Phenomena Project
Social Progress Through Contemporary Art
About Phenomena

Phenomena Project is an art organization based in New York City. Our mission is to increase awareness of, and initiate dialog on important societal issues and cultural challenges through the medium of contemporary art. We believe that creative responses to the world around us can lead to positive social progress.

We aim to work with the most relevant and inspiring artists as well as arts, civic and community organizations whose work has the power to effect change in the face of the challenging conditions of our times.
Our initiatives seek out constructive solutions for bridging the gulf between the contemporary art world and society as a whole. We believe that art can contribute a different perspective on many fundamental societal concerns. By encouraging interaction and offering a different perspective we aim to bring about discourse and even resolution. It is this vital artistic process that we believe should be an integral part of the wider public realm.

Madina Stepanchenko
Project Director
A tenured television journalist with over 15 years of field experience, Madina Stepanchenko is the author of several documentaries on environmental protection, deforestation and preservation of indigenous peoples in the Far East and the impact of commercial practices on marine wildlife. Passionately active in a number of social projects, she has initiated and successfully lobbied a Bill on Foster Care that resulted in the closing of several orphanages and raising the number of participating foster families from 6 to 500 in under four years. With a team of dedicated individuals, Ms. Stepanchenko has founded a school for foster parents where education as well as legal and psychological counseling are provided on a non-profit basis. Her background in support of the arts, her involvement with various social projects, and her experience in journalism and documentary film-making about art became the foundation for The Phenomena Project, as well as for her curatorial endeavors within the framework of this initiative.
Joachim Pissarro
Project Advisor
Bershad Professor of Art History and Director of the Hunter College Galleries Adjunct Curator, Department of Painting and Sculpture, the Museum of Modern Art since 2007. Joachim Pissarro previously served as the Curator in MoMA’s Department of Painting and Sculpture (2003-07). MoMA exhibitions organized by Mr. Pissarro include Pioneering Modern Painting: Cézanne and Pissarro 1865–1885 (2005) and Out of Time: A Contemporary View (with Eva Respini, 2006). From 1997 to 2000, Mr. Pissarro held the position of a Seymour H. Knox, Jr. Curator of European and Contemporary Art at the Yale University Art Gallery.
Darren Jones
A Graduate of Central Saint Martins College of Art, London (BA. Hons 1997) and Hunter College, New York (MFA 2009) Jones exhibits internationally. He represented Scotland and the USA at the Moscow Biennale of Young Art (2010) and the Queens International, NY (2009). He is the co-founder of the artists collective ‘Shopfloor' (London 1997); the founder and chair of the ACE Curatorial Committee for the Hunter College Galleries, NY (2007-9) and the founder and curator for the St George’s Church Artist Residency Program, NY (2007-10). Darren works individually and as one half of the Collaborative ‘Jones and Roa’. Further venues include The Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh; Athens Institute of Contemporary Art, GA; Jersey City Museum, NJ; and the National Library of Argentina. He has won several awards including the Scottish International Education Trust Grant (2007-9). Phenomena also benefits from Jones’s previous career in Visual Merchandising and retail Marketing when he worked for international brands in London and Paris. Jones's recent critical writing has appeared in Artforum, Artcritical, Artslant, The Brooklyn Rail, ArtUS and White Zinfandel.