Cohen Center for the Arts & Cohen Gallery

at Alfred University

Cohen Center for the Arts & Cohen Gallery

Hours Information

  • Tuesday-Thursday 11am-4pm
  • Friday 2pm-7pm
  • Saturday 12pm-4pm
  • Also available by appointment

Cohen Gallery
Exhibition Information
Cohen Studios
Contact Information
Current Events

Once a fraternity house, this turn-of-the-century Victorian house was converted to an art gallery on the first floor, Cohen Gallery, with apartments for visiting artists and faculty members on the second floor. In a newly constructed building behind the house is Cohen Studios, housing Freshman Foundation studios and wide-open, flexible spaces for various projects.

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History and Statistics

  • Constructed: circa 1890s
  • In Honor of: The Cohen Family
  • At this venue:
    • Cohen Gallery
    • Visiting artist apartments
    • Freshman Foundation studios

Cohen Center for the Arts and Cohen Gallery were created by the generous gift of Michele and Martin Cohen, parents of Adam Cohen, Class of 2003.

Cohen Gallery

Cohen Gallery exhibits the work of Alfred University alumni, faculty, and visiting artists. The Gallery provides Alfred University students with hands-on experience in arts administration, community development, marketing and public relations, design, and management. Students assist in all facets of the exhibitions, from designing the space to preparing promotional materials and acting as docents during the shows.

Cohen Gallery seeks to create opportunities for students, faculty, and alumni to engage in the professional activities of curating and organizing art exhibitions from the ground up, thus providing valuable experience in the business aspects of art. Cohen Gallery also provides a supportive environment for exhibitions that serve regional constituencies, such as regional arts councils, public schools, and exchanges between regional art programs at the university level.

Fall 2018 Exhibitions at Cohen Gallery

ikebanazigguratposter_pr-poster.jpgIkebana Ziggurat
November 2-December 7, 2018
Opening reception November 2, 6-9pm

Ikebana and Ziggurat are both distinct formalist structures. The work of Ellen Bahr and Kathleen McShane can be located within a conceptual ikebana where space is the prominent compositional element. Using an often pared-down aesthetic, McShane and Bahr share a line of inquiry that focuses on the construction of space, as opposed to a representation of space.

Bahr’s temporary, abstract arrangements are influenced by the small studio space where she works and the properties of the materials she manipulates. McShane’s drawings are informed by an extended approach to what drawing can be, and often in response to the expansive sense of space she experiences in Texas.

The exhibition is a kind of laboratory. In addition to photographs and drawings, each artist will build a "ziggurat" of works by artist who have been mentors and important influences, including Alfred alumni , as well as current and former faculty: Patrick Brennan, Jonathan Faber, Charles Goldman, John Hosford, Whitney Hubbs, Paul Kotula, Mary Lum, Lydia McCarthy, Stephanie McMahon, Ted Morgan, Sally Ross, Jennifer Niederhauser-Schlup and Linda Sormin.

Ellen Bahr studied photography at the International Photography Center and at Alfred University. She has lived in Wisconsin, New York City and Alfred, where she is a librarian at Herrick Library. Recent shows include Der Greif, Germany, Southern Tier Biennial, Black Box Gallery, Portland, Oregon, and Fourth Wall Project, Boston.

Kathleen McShane has a BFA from NYSCC Alfred and an MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art. She has lived and worked in New York City, Philadelphia, Detroit and now lives in South Central Texas and teaches drawing and painting at Texas State University. Shows include the Aldrich Museum, Brooklyn Museum, MOCA Detroit, Weatherspoon Museum, Drawing Center, and her work is represented by Paul Kotula Projects in Detroit. Collections include Weatherspoon Museum, Sally and Wynn Kramarsky, Fidelity and James Rosenquist.

Neil Before Zod - Gary SczerbaniewiczGary Sczerbaniewicz: Neil Before Zod
September 14-October 19, 2018
Opening Reception September 14, 6-9pm

Sczerbaniewicz's series of installation works investigates the interplay between the rational and the irrational as illustrated in three interactive spatial vignettes. The conceptual matrix behind NBZ arises from the true-life relationship between chemist, rocket scientist, and founding member of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Jack Whiteside Parsons, and the pulp-science fiction writer and founder of Scientology, L. Ron Hubbard. The two belonged to a US offshoot of a European sex-magick cult called Ordo Templi Orientis (OTO), through which they attempted to produce a "Moon Child"... a synthesis of human and demonic entities.

