Shana Nys Dambrot is an art critic, curator, and author based in Downtown LA. She is the Arts Editor for the LA Weekly, and a contributor to Whitehot, Flaunt, Art & Cake, and Artillery. She studied Art History at Vassar College, writes book and catalog essays, curates and juries exhibitions, is a dedicated Instagram photographer and author of the experimental novella Zen Psychosis (2020, Griffith Moon), and speaks at galleries, schools, and cultural institutions nationally. She is a member of ArtTable and the LA Press Club, and sits on the Boards of Art Share-LA and the Venice Institute of Contemporary Art, the Advisory Council of Building Bridges Art Exchange, and the Brain Trust of Some Serious Business.
Maasai Mara National Park, Kenya, 2014 - Photo by Osceola Refetoff
Co-Curator: El Velorio, Antonio Pelayo Productions, November 2019 at Plaza de la Raza
Female Gaze at Art Share LA was reviewed in the LA Weekly.
Juror at the Cal State University San Bernardino Annual Student Art Exhibition, June 2018.
March 2018: "Art History, Interrupted" at CMay Gallery.
January 2018: "The New Pictorialists" at YourDailyPhotograph.com (co-curated with Osceola Refetoff)
Pinterest Archive of full exhibition.
November 2017: "11" at Lamperouge Gallery, critique group show curator
July 2017: Satan's Ball at Art Share was reviewed by DiversionsLA.
May 2017: Juried the mixed media show CO-LA-LA-LAGE with Liz Gordon at the Loft at Liz's, for Collage Artists of America.
April 2017: Artistic Curator for M.A.R.S. Festival, featuring video, performance, installation, and fashion artists in the Arts District, DTLA, April 14-23, 2017.
August 2016: Feminist Variations at the Loft at Liz's. Susan Melly, Annie Terrazzo, Victor Wilde, Carol Sears, Peter Walker, and Lauren Kasmer look at how the female body occupies physical and ontological space. || My co-curator Susan Melly and I were interviewed on the progressive radio show FEMINIST MAGAZINE on KPFK. The program is archived as a podcast, and available on Soundcloud. DiversionsLA and ForYourArt both covered the show on their site.
August 2016: Art Share-LA's SPECTRA was reviewed by DiversionsLA.
July 2016: Art Share-LA's FLIGHT PATTERNS was reviewed by DiversionsLA.
March 2016: Elected to the Advisory Board of Building Bridges Art Exchange.
January 2016: Photographer Osceola Refetoff and Painter Scott A. Trimble at Chungking Studio: FACEBOOK EVENT
(Reviewed in DiversionsLA.)
2015: FOCUS photoLA Juror
September 2015 : CONTINENTAL DRIFT, at CMay Gallery
April 2015: Magic Realism: Bill Leigh Brewer and Osceola Refetoff at Chungking Studio, Curator and Essayist
March 2015: Beverly Hills Art Show juror
March 2015: MOAH Lancaster Open Show Juror
Feb. 2015: Open Show Juror, LACDA (LA Center for Digital Art)
2014-- ART SHARE LA gallery exhibition committee, a non-profit culture center in the Arts District producing 10-12 open-call exhibitions each year. Elected to the Board of Directors January 2017.
2014-- Los Angeles Plein Air Festival Judge, 2014, 2015, 2016
Summer 2014: Your Daily Photograph guest curator.
2014-15 LA WEEKLY ARTOPIA --EVENT CURATOR/PRODUCER
October 2012: THE FIVE SPOT: Abstract Art About Television & Desire, at AndrewShire Gallery
April 2012: LOOKING GLASS at the Analog Salon, All-Photography Show for MOPLA. Featuring: Viggo Mortensen, Gary Baseman, Suzanne Adelman, Jody Zellen, Sam Comen, Marjan Vayghan, Lawren Alice, Mark Schumacher & Scott Elgart, Sara Jane Boyers, Emily Bradley, Johhny Cubert White, Jennifer Vanderpool.
May 2012: UNSETTLED: The Art of Vincent Sabella. Exhibition and Catalog Essay for solo show at Edgar Varela Fine Arts
2012: Santa Monica College Art Mentor Program End-of-Year Exhibition. Professor: Ichiro Irie
2011-15: RAW Natural Born Artists: National Visual Art Judge annual competition
2010-12: Art Curator, Artistic Soirees in the Composer's Den monthly salon series.
October 2010: Ghost Stories: Happenings, Hauntings & Curiosities, inaugurating the Beacon Arts Building, Inglewood
September 2010: The Bigger Picture, at Edgar Varela Fine Arts. (Reviewed by Rene DeLoffre.)
