Commissioned Works/Special Projects is our program offering financial and administrative assistance to individual artists. We act as a fiscal agent for those artists applying for grants from federal and state programs and private foundations. Through this program we help develop collaborative projects between artists and assist with the presentation of their work. In 2023, we have sponsored the following projects funded by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.:
House of D is an art installation and workshop series that explores the history of The Jefferson Market Library, which previously served as a jail to punish and reform women, transgendered male, and non-gender-conforming people. The artist, Alex Strada, will continuously investigate the related history and use the material she encountered to build this installation within a feminist, queer and abolitionist framework. She will bring together an array of scholars, students, and professionals to discuss House of D as a case study in parallel with the public exhibition. The project resonates with the ongoing issues related with history, abolition, LGBTQA+, women rights, and anti-racist activism, and will be available to the public by partnering with New York Public Library.
Alex Strada is an Brooklyn-based transmedia artist and educator who explores the topics of collectivity, critical legal studies, and political transformation through installations and films. Her works have been shown at Queens Museum, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Anthology Film Archives, UnionDocs, etc.
BodyMouth is a bespoke computational sound/movement tool that turns the body into an instrument for speech. Wearing sensors on various body parts, a dancer sounds out full words by performing specific gestures in sequence, as if their body is turned into a mouth. The project explores the alternative modes of speech as an underground approach against totalitarian and oppression. The artists will develop and premiere a full-length evening work titled “Ielele.” In a series of live performances, they will deploy this instrument to sound out ‘lost’ histories and voices, focusing specifically on female East European figures, to conjure an alternate, modern feminist mythmaking that transcends traditional male-centered heroics. “Ielele,” are female forest creatures in Romanian folklore whose eerie voices led men astray—whoever heard their songs became instantly mute. This performance forms a series of linked narratives for 1-5 performers each, and experienced together as a full-length evening.
David Behrman and Bob Bielecki
Composer David Behman and artist/technologist Bob Bielecki will collaborate in a new to-be-named composition piece. It will feature a unique multi-channel sound system developed by Bob, as well as a 3-dimensional soundstage.The installation will be a combination of multiple audio compositions and instruments that presents an uncanny ability to reproduce the acoustic properties of sounds and direct sounds outward in an enclosed space. The audiences will be localized by the sonic murals created and immersed in a new sonic experience.
David Behrman is an composer and artist who made multiple sound and multimedia installation. He explores the interactive real-time relationships with imaginative performers with a unique use of technology and structures.
Bob Bielecki is a media artist who creates instruments and sound designs for installations and performances, especially in the fields of technology and electronic effects. He has collaborated with many artists, including John Cage, Alvin Lucier, La Monte Young and Pauline Oliveros.
Harvestworks Sponsored Projects Program is made possible