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Students from 2018

Tatiana Syromiatnikova

My name is Tatiana Syromiatnikova. I grew up in one of the coldest places on Earth in Yakutsk, Russia. My ethnicity is Sakha – indigenous people of the Russian Far East Region. I speak Sakha, Russian, English, and learning Chinese. I hold two degrees in Finance and in Law. I’ve gained a successful career in the banking industry and became a bank’s branch manager at the age of 25. But I have always seen my future in the art-related sphere so I made a decision to change my career path. That’s why I came to Taiwan to study MA in Critical and Curatorial Studies of Contemporary Art to make my dream come true. I plan to apply my experience and gained knowledge at the intersection of Arts, Finance and Law, yet also contribute to society. Besides my studies, I volunteer as a docent at the National Taiwan Museum.

Ariana Lombardi

Ariana Lombardi is from New Jersey, USA. She got her BA in Creative Writing and Literature from Santa Fe University. She studied Visual Communications and Comparative Literature at Bilgi University in Istanbul and Mandarin at National Taiwan University CLD. She is a Hanyu Enrichment Scholarship Recipient and a Ministry of Education scholarship recipient. Arian is founder and the host of The Salon, and has hosted art salons in Guangzhou, China and the States, as well as creating and teaching Salon-powered creative communication workshops internationally. She has interned at The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum Research Center and SITE Santa Fe and the Santa Fe New Mexican. Her writing has been published in Versifiy II, That’s PRD, Strangers, Vol. 1, and The Laurel Review. She has been participant and performed in exhibitions in China and the States. Some include, I Know That I Am, solo exhibition and residency (NO LAND Art Space), Embrace Ambition, (Arte Place Gallery at the Guangzhou Opera House), Fei Gallery’s, and The Salon’s Pink Party Summer Festival (One Creative Community Art Park). Her research interests are identity, collecting, art as a verb, gender, and language. Her artistic practice is ruled by language and its many forms. She is a writer and a performance/installation artist.

Leora Joy Jones

I was born in the US and grew up on the coast of South Africa. I earned my BFA at Rhodes University, specialising in sculpture and installation. A published writer, practising poet and artist, I am interested in the perverted intersections between critical theory, art, everyday life and popular culture. I live and work in Taipei.

Zilin Gong

My name is Zilin Gong. I’m from Shanghai, Mainland China. I have completed my bachelor’s degree at Providence University, Taichung. During my undergraduate years, I have grasped a better understanding of Taiwan and widened my horizon by reflecting on problems through various perspectives.
My fascination for art initially evolved from a deep-rooted interest in painting. I have been drawing since childhood which inspired me to take fine arts painting training from junior high. During my Master’s period, I intend to enhance my insights into Curatorial Studies. Moreover, I hope to do some exploration about eliminating the boundary between movies and contemporary art.

Vladimir Durnev

I am Vladimir Durnev, I graduated from the Syktyvkar State University in Russia with a major in folk arts. I have been working as a teacher of ceramics and sculpture and as a lecturer in that same university since graduation in 2007. For more than ten years, I have been developing my career as a ceramist. I understand the importance of constant development, and my focus for the last three years has been directed towards Asian countries due to the fast technical, economic and cultural developments that are particularly interesting in the face of globalization issues. I hope that such a contrasting comparison between the experiences gained in Russia and Taiwan will allow me to improve my understanding of contemporary art through critical and curatorial research that will form the basis for my further career development.

Shormi Ahmed

Shormi Ahmed is a Bangladeshi-born art practitioner from Hong Kong. She was the Head of Arts at Duddell’s Hong Kong and has executed several public art projects including “Carnival” – fundraiser for Amnesty International HK and “Art in the Bar” for CoBo Social. She holds a diploma in Industrial Design and has earned her undergraduate degree in Fine Arts and Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong.

During her studies at NTUE, Shormi is keen on exploring recent curatorial methodologies in representing regional and post-colonial history. She is also interested in cross-cultural projects between South, South East and East Asia. As an art practitioner, Shormi strives to make contemporary art accessible to the wider demographic.

Christopher Whitfield

Christopher Whitfield holds a BA in English and Creative Writing from Goldsmiths, University of London.

John Nicholas Stephenson

John Nicholas Stephenson holds a BA in French and German from University of Leeds.