Matter as Fallen Light by Chelsea Steinberg Gay

Three new works by JAS Fellow Chelsea Steinberg Gay חיה  (she/her/hers) are included in the Parsons Fine Arts MFA 2023 Thesis Exhibition, Matter as Fallen Light, at the Sheila Johnson Design Center, 66 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY, 10003, April  23rd – May 7th.

Steinberg Gay’s works are the result of research into Jewish amuletic practices from ancient and medieval sources to the present day. Working in neon, computer-assisted design, 3D printing, photography and sculpture, the three works will engage the intertwining subjects of ritualistic protection, the making and use of evil eyes and the significance of memory, family, and home. 

Two of Steinberg Gay’s pieces will be on display inside the gallery space– an evil eye formed by the triple parenthesis ‘echo’ symbol, reappropriated from White Supremacists and now in wide use by Jewish activists, journalists and politicians, rendered in flickering pink neon, and a self portrait of the artist as her drag persona, Ruthless Cosmopolitan.

The third work is a twenty-four-foot, five-thousand-pound hand-customized 1969 Lincoln Continental Mark III, which will be parked immediately outside the gallery space on Fifth Avenue between 12th and 13th streets and will be open to the public on April 22nd, April 29th, and by appointment. Metalwork, lighting, sound, scent, and textiles all rendered by the artist, transform the car into an immersive art object and mobile installation. 

To schedule a walk-through of the exhibition with the artist or to make an appointment to view the car, please email


Chelsea Steinberg Gay (b. 1986, Brooklyn, NY) is a New York-based sculptor and performance artist. She holds an MA in Jewish Art & Visual Culture from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America and a BFA in Sculpture from SUNY Purchase College. Steinberg Gay has performed at the Tishman Auditorium at The New School for Social Research, the Bronx River Arts Center, and at Revolution Books in New York, and at Unity EcoVillage in Kobina Ansa Ghana. Her work has been exhibited in numerous domestic and international shows and private collections.

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