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Samuel Van Aken

Samuel Van Aken, Artist and Professor, Syracuse University

Sam Van Aken‘s art combines sophisticated technology with traditional modes of art-making. Van Aken’s projects cross boundaries between artistic genres, including performance, installation, video, photography, and sculpture. With each body of work, he selects practices and new perspectives that provide a kinesthetic perception of objects and a visceral charge.

Born in Reading Pennsylvania, Sam Van Aken received his undergraduate education in Communication Theory and Art. Immediately following his studies he lived and worked in Poland under the auspices of the Andy Warhol Foundation and the United States Information Agency.

Returning after several years in Europe, Van Aken received his MFA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2001. Since this time his work has been exhibited nationally and internationally receiving numerous honors including a Joan Mitchell Award, Association of International Curator’s of Art Award and a 2009 Creative Capital Grant. Sam Van Aken is currently an Associate Professor in the Art Department at Syracuse University.

Hybrids – Artificial fruit has been cast, altered, and joined to create specimens of “hybrid” produce.

New Edens – Grafting is used as act and metaphor to modify and alter plant Forms.

TEDxManhattan – Sam Van Aken talks about The Tree of Forty Fruit

The tree of forty fruits | Sam Van Aken | TEDxManhattan