PPEH announces Spring 2021 Artists-in-Residence, Kristen Neville Taylor and Ricky Yanas

December 22, 2020

PPEH is delighted to announce that Kristen Neville Taylor and Ricky Yanas will be joining us for an artist residency that explores new paths toward necessary transitions away from carbon, and collectively envisions transformation. For this residency, Neville Taylor and Yanas have designed Solar Imaginaries: Play and Pragmatism in Energy Futures, a dynamic program event series. 

portraits of Kristen Neville Taylor and Ricky Yanas


Solar Imaginaries: Play and Pragmatism in Energy Futures is a 3-part program that brings together practitioners from environmental and creative sectors to re-envision the role of energy in our lives. Through film, reading, discussion and a participatory workshop, we will collectively reimagine the road to renewable energy systems. The series will begin with a screening of Sun Engine No. 1, a film by Swiss artists Christina Hemauer and Roman Keller, based on their 2008 exploration of the Tacony section of Philadelphia, home to early 20th century solar pioneer Frank Shuman. In the second program, a panel discussion will bring together creative and pragmatic voices to explore the imaginative possibilities of solar energy, especially in the context of struggles for racial justice, equity, and the pursuit of a just energy transition. The program will finish with a workshop where participants will pitch visions of alternate energy futures to practitioners in solar energy and the creative arts.


Save the date and rsvp here:

Thursday, February 18, 2021 4-5:30PM: A Road Not Taken with Christina Hemauer and Roman Keller

Thursday, February 25, 2021 4-5:30PM: Solar Panel: Community, Fantasy and Technology in Energy Futures

Thursday, March 4, 2021 4-5:30PM: Solar Synthesis: Energy Proposals Challenge


Solar Imaginaries is developed out of The Green Sun, an exhibition and symposium organized by Kristen Neville Taylor and Ricky Yanas and held August through September 2019. It is part of the Transition/Transformation annual theme, under the direction of Dr. Daniel Barber. 

Solar image in black and white, arched solar panel with two figures in midground
Left: Ricky Yanas, film still from16 Proposals, 2019, Video, Duration: 10 min
Right: In their No. 1 Sun Engine,  Christina Hemauer and Roman Keller deal with a largely forgotten episode from the early history of the commercial use of solar energy: in 1913, Philadelphia-based engineer and inventor Frank Shuman inaugurated the first large-scale solar power generator in Maadi near Cairo

Kristen Neville Taylor’s diverse practice combines drawing, sculpture, and glass which converge in playfull installations. ​Her process has been described as alchemical and utilizes pseudo-scientific experimentation to reimagine our relationship to nature futures. Taylor’s​ work has been shown at Vox Populi, the Woodmere Art Museum and the Philadelphia Art Alliance (Philadelphia), Pacific Northwest College of Art (Portland), Richard Stockton and Rowan University Art Galleries (New Jersey), and Expo Chicago. She has organized several exhibitions including ​Landscape Techne at Little Berlin, ​The Usable Earth at the Esther Klein Gallery, and she co-curated ​Middle of Nowhere in the Pine Barrens. Taylor is the recipient of the Laurie Wagman Prize in Glass, a RAIR Recycled Artist in Residence, and a Vermont Studio Center Fellowship. Taylor is a recent alumni of Vox Populi gallery and co-founder of Little Berlin, a Philadelphia art gallery and collective renowned both nationally and internationally for its cutting edge programming and distinct curatorial model. Since 2007, Taylor has taught courses in glass and material studies at The University of the Arts, Tyler School of Art and Architecture, and Moore College of Art Graduate Studies Program.

Ricky Yanas is a Texas born artist, educator, and curator living in Philadelphia, PA. Working within a pragmatic tradition of problem finding, Yanas aims to create intersectional spaces of  inquiry and mutual engagement through art making and art thinking. Recent projects include  Extension or Communication: Puerto Rico at Tiger Strikes Asteroid Gallery, Philadelphia and Taller Puertorriqueno and The Green Sun, a collaboration with artist Kristen Neville Taylor. In  2016 Yanas founded Ulises Books with Nerissa Cooney, Lauren Downing, Joel Evey, Kayla  Romberger and Gee Wesley.