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Gallery with student work
"Hiding in Plain Sight" New York City Exhibition

“Hiding in Plain Sight,” the master of fine arts (M.F.A.) thesis exhibition of Syracuse University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts (VPA), will open in March and April at three Syracuse University exhibition spaces that are part of the Coalition of Museums and Art Centers.

The exhibition features the work of 31 M.F.A. candidates from VPA’s School of Art and Department of Transmedia and is curated by Shehab Awad, exhibitions and programs associate at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Art, New York City.

Featuring a diverse array of paintings, sculptures, video and installations, “Hiding in Plain Sight” represents the culmination of a three-year period of critical investigation and introspection, marked by a significant, self-led shift toward multidisciplinary experimentation. The result is a collection of works which, through their staging and materiality, radicalize traditional modes of art-making and subvert our perception of space and reality.

The exhibition schedule is as follows. All events are free and open to the public.

March 26-May 11
Point of Contact Gallery, the Nancy Cantor Warehouse, 350 West Fayette St., Syracuse
Reception: Friday, April 6, 6-8 p.m.
Artists: Eric D. Charlton, Joan Helen Farrenkopf, Marilyn Koch, Jo Yu Lee, Katie Levesque, Luxin Zhang
Gallery hours: Mon.-Fri., noon-5 p.m. or by appointment.
Contact: 315-443-2169 or

April 5-May 13
Syracuse University Art Galleries, Shaffer Art Building
Reception: Thursday, April 12, 5-7 p.m.
Artists: Adriana Bianchi, Antone Dolezal, Yueying Feng, Cait Finley, Mirra Goldfrad, Aysha Hamouda, Brion Hardink, Michael W. Hicks, Jack Honeysett, Sijia Hong, Shaluliu Huang, Kwan Jeong, Sunyoung Lee, Andrew Pappas, Selma Selman, Joe Turek, Teona Yamanidze, Tong Zhang
Gallery hours: Tues.-Sun., 11 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; Thurs. until 8 p.m.; closed Mon.
Contact: 315-443-4097 or

April 5-May 13
Community Folk Art Center, 805 East Genesee St., Syracuse
Reception: Friday, April 13, 5-7 p.m.
Artists: Chelsey Albert, Xiaoyu Che, Amanda Struver, Fei Taishi, Kieu-Anh Truong, Preston Van Allen, D’Angelo Lovell Williams
Gallery hours: Tues.-Fri., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Contact: 315-442-2230 or

In an age where judgement is shaped by “alternative facts,” “Hiding in Plain Sight” does not attempt to offer any absolute truths or alternative solutions because the truth is unimaginable. Together, the artworks in the exhibition suggest a new mode of inconspicuous opposition: one that mirrors the absurdity of its surrounding environment to question the personal, the political and the real.

Shehab Awad is exhibitions and programs associate at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Art, New York. Awad’s recent projects include “A Tardigrade's Dream,” a publication produced with Nile Sunset Annex for “Meeting Points 8: Both Sides of the Curtain” at La Loge, Brussels, and Beirut Art Center; “The Future is Self-organized,” an online platform in collaboration with de Appel Curatorial Program participants at Casco, the Netherlands; and “We Are The Margins,” a series of public events about marginality and gentrification produced in various locations in New York City. He was the curatorial assistant at Townhouse, Cairo, from 2013-15 and is a core member of Muhawilun, a research and writing group dedicated to the history of contemporary art in Egypt. Awad holds an M.A. from the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College.

The College of Visual and Performing Arts has a tradition of excellence in educating visual artists that spans more than 130 years. The college offers M.F.A. programs in design, studio arts, and transmedia as well as an M.A. program in museum studies and an M.S. program in art education in conjunction with the School of Education.

Graduate students in the M.F.A. programs in studio arts and transmedia enjoy the benefits of an intimate and rigorous interdisciplinary program with access to the resources of a major university, small class sizes, an award-winning and diverse faculty and national and international semester residency programs with mentoring from prominent artists and curators. Recent graduates have received numerous exhibitions, screenings, awards and residencies, including the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture, the Cannes Film Festival and the MacArthur “Genius” Grant.