Summer 2010: Sculpture Curator: Art Squared Gallery, Pershing Square
2010: re:Materialization, Juried Show Co-Curator, Deborah Martin Fine Art
2009: Las Vegas Contemporary Arts Center, 20th Anniversary Juried Show.
January 2009: What's the Matter with Mommy, the Hang-Over, at Phantom Galleries, Downtown LA
November 2008: What's the Matter with Mommy? at Salon Oblique
October 2008: Surface Sounding at See Line Gallery. (Reviewed by Tucker Neel in Art Lies.)
October 2008: The Bronx Zoo salon series culminating exhibition curator at Ghettogloss
July 2008: Joint Custody Project, Co-Curator, at Found Gallery
June-December 2007: “Candy Necklace” exhibition series at the Brickhouse Kitchen, Venice
May 2007: “Family Garden” at Elizabeth Paige Smith Atelier, Venice
February 2006: Patrick Collins: “Back Fence” new paintings at Another Year in LA
2005: “Betting on Our Muses”: An invitational juried drawing show in magazine form produced by Gallery Domingo
2005: Affaire in the Garden, the Beverly Hills annual art show, Juror of Paintings
Summer 2005: OutAuction 2005 benefit, art search committee
2004: Juror, La Mano Press Miniatures Invitational
2004: “Overwrought: a Modern Baroque” at SK Gallery, Venice
2004: “The Secret Life of Sets: Set Decorators at Work”, curatorial committee and Graphics Text Editor Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Gallery, traveled to Conde Nast Building, NYC
September 2001: Chaz Guest interdisciplinary art performance and exhibition at Crazy Space, 18th Street Arts Complex
Spring 2001: “Off The Hook: The Mixed Messages of Prostitution” a group show to benefit the Mary Magdalene Project. (Reviewed in d’Art Magazine.)
1997: Artist & Image Liaison, Lollapalooza '97, curator of original visual art for Festival Concourse
1996: Co-Curator, "Feminine Eyes Femininize Feminine I's", 6 women photographers, at half a dozen rose
1996: Co-Producer, "The Three Sons of Viracocha" performance by Laslo Nosek, at half a dozen rose
1995: Co-Producer, "Public Punishment", multimedia performances, Andras Wahorn & Laslo Nosek, at half a dozen rose
INTERVIEWS & APPEARANCES
RAWArtists hosted me as the guest on their IGTV live arts industry interview show, November 2019.
I was the guest on the Art World Podcast radio show, November 2019.
Interviewed Camille Rose Garcia at the book launch for The Cabinet of Dr. Deekay, at La Luz de Jesus, December 2019.
DesignerCon panel moderator: Fine Art Toy Art Gallery Continuum, Anaheim, November 2019
August 2019: Photographed for Grace Roselli's Pandora's BoxX portrait project.
August 2019: Interviewed Brandon Boyd at SoHo House Malibu for the launch of his Portals memory game.
August 2019: Interviewed on the A.G. Geiger Books Podcast: Tales from the LA Art World Underground.
July 2019: Epic exhibition walkthrough of Blind Courier at the Brand Library & Art Center.
June 2019: Artist talk and hands-on clay workshop at Track 16 with sculptor Galia Linn.
June 2019: Artist Talk with Stas Orlovski at Artbook/Hauser Wirth Los Angeles, for his catalog launch
May 2019: Interviewed in the award-winning documentary Queen of Paradis, about the artist Reine Paradis.
April 2019: Video walkthrough of Tactile at Art Share.
April 2019: Speaker/Facilitator at Art Table X Sotheby's Institute career conference.
March 2019: Gallery Talk moderator, Chelsea Dean and Osceola Refetoff in "Paradox, California" at LAUNCH.
February 2019: Gallery Talk moderator for "Mind, Body, Soul" the inaugural exhibition at Lowell Ryan Projects.
February 2019: Panel Talk moderator at Louis Stern Gallery for "Woman | Woman" curated by jilllith moniz.
January 2019: Interviewed for Mikael B. monograph, Never Tomorrow
January 2019: Artists Talk with Lisa Diane Wedgeworth and Victoria May at Louis Stern Fine Arts.
December 2018: Profiled in an ArtTable Member Spotlight.
December 2018: Artists Talk with Daniel Leighton at Jayne Behman at LACDA.
November 2018: Panel with Amy Kaps and Mark Steven Greenfield at MOAH: Cedar.
November 2018: Panels with Camille Rose Garcia & Martin Meunier; Eric Nakamura (Giant Robot), Yoskay Yamamoto, and Luke Chueh at DesignerCon.
