MFA Thesis 2016 Makes It’s Way To SIA Gallery In Chelsea NYC

Artist-Entrepreneur Liz Lopez Speaks

Artist-Entrepreneur and alumna, Elizabeth Lopez speaks about her business, White Pear Photography.

Artist-Entrepreneur and alumna, Elizabeth Lopez speaks about her business, White Pear Photography.

Elizabeth Lopez, LIU Post Alum, photographer and owner of White Pear Photography Studios, Inc., will speak Wednesday, December 9, 2015, in the Artist-Entrepreneurs speaker series sponsored by the Art Department Studio Foundation Program in the LIU Post College of Arts, Communications and Design.  The event, to be held 12:30-1:30 PM in Sculpture Building, Studio A, is free and open to all students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the public.

Lopez opened her S-Corp photography business soon after graduating in 2008 from LIU Post with a BFA in Photography. Then she photographed one of Prof. Joan Power’s neighbors as her first wedding job and then another friend’s next-door neighbor’s wedding. Word of mouth referrals were key in growing her business. While she hasn’t had a specific mentor, she credits Prof. Joan Powers as “an amazing inspiration who taught me a lot” while at Post.

Like many entrepreneurs Lopez juggled a number of smaller lines of work at the outset. She did portrait photography early on, but slowly cut back to focus on weddings. She had also been a florist since age 14 and continued to do wedding flowers, incorporated as “Boos Florist” while growing her wedding photography business. But as of January 2016 she will be leaving the florist business saying, “White Pear has become so successful I am just too overwhelmed with both!”

Lopez says it took word of mouth, will power, and hard work to get her to where she is today. When asked what advice she would give to an artist/photographer starting out she replied with a laugh, “That’s going to be my hour lecture!” So you will just have to attend on December 9th to get advice from an alum with real world experience and entrepreneurial success!

The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti Summer Institute Re-cap 2015


Welcome to The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti Summer Institute 2015!

The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti is one of the first college level courses in the USA where students earn 3 credits in this specific subject while experiencing and learning hands on studio practice and techniques.

Guest Artists & Lecturers for this term:

Leon Reid IV


General Howe

H.Veng Smith

Gabe Schoenberg / Graff Tours

CAKE aka Jennifer Caviola

Yoav Litvin

Jordan Seiler

Ryan Seslow



Day #1 – 7/13/15

The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti started off with a class overview, learning outcomes and expectations. A historical presentation on early Graffiti in NYC begins with who the early writers were and how styles developed and evolved. Understanding and identifying the difference between legal and illegal graffiti works were explored. A screening and discussion of Style Wars set a great tone and left students with much to think about, especially a re-definition of what Graffiti is and how it can be defined. Style Wars is an essential part of the re-definition process of understanding graffiti. Will you take the time to check it out?


Day #2 – 7/14/15

The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti continued with a lecture on the earliest forms of tagging and letter forms. Writing on the wall dates back to pre-historic time. We discussed the human need to record and interpret the world and how it has transcended time. A tag and tagging development workshop with graffiti alphabets and markers took place. We explored various hand-styles, bubble letters and creating a graffiti name. The class examined: “How do graffiti writers create their names?”

Blackbooks were also introduced and discussed. Many of the students started their own and contributed drawings to each others books. Several of the guest artists also participated. Online resources were introduced, discussed and explored featuring Art Crimes & @149th St. After Day #1’s Style Wars screening, we discussed the importance of Henry Chalfant & Tony Silver’s classic documentary as well as Chalfant & Martha Cooper’s book “Subway Art” aka the Graffiti Bible.


Day #3 – 7/15/15

The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti started with a tagging workshop in hand style graffiti and solidifying a tag name. The class explored the tools of the trade, working with various sizes of markers. Students learned that aerosol spray paint can control is not as easy as it may seem to be. Developing spray can control takes many years of practice and dedication. We found out first hand in our first experience. Students collaborated on a group piece that displays their new identities. Followed by a guest artist presentation and aerosol demo from SEBS.

Tag workshop

LEtter Forms

SEBS shared both aerosol tagging styles as well as building larger letter forms, fill ins and outlining. Students continued to practice and add contributions to the wall over the duration of the course.

