BCA - Erin Genia Curates Yušká: Uncoil — the 27th Drawing Show at Boston Center for the Arts

Erin Genia Curates Yušká: Uncoil — the 27th Drawing Show at Boston Center for the Arts

The next exhibition at the Mills Gallery highlights the intersection of art, earth, and social change through the versatile medium of drawing.

Dates           May 11 — August 3, 2024

Location      Boston Center for the Arts, Mills Gallery | 551 Tremont Street, Boston 02116

BOSTON, MA — Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) announces its 27th Drawing Show — Yušká: Uncoil, juried and curated by Erin Genia. After a five-year hiatus, this highly anticipated exhibition including artworks from forty-four artists will be held at the Mills Gallery, located at 551 Tremont St, Boston, from May 11 to August 3, 2024. The opening reception will take place on Friday, May 17, 2024, from 6–9 PM, providing visitors the  chance to engage with the artists and curator firsthand.

From traditional to contemporary, the exhibition celebrates the rich tradition and interrogates what defines the medium. This year’s Drawing Show is Yušká: Uncoil. In the Dakhota language, the word Yušká means: to untie, release, uncoil, loosen, set free. Its meaning can range from the simple untying of a knotted rope, all the way to a philosophical undoing of political, economic and social constructs. Curator Erin Genia elaborates: 

Life is sustained by Earth and everything we do is the result of our connection to the lands we live on. This basic reality has been lost to most, but it is central to Dakota cosmology. All cultures of the world stem from Earth-based ways of living, and for the past couple centuries, those ways have been targeted for erasure and nearly destroyed by dominant societies, but we remain Earth-based beings. 

Artists’ unparalleled ability to speak to the intangible gives them a singular way of addressing inequities and presenting visions of a better world. This power, alongside fluency in the creative process, can be a catalyst for social change that aligns with the Dakhota word Yušká. The crises of climate change and ecological destruction are the result of the same cultural dynamics that are intertwined with economic inequality and the injustices of racism. Beginning with Yušká, how can artists honor the agency of the Earth and our place in it? How can we devote our creative work to unraveling the immense knot formed by harmful ideologies that threaten the web of life?

Participating artists: 

Ryan AasenConstanza Alarcon TennenCrystal Bi, Geoffrey Booras, Kameko Branchaud, Stephanie Cardon, Darius Carter, Mayté Castillo, Woosik Choi, Leah CraigTanya Crane, Mark Hernandez-Motaghy, Corazon Higgins, Elizabeth James-Perry, Ashley JinAlex Kalil, Iwalani Kaluhiokalani, Lucien Dante Lazar, Andy LiPatte Loper, Evangelina MaciasRobbie Moser-Saito, Marie Zack NolanSheila Novak, Chris Pappan, Crater PowersKiara Reagan, John RosMica Rose, Meg Rotzel, John Roy, Michelle Samour, Homa Sarabi, Bryan Shea, Mimi Silverstein, Susanne Slavick, Sarah Slavick, Michelle Stevens, Michael Talbot, Vivian Tran, Ananth Udupa, Margaret Inga Urîas, Jael Whitney, Adam Wise and Erin Woodbrey.

Brooke Stewart Constructs a Love Letter to Boston Artists

Opening April 29, Brooke Stewart: BAD MATH, curated by Liz Morlock is the newest exhibition in the 1:1 Exhibition Series at Boston Center for the Arts. 

Important Dates

On view: April 29, 2023, to June 3, 2023.

Public Reception and Curatorial Walkthrough: April 29 • 6pm–9pm

Public Program—Big Ink Print Workshop: May 6–May 7 • 11am–4pm

BOSTON, MA – In Brook Stewart: BAD MATH, printmaker Brooke Stewart and curator Liz Morlock bring a series of woodblock-printed portraits to the Mills Gallery. BAD MATH pushes the scale of woodblock-printing and celebrates one of Boston’s most dedicated arts subcultures. BAD MATH is the newest exhibition in the 1:1 Exhibition series presented in the Mills Gallery of Boston Center for the Arts. 

The exhibition features eight portraits, each tenderly constructed and sewn together with handmade paper fashioned by combining a delicate slurry of personal items, fibers, and glue. Embedded in the surface of these portraits of friends, family, and fellow artists, viewers can see different textures: clippings from a garden; frayed embroidery strings, and even the resulting wooden splinters from the artist’s own self-portrait.

Like past exhibitions in the 1:1 Exhibition series, BAD MATH presents a collaborative project between one curator and one artist. The public reception for BAD MATH at 6pm on April 29, will be part of a full day of BCA programming. BCA will also be hosting an Open House in the Artist Studios Building next door and a Project Room Show with BCA Studio Resident Szu-Chieh Yun within the Mills Gallery.

