University Place, Syracuse University
Stephen Zaima

School of Art
Professor, Studio Arts (Painting)

Stephen Zaima has served as coordinator of Syracuse University's studio art program in Florence, Italy in 1995-1996 and 1997-1998; prior to that he ran the visiting artist program for 12 years. Zaima received an M.F.A. from the University of California at Davis in 1971. 

Zaima’s solo shows include an exhibition in the limonaia of the historic Villa Romana in Florence, 2000. The residency and exhibition were sponsored by the German Cultural Institute for Artists. Another solo exhibition was at John Cabot University, Rome, 1999. This solo exhibition was accompanied by this introductory statement by New York art critic, editor, and gallery director Saul Ostrow: "Stephen Zaima's paintings are dominated by a stylized image of Christ's crown of thorns - there is no irony in this - just hope and memory. These paintings with their lovingly painted fields of sensuous color and iconography of paint wed the sacred to the profane. This marriage of the ecstatic imagery of Christianity and the materiality of modernism hold out not only the promise of transcendence and pleasure, but also reflects upon the human condition and art's humanist and expressive value. By collapsing the imagery of the Baroque and that of high modernism, Zaima produces paintings that are a compressed history of human consciousness in which the promise of emancipation is forever defined by sacrifice, pain, transcendence, and deferred pleasure."

Several group shows include the Dorsky Museum Hudson River Valley Artists, New Paltz, 2002; Atendi Gallery Group Show, London, England, 2000; Fulton Street Gallery Saints and Martyrs, Troy, New York, 2000; American Consulate Florence Studio Arts Faculty, Florence, Italy, 1999; Elena Zang Gallery Miniatures Shady (Woodstock), New York, 1998; and the Donatello Studios, Florence, Italy, 1998. Zaima’s lectures include "Giorgione, Titian, and Manet," John Cabot University, Rome, Italy, 1999, and Zaima at MassArt in Boston, 2005. Zaima’s paper “From the Renaissance, The First Modernist Painter: Andrea del Sarto (1486-1530) to Andres Serrano (1950- )” was accepted by the 4th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Arts and Humanities in January 2006.  Additionally, he organized the traveling exhibition To Never Forget/Faces of the Fallen to Syracuse University in 2005.


Stephen Zaima, the wall

Stephen Zaima, the wall

Stephen Zaima, associate dean of global studies in VPA and a professor of painting in the School of Art, created the...