Final Wall Collab

Day #4 – 7/16/15

The class met in New York City for a guided walking street art & graffiti tour of downtown Manhattan with NYC Graff Tours aka Gabe Schoenberg. SOHO, Nolita and the Lower East Side will be covered.

gtcolorsmalllogo Bowery Wall Graff Tours

On the tour we discussed and defined the modular components of Hip Hop. B-Boy & B-Girl poses in front of Ron English’s Wall on Houston St. were essential aspects of retaining the information.

(photo by GRAFF TOURS creator Gabe Schoenberg)

On Day #4 we also met up with artist Jordan Seiler for a NYC studio visit and tour with the NOAD app in the Subway. Jordan discussed his various public projects and spoke about taking back public space. The NOAD app tour was a great new awareness to how artists can participate.

NOAD demo

Jordan Seiler

Day #5 – 7/17/15

The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti hit the classroom for an introduction to Street Art lecture. The rise and evolution, connections to graffiti and public art. We spoke about the work of John Fekner and the awareness his influential work brought to the public.


On day #5 General Howe presented his work and discussed the transition of generating non-commissioned Street Art works and synthesizing them into conceptual new Media Art formats for the web and beyond. We discussed his tumblr based project titled “Disasters of War” and how the project has brought new levels of awareness and context to how information is presented and proceeded to the public.



RJ Rushmore is the author of VIRAL ART Creator of and Co-Curator and Co-Creator of ENCRYPTED FILLS – his book Viral Art was emphasized during the course and used as a main resource of investigation. Not only is the book filled with introductions to many artists and their practice, it is a great insight into how the internet has forever changed how artists communicate across the globe. The book is free to read online or download. Each student was required to obtain a copy.


Day # 6 – 7/20/15

The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti continued with understanding various Street Art styles, techniques, and motivations. Street art awareness via photography and the Outdoor Gallery book – author & photographer Yoav Litvin gave a great presentation on his work and lead the class discussion. From the streets of NYC to the many locations Yoav documented in South America, students received a clear vision of how commissioned works of street art function in contrast to non-commissioned works both in and out of the USA.


On the same day, identifying wheat pastes and the paste up process. Beginning with a presentation and series of definitions, CAKE aka Jennifer Caviola presented her work. CAKE also lead the class in a demonstration on the paste up technique. Using works generated specifically for the class students experimented and collaborated on a group installation with CAKE.


CAKE Lecture

Day #7 – 7/21/15

The class met in New York City at the Museum of the City of NY to view the Hip Hop Revolution Exhibition. We explored the emphasis and contributions of hip hop in relationship to early NYC graffiti. B-Boying, MC-ing, DJ-ing and Breakdancing were brilliantly captured by artists Martha Cooper, Janette Beckman & Joe Conzo.


We also visited CAKE’s solo show at The Untitled Space. (45 Lispenard St. Unit 1W NYC) and discussed how her works looked in the gallery opposed to how the works look on the street and via her presentation. The beautiful show generated a lot of new insight into understanding the artist’s process and how well the works looked in the gallery environment.

Cake Show

(One of the many paintings from Cake’s solo show.)

Day #8 – 7/22/15

On day # 8 Herb Smith was our Guest Artist. Herb gave a great presentation about his current work and his evolution as an artist. Starting out as a traditional graffiti artist while simultaneously maintaining a career as a fine artist. Heavily influenced by Dutch masters, Herb’s unique style ranges from large scale 40 foot collaborative murals to smaller scale oil paintings of realistic birds, landscapes and portraits.

Day #9 – 7/23/15

A Stencil Art workshop was taught and conducted by Ryan Seslow. The class generated stencil art works and collaborated on a series of new works for the growing class archive. The class archive consists of over 100 student stencil art works that dates back to when the class was started. The archive resides in the university print-making studio and is available to the LIU Post community and beyond (by appointment.) The class continued exploring street art and street art techniques by identifying legal and illegal versus permission and commission based works. Public murals were discussed. We spoke and explored the works of artist Chris Stain and presented the book he organized for previous talks at LIU.

Growing Door

Day #10 – 7/24/15 – Final Class

The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti welcomes back Public Artist Leon Reid IV to give a presentation of his work. Leon will discuss the transition made from graffiti writer to public artist. Leon led the class in a group activity on the collaborative idea developments for realizing public works of art. Students broke up into groups to contribute their mock ups. A final group critique took place to assess the outcomes.

