June 5, 2022
In Summer 2022, we partnered with artist duo Elissa Levy and Virgina Inés Vergara to produce towels for our Summer Bluefish. On June 5th, “Selva & Shadow” a large scale, three paneled mural, was unveiled at 465 Grand Street, right in the community our learn-to-swim program serves. Students could pass by the mural every day that displays the same imagery found on their pool towels!
“Selva & Shadow” included three 8 x 11-foot images serving as portals to alternate landscapes—seemingly organic yet altered scenes. The mural was part of Neumeraki’s Art Off-Screen, an international exhibition of artwork and performances in public-facing locations. Initiated by Eileen Jeng Lynch in 2020, the project has invites over 100 artists to date to showcase work for local communities on a global scale, supporting artists, social justice and mental health.
Elissa Levy was born in New York and attended the Rhode Island School of Design. She was a 2018 participant in the Quirk+VisArts residency, Richmond, VA, which culminated in a solo exhibition at The Visual Arts Center of Richmond. She has also solo exhibitions at The Living Room, San Francisco, CA and Brooklyn Fireproof, Brooklyn, NY, and has had a two-person exhibition at Foley Gallery, NY. Her work is included in the Altoids Curiously Strong Collection, which is part of the New Museum of Contemporary Art, NY, permanent collection and has been exhibited at the New Museum, and the Luckman Center Gallery, Los Angeles, Consolidated Works, Seattle, Blue Star Arts Complex, San Antonio, Soo Visual, Minneapolis. In 2019 she was a part of the inaugural residency at Bunny Mellon’s Oak Spring Garden Foundation in Virginia, and she returned there for further research in 2020.
Virginia Inés Vergara is a photo-based Chilean-American artist with a studio practice in NYC. She has had solo exhibitions at Robert Miller Gallery, NYC (Shards, 2015-2016); in Madrid at LA Projects (2017); and a solo booth at Arco, Madrid (2018). Her work has been displayed in group shows in New York and abroad including La Fabbrica del Cioccolato (2019) Switzerland; Barbara Gladstone Gallery, NYC (2018); Magenta Planes, NYC (2018); Carriage Trade Gallery, NYC (2019, 2018, 2017); Interstate Projects, Brooklyn (2014). She participated in the first uptown triennial, curated by Deborah Cullen, at the Wallach Gallery of Columbia University, NYC (2017), and was an En Foco fellow (2019). Her work has been mentioned or reviewed in Nueva Luz (2019), Brooklyn Rail (2018), The New Yorker (2018), New York Times (2017), and Financial Times (2017), to name a few. Her work is in numerous private collections including a promised gift to MoMA. She holds a BFA with honors from Rhode Island School of Design and an MFA with honors from Hunter College, CUNY. She has lectured and conducted workshops at Columbia University, Hunter College, and Edna Manley College, Jamaica.