A conversation with A.K. Burns, Tamara Zahaykevich (ASAP / Artist Studio Affordability Project), and Caroline Woolard (BFAMFAPhD, on the economic realities faced by artists in New York, and on how artists are organizing to survive in the city. The conversations, moderated by Hunter professor Howard Singerman, will address the politics, policy, and possibilities for artists’  housing and working spaces, and the role artists play as economic actors and as citizens.


For information on other events in the spotlight series – see: Politics, Policy and the Arts.


A.K. Burns  A.K. Burns, artist & co-founder of W.A.G.E. (Working Artists in the Greater Economy)

A.K. Burns is an interdisciplinary artist and educator residing in Brooklyn, NY. Using video, sculpture, installation and collaborative strategies Burns recognizes the body as a site of imminent negotiation offering possibilities to rework economies of gender, labor, ecology and sexuality. Burns has shown both collaborative and solo works extensively across the U.S., Canada and Europe and is a recipient of the 2015 Creative Capital Visual Arts Award. Additionally, Burns is a founding member of Working Artists and the Greater Economy (W.A.G.E.) a New York-based activist organization focused on regulating the payment of artist fees by nonprofit art institutions and establishing a sustainable labor relation between artists and the institutions that subcontract their labor. Currently she is full-time faculty at Hunter College, Department of Art & Art History, and a mentor in the Graduate Department at Columbia University School of Visual Art.

Caroline Woolard  BFAMFAPhD

Caroline Woolard is an artist and organizer whose interdisciplinary work facilitates social imagination at the intersection of art, urbanism, architecture, and political economy. After co-founding and co-directing resource sharing networks and from 2008-2014, Woolard is now focused on her work with to raise awareness about the impact of rent, debt, and precarity on culture and on the NYC Real Estate Investment Cooperative to create and support truly affordable commercial space for cultural resilience and economic justice in New York City.

Caroline Woolard’s work has been supported by MoMA, the Rockefeller Cultural Innovation Fund, Eyebeam, the MacDowell Colony, unemployment benefits, the curiosity of strangers, and many collaborators. Recent group exhibitions include: Crossing Brooklyn, The Brooklyn Museum, New York, NY; Maker Biennial, The Museum of Art and Design, New York, NY; and Artist as Social Agent, Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH. Woolard’s work will be featured in Art21’s New York Close Up documentary series over the next three years. Woolard is a lecturer at the School of Visual Arts and the New School, is an Artist in Residence at the Queens Museum of Art, and was just named the 2015 Arts and Social Justice Fellow at the Judson Church.

Caroline Woolard’s artist statement can be downloaded here. For more information, click on PROJECTS above, or scroll down for upcoming events and writing to download. You can also listen to a talk, search flickr and the news, or sign up for the mailing list.

Tamara Zahaykevich  the Artist Studio Affordability Project (ASAP)

Tamara Zahaykevich received her BFA from the Tyler School of Art in 1995. She is a two-time recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant and a 2014 resident at Dieu Donne’s Workspace Program. Her recent show at KANSAS gallery, ZAHAYKEVICH, was reviewed in The Brooklyn Rail. Her work has been exhibited widely in the US and abroad. Together with artist Jenny Dubnau,Zahaykevich started the Artists Studio Affordability Project in 2013. She has moved nineteen times within NYC since her arrival here in 1996.


Surviving as an Artist in NYC – Politics, Policy and the Arts | Posted on October 9th, 2015 | Politics Policy and the Arts, Public Programs