The final class assessment, learning outcomes and discussion. Students presented and discussed the works generated in the class. We exchanged how the information learned during the class will influence each student forward? How will you apply the information learned through out the course?


Students contributed great insight and reactions through out the course by reacting and responding in the comment areas below.

Many thanks to all of the hard working students, visiting artists and contributors!

Onward and forward.

Much gratitude – Professor Ryan Seslow

Want to learn more about this course? Contact me –


A collaborative ongoing piece from The History & Emergence of Street Art & Graffiti at LIU Post. Working in the campus Printmaking studio, this piece features ongoing works by guest artists Chris Stain, Herb Smith, Nicky Sebs, Ryan Seslow & Susie Kelly on the door. More Artists will add to the piece as they visit during the class duration.

LIU Campus Library Book Resources

1. Scrawl : Dirty Graphics & Strange Characters, by Blackshaw, Ric., Farrelly, Liz. London : Booth-Clibborn Editions, 1999.

2. Street Art, by Schwartzman, Allan. Garden City, N.Y. : Dial Press, 1985.

3. Subway Art : 25th Anniversary edition, by Cooper, Martha., Chalfant, Henry. San Francisco, CA : Chronicle Books, 2009.

4. Trespass : A History of Un-Commissioned Urban Art, by McCormick, Carlo, Seno, Ethel, Schiller, Marc., Schiller, Sara, Banksy, Pasternak, Anne, 1964, Serra, J. Tony. Köln : Taschen, c2010.

5. Getting up : Subway Graffiti in New York, by Castleman, Craig, Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, c1982.

6. The History of American Graffiti, by Gastman, Roger , Neelon Caleb, Harper Design , April 5, 2011.

7. Viral Art, by RJ Rushmore, 2013 – download here-

8. Outdoor Gallery, by Litvin, Yoav, Ginko press, 2014.


LIU Campus Library IMA Video Resources

1. Exit Through the Gift Shop by Banksy,  Oscilloscope Laboratories (Firm) [New York] : Oscilloscope Laboratories, 2010.

2. Next: A Primer on Urban Painting by Aravena, Pablo, by New Video, 2010.

3. Style Wars by Silver, Tony, Chalfant, Henry, Public Art Films, 1983.

4. Tats Cru: The Mural Kings by Lia, Jonathan, & Kotlinski, Mark, Anthem NYC (Firm) [New York] : Anthem NYC, 2006.

5. Wild Style by Ahearn, Charlie, Rhino Home Video [distributor], 2002.

6. Bomb It – by Reiss, Jon, 2007.

7. Graffiti-Post Graffiti – by Tschinkel, Paul, ART/new york, 1984.

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MFA thesis preparations

Last week was a busy week as LIU Post’s MFA students were setting up their thesis group show “Eight of Fifteen” in the Steinberg Museum of Art. The show starts tomorrow, April 6th and runs for a full month until May 8th, 2015. Opening reception is this Wednesday, April 8th, from 5-8 PM!

Artists exhibiting their work: Tyrone Santana Copeland, Miro Kang, Justin Capalbo, Jianan Li, Benjamin James Hoyng, Duaa Khalil, HuNoo – Heon Woo Nam and Meishan Pan.

For directions to the Museum, please see

Artist talk: Ryan Seslow

Ryan Seslow held an artist talk this past Friday, February 12 at the Steinberg Museum of Art.

“His talk covered the progress graffiti art has made since the 70s and 80s on the east coast and the expansion and popularity it has gained around the world today” says Melissa DelPrete who attended the talk. “He also discussed how each artist that participated in the show have their own specific style and how’s those styles have progressed from street art into the gallery realm.”

The show Concrete to Data will be up in the Steinberg Museum until March 21st, 2015.

During Ryan Seslow’s artist talk / Photographs by Melissa DelPrete

Calling all Students, Faculty and Alumni!



Happy Summer!

Calling all LIU Post Art Department Students, Faculty and Alumni! Are you currently enrolled in one of our programs? Did you graduate from one of our programs? Did you teach a course in the LIU Post Art Department? We want to hear from you! We are currently updating our online community, connect with us here :

Email –

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Follow us on Twitter@liupostart

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Instagram- @liupostart


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