• Art & Public Awareness: 13 Years of the Self Esteem Salon

    Date posted: August 3, 2011 Author: jolanta

    In 1996, Chris Verene and Lisa Shinault set out to create an atmosphere in which the raising of personal esteem was essential and joy was palpable. What began as a private show for a close friend has since become the Self Esteem Salon.

    During its 13 years of production, the Self Esteem Salon has used photography and performance art along with a variety of other approaches to raise both personal self-esteem and public awareness. Each year carries with it a whimsical façade with a sober underlying message.

    “In 2001, at Christie’s Auction House during an open auction, the Salon used its platform to comment on the society of wealth by having vases, similar to the ones in the auction, broken in their tents.”

     

    Chris Verene, Yurt and Group Facilitators: The Self-Esteem Salon, (Promotional Image), 2011.

    Art & Public Awareness: 13 Years of the Self Esteem Salon

    Janine Noelle

    In 1996, Chris Verene and Lisa Shinault set out to create an atmosphere in which the raising of personal esteem was essential and joy was palpable. What began as a private show for a close friend has since become the Self Esteem Salon.

    During its 13 years of production, the Self Esteem Salon has used photography and performance art along with a variety of other approaches to raise both personal self-esteem and public awareness. Each year carries with it a whimsical façade with a sober underlying message.

    In 2001, at Christie’s Auction House during an open auction, the Salon used its platform to comment on the society of wealth by having vases, similar to the ones in the auction, broken in their tents. That installation was also used to raise funds for Friends in Deed, a non-profit dedicated to AIDS and cancer patients. In 2005, in response to Hurricane Katrina, the Salon modeled itself as an orphanage and welcomed donations for those affected.

    This year’s installation embarks on a new chapter titled “The Self-Esteem Salon with Jessica Grable, The Self-Preservation Series.” The Salon now aims to move away from a heavy photography emphasis and towards a stronger concern with one’s physical and emotional actions.

    A circus inspired theme, the weekend will hold a “Safe-and-Slide” (complimentary bathing suits provided), learning to walk on stilts, and costumes construction. Also available will be career counseling, therapy sessions, and portfolio reviews conducted by curator Bridget Donahue, director of Gavin Brown’s Enterprise; Curator Bridget Finn, Independent Curators International; and Chris Verene, Postmasters Gallery.

    The event is due to take place the 12th to 14th of August at Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City.

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