Athens Residency Spring 2024
Residency Begins: Monday, March 4 2024 – Monday, April 29 2024
Muna Malik is a multidisciplinary artist based in Los Angeles, CA born in Sanaa, Yemen. Her work explores history, gender, popular culture, social justice, politics, and identity, employing diverse mediums and forms, from painting and sculpture to large-scale, socially engaged public art, and film.
Her work has been featured in institutions and publications such as The New York Times, LA Times, Vogue, Parrish Art Museum, Annenberg Center for Photography, ICP, and the MOCA Geffen. She has been a billboard artist in the “For Freedoms 50 State Initiative” and “2020 Awakening.” Additionally, her work has been featured in Artforum and iD Magazine. She recently unveiled a new large-scale interactive sculpture in Battery Park City, NYC, which has found its way to the Parrish Art Museum in Watermill, NY.
“At the heart of my creative journey are fundamental questions that have shaped my identity. For instance, how does one articulate the shadow of 30+ years of conflict and displacement in Somalia or Yemen? How can refugees’ biographies reflect the contradictions of trauma and joy? Where does one’s identity reside when nowhere feels quite your own? I am interested in how one’s identity can feel constantly in flux or evolving as it is shaped and mapped across different nations, through multiple migrations, while also being informed by the political tensions inherent in each space.
My artistic practice is multidisciplinary, employing painting, film, and sculpture as tools to explore a wide spectrum of themes, including history, gender, popular culture, social justice, identity politics. ArcAthens presents a significant opportunity for me to expand and experiment with my practice. For example, one of my projects aims to repurpose devalued Somali Shilling banknotes into art objects. This project is about reshaping the narrative around these banknotes, questioning what gives money its value and who defines that value, and breathing new life into this ‘useless’ currency through art. It’s a chance for me to explore how we perceive worth and challenge conventional ideas about value. This residency would also give me the time and space required to delve deeper into themes relating to land, nationhood, migration, and belonging as Athens is at the heart of many migration journeys. I plan to explore these subjects using painting, ceramics, and printmaking.”
Job Piston is an independent curator and artistic director with a dynamic career spanning over a decade in New York and Los Angeles. With a Master of Fine Arts from the University of California, Los Angeles, Piston has established a profound expertise in contemporary art and performance combining his unconventional background as a visual artist and biennial curator. Between 2016 and 2022, Piston served as an independent curator and producer, developing groundbreaking programs and online showcases that explore the intersections of surrealism, queer mythology, and identity politics. Notable special projects include a video screening by Asian diaspora artists for Nowness and Art at a Time Like This during The Armory Show VIP program, and commissioning multi-disciplinary installations by artists and architects for various cultural projects.
Piston was instrumental in organizing five editions of the Performa Biennial in New York, the world’s leading visual art performance organization founded by the art historian RoseLee Goldberg. In 2023, as co-curator for the Performa Finnish Pavilion with Defne Ayas and Esa Nickle, Piston developed a comprehensive framework for the US premieres of artists like Anna Maria Häkkinen, Teo Ala Ruona and Niko Hallikainen. In collaboration with international partners, he expanded audience engagement and created new opportunities for visiting artists, including Pilvi Takala through an Artist-in-Residence program. From 2015 to 2021, his tenure at Performa saw the commissioning of city-wide installations and performances, establishing late night programs bridging queer nightlife and live art, and launching impactful online exhibitions that broke records for digital impressions. Throughout his career, Piston has organized programs and projects with Tania Brugera, Judy Chicago, Elmgreen & Dragset, Barbara Kruger, Zanele Muholi, James Welling, Korakrit Arunanondachai with Alex Gvojic and boychild, Charlap Hyman & Herrero, Sara Cwynar, Jane Jin Kaisen, Richard Kennedy, Kia LaBeija, Monica Mirable & Sigrid Lauren, Jacolby Satterwhite, Shiketh, Athi-Patra Ruga, amongst others.
Piston’s work is marked by a commitment to exploring avant-garde themes and a notable ability to engage with a broad spectrum of artists and thinkers across music, dance, fashion, photography, video, design and architecture. He possesses a unique skill for establishing art partnerships, demonstrating an exceptional ability to not only enrich the art community but also connect the gap between cultural institutions and audiences. His diverse projects reflect a deep understanding of the contemporary art landscape and use of an expert method to transform new ideas into live performances. This approach has earned his projects recognition in prominent publications and solidifying his reputation as an innovative curator and creative pioneer in the art world.
Meet the Jury of the Spring 2024 Athens Residency
We would like to thank our stellar jurors for their service in thoughtfully and patiently considering the applications!
Olga Hatzidaki (b. 1983 in Crete, Greece) is a curator focusing mostly in the essence and nuances of the artistic gesture in the public realm. Hatzidaki is currently serving as the executive consultant to the artistic director of 2023 Eleusis European Capital of Culture. Previously, she initiated and formed Tavros space (Athens), while curating numerous art projects in various institutional and non-institutional locations, collaborating with established, emerging Greek and international artists.
Wayne Northcross is a cultural producer, writer, and consultant with 20 year’s experience in contemporary art and media. Northcross has worked for and collaborated with contemporary art galleries in New York City including CANADA, Salon 94, Lehmann Maupin, Third Streaming, and The Project. He has organized exhibitions for The Bronx Museum of the Arts, Fusebox Festival, The Project, Venetia Kapernekas Gallery, and Bronx Art Space. As chief consultant for ArtKapsule, an art advisory firm, Northcross guided clients through the process of contemporary art acquisition and collection building. As a fundraising manager for the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, he has developed and launched Collectors Circle, a patron group for those who align themselves with MOCAD’s mission of cultivating, supporting, and advancing new voices in contemporary art. As a journalist, Northcross has produced contemporary art and fashion features for such publications as The New York Observer, Un-Titled Project, Vogue Hommes, Gay City News, Genre, and others. Northcross attended Wayne State University, where he received a BA in Italian Language and Literature; he also holds a Juris Doctor from University of Miami School of Law. Currently, he holds the position of Director/Artist Liaison at CANADA, New York.