The New Social Environment#614

Benny Merris: flash!

Featuring Merris and Ksenia Soboleva


1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Artist Benny Merris joins Rail contributor Ksenia Soboleva for a conversation. We conclude with a poetry reading by Peter Burzynski.

In this talk

Visit Benny Merris: flash!, on view at Heroes Gallery through July 30, 2022 →

Benny Merris

Photo of Benny Merris
Raised in Boise, Idaho, Benny Merris is a New York-based artist with an MFA from Glasgow School of Art. He was a member of the inaugural Paint School cohort run by Shandaken Projects in New York City. Merris has had solo exhibitions at Heroes Gallery, NYC and Cleopatra’s, Brooklyn, among others. Merris has participated in numerous group exhibitions including presentations at The American Academy of Arts and Letters, NYC; GRIMM Gallery, NYC; Essex Flowers, NYC; Murray Guy, NYC; Regina Rex, NYC; LAXART, Los Angeles; Contemporary Art Museum Houston, Houston; Boston University Art Gallery, Boston. Merris has been an artist-in-residence at Casa de los Artistas in Malpais, Costa Rica, The Banff Centre, Denniston Hill, and Offshore Residency.

Ksenia M. Soboleva

A picture of art historian Ksenia M. Soboleva.
Photo by Irina Kadyrova-Schuddeboom
Dr. Ksenia M. Soboleva is a New York based art historian specializing in queer art and culture. She holds a Ph.D. from the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU, with a dissertation on art, AIDS, and lesbian identity in the United States. Soboleva is currently working on a book project titled Friendship as a Way of Art: Queer Identity and Visual Citation, and co-editing (with Svetlana Kitto) the first major publication on the lesbian gallery Trial Balloon. Her writings have appeared in the Brooklyn Rail, BOMB Magazine, Hyperallergic, Ursula Magazine, as well as various exhibition catalogues and artist monographs. She teaches at the New School and NYU.

The Rail has a tradition of ending our conversations with a poetry reading, and we’re fortunate to have Peter Burzynski reading.

Peter Burzynski

Photo of Peter Burzynski
Peter Buzyński earned a PhD in creative writing at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He works as the book center manager at Woodland Pattern Book Center in Milwaukee. Burzyński is the translator of Martyna Buliżańska’s This Is My Earth (New American Press, 2019) and the author of the chapbook A Year Alone inside of Woodland Pattern (Adjunct Press, 2022). In between his studies he has worked as a chef in New York City and Milwaukee. His poetry has appeared in jubilat, The Best American Poetry Blog, Thin Air, Prick of the Spindle, Thrush Poetry Review, MAYDAY, Your Impossible Voice, RHINO, and Forklift Ohio, among others. He is the son of immigrants who call him on the phone every day.

❤️ 🌈 We'd like to thank the The Terra Foundation for American Art for making these daily conversations possible, and for their support of our growing archive.