Video works:

    (Exhibited as a continuous loop)

    (Exhibited as a continuous loop)

    Video documentation of Installations:

    Narrative Shorts



    Working across a wide range of mediums including installation, photography, video, film and collage, I fabricate cinematic spaces in which a fragment of a story is inferred. My work employs iconic imagery including things like floods, ruins, shipwrecks and ghost towns. These fictional spaces draw from the tropes of theatrical sets, 30-second commercial spots, and Hollywood classics to deconstruct narrative story telling. I investigate the tensions between fictions and realities, the still and moving image, and the hazy mis-rememberings of personal vs. artificial memories. Was it a memory from my childhood, or am I just recalling a scene from a movie?


    I seek to occupy that fine line between fiction and reality, and question our ability to discern between the two. Romanian director Andrei Serban once said, theater “does not really happen on the stage. It happens in the audience’s head.” I’m fascinated by the suspension of disbelief but wonder: can we simultaneously get lost in a movie while being fully aware of its falsehood. I make works that are platforms for narrative, with significant parts omitted as a constant reminder to look directly at the fourth wall, as well as through it.



    Sarah O Donnell (born in Killybegs, Ireland) works in a range of media including film, video, installation, photography, and sculpture. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Sculpture from the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, PA in 2007, where she received the Edith Weil Hecht Memorial Award in Sculpture.
    After finishing her undergraduate studies, O Donnell worked in a range of roles on independent short and feature-length films including positions as Art Director, and Production Designer, eventually producing and directing her own narrative short films.

    She received a full fellowship to earn her Master of Fine Arts degree in Sculpture from The Ohio State University in 2012. In the summer of 2012, she received a full fellowship to attend a month-long residency at the Vermont Studio Center and in 2014 she was awarded a three-month residency at the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts.

    O Donnell has exhibited her work in venues such as The Bronx Museum of the Arts, The BYU Museum of Art in Provo, UT, Burlington City Arts in Burlington, VT, the Urban Art Space in Columbus, OH, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia, PA, the Icebox Project Space at the Crane Arts in Philadelphia as well as several alternative gallery spaces and performance venues in the Philadelphia and Baltimore areas.


    O Donnell was a founding partner with Abbey Meaker of Overnight Projects, a nomadic artist-run exhibition program based out of Burlington, VT that ran from 2015 to 2019.   

  • CV


    2012 MFA Sculpture, The Ohio State University

    2007 BFA Sculpture, Tyler School of Art, Temple University

    2006 Temple University Rome, Italy. International studies, Spring semester


    Selected Exhibitions
    *denotes solo exhibition


    *No Ghost, Francis Colburn Gallery, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT


    Make Moran, group exhibition, Karma Birdhouse Gallery, Burlington, VT

    An Order, site specific installations in former orphanage at Burlington College, Burlington, VT

    Bronx Calling, AIM Biennial, The Bronx Museum of Art, Bronx, NY

    Ditch Projects/ Third Meaning, Portland, OR (in collaboration with Mike Calway-Fagen)

    State Parks, University San Diego Art Gallery, San Diego, CA



    * The Light is the Source of the Land, exhibition and installation, BYU Museum of Art, Provo, Utah


    * A Visible Night, Burlington City Arts, Burlington VT with site specific light installation in Burlington’s Moran Plant
    * Sarah O Donnell, Upstairs at West Branch, Stowe, VT


    NextWave: Master of Fine Art Thesis Exhibition, Urban Art Space, The Ohio State University
    Annual Fergus Scholarship Exhibition, Hopkins Gallery, The Ohio State University


    Recent Arrivals, Hopkins Gallery, The Ohio State University, Columbus OH
    Annual Fergus Scholarship Exhibition, Hopkins Gallery, The Ohio State University, Columbus


    It's Who You Know, Invitational Exhibition, Projects Gallery, Philadelphia
    We're All Connected, Invitational Exhibition, 40th Street AIR space, Philadelphia
    Parts & Labor, Annex Gallery, Baltimore, MD. Collaborative performance with Elizabeth Thamm
    Annual Mummer's New Year's Day Parade, Performed with Vaudevillains Brigade, Philadelphia


    Art Dash, Invitational Exhibition, Little Berlin Gallery, Philadelphia
    Annual Open Video Call, Juried Exhibition of Video Artists,
    Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia
    Offerings, Collaborative Exhibition, Little Berlin Gallery, Philadelphia, PA
    Victory for Tyler, Juried Exhibition, IceBox Project Space, Philadelphia PA


    *Post Production, Little Berlin Gallery, Philadelphia PA
    Restless Discontent, My House Gallery, Philadelphia PA


    HausWerk., Site Specific Collaboration with Andrew Brehm, Christakis House, Paoli, PA
    Like Sardines. Senior Sculpture Exhibition, Tyler Gallery, Elkins Park, PA
    I’ll be around, BFA Thesis exhibition, Tyler Hall, Elkins Park PA
    Sasoseven, Penrose Gallery, Elkins Park, PA
    We Grew Up On TeeVee, Tyler Gallery. Elkins Park, PA
    Annual Juried Student Exhibition. Tyler Gallery, Elkins Park, PA


    Annual Student Exhibition. Temple Gallery, Rome Italy


    Residencies & Fellowships

    2015 MacDowell Colony Fellowship, Peterborough, NH (Fellowship awarded but unable to attend)

    2014 Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, three month residency, Omaha, NE
    2013 Vermont Studio Center, Vermont Week, Johnson, VT