October 2018: Interviewed Robbie Conal during his exhibition at Track 16.
November 2018: Gallery talk with Gay Summer Rick at BG Gallery.
September 2018: Exhibition talk with Jeff Soto at MOAH Lancaster.
July 2018: Artist Talk at Book release for Sarah Jane Boyers at Artbook/Hauser & Wirth.
Interviewed for a Sports Illustrated story on LA artist Victor Solomon (February 2018).
BBAX-hosted panel on international curatorial practices at the LA Art Show (January 2018)
October 2017: Gallery Talk with Benjamin Lowder at Open Mind Art Space.
October 2017: Gallery Talk with Rotem Roshef at the University of LaVerne.
July 2017: Instructor at Donkey Mill Art Center's Kīpaipai Professional Development Workshop in Kona.
May 2017: I traveled to NYC as part of the Artist Muse crew in support of Sheinina Lolita Raj's unique sound-and-image pop-up pavilion ENLIGHTEN on Manhattan's Upper East Side during Frieze Week. We have the Full Video of the Talk on YouTube! There's also a short and super-sweet Artist Muse Project Trailer.
May 2017: I had the honor of speaking to CalState San Bernardino's MFA students in a talk called "The Pleasures and Terrors of a Career in Art Now!"
April 2017: I was interviewed by Brainard Carey for Praxis on Yale Radio, where we discussed the arc of my career and the way I think about what I do in the art world.
April 2017: Opening remarks with Peter Frank for the inaugural Produce Haus exhibition installation.
March 2017: I moderated a panel discussion with aesthetic philosophers which was livestreamed from Bergamot Station to artist Kyunghwa Lee's event at Art Basel Hong Kong.
March 2017: Porch Gallery Ojai livestreamed the gallery talk with exhibiting artist Osceola Refetoff.
March 2017: SOMOS LOCOS (catalog writer) was covered in the Easy Reader News.
February 2017: Panelist at Fabrik/Building Bridges' All Women Are Dangerous photography exhibtiion.
December 20, 2016: Interviewed on KCRW's DNA podcast on the post-Ghost Ship effect on DTLA arts district development.
January 2017: LAST Projects, gallery talk with curator Mario Vasquez and exhibition artists.
January 2017: Jill Joy Gallery, Consciousness
January 2017: Getting Attention: Is a Review All You Need? W/ Peter Frank at the stARTup Art Fair
November 2016: Artist Talk at Jill Joy Gallery feat. Jill Joy, Aline Mare, Michael Giancristiano
October 2016: Artists Talk at BLAM!
August 2016: Critics round-table discussion on public art for Frances Anderton's DNA on KCRW.
August 28, 2016: I attended the history-making event NOW BE HERE, the instantly-infamous group photo of 733 women artists, taken at Hauser Wirth + Schimmel. I was interviewed on site for the new blog Art and Cake, and spoke at a subsequent edition of the Metabolic Studio's Explorer's Club to discuss the experience. The conversation, Pictures or it Didn’t Happen, is archived on Soundcloud as well (but I think you have to be signed into your account to listen...)
Summer 2016: Ellen Schinderman interviewed about my practices as a curator for her CURATIONISM blog on the MrXStitch website.
September 2016: Interviewed on Feminist Magazine's KPFK Radio Show.
September 2016: Feminist Variations Artists + Curators Panel.
Summer 2016: Art Expert on Google Cultural Institute's original program NAME THAT ART.
Summer 2016: Interviewed for the new documentary film F. SCOTT HESS: RELUCTANT REALIST.
Summer 2016: Interviewed for the new EMS documentary on the painter Bibi Davidson.
July 2016: Instructor at Donkey Mill Art Center's Kīpaipai Professional Development Workshop in Kona.
July 2016: Artist Q&A post-screening with Malka Nedivi at the Skirball Cultural Institute.
July 2016: Artist Talk with Bradford J. Salamon, Dave Naz, and Oriana Small at LAUNCH LA.
June 2016: Two nights of panel discussions as part of the CALIFORNIA LOCOS Juice Magazine and Rose Room take-over in Venice Beach.
June 2016: Panel talk with the artists of IT SPEAKS TO ME at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Oxnard.
May 2016: I interviewed the musician and artist Brandon Boyd for a special Art of Elysium salon dinner sponsored by The Macallan.
April 2016: "Who Needs Art Critics?" A panel discussion organized by the PALM SPRINGS ART MUSEUM with Steven Biller, David Pagel, and moderator Donald Osborne.
February 2016: A panel discussion at the VINCENT PRICE ART MUSEUM for Linda Arreola's exhibition, with the artist, curator Bill Moreno, scholar and editor Sybil Venegas.
