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Artists in Residence

Spark+Echo Artists in Residence spend a year developing and creating a major work in response to Scripture. Click on their names to view their projects.


Current Artists in Residence

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Elias Popa was born April 7, 1987 to Romanian immigrants in California. After traveling between his home in Romania and throughout the United States, he continued his travels into his adulthood by moving to China, traveling Southeast Asia, South America and working with refugees. During his travels around the world, his worldview in art was deeply impacted.

“My art expresses the struggle of identity and hope, worship and expressions of life. It explores common world views and challenges them. My work shines a light on the temporal solutions we put in place to replace what we really need deep inside”.

As an installation artist, Elias uses conventional materials such as paper, wire, thread, and clothing to evoke a deeper understanding about social structures. His aim is to solidify abstract ideas about the nuances that make up sociological structures. By doing so, he retrains the eye to build a visual literacy again and treats the art as a fundamental language. He also studied dark room photography for 10 years, as well as writes poetry.

Through his art, Elias started The Human Rights Network, a non for profit organization aimed at “telling stories that change lives”. The organization aims to build narratives through art that can impact social issues and generate activism. He currently works as a curator and manager of the esteemed Waterfall Mansion and Gallery on the Upper East Side, as well as the founder of the Human Rights Network. He resides on the Upper West Side of Manhattan where he works out of his home. He was the recipient of CFW’s artist vocational intensive, held at Princeton University. He also was selected on an Interfaith and Arts Panel at Columbia University, as well as regular participates in speaking engagements.




Previous Artists in Residence

2017
Aaron Beaumont (Music), Lily Maase (Music)


2016
Ebitenyefa Baralaye (Visual Art), Chris Knight (Film), Lauren Ferebee (Theatre), Stephanie Miracle (Dance)


2015
Benje Daneman (Music), Jason DaSilva (Film), Melissa Beck (Visual Art), Don Nguyen (Theatre), Christine Suarez (Dance), The Spark & Echo Band (Music)


2013
Nicora Gangi (Visual Art), Emily Ruth Hazel (Poetry)