ECC x AAI: Andrea Mastrovito

Presented in collaboration with Congregation Beth Elohim Early Childhood Center

Andrea Mastrovito created life-size silhouettes of each student, which were then cut out to form paper dolls. The artist and students colored and decorated the cut-outs, which were then fixed to the walls. Finally, with the help of a few industrial fans, the students gave life to the silhouettes as the pieces moved around in the wind. Through this movement, the students created small vignettes or stories around the images and objects that they replicated.

ECC x Artists Alliance is a series of collaborative projects initiated by Artists Alliance Inc with Congregation Beth Elohim Early Childhood Center. Designed and led by guest artists, in collaboration with ECC educator Tom Pnini, students work in the classroom on pre-designed projects that both parallel the school’s current art curriculum and extend from the individual artist’s existing practice. Collectively, the projects urge students to experience art-making through unexpected visual relationships, using professional artists’ practices as a means to create engaging and interactive learning activities.

As accomplished by ECC’s impressive programming, ECC x Artists Alliance aims to amplify the school’s ongoing success in providing children with a generative and hands-on approach to education. This project series extends ECC’s mission by designing classes that create new opportunities for students to develop cognitive skills within the framework of peer collaboration, discovery, imaginative sharing and the revelation of hidden narratives. But, perhaps most importantly, the projects are intended to be playful.

Andrea Mastrovito is a New York-based Italian multi-media artist (Bergamo, Italy, 1978), who explores a space somewhere in between the reinvention of the artist and the reinvention of drawing. Mastrovito first came to prominence within the Italian art scene in the early 2000s, thanks to his collages on canvas, inspired by linocut printing techniques, in which he overlapped hundreds of layers of cut-out and painted silhouettes. In 2005 his earliest environmental installations, presented by Analix Forever in Geneve, hinted at a new direction in his work, one that moved toward an expanded perspective incorporating the viewers themselves in the work of art. In the following years, Mastrovito’s work became more and more diverse: entire environments or events (galleries, libraries, apartments, and even concerts and movies) are drawn or photocopied; sport stadium choreographed card stunts are brought to the museum or vice versa. At the moment he is working on NYsferatu, a hand animated and redrawn Friedrich W. Murnau’s seminal 1922 film Nosferatu restaged in NYC. He won the New York Prize, awarded by Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2007 and the Moroso Prize in 2012. He installed solo shows in private galleries in Milan, Florence, Paris, Geneva, Brussels, New York and in museums and center for contemporary art in Milan, Bergamo, Fort Lauderdale, Toulouse, Rome, Florence, Montélimar and Lacoux. He’s been commissioned for many public installations and his works have been acquired by dozens of public and private collections in Italy, Europe and U.S.A.