    2012 Full Fellowship awarded by the David Bermant Foundation, The Vermont Studio Center, Johnson VT

    2010 University Fellowship, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH


    Lectures/ Visiting Artist

    2017 Visiting Artist Lecture, University of Iowa

    2016 Guest Speaker, Vermont Preservation Trust, Waterbury VT


    Visiting Artist Lecture, The University of Vermont, Burlington, VT

    PechaKucha Night, Fleming Museum of Art, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT


    Visiting Artist Lecture, Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, Omaha, NE

    Visiting Artist Lecture, University of Indiana Bloomington


    Visiting Artist Lecture Series, Brigham Young University, Provo UT


    Post-Production Gallery Talk with Matthew Suib and Nadia Hironaka, Little Berlin Gallery, Philadelphia, PA


    Honors & Awards


    The Bronx Museum of Art, Artist in the Marketplace program participant

    Annual Fergus Memorial Scholarship Award, The Ohio State University


    Graduate Research Grant, The Ohio State University, Dept. of Arts

    & Humanities
    Dedalus Foundation, Master of Fine Arts Fellowship Nominee
    Annual Fergus Memorial Scholarship Award, The Ohio State University


    Best Local Film, Harrisburg Artsfest Film Festival. Awarded to short film, “Imprint”

    Edith Weil Hecht Memorial Award in Sculpture, Tyler School of Art


    Press & Publications


    "Overnight Projects Artists Find Their Place", Rachel Elizabeth Jones, Seven Days, Dec. 9, 2015


    "Plant With a Plan: At the South End Art Hop, Artists Advocate for the Moran", Sadie Williams, Seven Days, Sept 9, 2015


    "Local Artists Bring New Life to Former Burlington Orphanage", Sadie Williams, Seven Days, August 5, 2015, http://www.sevendaysvt.com/vermont/local-artists-bring-new-life-to-former-burlington-orphanage/Content?oid=2789418


    "Art Pops Up at Burlington College", Ric Kasini Kadour, Art Map Burlington, August 3, 2015


    "Bronx Museum Showcases (and Helps) Emerging Artists", New York Times, July 10, 2015


    "Artists respond to call from the Bronx", Victoria Stapley-Brown, The Art Newspaper, 13 July 2015



    “Sarah O Donnell's first museum exhibition opens at BYU's Museum of Art”, Artdailiy.org, April 24, 2014


    “Light- Based Artist Sarah O Donnell’s Ghostly Work on View at BYU”, Eric Olsen, America’s Most Haunted, April 7, 2014

    “Sarah O Donnell: A Visible Night” Meg Brazill, Art New England Magazine November/ December 2013

    Fan Mail: Sarah O Donnell” A. Will Brown, Daily Serving October 10, 2013

    Beautiful Ruin”, Megan James, Seven Days, Sept. 11, 2013

    A Visible Night by Sarah O Donnell”, Amandas Ong, Elephant Magazine, Sept 04, 2013

    Summer exhibitions at Burlington City Arts expand beyond gallery walls to
    Burlington's Moran Plant” Artdaily.org, August 29, 2013:


    Opening Reception: Sam Falls and Sarah O Donnell”, Vermont Art Guide:

    “Art Installation Lights Up Moran Plant”, David Charns, WPTZ News Burlington, July 31

    “Light Show Brightens Up Burlington’s Gloomy Moran Plant”, Kevin J. Kelley, Seven Days July 24, 2013

    “Art Exhibit Lights Up Old Moran Plant”, Deanna Lablanc, WCAX News Burlington, July 22, 2013

    Post #4, Hyde Park, VT: Sarah O Donnell (Artist)”, Concept Plus Object blog
    Invited to write by guest blogger, Mike Calway-Fagen, February 16, 2013


    “Post Production”, Roberta Fallon and Libby Rosof, Philadelphia Artblog, June 22, 2008

    “For students, home is where the art is,” Lini S. Kadaba, Philadelphia Inquirer,
    December 17, 2007

    “Hauswerk” Roberta Fallon and Libby Rosof, Philadelphia Artblog, December 19, 2007


    “Art students show that hard ‘werk’ pays off in Paoli”, Rachel Perry, Main Line Life, December 11, 2007




    "Bronx Calling", AIM Biennial Catalog, Bronx Museum of the Arts, Bronx, NY


    NextWave: Master of Fine Art Thesis exhibition catalog, Urban Art Space, The Ohio State University
    Annual Fergus Scholarship exhibition Catalog, Hopkins Gallery, The Ohio State University

    Like Sardines exhibition catalog, Senior Sculpture Exhibition, Tyler Gallery, Elkins Park PA
    HausWerk Group exhibition catalog, Christakis House, Paoli, PA
    Tyler School of Art Admissions Catalog 2007-2008, Sculpture Portfolio,
    Sasoseven Group Exhibition Catalog


    Professional Experience
    2015- Present, Founding Partner and Co-Director, Overnight Projects, Burlington, VT

    2014-2015 Studio Assistant, Nancy Hellebrand, Photographer, Philadelphia, PA

    2012- 2014 Assistant Director, West Branch Gallery & Sculpture Park, Stowe VT
    2011-12 Graduate Teaching Associate (Instructor of Record), The Ohio State University, Foundations 4D: Art 208 Real and Recorded Time Arts.
    2010 Gallery Assistant, Arader Gallery, Philadelphia, PA
    2006 Gallery Intern, Vox Populi Artist’s Collective, Philadelphia PA
    2005 Gallery Assistant, Woven Fiber Arts House. West Chester, PA



    email: info@sarahodonnell.com


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