2018 Resident Artists

Azita Moradkhani

Closing Talk: On a chilly October evening, the Goetemann Residency Program for 2018 came to an end with Azita Moradkhani’s talk.  Ours has been just one of a series of back-to-back residencies for Azita, as she’s traveled this country getting to know us — and letting us get to know her. Her work is inspired by a visit to Victoria’s Secret when she was new to the US. Such things are really keep secret in her native Iran. Her grappling with the cultural differences has resulted in a body of work that melds the lacy with the newsworthy. A negligee is topped with a very masculine mustachioed face; a high-necked capelet bears an historic image of a nude “women who didn’t look comfortable.” Azita’s playing with paradoxes in her work that fuse into powerful statements that demand close inspection.


Opening Talk: Azita is a most engaging and thoughtful young artist. After a quick lesson in geography (Iran is not Iraq), pronunciation (it’s “ear-ran” not “eye-ran”) and language (they speak Farsi, not Arabic), Azita took us on a quick photographic tour of some of Iran’s great buildings, parks and natural wonders.

422AD978-B9D4-472A-8732-2490755DDDC7The impetus for her using women’s underwear to create her compelling drawings was her first trip into a Victoria’s Secret store. She’d seen nothing like it before, and it’s brazenness and sexuality affected her deeply.  She’s turned that into delicate drawings with powerful messages. You have to get close to one of her drawings to get the full impact. A visit while she’s here is an opportunity to discuss her work and get to know her.

azitamoradkhani-becomingexhibition-mwpai-2018Azita Moradkhani was born in Tehran. There, she was exposed to Persian art and culture as well as Iranian politics, which increased her sensitivity to the dynamics of vulnerability and violence. She’s since turned that into her work and art-making process.

She received her BFA from Tehran University of Art in 2009, and both her MA in Art Education (2013) and MFA in drawing, painting and sculpture (2015) from Boston’s School of the Museum of Fine Arts & Turfts University.

As Moradkhani writes, the female body, and its exposure to different social norms, is central to her work. Through her drawings and body castings, she is examining displacement as an unnuatural state we experience when we find ourselves insecure in our own body.

04-azitamoradkhani-coloredpencils-2018She uses an aesthetic of pleasure to attract the viewer’s attention. Yet, upon closer inspection, through the layers of colored pencil, past the details of lace and filigree, the disruptive iconography becomes apparent, narrating inherited histories of nation and belief.

2018 Resident Artists

Deborah Redwood

Deborah at work:  it’s been a busy month for Deborah as her whale tail has taken shape. Some of us have become quite well acquainted with the junk and metal dealers around Cape Ann (who knew there were so many!) as we’ve helped Deborah scout for materials. Don’t forget to join us tonight for the unveiling of Dive Deep Within.  


Opening Talk, September 4: Fresh from airplane hops across the globe from Australia, Deborah Redwood gave us a great overview of her work. She’s a scientist by training, and is fearless about attacking the twin demons of entropy (briefly, a gradual decline into disorder) and climate change. Her sculptures reflect the delicacy

of underwater sea fans and the beleaguered Coral Reef in Australia. Deborah’s a surfer and a diver, so the sea is of great importance to her. Her participation in the Goetemann Artist Residency is part of her Master’s program — help her out by visiting the Ocean Alliance site this month and providing feedback.


In September, Goetemann Artist Residency program welcomes its second Environmental Installation Artist, Deborah Redwood. A sculptor and installation artist from Australia, Deborah will be working on site at the end of Rock Neck at the Ocean Alliance.

Starfish, by Deborah Redwood. Steel (found objects)

Adept at construction and metalworking, Deborah submitted a proposal that thrilled all on the selection committee: to weld a metal sculpture related to the research work done by Ocean Alliance.

A graduate of the College of Fine Arts (Sydney), Deborah has exhibited over the past decade in group and solo shows in Australia, Japan, China, India and the US. She uses recycled materials, particularly metal.

Deborah’s statement about Starfish (above): “…like any other marine animal with an exoskeleton, the starfish has created [its exockeleton] from calcium in the sand. Sand is the accumulation of a collection of other dead animals that have decayed. In the same way the starfish created by me is a collection of broken objects welded together to create something new.”

A special shout out to Gloucester’s own J&L Welding for helping with some necessary tools for Deborah’s work during her stay.

2018 Workshop

Workshop, Day 4

How did those four days go by so quickly? Probably because we were all busy getting gently nudged out of our comfort zones. Thank you, Kathy Liao, for a wonderful experience! Below is a small sample of the work we did. Tap on photo for artist’s name: