Originally from Brooklyn, New York Brenda Schertz received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the Art Institute of Boston and completed her Master’s degree in Sign Language Education at Gallaudet University.
Currently Schertz is a senior lecturer teaching American Sign Language an Deaf studies at the Department of Linguistics at Cornell University. Schertz has taught covering the topics of ASL, Deaf studies and Interpreting at the University of Rochester, National Technical Institute for the Deaf and at the University of Southern Maine.
Schertz is passionate about the arts and coordinated USM’s annual Maine Deaf Film Festival for 12 years and the Deaf Rochester Film Festival in 2017. She curated her first art exhibit of Deaf artists’ work in 1993, and has been guest curator for several exhibits. She organized a year-long, seven-city National Touring Exhibit of Deaf Culture Art; and in 2018, curated Beyond Form: Non-Objective Art by Deaf Artists at NTID. She’s delighted to be working with the Dyer Arts Center again, with the current exhibit, This is Not Normal: Deaf Modernist Sensibilities. In the past she was a museum educator at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
Born and raised near Chautauqua, New York Kenzie Robbins Mencer received her Bachelor of Science degree from Rochester Institute of Technology of Rochester, New York.
Currently, Mencer is working as the Collections Assistant at the RIT/NTID Dyer Arts Center. Mencer has helped in the organization and development of the Dyer’s permanent collection of over 1,000 artworks by Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing artists. She recently took on the role of planning and implementing exhibitions. This will be her first assistant curated show with the Dyer.
Mencer has an extensive background in collections, previously working in conservation at the George Eastman Museum, the Thomas Edison family papers at Chautauqua Institution, and private collections. She has been looking forward to the possibility of a Surrealism show since she was hired at the Dyer serval years ago, and is excited to see it come to life through This is Not Normal: Deaf Modernist Sensibilities.