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Giving Tuesday Spotlight on Artist Alla Broeksmit

Why one alum thinks New York Studio School is the best New York City art school.

Giving Tuesday is two weeks away! The New York Studio School is delighted to announce that NYSS alum and trustee Alla Broeksmit (MFA 2017) has generously agreed to double the match of all gifts up to $20,000 this Giving Tuesday season. Thank you, Alla! And thank you to all of the wonderful NYSS alumni who contribute in so many ways—through artwork contributions to our auctions, attending events, spreading the word about our programs, and making gifts.

Make a gift today to help us meet Alla’s matching challenge! DONATE

We sat down with Alla, and she shared how her experience at the School has fueled her career as an artist and continues to inspire her work to this day.

Alla Broeksmit, Catch Me I’m Falling I & II, 2018, 6×6 inches

NYSS: Why is the New York Studio School so important to you? What do you think makes it special?

Alla Broeksmit: That’s easy: it is the excellence of the faculty. Not only are they accomplished artists, but they are knowledgeable and gifted teachers. Their critiques are thorough and insightful and they are eager to share their experiences and perspectives on the art world.

Beyond the faculty, the fact that every student has dedicated studio space not only gives every student the freedom and autonomy to fully immerse themselves in their creative process, it also creates a community where students challenge each other to grow and excel. Of course, being in the heart of New York City in a historic building with deep roots in the art world only adds to the school’s artistic and creative energy.

NYSS: What are the best aspects of studying at NYSS that continue to influence your current studio practice?

AB: The school demands a dedication and commitment to art that is essential in the life of an artist wishing to continue to grow and explore new depths of creativity.

While Covid was a devastating time for so many, it also led the school to start offering remote courses that mimic this same intensity. I have taken several virtual Marathons. These online experiences have enabled me to stay connected to the school and continue to gain inspiration from the faculty and students.

NYSS: Is there a specific conversation or bit of wisdom shared by an instructor at NYSS that you feel helped shape your approach to artmaking and that you have held onto as a practicing artist?

AB: It is hard to identify only one bit of wisdom, as I learned so much from all my instructors.

Alla Broeksmit, Red, Green, and Yellow, 2018, 2.5×5 inches

Graham Nickson encouraged me to work in large scale, engaging directly with the canvas, allowing me to embrace a more instinctual, visceral approach to my art.

Judy Glantzman showed me how to transcend conventional artistic conventions, thus opening up a more personal visual language.

Kyle Staver led me to shift my perception of the canvas from a two-dimensional surface into an open space of boundless potential.

Elisa Jensen’s instruction in the technical use of pigment opened up a new world for me of the narrative and emotional expression of color.

NYSS: What is your most treasured memory from your time at NYSS?

AB: Without a doubt it is the time I spent with my fellow students—often late at night. Being surrounded by individuals who believed in each other’s potential and were committed to their own artistic growth was a constant source of motivation. They were times of shared passion, dedication, risk taking, and camaraderie. The collective energy and mutual determination that permeated those late hours were truly transformative and continue to inspire me in my journey as an artist.

Make a gift today to help us meet Alla’s matching challenge! DONATE

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