2020 Post-Grads Target Gallery | December 19, 2020 - January 17, 2021

About the Post-Grad Residency

Torpedo Factory Art Center's Post-Grad Residency is a competitive juried program that provides meaningful support and a short-term solo studio space. This residency is open to recently graduated students who earned a bachelor’s or master’s art degree from an accredited university. The program is unique for addressing the critical post-graduation juncture in an emerging artist’s career, offering an opportunity for professional development, and a chance to define their independent work process outside of the academic context.

Residents are active and equal participants in the Art Center’s unique creative community. At the end of the year, they have a culminating exhibition in the Target Gallery, the Torpedo Factory Art Center’s contemporary exhibition space.


July – September 2020 Residency

Luis A. Navas-Reyes is a visual artist whose work is a translation of abstract compositions that build upon his unique and personal visual vocabulary. His work is rooted in his identity, culture, environments, abstraction, power structures, familiar and historical histories. Utilizing media such as printmaking, drawings, ceramics, and bookmaking Luis explores themes, narratives, and forms. In 2018 Luis was awarded “Jurors Choice” at Artworks juried show. He was also selected to participate in the DOLPH project that contextualized contemporary art practice. Luis completed his BFA at James Madison University in 2018. Received a research grant to go to Sevilla, Spain 2019.

Luis A. Navas-Reyes, Plant Vessels, 2020. Photography. $120-$150. Drawings, 2020. Ink on paper. $150.


“Hundreds of years ago my ancestors’ stories were burned away or lost under the earth. As a U.S. Latino artist removed from the mysticism of Latin America, my artist practice is a way to connect with the past and present.

"For this project, I wanted my work to be ephemeral and decompose back into the earth. I used recycled paper, cardboard, wheat paste, wood, and red beans to create the tripod vessels. These tripod vessels are inspired by the unearthed vessels from Teotihuacan in Mexico. The Aztecs and Mayans would go on to adopt the form. I am interested in how art and form exchange, transform and get lost over time. By using the Tripod vessel form I am connecting to the past but also following in the lineage of adopting and transforming the past. The vessels are long gone now and have transformed.

"I feel our stories are getting lost in our fast-paced society, and it's up to artists, writers, poets, and more to keep those stories alive. I used red beans as a personal connection to the traditional dishes I grew up on such as pupusas. Every year my parents would visit El Salvador and come back with a suitcase full of beans. My parents had an appreciation for authenticity and supporting family back home. Over the years I have realized how removed I am from the earth which my ancestors farmed and died on. Their DNA exists in that soil, which in our global economy is exported to other countries and is being lost. I come from generations of farmers and this work is a way to connect.

"Language, names, art, patterns, forms, etc. have decomposed back into the DNA of the earth. This work is a way to connect with that lost mysticism and regenerate new ideas for Latinx art. This work was experimental and these ideas and materials will continue to influence my future work.” --Luis A. Navas-Reyes


October – December 2020 Residency

Fanni Somogyi is a multi-disciplinary artist currently residing in Baltimore, MD. She has recently completed her BFA at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Sculpture and Creative Writing. Her work explores organic and inorganic networks, the effects of technology on memories, and how space and distance affect relationships. She is drawn to the foundry process, specifically lost-wax aluminum casting and metal fabrication. When she is not fabricating metal sculptures, she can be found researching or avidly composing her next poem. She has one public sculpture at the Franconia Sculpture Park in Minnesota installed in the summer of 2019 and she recently exhibited at Art Market Budapest, the biggest contemporary Eastern European Art Fair in October 2019.

Fanni Somogyi, Transplanting Home Elsewhere, 2020. Aluminum, soil, moss, plexi. $740.

Artist Statement

“Themes that often occur in my work are networking systems, modes of connection and acts of remembering. More specifically, inspired by the formal qualities of organic and inorganic networks I investigate how humans relate to nature and one another. A symbiotic relationship exists between mycelium, a fungi and tree roots. Within this web there is a mesmerizing amount of activity: nutrients and information rhythmically transferred between trees and different plant species. In a sense, mycelium is the biological internet. Humans are located in a more overarching network with these beings and relating to them emphatically is important in developing a more sustainable relationship.