This uncanny co-mingling of rational, post-enlightenment science with mystical, occult, and arcane magical practices creates a compelling impetus for artistic play and wild rumination. Sczerbaniewicz has subsumed this bizarre narrative and its extended "family" into a composition furthering his interest in creating disorienting viewing scenarios in which spectator and subject are brought together under specific physical and spatial constraints, and to create viewing environments that embrace a sense of cognitive dissonance and intellectual uncertainty.

Spring 2018 Exhibitions at Cohen Gallery

events postersConcurrent exhibitions by:
Hope Zaccagni and Tim Pauszek
April 7 - August 3, 2018

Hope Zaccagni: Salt and Steel
Hope's formalist paintings are constructed with simple, direct color forms. Focusing on color, line, and light allow the artist to create a place for the subject to live. She plays on the geometry of her subject matter in space by paying a great deal of attention to the architecture of the painting and to emphasize the visual, rather than emotional, elements of the work.

Tim Pauszek: In Cahoots With...
This exhibition highlights the collaborative prints produced in cahoots with and printed by Tim Pauszek.  The collection features works by SoAD faculty as well as IEA visiting artists who typically work across a diverse range of both 2D and 3D mediums. Every piece is the manifestation of a conversation between artist and printmaker, who each challenge one another to work within their imposed limitations.

event posterConcurrent shows by:
Ladia Guerra and Victoria Kue
Cohen Artistic Promise Prize Exhibitions*
February 2 - March 16, 2018

Ladia Guerra: The Sweat Life
Ladia is fascinated by the artificial world created by contemporary society and is interested in the actions we take to make our lives happier through consumption and social pressure. She observes this by researching American pop culture through social media, television, and personal experience and manipulates her observations through the self. The self acts as a blank canvas to express feelings about her upbringing and her culture.

The Sweat Life explores domestic spaces and the way in which we interact in and view them. The artist has created video works conveying the feeling of loneliness, belonging, and the somewhat grotesque nature of private domestic spaces. The videos insight laughter, feelings of unease, and offer a psychological twist on what a domestic space can be through the lens of commercial objects and characters.

Victoria Kue: what's her face.
Victoria's studio practice stems from her query of autobiography and the investigation of the female narrative within her Hmong-American perspective. Victoria's observations from cultural, bodily, and emotional experiences direct her approach to material and representation. Her sculpture, installation, drawings, and abstractions evoke conversations about self-identity through patterns, color, and language.

what's her face. pushes back at the familial interrogation of a sexually-active Hmong-American woman who negotiates and claims ownership with her identity, body, and sexuality. Using the house as the setting to confront self-identity, what’s her face. explores placement, function, and language within domestic objects as a way to recognize the discomfort, struggles, and paradoxes within sexual relationships.

*The 2016 Cohen Artistic Promise Prize recognized two graduating seniors whose work, hunger, sustained growth and ambition marked them out as those who would continue on as artists beyond their academic training. The Prize, which granted the recipients concurrent solo shows at the Cohen 18 months following graduation, was designed to foster the growth begun in school, encourage the continuation of artistic practice and support the drive needed to reach full artistic potential.

Cohen Studios

Home to studio space dedicated to Freshmen Foundations students, Cohen Studios provides a wide open, versatile space for a variety of works of all shapes and sizes to be created and presented. Bright, young artists are introduced to the space as part of their orientation and is leveraged throughout the first year and beyond. Cohen Studios provides a significant amount of the over 126,000 square feet of studio and classroom space available to art and design students.

In addition to its use as dedicated studio space for first-year art and design students, Cohen Studios is also frequently the preferred venue for senior thesis exhibitions, art shows, performances, and receptions. Cohen Studios is conveniently located on the same property as Cohen Gallery.


Gallery Proposal Form

Contact Information

The Cohen Center for The Arts & Cohen Gallery
Director & Chief Curator
Cindy DeFelice
School of Art and Design
2 Pine Street, Alfred, NY 14802