Zoe Sheehan Saldana, assistant professor in the department of Fine and Performing Arts, has been named one of six emerging artists to be awarded a 2008-09 Workspace residency by Dieu Donne, a nonprofit arts organization devoted to the creation, production and preservation of contemporary art in the process of fabricating handmade paper.
Sheehan Saldana will be an artist-in-residence at Dieu Donne, which she characterizes as “an arts studio and paper mill.” She will be exploring the process of paper-making in conjunction with a Dieu Donne a staff member whose expertise she will be able to tap for a year-long project.
The artistry of hand-made paper fits well with Sheehan Saldana’s prior artistic creations which she describes as “object and material oriented.” Most recently, her projects have included working with a chemistry professor to create hand-made matches, “starting with the tree.”
Typically, Sheehan Saldana utilizes a variety of media, including photography, drawings, digital media, fiber sculpture and craft techniques. In recent years, she has been replacing mass-produced commercial items with handmade duplicates and exhibiting the documentation of these products and actions. Her work examines the shifting value placed on “handmade” goods and the dynamic between low and high art forms. Examples of this can be seen on her website at www.zoesheehan.com.
She will also be teaching a MaCaulay Honors seminar on the arts in New York and a class on advanced digital imaging at Baruch next semester, giving her a chance to explore her special interest in the relationship of digital graphic design with more traditional and antiquated processes.