Fifty-six artworks have been selected by distinguished juror Ms. Heather Pesanti, from nearly 600 nationwide entries, for display September 24 through November 5 at Barrett Art Center for the 32nd annual New Directions exhibition.  With a number of local artists works among those selected, the region is well-represented, demonstrating the wealth of creative talent in the Hudson Valley.   Local artists in New Directions ’16 include painter Kevin Frank (Kingston), photographer Roberto Hull (Poughkeepsie) and multi-media artist Vincent Serbin (Lake Katrine).  


As Senior Curator of The Contemporary Austin, Heather Pesanti has organized monographic exhibitions of Marianne Vitale, Do Ho Suh, and Robert Therrien, with forthcoming projects by Monika Sosnowska, John Bock, and Wangechi Mutu.  In 2015, she organized the museum’s largest exhibition to date, Strange Pilgrims, a fourteen-artist, thematic exhibition on experiential art that engaged three venues and a catalogue in conjunction with the University of Texas Press.  In 2014, Pesanti was paired with artist and critic Robert Storr as joint visiting critics in the prestigious Viewpoint speaker series at the University of Texas at Austin.  Pesanti has also been guest curator for Artpace’s International Artist-in-Residence program in San Antonio, Texas, in 2011, and Scotiabank Nuit Blanche in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in 2014. 
Prior to Austin, Pesanti lived in Buffalo, New York, where she was Curator at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery for five years.  During her tenure, she organized the seminal historic exhibition Wish You Were Here: The Buffalo Avant-garde in the 1970s, a large-scale survey of Buffalo’s dynamic arts scene in the 1970s (2012).  Additional projects included Robert Therrien (2013), DECADE: Contemporary Collecting: 2002-2012 (2012; co-curated), Surveyor (2011), Beyond/In Western New York: Alternating Currents (2010; co-curated), Bad Habits (2009), and a series of Artists in Depth exhibitions from the collection.  She was also adjunct professor in the Visual Studies Department at the University at Buffalo.  Pesanti earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and holds graduate degrees from the University of Oxford, England, and New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts.

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Artwork will be viewable after the opening