To keep the thread of community active, Stewart and Morlock have also partnered with Big Ink to present a woodblock printing workshop on May 6–7 in the BCA Mills Gallery. The first day of that workshop, we will be celebrating International Print Day together with Boston Printmakers. People will gather at Boston Center for the Arts to celebrate International Print Day to watch large-scale printing in action at the Big Ink workshop in the Mills. Guests will also be welcome to visit BCA Studio Residents and the founders of Limited Time Engagement Press,  Boyang Hou and Kate Conlon who will open their studio in the BCA Artist Studios Building.

About the Artist: Brooke Stewart

Brooke Henderson Stewart (b. 1994, Topsfield, MA) is an artist living and working in Boston, MA. She received her MFA from The School of The Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University (Boston, MA) in 2018. Stewart’s debut solo exhibition, No Potatoes, was hosted by The Distillery Gallery (Boston, MA). Stewart will be featured in an upcoming exhibition titled Peace Love and Understanding at the Danang Museum of Fine Arts (Danang Vietnam), on view starting April 17th. Recent group exhibitions have been presented by Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (Boston, MA), Los Angeles Printmaking Society (Los Angeles, CA), LaMontagne Gallery (Boston, MA), Tokyo University of the Arts,Geidai (Tokyo, Japan), Edinburgh College of Art (Edinburgh, Scotland) and Artist Proof Press (Johannesburg, South Africa), among others. Her work has  been written about in The Boston Globe, New American Paintings and Boston Art Review. Stewart currently serves as a postgraduate teaching fellow for Northeastern University. 

About The Curator: Liz Morlock

Liz Morlock (b. 1993, Long Beach, CA) is a curator and writer living and working in Boston, MA. She currently serves as the Director of Steven Zevitas Gallery with a focus on providing space for emerging, contemporary artists. Morlock also works as the Marketing Manager for New American Paintings, a bi-monthly art publication featuring contemporary painters across all regions of the United States. She previously worked as the Assistant Director of Samsøñ, a gallery specializing in the representation of underrepresented artists and recontextualization of established artists. Recent writing projects consider the site-specific distribution of arts capital in the city of Boston.

About Boston Center for the Arts:

Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) supports working artists to create, perform, and exhibit new works; develops new audiences; and connects the arts to community, and has for over five decades engaged the creative community for public good. While the organization’s physical residence is in the historic South End, BCA touches every part of Boston’s cultural ecosystem. A leading force in the city’s cultural community, BCA has supported thousands of individual artists, small organizations, and performing arts companies, who add depth and dimension to the Boston arts ethos. Through residencies and programming, BCA serves as an epicenter for an expanding cohort of artists working across all disciplines, and has catalyzed careers by providing fertile ground for experimentation and artistic risk-taking. To learn more about Boston Center for the Arts, visit www.bostonarts.org

About the Big Ink Workshop

The public can attend and watch the printing process unfold. BIG INK LLC, a New England-based art education company, is teaming up with the BCA for the first time to make this learning opportunity available. BIG INK travels the country, hosting dozens of similar demonstrations in partnership with museums, universities, art centers, and galleries. Their portable printing press, called The Big Tuna, is unique in its ability to print large yet travel readily. The event will be open from 11am to 4pm, May 6–7, where visitors can see up-close printing demonstrations. The slate of artists will feature Saturday appearances by Deborah Cornell, Juan Lopez, Adrian Tio, Aurora Goodland, Rebecca Potter, Lauren Adelman, Kiara Reagan, Casey Park, and Steph Shapiro. Sunday's artists are BCA alum Iwalani Kaluhiokalani, BCA Studio Resident Karmimadeebora McMillan, Stephanie Sullivan, Sara Delaney. Bob Maloney, Chelsea Teta, Isabella Penney, Michelle Stevens, and Liv Stanislas. Admission is free.

Info: www.bigink.org/calendar

 More informationExhibition details: https://bostonarts.org/experiences/exhibitions/brooke-stewart-bad-math/ 

Big Ink: www.bigink.org/calendar   Limited Time Engagement Press: https://www.limitedtimeengagement.com/



The BCA Playwright Residency fills the dire need for a residency that holistically supports playwrights’ entire creative process from inception to reading.


Important Dates:

Application due by: September 11, 2022

Notification on or by: September 23, 2022


BOSTON, MA — Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) is thrilled to announce the new BCA Playwright Residency. This year-long residency has been designed to support three rising Boston-based playwrights in the creation of new work, while protecting the creative control and ownership of their innovative work. The BCA Playwright Residency will provide access to office, rehearsal, and performance space, marketing support, professional mentorship, community partnerships, and workshops.


