New School News

The Vera List New School Art Collection Writing Awards Winners Announced

First prize critical response winner Thomas J. Ashley’s essay “Helmsboro Country and Me” was inspired by Hans Haacke’s, Helmsboro Country (diptych), 1990.

From Chuck Close to Kara Walker to Jose Clemente Orozco, the artists represented in The New School’s Art Collection are among the most influential names of the last hundred years. Since 1996 the Vera List Center New School Art Collection Writing Awards has fostered a closer connection between the collection and students by calling for critical and creative essays inspired by certain works. The winning entries of the 2012-2013 competition are as creative, diverse, and experimental as the artists represented in the university’s collection.

In a first, this year’s competition applied an enhanced notion of “essay,” and accepted non-text based, visual entries. Work was submitted by students from programs such as Urban Design, the Institute of Retired Professionals, Economics, Creative Writing, Poetry, Politics, Anthropology, Sociology, and Fine Arts. Like the Art Collection itself, the award provided a cross-divisional platform for creative and critical thinking and making. The award is sponsored by the Vera List Center for Art and Politics, which this year celebrates its 20th anniversary.

Award winners actively engaged The New School Art Collection and drew on the Vera List Center’s 2011-2013 focus theme, “Thingness.” Addressing this theme deftly by focusing on the material aspects of art, the winning submissions honor the conclusion of the current thematic issue before the Vera List Center upcoming, 2013-2015 focus theme, “Alignment.”

The 2012-2013 Vera List New School Art Collection Writing Awards were given to the following students:

First Prize, Creative Response ($400)
Raven Jackson, New School for Public Engagement, MFA in Poetry
For her poem “Mississippi”
Inspired by Brice Marden, Untitled #4, 1979
On view at 65 West 11th Street, 5th Floor, Wollman Hall

First Prize, Critical Response ($400)
Thomas J. Ashley, New School for Public Engagement, Institute for Retired Professionals
For his essay “Helmsboro Country and Me”
Inspired by Hans Haacke, Helmsboro Country (diptych), 1990
On view at 66 West 12th Street, 4th Floor

Second Place, Creative Response ($200)
Andrew Williams, Parsons The New School for Design, BFA Photography
For his photo essay
Inspired by Berenice Abbott, Fulton Fish Market, 1938
On view at 66 West 12th Street, 7th Floor

The winning entries will be featured on the Vera List Center’s website and in a public program in the spring. They will be edited by professional critics and published in an award poster. This year, the poster will again be created in collaboration with the Illustrations Department at Parsons.

The prize jury included:

  • Carin Kuoni, Director/Curator, Vera List Center for Art and Politics
  • Joshua Mack, member, Vera List Center Advisory Committee
  • Rosemary O’Neill, Associate Professor of Art History, School of Art and Design History and Theory, Parsons The New School for Design
  • Robert Polito, Director, Writing Program and MFA in Creative Writing, The New School for Public Engagement
  • Silvia Rocciolo, Curator, The New School Art Collection
  • Juliet Tarantino, student representative and candidate for M.A. in Anthropology, The New School for Social Research
  • Wendy Walters, Assistant Professor, Literary Studies, Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts

 To learn more visit www.veralistcenter.org.

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