An experiment in Post-it modernism

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Kneeling, Nina Seigenfeld-Velazquez, 51, swept a black Sharpie down a sheet of brown paper taped up at the Riverdale library. Her wrist traced the profile of a cheek and a chiseled chin. She etched in the eyebrow, as she discussed the upcoming opening of her show, What’s Mine Is Yours.

For the past two years, Ms. Seigenfeld-Velazquez has been drawing faces on Post-it notes. The Riverdalian has crafted many mini drawings, some while riding the subway, others while manning the security desk at Robert J. Christen School, PS 81, where she works as a parent coordinator. And recently, while entertaining her children without the assistance of electricity after superstorm Sandy. 

Once she collected 400 Post-it notes, she knew she was ready to show off her work. Her exhibit, What’s Mine is Yours, opened at the Riverdale Public Library on Saturday and will remain on display through Saturday, Jan. 26. 

“I like the idea of making something really extraordinary out of something ordinary. So I like the idea of using really ordinary materials, stuff I have lying around the office,” Ms. Seigenfeld-Velazquez said as she set up on Nov. 16. “It’s at the library. People will come. I’ll tell them, ‘Take one,’ Which means you now own your first piece of art. I think there’s something really empowering about that.”

On one wall, she stuck four rows of pink, green, yellow, purple, green and blue Post-it notes covered with everything from sleek, minimal profiles to detailed sketches. 

While Post-it notes may be her main canvas, faces are what bind the exhibit. 

A purple cardboard crate originally used to store fruit boasted black and gold ones, as did white tiles, a cigar box and a second-hand picture frame. 

Drawings on an orange napkin, a plate and a graffiti-covered car hung on a second wall. When she noticed two walls were broken up by wooden frames that were missing their shelves, Ms. Seigenfeld-Velazquez taped brown and back paper over them and drew more faces.

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