The BCA Playwright residency helps further the playwrights’ creative process by catering support and direction to each artists’ needs. It is a process-based residency where the playwright can focus on a new work–defined at BCA as something that does not exist or is an idea that needs cultivating. 

Specifically, playwrights will  have their own station in a shared office space with their fellow playwright residents. Each resident will have access to five days in the Black Box Theatre or Martin Hall in the Calderwood Pavilion, for a mid-year workshop of the play. Playwrights will have a budget to cast actors and dramaturgs; and the option to seek industry feedback. To conclude the residency, there will be a final staged reading in the Plaza Theatre.

Like other residency programs at BCA, the BCA Playwright Residency aims to gather a diverse and inclusive community of artists for the purpose of supporting innovative work across disciplines, connecting artists with peers and resources, and providing a vibrant platform for new art in Boston. Each application will be evaluated based on the artist's demonstration of experimentation, responsiveness, balance, community engagement, and potential impact.

Fernadina Chan and Jessi Stegall, Latest Boston Dancemakers Residents, Creating New Dance Pieces Exploring Concepts Of Legacy And Race

New works build on Michael Alfano’s sculpture “Cubed” and theremin virtuosa Clara Rockmore’s music

MA (August 4, 2022) – We are delighted to announce that Fernadina Chan and Jessi Stegall are the new 2022-2023 Boston Dancemakers Residents at Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) and the Boston Dance Alliance (BDA).

Jessi Stegall and Fernadina Chan will both develop work during their year-long residencies at BCA inspired by, and in deep conversation with, other two artists who inspire each of them.

Left: Fernadina Chan (photo: Phyllis Bretholtz) / Right: Jessi Stegall (photo: Lo Kuehmeier)

In Jessi Stegall’s case the theremin virtuosa Clara Rockmore is the inspiration behind

Stegall’s upcoming piece “The Theremin Vignettes.” Stegall notes that her own work is,

“rooted deeply in odes — responding to, building, and furthering the legacy of worlds

crafted by others,” which in this case is the extraordinary but under-appreciated work of

Rockmore. For Fernadina Chan, Michael Alfano’s interactive sculpture “Cubed” is the

starting point for Continuum Dance Project’s new work that will develop into an

exploration of race and gender from a female perspective, contrasting and harmonizing

with Alfano’s sculptural intention.

About Fernadina Chan and project:

Accomplished educator and choreographer Fernadina Chan is the founding artistic dean

and former chair of Boston Arts Academy (BAA). Fernadina Chan founded Continuum

Dance Project (CDP) — together with her collaborator and co-director Adriane Brayton

— as a means to create site-specific, cross-disciplinary collaborative work that reflects

the backgrounds of their collaborating artists.

In a new evening-length work CDP will explore the multi-layered connection with

Michael Alfano’s interactive sculpture “Cubed.” Built like a jigsaw puzzle, “Cubed”

consists of nine moveable pieces. Each piece is pigmented with a different skin tone,

representing individual diversity within a united community. Fitted together they form a

four-foot by four-foot face, depicting a male image on one side and an inverted female

on the other.

This new cross-disciplinary dance will challenge audiences to consider the nuances of

race and the label of gender; while empowering them to interact with, touch, and take

ownership of the work. This project will feature four diverse female dancers, with family

backgrounds from The Dominican Republic, Haiti, South Korea, The U.S. Virgin Islands,

and United States. Along with female choreographers Adriane Brayton and Fernadina

Chan, this creative team will explore race and gender from a female perspective,

contrasting and harmonizing with the sculptor’s intention.

About Jessi Stegall and project:

Jessi Stegall is a dance-theatre artist, applied ethicist, and arts educator based in Boston.

Jessi currently approaches performance as an act of ode: expressing curiosity and

homage toward worlds built by others. She has been an artist-in-residence at the

Harvard ArtLab, National Parks Service, Windhover Performing Arts Center, and Jacob’s

Pillow Dance Festival, and was recently featured as one of Dance Magazine’s “25 to

Watch” (2022) alongside her close collaborator, Ilya Vidrin.

Jessi Stegall’s upcoming work “The Theremin Vignettes” is an evening-length dance

production made up of a series of choreographic vignettes within the musical world of

thereminist Clara Rockmore. Despite being credited as the best theremin player to have

ever lived, Rockmore remains under-recognized and overlooked for her immense

contributions initiating the relationship between electronic interface and classical music.

