This exhibition was made possible through the generous support of Valeria Napoleone XX. The IFA extends special thanks to the artist for lending her works on view. Lillian Beeson, Laura Sofía Hernández González, Barbie Kim, and Kaylee Moua Nok curated the exhibition. Jason Varone designed the website and Professors Catherine Quan Damman and Christine Poggi provided faculty support. Additional thanks are due to Sarah Higby and Sofia Palumbo-Dawson.
Since 1932 the Institute of Fine Arts has been dedicated to graduate teaching and advanced research in the history of art, archaeology, and conservation. This tradition was enhanced in 2013 when the Institute, revealing the potential of the Duke House’s Beaux-Arts interior as a venue for contemporary art, inaugurated its student-led Great Hall Exhibition program. Acclaimed artists Lynda Benglis, Rachel Harrison, Martha Friedman, Judith Hopf, Jamie Eisenstein, Amy Yao, Sarah Peters, Xaviera Simmons, Cauleen Smith, and Avital Meshi are among those featured to date.
ValeriaNapoleoneXX is an umbrella platform for projects and initiatives working towards increasing the recognition and validation of art practices by female artists through collaborations and partnerships with institutions and individuals in the world of contemporary art.
ValeriaNapoleoneXXIFA is an ongoing commitment to underwrite the Great Hall Exhibition Series at the Institute of Fine Arts, two solo exhibitions a year focused on the work of female artists.
Lillian Beeson (Taurus sun) is a second-year MA student in the History of Art and Archaeology at NYU’s Institute of Fine Arts. In her research, she primarily uses social art historical methodology to examine how eighteenth- and nineteenth- century French art interacts with the cultural context in which it was created. Her art historical work has been recognized through awards such as the Jack Breckenridge Prize in Art History, the School of Art Special Talent Award, and the Katherine K. Herberger Scholarship. She has held positions at the Arizona State University Art Museum, Artists’ Literacies Institute, 5-50 Gallery, and NYU’s Department of Art History. Beeson is deeply interested in how curatorial practice can inform public perceptions of art, which she explored in her first exhibition Dreamscape/Escape and in her published article “Curatorial Practice and the Power of Perception: Fred Wilson’s Mining the Museum and the Newly Reinstalled British Galleries at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.”
Laura Sofía Hernández González (Aries sun) is a Puerto Rican first-year MA student in the History of Art and Archaeology at NYU's Institute of Fine Arts. The interdisciplinary academic and professional formation she has pursued since her undergraduate journey—primarily centered on Journalism and Archaeology, with a few additional studies in French and Art History—informs her art historical scholarship. Her past archaeological research pertains to documentary evidence from nineteenth and twentieth century San Juan, focusing on the stories of women, the working class, and domestic life in Puerto Rico's capital city. She has presented part of this work at two Society for American Archaeology meetings and published it at the peer-reviewed journal [IN]Genios. She has also worked as an intern at the art history and art criticism journal, Visión Doble, and as a sponsored affiliate at the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology at the University of Michigan. Her background as a journalist has led her to believe that making information accessible to multiple audiences should be one of the primary goals in curatorial work. Meanwhile, her first-hand knowledge of political and gender violence in Puerto Rico influences her to practice intersectional feminist and anti-colonial art history.
Barbie Kim (Taurus sun) is an M.A. student at the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. She is also a contributing editor at IRRADICANT, an art writing collective and collaborative learning space based in Brooklyn, New York. Her interest combines legal theory as an art historical methodology to investigate reproductions of photographs and architectural works in the twentieth century. Kim received her Bachelor of Fine Arts with an Art History Thesis from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Kim works in various mediums as an artist, including glass, metal, neon, charcoal, and oil paint. She lectured at New York University and presented her research at John Hopkins University, the School of Art Institute of Chicago, Loyola University Chicago, and the University of Arizona
Kaylee Moua Nok (Leo sun) is a first-year MA student at the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU. Storytelling is at the heart of both her artistic and scholarly practices. Originally working as a studio artist addressing issues such as class and race, her curatorial goal is to work alongside artists to foreground their voices. Her work highlights her experience as a second-generation Hmong-Cambodian-American, resulting in an interdisciplinary mixed-media practice. It is through revisiting traditional practices and exploring experimental mediums that she is able to reconcile Southeast Asia’s tumultuous past and envision a hopeful diasporic future. Her current art historical scholarship attempts to untangle the complex history of Southeast Asian America, with a focus on modern works in the time of and after the Vietnam War. Other shows she has contributed to as a curator include: Open House: Art-making as Therapeutic Practice, the 2023 NYU Curatorial Collaborative group show; and Modeling Mesoamerica: Origins and Originality in a Teaching Collection with the Stanford University Archaeology Collections.