"Processes, such as metal fabrication and casting are integral to my work. These include welding, aluminum casting, mold making and image manipulation. I am drawn to metal specifically because of its malleability and durability. Steel contrasts with the more organic materials, such as plants, included in my work, however, this juxtaposition is crucial in thinking about possible sustainable futures. Moreover, casting is a process of care and transformation, which are qualities that are also present in the environment. This act of care and labor is necessary for the nourishment of natural areas.

"Becoming Still is an example of a dystopian-looking object functioning as a memory box of earth. Speculative in its nature, it is constructed for a time where nature is no longer pristine and is not readily available. The sculpture is built from steel and holds an LCD screen with video footage of the Patapsco River’s smaller branches, and the surrounding trees. The landscape is calm and human less, which contrasts with the context of the hypothetical viewer, who is missing nature. At the top of the sculpture is a small planter box housing aromatic basil. The work offers a fragment of nature in the hopes of inducing the viewer to seek out more. Questions of our ever-evolving relationship with nature, and the role of technology in salvaging our environment continues to motivate my art.” -- Fanni Somogyi

Left to Right: Fanni Somogyi, Transplanting Home Elsewhere (poem) , 2020. Poetry, plywood, plex-glass. $272. Becoming Still, 2020. Steel, basil, soil, LCD screen. $868. Sway with the trees, feel the wind among your limbs, 2020. Silk organza, poly silk, steel. $374. Emergence: The Land Within Concept Drawing, 2020. Pen and paper. $120. Emergence: The Land Within, 2020. Plastic, steel, microgreens. $527.


January – March 2020 Residency

Vi Trinh graduated from the University of Richmond in 2019 with a Bachelor's in Visual and Media Arts Practice & Leadership. A Vietnamese-American artist based in D.C., she works in digital and traditional media to examine the relationship between ecological and social patterns. She synthesizes data to confront ideas of colonialism and white supremacy within our current social context.

Her work explores ideas of rich aesthetics in ecological emergencies and the temporal reality created by large-scale phenomena. Much of her work is based in the internet and comes from the ethos of the internet as an illusionary space and the interaction with its interface. The internet as it appears; democratic, and free, and the reality of exclusionary design by the very few and the profits they gain from it. It has become the new ground of a very old problem. Between the environment and people, the disenfranchised and society, the user and the internet. She seeks a balance between technology and the internet not as antagonists created by colloquialism, but as multidimensional characters and potential allies.

The storyline for much of her work derives from a focus on objects and spaces surrounding humanity, without actually showing humans, architecture, design, aesthetics, technology, even A.I. trained by humans, built by humans, and strangely human themselves, it is about what is left behind and what that says about us and our archeological legacy.

Vi Trinh, The Station (stills and demo), 2020. Netart. NFS.

Artist Statement

The Station is the second installation of The Bunker Series, an ongoing series of interactive netart pieces about post-apocalyptic bunkers in space built by the super-rich. The series compares the veneer of the internet; democratic and free, against the reality of exclusionary design and the profits and power the creators gain from it. It has become the new ground of a very old problem, between the environment and people, the disenfranchised and society, the user and the internet.

"The Station takes place in a space station and is based on the Myth of Sisyphus. It deconstructs aesthetics of nostalgia as a weapon of ideology, especially of nostalgia as a threat against traditionally marginalized people.” -- Vi Trinh


July – September 2020 Residency

Ashley Llanes is an artist born and raised in Miami, FL who moved to Washington DC to earn her BFA in Fine Art Photography from the George Washington University Corcoran School of Art and Design. Her work focuses on personally political work about her Cuban American identity, her affinity with Miami, her queer identity and cultural pressures. These topics are represented through her photography, performative self-portraiture, collage, and mixed media.

Ashley Llanes, Isole Scisse (chair), 2020. Found objects, mixed media. $500.

Artist Statement

"The title, Isole Scisse (Separate Islands), specifically references the Caribbean islands as well as the fragmented memories over generations of miscommunications and silence. A common post-traumatic stress reaction to diasporas.

"This series is the investigation of intergenerational trauma comprising found objects, family photos, and archived objects. Through this I’ve been able to map out history of my family’s experiences, my upbringing, and how I can be mindful and more intentional about my legacy.” -- Ashley Llanes