“The Theremin Vignettes” is, first and foremost, an ode to Clara: a Jewish woman,

virtuosa and pioneer of electronic music, strong-willed and charismatic yet barely 5 feet


More broadly, this piece will pay homage to what is simultaneously so human in spirit,

yet not human in form: the musical theremin. The only instrument to be played without

physical contact, the theremin produces a warbly and eerie tone made from thin air,

often associated with science fiction films. Rockmore’s theremin arrangements of

classical works elevated the instrument above novelty status, bringing precision and

composition to an otherwise seemingly random and crude instrument. It has been said

that Clara aimed to “bestow the non-human [theremin] a soul.” In an age where the

relationship between humans and machines is becoming increasingly more intimate, her

goal has more meaning now than ever. By choreographically illuminating Rockmore’s

unique use of the theremin, “The Theremin Vignettes” aims to choreographically

highlight the music’s soulful charm through idiosyncratic narratives of departure, grief,

and remembrance.

More Artists’ Quotes:

Fernadina Chan, Continuum Dance Project (CDP):

“We are so excited to have Boston Center for the Arts be our “home” for inspiration and

creation in 2023. Through our Dancemakers Residency, we look forward to continuing

the development of ideas generated during our initial exploration of Michael Alfano’s

“Cubed” at our AiR Residency in 2022. The accessibility of the sculpture throughout our

creation period will be vital to the creative team. During the residency we will focus on

experimentation; ideation; and shaping the full-length work as an interdisciplinary team.

We will initially share the work through informal showings with invited audiences to test

the interactive and participatory elements we will be crafting.”

Jessi Stegall:

“I am extremely excited to spend this year deepening my practice of ode-making with an

interdisciplinary team. With the support of the Dancemakers Residency, I am looking

forward to experimenting, prototyping, and reflecting — not only in building

choreography, but all the moving parts of developing a performance production.”

Andrea Blesso, Director of Dance & Interdisciplinary Arts, Boston Center for the Arts:

“Boston Center for the Arts and Boston Dance Alliance are delighted to welcome two

extraordinary dancemaker talents in Fernadina Chan and Jessi Stegall as this year’s

Boston Dancemakers Residents. Together with their equally talented collaborators, they

will each create what promises to be thought-provoking and ground-breaking pieces

that will move us all. I am eager to deepen our partnership with these visionaries as they

both return to BCA in their new roles as our Dancemaker Residents.”

Debra Cash, Executive Director of Boston Dance Alliance:

“Boston Dance Alliance’s partnership with BCA to create the most comprehensive dance

residency in Boston continues again this year with two extraordinary dancemakers

pushing the boundaries of their discipline. We are thrilled by the wonderful selection of

Fernadina Chan and Jessi Stegall and can’t wait to see the work that emerges!”

About The Boston Dancemakers Residency:

The Boston Dancemakers Residency supports Boston-area dance artists who are striving

to develop, adapt or reinvent their creative process. Produced through a partnership

between Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) and Boston Dance Alliance (BDA), the

residency serves as a laboratory for ideas that are in the exploratory phase and need

dedicated time and space to be fully realized.

Designed to promote artistic growth and the development of original ensemble work,

dancemakers will be offered support for research, development, rehearsal, financial,

and production phases of their project. Resources include a regional three-day retreat,

six weeks of intensive studio time, discounted rehearsal space, dancemaker and

collaborator stipends, and rehearsal pay for up to six dancers.

The residency must be used to develop new work and the majority of rehearsal time

should be dedicated to the proposed project. BCA and BDA encourage dancemakers to

take risks, invest time and focus in working with their dancers, build the skills to develop

and advance original ensemble work, and dive deeply into their creative process.

The Boston Dancemakers Residency is made possible with support in part from the Aliad

Fund at The Boston Foundation.

About Boston Center for the Arts:

Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) is the nexus of the arts in Boston, fostering the

development of contemporary visual and performing arts and convening artists and

audiences to create, explore and celebrate all creative disciplines. An integral part of the

cultural fabric of the City of Boston, Boston Center for the Arts utilizes its historic

campus in the vibrant South End to present world-class exhibitions and performances,

provide affordable work space, engage cultural consumers throughout the region, and

nurture artists with the resources to take risks and develop new art works.

About Boston Dance Alliance:

Boston Dance Alliance (BDA) builds capacity for dance by identifying and creating shared

resources, information, and productive partnerships to help dance flourish across the

Boston metropolitan area and New England region. BDA is an independent service

organization representing dancers, choreographers, teachers, presenters, allied arts and

cultural professionals, arts journalists and scholars, wellness and health providers, and

dance enthusiasts brought together across dance genres and geographies. BDA strives

to increase cultural equity and access to dance for diverse communities, build dance

audiences, and promote quality and sustainability.

Photography and more information:

● Boston Dancemakers Residency on the BCA website

● Fernadina Chan’s Dancemakers Residency page on the BCA website

● Jessi Stegall’s Dancemakers Residency page on the BCA website

● The BCA website

● The BDA website