2016: I was interviewed for a documentary film about twin brothers and iconic artists Jerome and Joel-Peter Witkin, via Jack Rutberg Fine Arts. (The film was honored at Newport Beach Film Festival.)
2016: I was a guest on Mat Gleason's internet art-world talk show MODERN ART BLITZ.
May 2016: Artist talk at LAUNCH Gallery with Ryan McCann.
2016: Eric Minh Swenson made a short film on the painter Susan Lizotte, in which I talk too much but we have a good time with New Medievalism.
April 2016: Guided docent tour at Photo Independent Fair. (Highlight video out now.)
March 2016: Artist talk with Nurit Avesar, at the Neutra Institute in Silverlake.
February 2016: Awards Committee: Cleveland Creative Workforce Fellowships.
February 2016: Artist Talk Wyatt Mills at Project Gallery
January 2016: Justin Bower artist talk and catalog essay MOAH Lancaster.
January 2016: photoLA panel"The Aesthetics of Activism" with Jay Mark Johnson, Zoe Crosher, Austin Young, and Osceola Refetoff.
January 2016: Bonita Helmer artist talk at George Billis Gallery.
January 2016: Art Critic Roundtable at the stARTup Art Fair organized by Peter Mays, Executive Director, Los Angeles Art Association.
January 2016: LA Art Show panel and catalog essay, Riccardo Mannelli at Building Bridges Art Foundation.
November 2015: Museum Talk: The Love/Hate relationship between art and criticism, at the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art.
September 2015: Featured guest on This is the City podcast about the ever-changing quality of art and life in DTLA.
September 2015: Dina Herrmann artist talk at the Neutra Institute, Silverlake.
September 2015, 2016, 2017: IPA/Lucie Foundation Awards Juror
June 2015: Record Breakers: The Fine Art of Album Covers panel moderator, Forest Lawn Museum
Summer 2015: Artist Conversation: Mikael B. and Thomas Fryd at Project Gallery
April 2015: Bradley University Visiting Lecturer, Peoria
March 2015: Talk: The Love/Hate relationship between art and criticism, at East Side Art Exchange, DTLA.
February 2015: Panel talk, Jay Mark Johnson, photography, mathematics and classical music at the Colburn School
January 2015: photoLA panel: When & How to Self-Publish
January 2015: LA Art Show panel: Cuban Art Now
January 2015: LA Art Show panel: Public Art in Los Angeles
2014-15: Featured in Evan Senn's Life of a (Female) Artist
October-November 2014: Interviewed on KCRW's DNA with Frances Anderton (Oct: Robbie Conal; Nov: Art Basel Miami)
Sept. 2014: Los Angeles Art Association Art Career Seminar
August 2014: Artists Talk The Clayton Brothers & Aaron Smith at Mark Moore Gallery
August 2014: Artist Talk Jane Szabo at LACDA (and exhibition essay)
June 2014: Artist Talk Allison Torneros at Project Gallery
June 2014: Artist Talk JonMarc Edwards at Coagula Curatorial
May 2014: Artists talk with Alex Couwenberg & Lisa Bartelson at LAUNCH Gallery
May 2014: Los Angeles Art Association Art Career Seminar
May 2014: REDDIT Ask Me Anything (#AMA)
March 2014: Conversation Moderator, Moby and Shepard Fairey at Project LA Gallery
Spring 2014: Featured Media Panelist, AICAD Development Conference, Art Center College of Design
2013: Featured Speaker, Ojai Art Festival. Art from Trash panel: YOUTUBE.
2013: Featured Guest, POETISCAPE Radio Program, Interviewed by Rich Ferguson. FULL EPISODE.
2012-13: Featured Speaker, DIEM (Design Intersects Everything Made) Festival.
--2013: Public Access Limited? LA's New Era of White-box Warehouse Galleries, at Woven Accents. Panel Moderator.
--2012: Tempest in a Furry Teacup? Art, Entertainment & Emotion in LA Museums, at Minotti Design. Dialog with Frances Anderton.
2010-14: Panelist, Contemporary Art Conversations. #3, at the Armory Center for the Arts, Pasadena, #5 at Lawrence Asher Gallery, #6 at Edgar Varela FIne Art, #11, at CB1 Gallery; #12 at Jack Rutberg Fine Arts; #13 at Offramp Gallery; #14 at CB1 Gallery; #15 at Robert Berman Gallery, #16 at CB1 Gallery, #17, Pasadena Museum of California Art, #18, Loft at Liz's (October 22, return after a 2-year hiatus), #19 (November 2017, Self-Help Graphics)
September 2012: Reader, Madwoman in the Attic, reading series organized by Lezley Saar during her exhibition at Merry Karnowsky Gallery
March 2012: Featured Speaker, Dana Ross' Culture and Music event hosted by The Rubix Hollywood
2012: Reader, Henry Miller Readings & Ping-Pong Tournament for Tim Youd's exhibition "Coney Island of the Mind" at Coagula Curatorial
2012: Conversation with Edward Walton Wilcox, at Merry Karnowsky Gallery.
