Museums May Be Closed, But Public Art Continues: Grad Student’s Work Chosen for Billboard

Above: Nathalie Alfonso adds charcoal to a sculpture created for her by Julia Jaloweic at COLLABO show in 2018 (Photo by Kim Leeson)

Division of Art grad student Nathalie Alfonso (M.F.A. ’20) is one of 6 artists chosen by the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth to have their work featured on billboards in under-served communities on the outskirts of downtown.

The museum says its project, called Modern Billings, “comes at a precarious time for artists and students, especially those having their final graduate exhibitions cancelled or postponed. With normal operations temporarily upended due to COVID-19, nearly all of these participating artists have graduate thesis exhibitions affected.”

The museum also noted, “ MODERN BILLINGS is proud to serve as a platform for these emerging artists to present examples of their work despite the current isolation of the general population and institutional closures. The billboard format allows these works to be viewed in isolation, from vehicle windows or computer monitors. MODERN BILLINGS continues to build access between artists, students, and the community outside of the museum and classroom walls.”

Here’s a look at the billboard:

Nathalie Alfonso (SMU)
Banner Anatomy, 2020
Billboard located at 6602 Lancaster Ave, Fort Worth, TX 76112

About Artist Nathalie Alfonso, MFA ‘20

(b.1987, Bogota, Colombia) Nathalie Alfonso holds a Bachelor in Fine Arts from Florida International University, and she has been a teaching assistant in drawing and sculpture. Alfonso has received the SUM Award to develop research in Beijing, China at the Central Academy of Fine Arts. Her work has been exhibited and performed in galleries, universities, and in public spaces, such as Marymount University in Washington D.C., Art and Culture Center of Hollywood, Spinello Projects, Miami Beach Urban Studios, The Projects – Fat Village, The Annex – Fordistas, Miami Beach Botanical Gardens, and La Factoria – Ecuador. Alfonso’s practice investigates the value of manual labor, the degeneration of the body, and notions of impermanence through drawing, installation, and video. Her necessity to merge the practice of cleaning and art making is utilized to observe her constant obsession with cleanliness. This is manifested in the impermanent installations completed with repetitive movements of applied and removed charcoal on different surfaces such as walls, rags, and paper.

In confronting the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic, it is more important than ever to build and sustain our community connections. With SMU Meadows Keep Going, we’ll share faculty, alumni and student works, stories and more reflecting how the Meadows community is responding to this unprecedented event. Follow #keepgoingmeadows on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram for more.

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