Jeff Kasper

J—KASPER


Jeff Kasper is an interdisciplinary artist, writer, and educator. His scholarship and creative work focuses on public art and design as social practice. He prototypes pathways for support, collaboration, and engagement through objects, tools, social spaces, and workshops.


Arts Organizing, Design, Facilitation

Kasper sustains an active career centering public programming, design, and facilitation for community engagement. This involves visual design and art direction, strategic planning, and development of programs for outreach, arts infrastructure, public pedagogy, wellbeing, disability culture, and artist services. 

Over the last decade, he has worked with numerous cultural, grassroots, and social planning organizations in New York City to realize over 300 projects with hundreds of artists and community members. He co founded Civic Art Lab with Laura Scherling in 2010. The platform brings together hundreds each year for hands-on workshops and sustainability initiatives.


Projects & Awards

Kasper is currently developing a dual-site public art project in New York City with ArtBridge and Facebook Open Arts for 2021. His recent solo projects include Give & Take Care at Downtown Art and Boundary Objects at University of Massachusetts Herter Art Gallery. He also recently organized the series Access/Points: Approaches to Disability Arts at CUE Art Foundation, and participated in public programs exploring disability justice and the arts at the Brooklyn Museum, BRIC, and The 8th Floor. Kasper was awarded residencies from, The Umbrella Art Center, Art Beyond Sight, and Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts.





Teaching & Engaged Scholarship

Kasper is Assistant Professor of Design at University of Massachusetts Amherst where he serves as the Undergraduate Program Director in the Department of Art. He is currently a Faculty Fellow with the office of Civic Engagement & Service Learning.

He is the co-editor of More Art In The Public Eye available with Duke University Press. Kasper’s various contributions to socially-engaged art can be found in the books, Art As Social Action: The Principles and Practices of Teaching Social Practice Art (Skyhorse Press),  Futures Worth Preserving: Cultural Constructions of Nostalgia and Sustainability (Transcript Press), and Bridging Communities Through Socially Engaged Art (Routledge). 


Peer-Mentor

As a peer-mentor with New York Foundation for the Arts Immigrant Artist Program in Social Practice and Director of Engagement at More Art, he has supported the work of nearly 200 individual artists and activists.


Education & Training
 
His undergraduate and professional studies merged interdisciplinary design, public service, and social science. He holds an MFA from Queens College CUNY in social practice with distinctions in digital media and critical theory. Alongside his teaching, he is pursuing advanced studies in trauma-informed practices for arts and learning.