2012: Moderator, Beyond the Image, All-Photography exhibition artists' panel, curated by Dale Youngman for MOPLA
2012: photoLA docent
2012: Festival Correspondent, Pacific Standard Time Performance and Public Art Festival
September 2011: Moderator, Libros Schmibros Public Engagement: CAR SCHMAR with DJ Waldie, Marisela Norte & Richard Rayner, at the Hammer Museum
October 2011: Panelist, The Analog Salon at the Stealth Building
September 2011: Artist conversation Julia Schwartz: The Hollow Sea at Bleicher Gallery La Brea
September 2011: Panelist, Adi da Samraj, Sundaram Tagore Gallery
July 2011: Panelist, Art Share LA: Downtown Legends
June 2011: Artist Conversation, Edward Walton Wilcox at Merry Karnowsky Gallery
February 2011: Panelist, Cal Arts Writing MFA Visiting Artist Lecture Series
2010: Special Guest Lecturer, University of Akron MFA Program (Lari Pittman).
2010: Panelist at Beacon Arts Building exhibition closing receptions, Peter Frank's "Densities," David Pagel's "Pieceable Kingdom," Mat Gleason's Tel-Art-Phone
2010: Panelist, Jay Mark Johnson: Beyond Spacetime, Limited Edition Video
October 2010: Featured Speaker, Emerging Arts Leaders LA Creative Conversations Conference at the Getty Center
September 2010: Panelist, Exhibiting & Exposure at Downtown Art Center Gallery
March 2010: Artillery Magazine Art Debates Round 2, at the Downtown Standard
March 2010: Panelist: Showing Art in a Domestic Setting, Marine Salon
2010: Presenter, X-TRA's One Image, One Minute, at the Pacific Design Center/Art Contemporary LA Art Fair
March 2010: Presenter, Sea & Space Explorations ASAP: Three Hour Tour at the Torrance Art Museum
2010: J. David Carlson and Michael Dotson artists in conversation series at Lawrence Asher Gallery
2010: Panelist, Jay Mark Johnson: Beyond Spacetime, at the Edye Stage, Broad Art Center
December 2009: Radio Interview: Off-Ramp Internet Radio
2009: Live at Lunch conversation series:
--Marcus Miceli of AIR Properties
--Bill Bush and Ashley McLeanEmenegger
2009: Artist conversation with Lisa Adams at Lawrence Asher Gallery
2009-10: GYST artist workshops, Cal Arts
2009: College Art Association Conference, Panel Co-Chair: Just Another Critical Day in Paradise: Art Writing in Los Angeles.
2008: Panelist: Collecting Contemporary Urban Art, Panel at Bonham & Butterfield w/ Seth Carmichael, Shepard Fairey, Jon Reiss, and Charming Baker
July 2008: Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum, Guest Lecturer with artist Jennifer Vanderpool
December 2007: Everyone's a Critic, featured speaker, Art Spoken Here lecture series at TAG Gallery
2007: Panelist: PSFK Conference LA, “What Happens in LA Stays in LA”
February 2007: Featured Speaker, Atelier Zero Artist Survival Workshops at Pharmaka
September 2006: Panelist, Art and Digital Media, Gallery 825
May 2005: Venice Art Walk, Invitation and Fringe Tour Brochure Text & Studio Docent (Marischa Slusarski)
2005: Guest Lecturer, UC Santa Barbara, undergraduate seminar, Critical Theory
2005: Guest Lecturer, Otis College, continuing arts education seminar
2004: Venice Art Walk, Invitation and Fringe Tour Brochure Text & Studio Docent (Andy Moses)
2003: “Art Critics Uncensored”, at CalArts (April) and Bergamot Station (July) with Bruce Bauman, Peter Frank, George Melrod & Holly Myers
1998-2000: Venice Art Walk Silent Auction & Docent Tour Committee(s) Member
1998: Producer/Panelist, Califragile Sideshows Low-Brow Art Panel Discussion, L.A.
1997: Presenter Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles, "Breakout" Panel Discussion Moderator featuring Robert Williams, Mark Ryden, Rob & Christian Clayton and Eric White