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conversation series

Humor, Vulnerability, and the Shaping of Narratives with Ceramicist Lauren Cohen and PHA Ceramics Studio Director Biata Roytburd

April 9 @ 6:30 pm 8:00 pm

Through her paintings, sculpture, graphic novels, and comedic performances,  Lauren Cohen blurs the line between truth and fiction, drawing inspiration from her varied careers, which currently includes her being a cue card girl for NBC’s Saturday Night Live and a gallerina at a Chelsea art gallery. Together, Cohen and PHA Ceramics Studio Director Biata Roytburd will explore the intricacies of creative expression, the challenges and rewards of blending humor with emotional depth, and the evolving role of the artist  in today’s society. They will delve into the ways in which personal narratives and societal norms intersect in their work, offering a compelling glimpse into the convergence of art and life.

Following the conversation, join us for a light reception featuring local fare to meet the artists and connect with community members. Then, continue the celebration at local bar, Dirty Precious, for an after party to toast the launch of Cohen’s fourth graphic novel, “The Invisible Cue Card Girl.”  (The celebration will also feature a custom dessert from Aesthetically Complex Pies.)

Powerhouse Arts’ new Conversation Series provides an intimate and lively exploration of the creative process through insightful dialogues designed by PHA fabricators, staff, and collaborating artists. We invite our communities to join us in creating affirming spaces for a diverse range of perspectives on making, process, and belonging. Upcoming conversations will include Stephen Burks with Eric Shiner, Pamela Council with Brittni Collins, and Ivan Forde with Luther Davis.

Tuesday, April 9, 2024
Doors at 6pm
6:30pm – 8pm
Small Hall 
FREE with RSVP (limited capacity)

About the artists:

Lauren Cohen constructs an artistic universe where control, power, sexuality and violence are recurring themes. The forming of “the other” within any given society is at the core of her research. Having grown up (and out) of Puritan New England, she connects historical events and characters to her own growth and development in order to form fictional mythologies. 

She holds a BFA from California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA and a Masters  from Royal College of Art, London, UK. Her work has been exhibited at Westbeth Gallery, New  York; Wassaic Project, New York; Spring/Break Art Show, New York; The Museum of Modern  Art Department of Film, New York; Van Der Plas Gallery, New York; Trestle Gallery, New York;  Andrew Edlin Gallery, New York; The Maine Jewish Museum, Portland; Patricia Sweetow  Gallery, San Francisco; The di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art, Napa, California; The London  Institute of Contemporary Art; The Blyth Gallery, London; and Goldsmiths College of London.  She has been an Artist in Residence at MacDowell, NARS (New York Art Residency and Studios),  The Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture, The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation and  MASS MoCA. Previous juried exhibitions include Bloomberg New Contemporaries, The Catlin  Guide, and Saatchi New Sensations.

Biata Roytburd is a classically trained sculptor, contributing over ten years of experience in ceramic fabrication and education. She received her BFA in Illustration from the School of Visual Arts in 2010. She studied anatomy and sculpture in clay at the Salzburg International Academy of Fine Arts. With a focus on porcelain, she has expertise in various ceramic processes including sculpture, slip casting, mold-making, hand-building, throwing, glazing, and firing. Biata has extensive experience with realizing ambitious site-specific artwork commissions and installations, and describes herself as having a meticulous eye when it comes to her craft.