Aileen Bassis is a Queens visual artist and poet. Her practice includes artists books, printmaking and mixed work on paper. She explores social and political themes running throughout contemporary society. She’s been awarded artist fellowships to the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, the Vermont Studio center, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, grants from the Queens Council on the Arts and the Puffin Foundation. She was awarded two residencies in poetry to the Atlantic Center for the Arts.
“Time to Leave,” was inspired by the forces at work around the world forcing desperate people to migrate from their homelands, facing all sorts of dangers for an uncertain future. Each of the etchings includes the words, “It was time to leave when…” She explores people deciding that they have no future wherever they are and must leave — the Rohingya people from Myanmar fleeing genocide, the refugees from war in Syria and Libya, the people from Iraq, people trying to reach Europe across the Mediterranean, the migrants from Central America fleeing gang violence and poverty, Haitians drowning in the Atlantic, Venezuelans crossing mountains in search of food and medicine. This work is funded in part by the Queens Council on the Arts with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the Puffin Foundation.
The exhibition will be on view through Friday, December 13th.