future Unknown: Global Education Summit | CAFA

Director David Gersten was recently honored to participated in ‘Future Unknown: Global Education Summit’ held at CAFA (Central Academy of Fine Arts), Beijing, China. Future Unknown gathered Artists, Designers, Technologist, Educators and Futurists for a two-day exchange on the future of education. David’s address entitled: “Constellations: Hinges Mirrors Eclipses” shared, with a global audience, the mission and vision of Arts Letters & Numbers as a social poetic project. Addressing both future challenges and promises, he spoke of the critical role of diverse cultures and ways of knowing in creating transformation that aspires to our best hopes and aspirations. He called for new models of asking the extraordinary complex questions of our time and outlined a framework of education as a living system with the capacity of developing new pathways of interaction and forms of knowledge.

Future Unknown was the first in a year-long collaboration between CAFA and Arts Letters & Numbers.

Collaborations, Events

Votes for Women

On October 12th - 14th, 2017, Dr. Krysta Dennis Votes for Women was performed in the House on the Hill, as a collaboration between Arts Letters & Numbers, Siena College Creative Arts Department and Sand Lake Center for the Arts. The performance brought the past and the House on the Hill alive, as the audience members found themselves in the middle of a suffrage march and lead was through the intimate moments from suffrage movement. 

Events, Collaborations

SAUCE

SAUCE was a 3-day celebration of Soul, Motown, Funk, Swing, and Blues organized by our friends Joshua Fialkoff and Bryan Brundige. Arts Letters & Numbers hosted the late night dance on Saturday September 30th, where the tunes were accompanied by an edible installation made by Frida Foberg, Merethe Bahn Trolle, Josephine Saabye & Zubin Singh. In front of a white wall, with a projection of dripping sauces and suspended flat breads and peppers, 12 different sauces in squeeze bottles were hanging in elastic string, inviting the guests to compose a late night snack of different tastes and different colors. 

We thank Joshua Fialkoff and Bryan Brundige for bringing a wonderful crowd of people to Arts Letters & Numbers, who filled the space with amazing music, impressive dance moves and a great SAUCE appetite!  

Collaborations

Albany High School | Oliver!

Directed by our dear friends Ward Dales & Gregory Theodore Marsh, Albany High School Theater Ensemble performed Oliver! at The Albany High School Theatre in Albany, NY, in early April.

Based on Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist, Lionel Bart’s frothy musical adaptation boasts some on the most classic tunes in all of Broadway history. And as with all of AHS Theatre Ensemble's productions, the audience got to experience a “twist on Twist,” as they explored the show’s deeper themes of lost innocence, corruption, classism, and social decay. 

ALN's Che Perez and Frida Foberg have had the great opportunity to work with the team behind the production, and has designed the set for this unique version of Oliver!

 

Events, Workshops, Collaborations

Pioneer Works Alternative Art School Fair

In mid-November we were invited to participate in the weekend-long Alternative Art School Fair (AASF) at Pioneer Works in Red Hook, Brooklyn, along with +50 other schools/institutions/project spaces.

Neither singular nor static, Arts Letters & Numbers is an emergent and collaborative endeavor with many parts and players: a conversation in action. In light of this, rather than having us on one side of a table and the audience of the AASF on the other, we embarked on a two-day workshop, bringing them into contact and creative exchange with the greater ALN network, which would gather the questions of the visiting AASF audience amongst with ours.

With the table gone we constructed a three dimensional wooden frame with an identical footprint, which acted as a space to gather the questions. Via a video link we hosted live poetry readings from groups respectively in Buenos Aries and Ithaca, projected to a screen in the frame. The grand finale was a pivotal moment in the life of one of our house on the hill: cutting through the third floor to make room for a staircase and create a new studio space in the attic—a real-time interactive piece between the people in the house and AASF audience, communicated through the transference of light via the video link between the two spaces.

We walk away from the AASF optimistic and with many new friendships.
 

Pioneer Works, is a non-profit organization, running artist residencies, exhibitions, and performances in their facilities in Red Hook, Brooklyn NY. They focus on community building and to provide spaces for alternative modes of thoughts. This fair will be the first fair they are hosting for alternative art schools, and for us to participate means a great deal.

Collaborations

Albany High School | Which Way is Home?

The project helps people find a place of home in themselves and you learn from it and then you get to share it with the world.” 

-Bianke, 11th grade participant

 

“You can never take what I fought for as a child in the refugee camp, the love of my life, the opportunity to learn. “ 

-Ar, 12th grade participant

 

“Try to take away my pride, take away my hopes leaping high. But you will hear this beautiful black girl’s voice because I matter.” 

-Camille, 10th grade participant

 

What did a teenager escaping the juggles of Burma have in common with a teenager fleeing Iraq in fear of political reprisals? What do teenagers leaving Mexico and Haiti both for family economic survival have in common with African American teenagers who are stopped by police on the block where they live and questioned about stealing groceries they just bought for their Mom?

All were students in Albany High School’s after school Social Justice Theatre program. In 2016 the students wrote, developed and performed a play entitled Which Way Home that told their person and family journeys to find a place of home, a place of peace in Albany, New York. 

Arts, Letters and Numbers was invited to collaborate with the Theatre Program to witness the students in the telling of their stories and to design a single stage set that would be used for this production along with seven other student-written and performed plays as part of an annual festival.  After the festival, ALN hosted the Albany students at the Mill and with Youth FX, a local non-profit film arts program, they filmed and produced a dramatization of students’ stories. 

The Social Justice Theatre Director, Noelle Gentile, explained, “The purpose of the piece is to highlight the transformative power of listening to one another, hearing each other’s stories and discovering the bonds that unify us. The piece aims to empower all those involved and those who witness it as audience members.”

Other collaborators in this project included the National Coalition Building Institute who facilitated coalition building and story telling activities with the students that formed the basis for the script for Which Way Home

These films will then go on to be a teaching tools in classrooms with students grappling with similar issues.

Exhibition, Collaborations

Sun Ship | Benefit Exhibition and Auction

Sun Ship: An Exhibition in support of Arts Letters & Numbers was held at Wilmer Jennings Gallery, in New York City, co-hosted by Dorian Grey Gallery and curated by Director, David Gersten. On view from June 17 till June 30, 2016, the Exhibition contained over 100 works by over 70 artists from more than a dozen countries, all donating their works to support Arts Letters & Numbers. These were emerging and internationally renowned artists, including Dennis Adams, John Ahearn, Michael Benson, Mike Bidlo, Lorenzo Clayton, Martha Cooper, Marylyn Dintenfass, Adeline Kueh, Bill Morrison, Margaret Morton, Laurie Olinder, Walid Raad, James Romberger, David Shapiro, Homa Shojaie, Suha Traboulsi, Ian Woo and Lebbeus Woods, among others. 

Bringing together works of the broader Arts Letter & Numbers community, the exhibition opened with a beautiful celebration of these many vibrant and diverse works and voices. The highlight of the evening was a grand piano performance by Michael Harrison followed by a live auction in support of our project. Photos from the exhibition and event are below, and a publication of the exhibition is available here on our website. Sun Ship was new territory for Arts Letters & Numbers and the entire organization sprang into action determined to have the exhibition, publication, events, online and live auctions created and crafted with all of the thoughtfulness, and precision, poured into all of our ALN works.