Collar Works is a non-profit art space located at 621 River St. in Troy, NY dedicated to supporting emerging and under represented artists, working in any media, exhibiting challenging and culturally relevant contemporary artworks. Striving to expand the current art vernacular in New York’s capital region, Collar Works provides a venue for community dialogue focused on serious, provocative and spirited artworks.

Open Call 2020: Collective Health

Deadline to Submit: December 15

Curators: Valery Jung Estabrook and Rachel Frank

Show Dates: March 26, 2021 - May 15, 2021

Collar Works is excited to announce our annual Open Call titled 'Collective Health' guest co-curated by Valery Jung Estabrook and Rachel Frank. For this year's open call we ask artists to reflect and illuminate the politics of community health.  If community health broadly refers to the state of our collective bodies, then each and every one of us comprise and contribute to our overall collective health. All of our actions, on micro and macro levels affect ourselves, the people around us, and the environment in which we live and leave behind.  We are looking for visions of the future that we may hope for; of the past that we leave behind; and of the present that we see outside our windows. We encourage and welcome a variety of media and formats from painting and sculpture to video, performance, and socially engaged works.

Show Statement

The world has changed since the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic. We can no longer ignore or disregard how our decisions or actions can affect many; how interconnected we are both globally and locally.  

As much as we tell ourselves that we are “all in this together”, the coronavirus has accelerated and amplified many issues of inequality in our society. While the affluent have been able to travel and more comfortably insulate themselves, others are struggling with unemployment, food insecurity, and greater rates of illness and loss of life. 

In the US, we are in the unique situation of the pandemic unfolding during an election year in a country that has rarely felt so divided. Stay-at-home directives and mask ordinances have become political flashpoints. Incidents of hate crimes against Asian Americans have increased as public figures use xenophobic language and shift blame onto others. At what seemed like the height of the pandemic, video footage of George Floyd’s death shone a light on police killings of Black Americans and revived the Black Lives Matter movement. His death — along with Breonna Taylor, Elijah McClain, and others — sparked outrage, nationwide protests, and calls to divest from police. The spotlight on racial inequality has only added to the list of many polarizing issues within the country.

Meanwhile, the pandemic has also shown how human activity or lack thereof affects the world around us. With our decreased travel, spending, and the closures of industrial factories, we have seen drops in pollution levels illustrating for us that we can and do greatly affect the environment around us. 

We have also seen a rise in communities coming together and providing mutual-aid in the form of mask making, delivery of groceries and food, raising money, providing childcare, and other aid in their local neighborhoods. 

If community health broadly refers to the state of our collective bodies, then each and every one of us comprise and contribute to our overall collective health. All of our actions, on micro and macro levels affect ourselves, the people around us, and the environment in which we live and leave behind. 

In a deeply divided United States in the middle of a community health crisis, what are the issues that we can no longer ignore, that scream out and demand our attention? If mere survival is a challenge, is the goal of a healthy community a lofty dream? How do national and global politics play into and complicate these goals? 

For this open call, we ask for works that reflect and illuminate the politics of community health.  We are looking for visions of the future that we may hope for; of the past that we leave behind; and of the present that we see outside our windows. We encourage and welcome a variety of media and formats from painting and sculpture to video, performance, and socially engaged works. 

Submission Material

  • Artist Information
  • Artist Statement (150 words)
  • Artist Bio (150 words)
  • 5 images or videos
  • Corresponding List of Works (title, medium, date, size, price)
  • Website and social media handles
  • Entry Fee: $15

Guidelines + Information

  • Artists may submit up to 5 works for consideration.
  • Curators will select works based on the theme of the show.
  • All artists working in all mediums are welcome to apply. 
  • All artwork submitted must be ready to hang or install. 
  • All artwork in the exhibition will be for sale, with artists receiving 100% of all sales. Collar Works is a non-commission space. 
  • At this time, artists are responsible for shipping + handling costs.
  • Artists working in video or new media may need to provide their own equipment. 
  • Selected artists will be notified by February 1, 2021
  • All artwork must arrive at Collar Works on or by March 15th. 
  • Exhibition runs March 26 - May 15, 2021.
  • At this time, we are unable to plan an opening reception or public events. More information will be provided closer to the show dates based on NYS health and safety guidelines around COVID-19.
  • Collar Works is committed to artist equity and provides an inclusive space with access for all, regardless of differences of race, age, color, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, religion, national origin, migratory status, disability/abilities, political affiliation, veteran status and/or socioeconomic background. 


About The Curators

Valery Jung Estabrook is a multidisciplinary artist exploring culture and the human experience through media and time-based installations. She often uses her own life events as an entry point for wider topics with the aim of creating intimate spaces for a public audience. The resulting work reveals hidden personal histories, allowing others to peer into a private psychological space, with the ultimate goal of outward connection and contributing to ongoing dialogues. Valery Jung Estabrook was born in Plantation, Florida, and grew up on an organic Asian pear farm in rural southwestern Virginia. She holds an MFA in Painting and Drawing from Brooklyn College and a BA in Visual Art from Brown University. Her work has been exhibited in major cities both domestically and internationally, including New York, Los Angeles, Lagos, Bilbao, and Melbourne. In 2018 she received the Gold AHL-T&W Foundation Contemporary Visual Art Award, an annual award recognizing artists of Korean heritage in the United States. In 2020 she was a Vermont Studio Center Fellow and the Paula and Edwin Sidman Fellow at the University of Michigan's Institute for the Humanities. She currently resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Rachel Frank grew up near Big Bone Lick, Kentucky, the birthplace of American paleontology, where large mammoth and other megafauna fossils were found, altering Western views on extinction and evolution. Her work uses sculpture, video, and performance to explore our relationships and shifting perspectives towards natural history, climate change, and non-human species. Rachel Frank received her BFA from The Kansas City Art Institute and her MFA from The University of Pennsylvania. Frank is the recipient of grants from The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation, The Puffin Foundation, and The Franklin Furnace Archive. She has attended residencies at Yaddo, The Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation, The Museum of Arts and Design, Sculpture Space, The Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and most recently at the MOCA in Tucson, AZ. Recent solo and two-person exhibitions include Thresholds at MOCA Tuscon (AZ), the SPRING/BREAK Art Show (NYC), Thomas Hunter Projects at Hunter College (NYC), Standard Space (Sharon, CT), and Geary Contemporary (NYC). Her performance pieces have been shown at HERE, Socrates Sculpture Park, The Select Fair, and The Bushwick Starr in New York City, The Marran Theater at Lesley University, and most recently at The Watermill Center in collaboration with Robert Wilson. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.


About Collar Works
Collar Works is a non-profit art space located at 621 River St. in Troy, NY dedicated to supporting emerging and underrepresented artists, working in any media, exhibiting challenging and culturally relevant contemporary artworks. Expanding the current art vernacular in New York’s capital region, Collar Works provides a venue for community dialogue focused on serious, provocative, and spirited artworks.
 

Artist + Curatorial Proposals – Ongoing Call

Emerging and underrepresented artists and curators, working in any media, exhibiting challenging and culturally relevant contemporary artworks are invited to submit artworks for consideration in exhibitions.  Both artists and individual curators interested in submitting curatorial proposals, must fill out a submission form and adhere to guidelines. Submissions will be reviewed on an ongoing basis by an exhibition committee of artists and arts professionals. 

Collar Works