Anna Schuleit, a good friend, is a visual artist who studied painting at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in Providence and Rome. After graduating from art school in 1998 she worked on two site-specific installations: Habeas Corpus at the abandoned Northampton State Hospital (2000), and Bloom for the closing of the Massachusetts Mental Health Center (2003). From 2001 to 2004 she was a visiting artist at a psychiatric institution in Westborough, MA, that was being downsized and phased out, ending in another closure. During that time she also documented the closing of Medfield State Hospital. In 2005 she completed a master’s degree in creative writing / book arts at Dartmouth. From 2005 to 2007 she was commissioned by the ICA Boston to develop a site-specific project, Intertidal, for the military ruins of Lovells Island in Boston Harbor. In 2007 she created Landlines, a large-scale project that brought dozens of children together with artists, telephones, and the general public, in the forest surrounding the MacDowell Colony. In 2010 she was the visiting artist at UMass Amherst and completed Just a Rumor,
a site-specific project involving a face, a pond, and wild ducks.
She's been a fellow at the MacDowell Colony, Bogliasco, Blue Mountain Center, The Hermitage, Yaddo, Banff, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies, and a visiting artist / guest lecturer at Brown University, MIT, Smith College, Harvard, The New School, Brandeis, University of Michigan, McGill, RISD, Boston University, Pratt, Bowdoin, and Syracuse University. In 2006 she was named a MacArthur Fellow.
Here is an excerpt from an interview from Bettery Magazine about some of her recent work.
In my paintings and projects, I am swinging back and forth between working on an intimate scale, and working on a large scale. The live drawing (see below) that I did for you, in response to Wayward Plants’ question, was an attempt to bridge my drawings with the sites I love, the streets and alleyways, on a one-to-one scale. I think that wish of drawing directly into the urban space comes from my frustration with the typical reduction of scale in most drawings. It’s a wish for working life-size, and moving beyond the rectangular canvas, out of the studio and into our built environment and public spaces.
Yotam Haber, Schuleit's fiance, composed the music.