Rutgers University - Mason Gross School of Art, 2016, MFA
Basia Goszczynska is a Brooklyn-based artist working in sculpture, installation, and new media. She received her BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and her MFA from the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. In addition to numerous group shows and film festival screenings, she has presented her work in solo exhibitions at the Mid-Manhattan Public Library and OCAD University. She has received fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center and the Massachusetts Cultural Council as well as the Ray Stark Film Prize.
Proposing a new response to land art and reinstating craftwork into the political, I redress the value of discarded objects through sculpture, installation, new media, and performance, in order to explore the psychological and emotional dimensions of our precarious relationship with nature.
My palette consists of colorful and durable manufactured materials that I source from trash and recycling bins or off beaches and roadways. I also crowdsource materials from environmental activists who I connect with online thanks to hashtags such as #beachcleanup and #marinedebris. In this way, my process is a vehicle for environmental interventions that allow me to both envision and enact a more just and sustainable future. Once in the studio, much of my practice is still that of handwork: processing and re-imagining these immensely tactile materials with an approach that is both experimental and methodical.
Ultimately, my work serves to make all the facts that we think we already know about global warming and pollution stick more imaginatively in our minds. Though I still sometimes fear that endlessly celebrating isolated examples of reuse and recycling risk becoming masked denial—as if upcycling were enough to absolve us of responsibility and put an end to our massive trash problem—ultimately, I believe that art has the potential to play an important role in bringing about environmental and social justice by provoking important conversations and engendering empathy in us.
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